March 24th at 6pm Rialto City Council will address many issues on the nights agenda. The public will be given an opportunity to see five presentations, three more approvals for more training, discussion on Fireworks and a $500,000 giveaway. If you only attend a few Council Meetings this one will be one you don’t want to miss here is what we see are the highlights:
Presentations & Proclamations:
Out of the five items under this heading we see three that stand out.
- Rialto resident Don Griggs as Assembly Member Brown’s 2015 Unsung Hero.
- Cuba Sister City Presentation
- Introduction of new Rialto Police Officers
There are a lot of questions over the Mayor and Councilmember Scott pushing Rialto into a position that should be left up to our Federal Government. Also it will be nice to meet the three new police officer that Rialto recently graduated from the academy.
Consent Calendar & Miscellaneous:
The Consent Calendar is the place where large amounts of money is spent, more and more people are being sent to travel all over the country on the cities dime and policy can be changes without a serious vote. Items to watch for include:
- $23,213.95 for purchase of office furniture for Rialto Police Detectives.
- Travel request for City Clerk Barbara McGee.
- Travel request to Vegas for two planning commissioners.
The office furniture for the Rialto Police Detectives what is a problem is $67,935 is being spent from within the Miscellaneous portion of the agenda. Many times this portion is quickly approved with little oversight so unless someone catches an item that is not in line with the communities needs. The travel on the other hand is getting out of control once again. Two years ago a special audit was done to find that Rialto officials were abusing travel in regards to public funds. The two years following travel has been at a minimum and under control. Now that Ed Scott is back on council it seems every single agenda has travel requests inside. We can’t afford to fix our own water system without jacking up water rates or fix our roads but we can spend thousands to send elected officials all over the country.
This is a longer meeting agenda with 12 tab items this meeting won’t be short by any means. This agenda includes a discussion of Fireworks Enforcement in the city of Rialto, a $500,00 one time giveaway, road contracts and a contract to develop an affordable housing project.
- Amending the Fireworks Ordinance.
Fireworks in Rialto are out of control and for some reason the city claims to be doing more but the community never sees any results. Last year there was talk of more money and resources that were utilized to reduce illegal Firework use. Even though the police and fire departments held their heads high our community suffered. Veterans suffer from serious reactions to the popular 4th of July activity as seen here in this news story.
The addition of Safe And Sane fireworks was to replace the aerial Fireworks that can be so dangerous. So when people decide to stay home from the major aerial displays they should not have to be bombarded with fireworks falling on their heads and military grade explosives shaking their homes. Many of the people who complain year after year have the same people breaking the fireworks law each year yet police seem to not be able to get them in line. Last year the community was further insulted by the addition of a special hotline where senior citizens that could not hear you or understand you feilding calls. Police dispatch would transfer you or just hang up!!!!! The main reason they give for not being able to shut them down is we can’t prove that they have illegal fireworks because they put them away when we arrive. So how are they going to cite property owners for what they claim they can’t see?
- One time $500,000 give back.
For those employees that gave and sacrificed during the tough years of Rialto recovering from the housing recession the city is going to show them that their efforts did not fall on blind eyes well almost all employees. FULL TIME employees that are not currently on probation will receive a one time bonus.
Rialto City currently has 134 part time employees & 268 full time employees that are eligible for this one time bonus of 1,838.62. If employees have been with the city for less than 1 year as a full time employee ( which means you are on probation), they would not be eligible for the bonus.
This comes from six departments (excluding the City Administrator, City Attorney, City Treasurer and City Clerk. They are Police, Fire, Development Services, Administrative and Community Services, Management Services & Public Works. City Council, City Treasurer, City Clerk, City Attorney, City Administrator and department heads will not be receiving the bonus.
Why are the Part Time employees being overlooked? We reached out to Councilman Shawn O’connell and asked this very question. His response was that the original reason to give this to full time employees is they took pay cuts, paid more towards retirement & paid more for their benefits to help the city in a hard time. What people who have not worked in todays part time environment is we have part time staff doing the work of a full time staffer. When full time staff get squeezed full time staff dumps more work on an already underpaid, under compensated part time staff member. Also Rialto part time staff are at the lowest end of the pay scale. Rialto part time staff make minimum wage and climb up a small payscale ladder very, very slowly. Many of the people we depend on the most daily are part time staff from recreation, child services and senior center staff are part time but we count on them to provide us with top notch professional service.
- Road Contracts
There are two different road contracts on the agenda tonight. What makes this stand out is Monday their was a information meeting for a road contract and it appears nobody was notified until after it was already started. Proving once again Rialto is behind in notifying the community.
- New affordable housing projects
TAB Seven is a request to give some select companies access and ability to build a new low income project in the city of Rialto. Watch tonight as certain people are connected to these companies that may not be illegal but they look really bad and raise some serious questions.
These are the items that stand out to us here at Rialto Now but this is in no way a complete list of the entire agenda. We encourage everyone to go to http://www.rialtoca.gov and look at the entire agenda for themselves.