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Planning decisions underway for Roseland annexation

The annexation of Roseland is going to be a costly endeavor, and the Santa Rosa City Council faces its first installment Tuesday.

The council must decide how much to spend on the complex, multi-year planning effort, including whether to promote the staff person in charge of managing the annexation and whether to study what it would take for city police to begin patrolling county islands.

Costs estimates for the planning work range from $1.2 million to $1.6 million, depending on which of three options the council chooses.

All three options involve the promotion of Community Development Director Chuck Regalia to the post of assistant city manager.

In his new position, Regalia's duties would be evenly split between his current role heading the planning, building and code enforcement departments, and managing the three-and-a-half year Roseland planning effort.

Running the annexation out of the City Manager's office makes sense because the scope of the effort, Regalia said.

"It's a broad program across all city lines," he said.

Assistant City Manager Jennifer Phillips was previously going to manage the project, but when the council pushed for the schedule to be sped up by several months, it conflicted with her other duties, including as acting chief financial officer, she said.

Regalia is "extremely knowledgeable and passionate" about the annexation and having him lead the effort makes perfect sense, Phillips said.

"We thought it was a really good approach," she said.


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