First Council Meeting Since the October Election Blackout

Seems like we should have had those meetings in October after all.

Because no City Council Meetings were held in October due to the Election we had a stacked calendar tonight.

They had the Utility Users Tax on the end of the agenda and choose to address that TAB item first. What that TAB item was for was city staff laying out the ground work for the workshop that will be held November 20th. What seemed the hardest was getting the council on board to attend the workshop, the biggest problem maker was Joe Baca Jr. I’m not sure if he was still licking his wounds from November 6th or if he really only cares about parks and that’s it but he had a scheduling conflict with that day and refused to adjust his schedule.

What the UUT (Utility Users Tax) is the 8% tax on all the utilities you use in the city of Rialto and amounts to a little more than 11 million dollars for the general fund. The way it was sold 5 years ago was a tax to help pay for Police and Fire operations looking back it was probably sold the same way Measure “V” was if you don’t vote for this the police and fire will suffer. I was young and not living in the city back then so I was listening to what my parents, in laws & friends were telling me about the UUT.

What’s scary now is they began floating the idea of raising the percentage to as high as 12% as a way to punish voters for not falling for their lies with Measure “V”. I don’t like this tax but if they are straight with the community and don’t raise the percentage because it means such a big piece of the general fund.

What also was annoying was the fact that things are changing with the sale of Rialto’s water and waste water systems to Viola and West Valley Water. The deal was for 30 million dollars, tonight it was brought up that there is an additional 5 Million the city can borrow, that we have to pay back. There was talk of your 100 percent increase in rates over 4 years would be more if they borrowed that money.

City Staff brought up bringing back the Per’s Tax. I’m not familiar with this tax but Council was scared to death of another lawsuit from our friends the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association. Apparently Howard Jarvis stopped Rialto from doing this long ago. If they bring it back and Jon Coupal wants to sue on a residents behalf I will be first in line.

Everyone kept saying we don’t want to raise taxes then talked about a new way to tax the community. Also Transparency is the buzz word right now all of the Council People want to provide it even though they have been hiding things from us for years. Even June Hayes RUA Committee member was blown away by the new talk of 5 million in available borrowed money.

Ed Scott tried to equate the 5 million to a homeowner who buys a house then finds out they qualify for more money and takes it. A homeowner can only take more money if the value of the house meets the desired loan amount. Also its not free money it does raise the interest and principle monthly payment.

So 5 million is what percent of 130 million its 3.84 percent almost a filth of the entire loan and when your talking millions that’s not chump change.

So lets re-cap:

*Water and Waste Water rates will go up for the next four years.

*Rialto wants you to possibly pay 12% on your UUT (up from 8%).

*Rialto pays 8-10 cents more per gallon than cities like San Bernardino that have higher sales tax than Rialto.

*Late fees were increased largely in part to Mr. Everyone Else Is Doing It Why Not Us.

So what should we do?

First off plan on being at the UUT Workshop on 11-20-12 at 6pm.

Second call, email and ask him in person if given the opportunity. Him I mean Joe Baca Jr. who for some reason refuses to attend the UUT workshop on 11-20-12 he claims to have plans. So do I Mr. Baca my parents will be in that week from out of state yet I will be there and I am not a paid member of the city of Rialto just a concerned resident.

Joe Baca Jr.

Email: Bacaj@rialtoca.gov

Phone: 909-820-2525

Second attend the Council Meeting on 11-27-12 because there they will make the final vote to officially sell off the water and waste water, vote on whether to put the UUT on the ballot in March and at what percent and its the last day for Ed Scott, Mayor Grace Vargas and Deborah Robertson’s last day as a council member so there may be some interesting exchanges at this meeting.

Tomarrow I will Re-cap the rest of what I stayed for.

 

Coffee with the Chief overview

Coffee with the Chief was held at Coffee Nuttz at 8am.

Chief Farrar talking with the attedees

Rialto pd staff in attendace Chief Farrar, Captain DeAnda and Lt. Karol and Volenteer Cordinator Judy Roberts.

Captain DeAnda and Lt. Karol and Volenteer Cordinator Judy Roberts

Chief Farrar began with showing off the new Ford Taurus police units.

New Canine Car Ford Taurus Utility

Chief Farrar announced officer Nelson as the new Community officer. He will attend the outreach programs the Police Department puts out as well as schools and will be the begining of the eventual return of community policing to Rialto.

Dr. Michael Neeki, who regularly works in the trauma center at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center in Rialto, pulls double duty as a tactical medic for the Inland Valley SWAT team. Click this link for the full story on CBS 2 news http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2012/11/12/rialto-er-doctor-trades-in-scalpels-for-guns-as-swat-volunteer/

Newest reserve officer was sworn in. Chief Farrars goal is to beef up the reseve unit to give Rialto PD the ability to add officers to the street at a low cost.

Grants submited for police officer supplies like bullet proof vests. Also Lt. Karol also spoke about a grant to get a vehical to help deal with big rig traffic in the city.
Someone asked if people can help with grant writting and Chief Farrar said all help would be great and appreciated.

Air Support Unit last 2 months logged 200 hours of flight time. Also Redlands PD has decided to join this joint effort. With thier addition to our regional Air Team Rialto now has the availability of thier fixed wing Air Support Unit a great resource.

Javier palitto helped design the new badge which will be displayed at Council Meeting tonight. Badge will display Rialti PD’s commitment to the Community. Come on out and see the badge or watch on TV tonight. Also Chief Farrar will be introducing the first new Rialto Police Officer graduating Topof Class.

Resident gave the police big kudos for thier work with Community and the School District.

Question was raised about new Mayors ability to work with police? All three command officers said they have always worked well with all Mayors and council members and look forward to working with Mayor Robertson.

Plan is by next year to reintegrate the Narc program.

The Crowd about 20 in attendance

Also the Chief updated us on the canine unit and Cash for Gold businesses:

 

The Rialto Police Canine Team competed on November 2nd and 3rd in the Riverside County Sheriff’s 17th Annual Canine Trials. The canine team did excellent competing against 40 other canine teams, from all over California, Texas, and Baja Mexico.

Officer J. Maltese and K-9 Smoky – First Place in Building search (3 years in a row) and
Third Place in Area Search

Officer C. Compton and K-9 Jango – Second Place in Area search and Fifth Place in Area Search for Narcotics
Officer A. Anderson and K-9 Gilly – Second Place in Protection and Fifth Place in Parcels Narcotics
Officer J. Breen and K-9 Kimo – First Place in Protection

The moritorium on new Cash for Gold businesses has been lifted and in iys place are stiff restrictions these businesses must follow much like those for Pawn Shops in an effort to keep people from selling stolen items there.

Coffee With The Chief Of Rialto Police

11 Nov 2012 Leave a comment

Coffee with the Chief

Local area residents and leaders come together to learn and diologe about Police services in the city of Rialto.

Tuesday November 13, 2012

8:00 to 9:00 am

Coffee Nutzz, 119 E. Foothill

“Coffee with the Chief” offers resident’s an opportunity to personally meet their Police Chief and other representatives in a casual setting. At “Coffee with the Chief” community members will learn about the police department, special projects, and other related events. Please join Chief Tony Farrar for “Coffee with the Chief”.

“Spotlight” Interview with Rialto Unified School Board Member Edgar Montes

11 Nov 2012 Leave a comment

Member: Edgar Montes
email: emontes@rialto.k12.ca.us

We would like to introduce Mr. Edgar Montes to those of you in Rialto that may not know him. Mr. Montes is one of our School Board Members here in Rialto. I have had the privilege of speaking and interacting with Mr. Montes over the last 2 years and have found him to be someone that cares for the children and the community. Mr. Montes has made it his job to stand in the GAP for our schools and children. Something else less involved people may not know is the riff that exists between the City Government and the Rialto Unified School Board and no one knows why this is, it’s like the Hatfield’s and Mac Coys. Mr. Montes has begun slowly interacting in various city functions and answering questions in reference to Rialto Unified School District when he can. You can find Mr. Montes attending Coffee With The Chief, Area Command Meetings, Rialto’s Farmers Market & the occasional City Council meeting.

He is an honest and open Board Member and works as a peace maker when the situation allows. One thing with Mr. Montes that I have come to experience is you wont ever agree 100% on everything but with Mr. Montes you know where he stands, and in the end its on the side of our kids and schools. Don’t be afraid of disagreeing with Mr. Montes because that won’t hurt or hinder the relationship but make it stronger and give it a solid foundation on where everyone stands.

I would like to thank Mr. Montes for his time answering our questions:

 

 

RIALTO NOW – Tell us a little about yourself were you raised here in Rialto? What’s your story?

EDGAR MONTES – I was born in the summer of 1979 in Upland, CA. I have lived in Rialto since 1988. At that time I attended Maple Elementary in Fontana, my parent’s house although it was within Rialto city limits was actually within the FUSD boundaries. Much like today were Rialto Unified School District boundaries cut into parts of Fontana, Colton, San Bernardino and Lytle Creek. I attended Alder Middle School and A.B. Miller High School also in Fontana. So although I attended public school in Fontana, I was indeed raised in Rialto.

RIALTO NOW – What was the driving force behind your desire to run for School Board for RUSD?

EDGAR MONTES – My wife and I bought our home in Rialto in 2002. With 20 years left on our 30 year mortgage we have no plans of leaving Rialto anytime soon. I love my community. I grew up here and have seen first-hand the ups and downs and all the good and bad about our tiny 4 miles wide 8 miles long city.

Going to school in Fontana and having friends and family all through-out the Inland Empire I saw many similarities in some of our public schools. For example; the loss of public school funding over the years, and how that loss of funding and mismanagement of public tax-payer’s dollars affects kids from “socially-economically-challenged” backgrounds. The switch from Junior High Schools to Middle Schools and with that the loss of Junior High Sports teams. Arts and music programs cut or reduced. Increased focus on test scores. Decreased focus on the development of “the basics”like reading and writing, math and science. Above all as a parent and a product of our public schools, I understand the many challenges parents, students, and schools face in these tough economic times.

RIALTO NOW – Have you ever run for any elected office in the past?

EDGAR MONTES – No. I was elected in November of 2010. It was my first time running for elected office, but not the first time I ran for something. In High School at Fontana A.B. Miller High, I ran for A.S.B. President my senior year and won. I also ran for school site council at A.B. Miller after graduating from there and was also elected.

RIALTO NOW – What is your background in regards to education?

EDGAR MONTES – As far as my college education goes, I have put that on hold for now. With 11 year old twin boys, a 3 month old baby boy, a small family-owned business to run, and a democratically elected position as a Rialto school board member, I want to wait a little before going back to school. I am the kind of person that if I will not be able to commit myself 100% to something, than I won’t even bother wasting anybody’s time. I was attending San Bernardino Valley College and the University of Phoenix Ontario Campus before that at the time I ran and got elected to the school board.

It’s important for me to point out that I have been criticized by some as a college student on the public school board for not being a college graduate. Some people have even gone as far to criticize me for the community college I was attending. For example at a time when our school district was laying-off many teachers and cutting programs for students because of the loss of funding, I took a stand against the wasteful spending of $70,000 (public tax-dollars) to send 30 school district employees and two school board members to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania for a supposed “one week leadership training.”My fellow school board colleague Michael Ridgway said “there is nothing like this locally. If you want a Harvard education, you go to Harvard. You don’t go to (San Bernardino) Valley College. These are world-class presenters. Education is expensive. The only thing I have found more expensive than education is ignorance.” My response to him was this “I have also met my share of “educated fools” and that I don’t undermine anyone or judge anyone by their level of education or where they went to school.”

The San Bernardino Sun Newspaper wrote an article about the issue of the Gettysburg trip and even wrote an editorial supporting my stance on the issue. What matters most to me on a school board or any elected office is “common sense.”

RIALTO NOW – With school district budgets getting slashed every year what are your ideas on still offering a quality education?

EDGAR MONTES – I believe that even with the loss of revenue for public schools it is still possible to give a quality education to ALL students. I am a strong supporter of grant writing, I asked for grant writers for our school district on a contingency contract, meaning they would only get paid a percentage if they got us grants. Unfortunately, at the recommendation of our superintendent the board opted to go with a grant writing company that charged $5,000 per month for six months that did not produce any grants. I also am a strong supporter of partnering with local businesses in the community. If we reach-out to the local businesses in our school district, they can help us by donating to our schools, sponsoring our students, and working with us to build bridges not burn them. I also believe the city of Rialto would be a great partner in the education of our students. There was a time when our school district and city worked together on many things and you and I both know that is no longer the case. But I remain optimistic and will continue to push for rebuilding that relationship, because what is good for our city is good for our parents and students and what is good for our parents and students is good for our communities.

RIALTO NOW – How important are sports programs and the arts to you within the confines of public education?

EDGAR MONTES – I am a strong supporter of sports programs and arts, and I can say that because you can find me and my sons at school games, art competitions, and at school district talent shows. Many children don’t know they have a gift or special talent for something and it’s important that we help all students find what interests them, what drives them and tie that into their education. Some kids are great leaders, others make awesome drawings. I saw a student from Rialto High School free-style spoken word poetry, powerful and moving.

RIALTO NOW – The current school of thought is to prepare every student to enter college. Do you agree with the thought that every student should and can go to college?

EDGAR MONTES – I believe that every child should be given support, guidance, and encouragement to go to college. The sad reality is that only about 15% of high school graduates actually go. Many people know that if you constantly, repeatedly tell a child that they will “never amount to anything” most likely, not always, but most likely they won’t. And vice versa, if you constantly and repeatedly tell a child that “they can and will be successful in life and do something great”, most likely they will.

RIALTO NOW – As someone who studied education, I know that not every student is college bound, yet through our Regional Occupational Programs we can prepare those students to be successful in the work force. What value do you place on RUSD and its Regional Occupational Program?

EDGAR MONTES – I place a very high value on any ROP at any school district. Preparing students for the workforce is critical to any family and community as a whole. ROP is a great way to give students the resources and skills needed for many vocational careers. Aside from the ROP offered to students at the high schools like ROP Jr. Navy and ROP Jr. Marines, etc., through our Adult ROP high school graduates and adults can enroll in our Adult Education Program. Through our Adult School we offer Career Technical Courses like Word Processing/Keyboarding, and Intro to Computers. In adult ROP students can take specialized courses like Office Operations and Technology, Business Technology Lab, Pharmacy Technician, and Pharmacy Clerk. I not only want to continue these much needed programs, but would to like secure funding to expand them.

RIALTO NOW – What is the biggest factor that can help ensure quality teaching? Is certification a measure of quality?

EDGAR MONTES – I think certification is good, but I don’t think it’s the best way to measure quality teaching. I think quality teaching can be measured by pro-activeness, the ability to adapt to new technology and the ever changing times. Most Hispanics/Latinos/Chicanos have native-indigenous roots, and we use many metaphors when speaking. There is a saying in Spanish I would like to share with you. Here it goes “La vaca que da leche, de lejos se ve” which is difficult to translate but I will try, “the cow that gives milk, you can see from far away.” School principals, parents, and students know quality teaching when they see it.

RIALTO NOW – One of the jobs you have listed on Face book is an education advocate, can you explain what this is.

EDGAR MONTES – An Education Advocate is anyone involved in advocating for student’s education in any way. I have advocated for students education since my sophomore year in high school when me and a group of students organized a student walk-out to protest awful treatment of students, unfair discipline practices, and a hostile learning environment to name a few. Regardless of what anyone says, that walk-out brought many changes to Fontana A.B. Miller High School that by my senior year our high school was award the “California Distinguished School Award.” Did I mention I was elected A.S.B. President that year? As an education advocate I have advocated for students and parents all across the Inland Empire from Big Bear to Perris, and for everything from unfair suspensions/expulsions to speaking at public board meetings. As an education advocate I also attend rallies organized by activist, school employee unions, and community organizations against the state budget cuts to education. Now I am an education advocate for parents, students, and employees as a member of the Rialto school board.

RIALTO NOW – I have had many friends in the city of Rialto remark on the state of your special education programs here in Rialto Unified School District. The biggest complaints are that this department seems to miss the mark more and more frequently. Are you aware of this issue, and if so what are some steps to fixing this?

EDGAR MONTES – The problems of Special Ed in our district are something I became aware of when I was running for school board in 2010. I witnessed parents and students along with Special Education advocates speak at school board meetings many times. Their complaints and their concerns regarding Special Ed were never responded to or addressed. After I got elected I took on the problems head on, I’ve been fighting for the children of Special Ed and their Parents ever since.

For the record let me first say that there are many good-hearted employees working in Special Ed. Many employees of Special Ed give 110% of themselves to the students and need full support of the RUSD leadership starting with the board of education first, and the superintendent second. Without the full support of RUSD leadership how is Special Ed staff supposed to help the students and parents. Recently a group of about 40 parents and members of the community held a protest in front of the school district office; it came out in the Sun Newspaper back in May I believe. I am only 1 vote on a board of 5. I can only keep speaking up and hope that we get some new board members that will “truly” listen to parents, staff and the community, otherwise nothing is going to change.

One of the arguments made by Dr. James Wallace former Assistant Superintendent Deputy Chief of Staff, then Assistant Superintendent of Student Services which oversaw Special Education, now Assistant Superintendent Deputy Chief of Staff again, is that RUSD spends the most amount of money compared to neighboring school districts. Whether or not that is true, the question is how much of the revenue spent by RUSD for Special Ed has actually trickled down to students and the classrooms? For example, how much money has RUSD spent on attorney’s fees for fighting parents and Special Ed advocates instead of giving the students the services they deserve. I believe in accountability, where is it? We can’t blame the Special Ed teachers, Speech Therapist, Psychologist, or any one from our Special Ed department. We need to hold accountable those at the top.

RIALTO NOW – How can our readers reach you to get more information?

EDGAR MONTES – I can be reached anytime 909-202-2485 or emontes@rialto.k12.ca.us

City of Rialto Election Update

07 Nov 2012 Leave a comment

Looks like the winners for city council are:

Shawn O’Connell and “incumbent” Ed Palmer

Looks like the winner for Mayor is:

Deborah Robertson

We are proud to see Shawn and Deborah win their perspective elections. Its exciting to see some change finally taking hold.

Vote Count Percent
ED SCOTT 6,888 43.22%
DEBORAH ROBERTSON 9,050 56.78%
Total 15,938 100.00%

Rialto – City Council
46/46 100.00%
Vote Count Percent
SHAWN P. O’CONNELL 5,693 24.44%
SARMAD ”SAM” SYED 894 3.84%
JUNE D. HAYES 3,500 15.02%
RAFAEL TRUJILLO 4,438 19.05%
JOSEF ”JOE” BRITT 2,382 10.22%
ED PALMER 6,389 27.43%
Total 23,296 100.00%

Also we would like to anounce what appears to be the end of the BACA DYNASTY. Joe Baca Sr. & Joe Baca Jr. both lost in this open election to well know democrat contenders. We also learned alot via dirty mailers about Joe Baca Jr. and his past, must watch him as he still sits on our City Council.

Congressional – District 35
245/245 100.00%
Vote Count Percent
DEM – GLORIA NEGRETE MCLEOD 46,627 53.96%
DEM – JOE BACA 39,788 46.04%
Total 86,415 100.00%
State Assembly – District 47
284/284 100.00%
Vote Count Percent
DEM – JOE BACA JR. 31,811 43.77%
DEM – CHERYL R. BROWN 40,871 56.23%
Total 72,682 100.00%

 

Also Our Congressional District 31 here is the winner:

Congressional – District 31
443/443 100.00%
Vote Count Percent
REP – BOB DUTTON 55,940 44.81%
REP – GARY G. MILLER 68,892 55.19%
Total 124,832 100.00%

Also Measure “V” seems to have lost!!!!!!!!!!

Measure V – City of Rialto
46/46 100.00%
Vote Count Percent
YES 7,585 47.10%
NO 8,518 52.90%
Total 16,103 100.00%

Coming up in Rialto in October

02 Oct 2012 Leave a comment

Pepper Avenue Extension Groundbreaking         

The City of Rialto invites you to the Pepper Avenue Extension Groundbreaking. The City of Rialto is moving forward to greatly improve traffic circulation and access to SR210. This event takes place October 2, 2012 at 10:00 am north of the intersection of Pepper Avenue and Winchester Ave. in Rialto. For more information, please contact the Public Works Dept at (909) 820-2602.

Farmer’s Market         

Every Wednesday, from 10:00 am – 2:00 pm, Rialto City Hall, 150 S. Palm Ave. (Grass Area off South Parking Lot)!

Get Healthy, come out and pickup some fresh Vegetables and Fruit!

Coffee With The Chief

Come out and learn whats up within the police department and also have the ability to ask questions of the cities top law enforcement official.

Map of this months location is below:

Great oportunity to hear others issues and air out your own.

Candidates Come Out and Answer Your Questions

These events are being organized, sponsored and marketed by the community and local businesses there is no sponsorship by any city entity. Flores Park NW acts on its own and is not controlled by any agency. All candidates were given the opportunity to host a Q&A, October 16th, 24th, 30th & 31st are still open and available.

Get your questions answered and find out where the people running stand on issues that matter to YOU:

When: Tuesdays & Wednesdays in October @6pm

Where: Flores Park 1020 West Etiwanda in between Cactus and Cedar.

Who: Look Below

Deborah Robertson

Rialto Councilwoman

P.O. Box 852

Rialto, CA 92377

(909) 644-8520

Shawn P. O’Connell

Retired Police Sergeant

2542 W. Windhaven Dr.

Rialto, CA 92377

(909) 429-1138

Josef (Joe) Britt

Local Businessman

720 E. Madrona St.

Rialto, CA 92376

(951) 204-4013

Nancy O’Kelley

Former Principle Eisenhower High School

Running For RUSD Board

Citizen’s Academy

The Citizen’s Academy curriculum will include, among other things:  criminal investigations, traffic laws, radio communications, drug and gang enforcement, police ethics, police K9s, SWAT, crisis negotiation, crime analysis, and patrol functions.

Anyone interested in attending the Citizen’s Academy, please contact Lieutenant Kathy Thompson at (909) 820-2560, or an application can be located on the department’s website at http://www.rialtopd.com/, or obtained at the Rialto Police Department, 128 N. Willow Avenue.

Class size is limited to about 40 attendees, due to site capacity limitations.  Preference will be given first to Rialto residents.  You must be at least 21 years of age; no felony convictions; no misdemeanor convictions within the last 3 years; and no pending criminal cases.  The recent academy class filled up quickly, and classes are filled on a first come, first served basis.

Please submit your application no later than Wednesday, September 26, 2012.

Fire Department Open House

Join us at our Annual Fire Prevention Open House! October 13, 2012 from 9:00 am – 2:00 pm

Come out and meet some of the Rialto Fire Fighters and tour the station.  The kids will have a blast and sit in a fire engine! There will be demonstrations, food & games for the kids!

http://www.rialtoca.gov/documents/downloads/2012_Open_House_Flyer.pdf

The Haunted Fire Station

Fire Station #201 (131 S. Willow) will be a haunting place to be on October 26th & 27th.  From 5:00 – 10:00 pm, come see if you are brave enough to get through the “Scary Station”.

Halloween Hi-Jinks

The City of Rialto’s “Halloween Hi-Jinks” is an annual event that is held in downtown Rialto on Halloween night. This event takes place Wednesday, October 31st, on Riverside Avenue between Rialto and First Street from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. This is a free, family friendly event with a costume contest, guess the weight of the giant pumpkin contest, games, food and lots of candy. All booth participants are community organizations that provide a safe alternative for children to “Trick or Treat.” If you are interested in hosting a game booth and would like more information, please call 909 421-4949 or 909 877-9706.

WOMAN’S CLUB OF RIALTO A CANDIDATES FORUM

27 Sep 2012 Leave a comment

Below you will see the details on the first debate amoung the canidates looking to lead Rialto into the next few years.

We have included a map from google to better give you an idea on where the club is:

WOMAN’S CLUB OF RIALTO

219 North Riverside Ave.
PRESENTS

A CANDIDATES FORUM

October 4th, 2012 – 7:00pm (Thursday)
Mayor
Deborah Robertson
Ed Scott
RIALTO CITY COUNCIL
Shawn P. O’ Connell
Sarmad (Sam) Syed
June D. Hayes
Rafael Trujillo
Josef (Joe) Britt
Edward Palmer
CITY CLERK
Barbara A. McGee
City Treasurer
Edward J. Carrillo
MODERATOR
Lynn Hirtz
ALL WELCOME
Sharon Hughes (909) 875-3197
Angie Consolo (909) 4009

Question & Awnser Events With Rialto Officals

24 Sep 2012 Leave a comment

Ok so everyone’s biggest complaint with politics and voting is “my vote doesn’t count” or “how can you know someone from their campaign mailers”?

This election is bigger than just the president race its tons of Ballot measures and local and regional offices, people with a say on what happens daily in YOUR LIFE.

Well here is your chance to see where FOUR Local people stand on issues that matter to YOU!!!!!!

Shawn O’Connell running for City Council – These 2 seats are going to be very important with Rialto moving forward while its massive neighbor San Bernardino struggles with Bankruptcy and Internal Strife. We must have people willing to actually speak to the community and not hide information to stress out or break the spirits of the local community. Come out and ask Shawn what’s important to YOU!!!

http://www.facebook.com/events/104179109739352/

www.Shawn4Rialto.com

Joe Britt is also running for City Council and has spent a long time acting as the Gadfly to our local government as well as sitting on the Parks and Recreation board. Come out to OUR park and ask him what YOU want to know from someone who is now asking for the responsibility of making bigger decisions on OUR behalf.

http://www.facebook.com/events/145313615611286/

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Joe-Britt-for-Rialto-City-Council/302607623134033

Deborah Robertson is currently a Council Woman and is running for the seat vacated by Grace Vargas. She has worked with Flores Park Neighborhood Watch on different projects showing she is able and ready to work for and with the community. Come out and see where she stands on issues that matter most to YOU!!!!

http://www.facebook.com/events/488986811120175/

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Councilmember-Deborah-Robertson-for-Rialto-Mayor/157653127704436

Nancy O’Kelley is running for Rialto Unified School District Board. Who really knows anyone on this board or ever took any time to get to know the person your voting for? Nancy O’Kelley has worked at RUSD for years and was one of the top principles at Eisenhower High School. Come out and ask her what her plans are for OUR CHILDREN. Parents of children with special needs this is your opportunity to lay out how you feel RUSD special ed program has effected your child. Come out and let her know what we expect from her and see what her plans are. Ask her what YOU think is important!!!!!!!!!!

http://www.facebook.com/events/467287593303064/

www.nancyokelley.com

 

Were not the only ones smelling coruption

22 Aug 2012 Leave a comment

Let’s start with some awesome news we have the attention of more than just or city council we have senators and senators of the future, financial advisors and Dr. Imran Farooq.

Mr. Farooq is a partner at:

The Omnius Group – The Omnius Group specializes in comprehensive economic development to dynamically integrate public and private sectors. Our experience includes real estate development, commercial finance, green technologies, workforce development and extensive relationships across local, state and federal agencies. Our objective is to pursue projects that incorporate economic, social and environmental value in the local communities.

http://www.facebook.com/DrIFarooq

His preliminary advice is to look at:

Is it possible to propose exemptions to rate increases depending on household incomes? This might be a way to protect the most vulnerable in the community but still facilitate the deemed ‘necessary’ upgrades.

Now we were sent an interesting piece of news. The article below is about the failure of American Water to secure the contract with the City of Rialto. I find it interesting that in the press release they (RWS) claim they decided to sever ties with American Water, but here it looks like American Water was the one cutting the ties. Insiders have told me that the cities decision to ignore the residents desire to put the outsourcing issue to a vote in November gave American Water an uneasy feeling about moving forward. The city attorney’s bad advice to the council now looks like a failed political move.

You see they didn’t put the issue on the ballot for a ton of reasons:

Also if this deal is to bring Development to our city can someone explain the consequences of their miss-direction and lies as seen at the bottom of this article from the Public Works Newsletter:

 

The deal called for American Water to be paid $26.5 million a year to run the system and cover certain maintenance expenses – but not counting the automatic price escalator each year. Multiply that out 30 years – and that’s just for the O&M, which of course must be covered by sufficient revenues from the ratepayers, on top of covering the financing for the improvements, the $30 million “catch up lease payment” to the City, refinancing existing RUA debt (at much higher interest rates), etc.

When I asked Megan Madsen from Table Rock Financial about the built in profit guarantee that was there for American Water she said she had no idea what I was talking about. So when information I stumbled across leads one to believe there is more than they are telling us. Does anyone know that 27.4 million is going toward refinancing existing debt?

 

No one will tell us the rates they are financing at or why it nessicary to add such a massive amount of debt to something that’s tied to our WATER & WASTE WATER systems. On financial person told me that depending on how the loan is structured it may very well hurt more than help if the city ever found its self in the same situation as our neighbor San Bernardino. I have been told we will be in deficit spending this next fiscal year in the realm of $5 million dollars.

We need to be wiser to WHO is sitting on certain sub communities when it comes to dealings with contracting out services.

 

What do you want Rialto’s Political landscape to look like

08 Aug 2012 Leave a comment

Are you going to fall for the same old tricks, only to find our city and your wallet in the frying pan?

I want everyone to pay close attention to cities like San Bernardino, Colton and Fullerton.

Let me preface this post by making something’s clear:

  1. We have a wonderful police and fire department. From everything I’m hearing both sides are doing their best to come to the table and negotiate to not only help the council and staff balance their budget but also still provide the community with the service we need.
  2. We have a police chief that takes the time to listen to the community and a command staff out their doing their best to put the community’s concerns as a top priority.
  3. Our chief of police is an out of the box thinker. By using grant writing abilities and technology we have the ability to see long term crime prevention. They do everything you can ask of an agency that plays by rules the criminals are not bound to.
  4. I have found that when left alone and allowed to talk to the community our staff is open and honest, but once our council members find out their talking to you the communication shuts down. There is no reason we shouldn’t be able to ask questions of staff, staff is well aware of what confidential council just loves their CLOAK OF SECRACY.

Voting for an incumbent for council is not going to work this go around, they only started acting like the councilmember’s we need over the last month because of November 4th the election. There are 3 people being supported by our fire and police agencies only one deserves your vote. City Councilman Ed Palmer is up for re-election and Ed Scott is running for Mayor neither deserve a vote “IN MY OPINION”. Shawn O’Connell has a strong desire to see more openness in city government. One shouldn’t to use the threat of a freedom of information act request to get information from the city or strong arm the city government by going around and over their heads to get information that should be available to everyone.

When it comes to mayor I am making the best choice available this time and hoping a better candidate comes along in four years just in case Deborah Robertson fails me. I am backing Mrs. Robertson because when I pressed her and questioned her intentions on issues over the years she didn’t:

What did Deborah Robertson DO:

People will tell you she isn’t good because of the whole outsourcing our police issue back in the 90’s. News flash no one is letting that happen & talk to any of the council member there now and tell me you don’t hear that issue is in the back of their minds? Even the councilman running against her ALWAYS reminds me how much of our budget the Police and Fire consume each year. It’s not what you say it’s how you say it that speaks to the true meaning.

Now to the three cities I first referred to.

Why these three cities you ask? Because they all have some big problems facing their cities and they are making horrible decisions on how to respond to issues plaguing their communities. Let’s break them down one by one and ill explain:

Colton a small city with big city problems. Their budget ran out of control so bad they began to gut their city workers starting with cutting their police force by a third!!!! Colton in my estimation & by the looks of their stats on www.crimemapping.com is rife with crime and no real way to combat it. With no more RDA like other cities how will they continue to attract businesses to their city to support a strong tax base. To top it all off their chief of police retired and their mayor passed away, the city hired a new chief and replaced their mayor with his widow which was a choice that was without controversy.

San Bernardino, where do I start????? Bankruptcy, Childish City Government, Poor Spending Practices or Crime and murders and homicides soaring through the roof, paying millions of dollars to attract business in a city that isn’t safe, a era of public safety that provides poor, poor service yet gets upset when the community. (A) Questions them and (B) asks them to help with their pensions so that the city can climb out of a hole. A hole created by runaway mayor and council by negotiating for an endorsement in the next campaign instead of doing a good job for the community. The article below is from the SB Sun Newspaper and shows one of these big babies in council asking the corrupt city attorney to investigate a citizen for telling him that if he voted to not allow the city to vote on San Bernardino Being a Charter City, he would begin a recall campaign against him???????? Well if this is the case call the police lock me up and throw away the key. I have been ridding Rialto’s Council and Mayor for months over their decision to outsource our water operations and create a bad financial deal. I told them you vote for this deal at your own political fate. I meant what I said, and I said what I meant.

Attorney says he threatened councilman with recall; DA investigating

Ryan Hagen, Staff Writersbsun.com

Posted: 08/07/2012 09:49:14 PM PDT

Special Section: San Bernardino

SAN BERNARDINO – Attorney Tim Prince told Councilman Chas Kelley he would pursue a recall if and only if Kelley voted against putting charter repeal on November’s ballot, Prince said Tuesday.

“I expressly told him, I don’t expect you to personally support repeal of the charter. What I do expect and demand of you is that you give the people the right to vote,” Prince said. “Despite all the errors he’s made, despite driving us into bankruptcy, he could have just let the people have their say.”

The District Attorney’s Office received a complaint Tuesday and is investigating, said spokesman Chris Lee.

Kelley said he considered the threat to be an attempted bribe.

“Someone was trying to coerce my vote, and that’s inappropriate, unacceptable, and I made that quite clear yesterday,” he said on Tuesday.

California penal code defines a bribe as “anything of value or advantage” given or promised with a “corrupt intent to influence.”

That probably wouldn’t apply to a threat to do something that is legal, said Jessica Levinson, a professor at Loyola Law School.

“It’s certainly a threat, but is it chargeable? I’m not sure,” she said. “It’s along the lines of, ‘I’m not going to vote for Jerry Brown unless he pursues pension reform.”‘

Prince gave Kelley a notice of intention to circulate a recall petition just before discussion began on whether to add a ballot measure to repeal the city’s charter.

Kelley, whom Prince said was a swing vote, joined a 4-3 decision not to put charter repeal on the ballot.

The notice says Kelley deserves to be recalled for three reasons: an investigation into Verdemont Community Center, which Kelley “spearheaded and supervised”; advocating higher pay and other benefits for union members – who contributed heavily to his campaigns – despite warnings that the city was headed toward bankruptcy; and “dismissing his constituents by denying us the right to vote on repealing the city charter.”

The Grand Jury’s 2011-12 report criticized the construction of the Verdemont center for not having a certificate of occupancy, initial building permits or proper inspections and for construction that didn’t meet required standards.

The report also found city staff “had a general lack of understanding of the building requirements,” but doesn’t mention Kelley or other elected officials.

Kelley said he agreed with the Grand Jury’s recommendations, but the errors were made by city staff whom he said hadn’t built a community center since the 1980 s.

“I don’t micromanage or make the day-to-day decisions,” he said. “Every step of the way on this project was approved by the mayor and council.”

Prince said he had no regrets and was moving forward with petitions to remove Kelley from office and put charter repeal on a later ballot.

Several council members, including those who said charter repeal should be on the ballot, said Prince’s actions were unacceptable.

Read more: http://www.sbsun.com/ci_21259787/attorney-says-he-threatened-councilman-recall-da-investigating#ixzz22yZgyYvv

FULLERTON was most recently in the national spotlight over the Thomas Kelly case where a man died because after his encounter with some of their officers. Fullerton had a massive recall election, removed bad officers and the Chief of police. They made big changes to their use of force policy and used a PR campaign to show the community they were serious about changing the publics face of their department. So now the city council has asked the Orange County Sherriff to put together a total cost estimate to take over police services. Even though they split the vote to stall this venture this is one of those issues once the cat is out of the bag there is no going back, and this is an issue that is full of contriversary.

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FULLERTON, Calif. (KABC) — The Fullerton City Council was expected vote Tuesday on whether to begin a process that would eliminate the city’s police department and have the Orange County Sheriff’s Department take over.

The city council, which recently welcomed three new members after a recall, says the issue is one of money. Two council members said operating the police department costs tens of millions of dollars, so allowing the county sheriff to take over would save the city a lot of money, especially in management expenses. The Orange County Sheriff’s Department already provides services to other cities in north Orange County, the most recent of which is Yorba Linda.

However, there is speculation that the move is in response to the death of Kelly Thomas, a mentally ill homeless man who died after a violent confrontation with police last July. Many of the council members who support dismantling the police force have been sharp critics of the department.

Mayor Pro Tem Bruce Whitaker maintains cost is the true concern.

“Had the Kelly Thomas incident not occurred, I believe it would still be our responsibility to be looking at these costs,” he said.

With the city’s expenditures increasing by 9 percent and revenue only increasing by 1 to 2 percent over the coming years, it makes financial sense to cut the department. Should the police department be cut, about 95 percent of Fullerton’s cops would still be able to serve the public as sheriff’s deputies.

Whitaker says now that three former council members have been recalled, it will be a lot easier for the city to look at the budget more objectively.

“The city is shouldering many lawsuits at the moment, including that one from [father of Kelly Thomas] Ron Thomas. And there was an earlier settlement of $1 million to Kelly’s birth mom,” said Whitaker.

Fullerton police officials say they will abide by whatever the city council decides, but they also say public safety is more than just about dollars and cents.

Some Fullerton residents like Scott Darrah are for the idea of allowing the sheriff’s department to take over.

“As long as they get the corrupt people out and get the right people in and do the right job, that’s really all that matters, as long as we feel safe,” he said.

Others are not so keen on the idea.

“They’re doing a pretty good job, I mean they realized they did a mistake and they got rid of the people, so I think we need to keep the police, I mean it’d be ridiculous,” said Susan Montoya.

The president of the Fullerton Police Officers’ Association said he thinks the move is purely motivated by politics. He also said the entire department took a pay cut last year, and he hopes the city will honor a contract it has with the department that lasts through 2015.

Fullerton’s police department, which is about 100 years old and is one of the oldest in the nation, has undergone major changes in the past year. The police chief retired, three officers quit and two officers have been charged in Thomas’ death.

A cost analysis of the department’s dismantling would take about four months

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