As Homelessness Becomes A Bigger Problem Mayor Wants To Attract More Homeless

After a November 15th NEIGHBORHOOD & HOUSING PRESERVATION & BEAUTIFICATION COMMISSION meeting the City Council is set to:

Request City Council to Review and Provide Direction regarding the Site Selection Process for a proposed transitional housing project with the Time for Change Foundation in accordance with the Predevelopment Services Agreement.

The first time this project was brought before the public by councilman Rafael Trujillo the founder of Time for Change Foundation Kim Carter not only ripped into our council for asking questions about the project but lifted off into a name calling rant, but not before placing children right up front as props to witness everything.

The next time this project would come before the public was at the November 15th NEIGHBORHOOD & HOUSING PRESERVATION & BEAUTIFICATION COMMISSION meeting. As this meeting was advertised there were two sites mentioned the original site on palm and an additional site on Linden Ave just north of Foothill. Once the meeting began over 14 sites were introduced leading many to believe that the city did not honestly advertise this meeting and the proposed sites. This meeting Founder Kim Carter did not attend and there were many details of the project that were left without answers. Time for Change Executive Director Vannessa Perez did her best to answer as many questions as possible.

In this meeting there was an important issue that was brought to light about this project and it’s size. Development Services staff member Gina Gibson stated that this project would require a lot size of at least 1 acre. This was important because the highly contested open lot being considered was under the 1 acre size virtually taking it out of play. The lot on Palm Ave is desirable to both Kim Cater and her friend Mayor Deborah Robertson is because the cities housing authority owns this land. The goal of both Mrs Carter and Mayor Deborah Robertson is to gift more than $1 Million in land over to a Non Profit organization that openly admitted to engaging in seating and unseating elected officials. The city only owns 2 land parcels and the other one is right across the street from city hall.

The big issues people had and still have with this is the placement of a homeless womans shelter in already established neighborhoods coupled with the city gifting an additional million dollars plus to a political friend. Mrs Carter has operated one shelter in San Bernardino for a few years and has shown success, but there are some stark differences between projects:

  • The San Bernardino Shelter is a fraction of the size of the one that is being proposed in Rialto.
  • San Bernardino and Rialto are very, very different cities with very different struggles and people in the community don’t want to become San Bernardino.
  • The long proposed favored site is zoned for cottage commercial.
  • No community input has been allowed to see if this is what Rialto wants.

The Palm Ave site is zoned cottage commercial this area was meant to house people who run a business and live at the same site. This is not only a historic portion of the city but as traditional jobs become more scarce and people go into working for themselves this area could serve as a shot in the arm to the Rialto business community. If you look at the homeless debate in the Orange County Area cities have opposed placing homeless centers in their city, shouldn’t Rialto residents have the same voice and option? Also can the founder of Time for Change come to the community and answer questions without name calling, threats and anger?

This Tuesday February 26th at 6 pm this item will be on the city council agenda and if residents don’t come out and speak up they may find themselves with yet another problem created by gifting of taxpayer funds to pay off political debts.

 

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Rialto Leadership Lacks The Ability To Lead ALL of Rialto

With homeless population increasing every single day and the core of the city falling into disrepair many of the regular unconnected people in Rialto are asking if our leaders still have what it takes to lead all of Rialto. There is development happening in the North and South ends of the city but as you move closer to the city center the decay becomes quite evident. This question isn’t just something whispered about in quite circles but people are asking it out loud in public forums and there really isn’t any answer to the questions.

At the Rialto Unified School Safety Seminar the question was asked multiple times about what the city and schools are doing to deal with homelessness and the crime and consequences that come with them. Rialto Police Lt. Cameron Nelson said that the police departments hands are tied by new public camping laws (nobody ever references a specific law). The problem has become so bad that parks and schools are now dealing with homeless living in the or near them. One are that was brought up at the school safety seminar was the walking trail behind Rialto Middle School and Warner Elementary School. Both of these schools have access gates that open up into this trail. This BLOGGER brought up many concerns with this trail and having access gates to the schools. The powers that be said I was crazy and just trying to get in the way of progress. Now we have unstable people living where kids walk to school and have access to the schools. Does a child have to be hurt or go missing before anyone listens?

When it comes to what our leaders it seems that most of them are ok with Rialto becoming an homeless magnet. Mayor Deborah Robertson seems on a fast track to begin opening housing shelters in Rialto. When new laws are thrown in the public’s faces as the reason that more isn’t being done to fix the problem I wonder what benefit we get from the HUNDREDS of THOUSANDS of $$$$$ we spend on lobbyists and having our elected officials travel with our tax dollars to Washington and Sacramento.

Some if the worst areas of our city are the main corridors that people travel every single day! Areas like Route 66 that are full of shuttered businesses, graffiti and homeless are far from the beacons of progress and prosperity that our leaders preach about.

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Eisenhower Brings Home the CIF Title

Two teams that looked evenly matched on paper collided Saturday night in Rialto.

The stats would not predict what happened on the field Saturday night in Rialto. The passion of a team destined to return to greatness would overcome any stat or nay sayer. These young men and young woman would show everyone that this was their time, it was Eisenhower’s time!

Eisenhower High School Varsity Football team led by #5 Cesar Ayala at QB, #11 Jordan Goodloe & #2 Joel Ayala plus the ever so constant foot of female kicker #33 Taylor Jackson propelled Eisenhower Football into greatness as they won another CIF Championship for the once famous high school.

A school that has won CIF Championships before and has had multiple students go on to the NFL and win super bowls hit a 25 year dry spell that Coach Alvin Brown vowed to end. Coach Brown and his staff and student athletes came into this season thinking we want to go 1-0 each week. Coach Brown said the teams success came from the team listening to the coaching that they were given and executing each week.

Highland High School looked more impressive on the stats sheet than they did on the football field. Eisenhower pushed forward and kept to their game and came out triumphant in this CIF Championship.

You could see it in the kids faces they were so excited to have went from back to back 2-8 seasons to undefeated CIF Champions. Eisenhower has a long legacy of greatness and that can be a lot to live up to, but this team showed they were equal to the task of getting the job done and making the school and alumni proud!!!!

Principal Frank Camacho said “we are proud of the coach and the players making Eisenhower proud and bringing a ring back to Eisenhower High School football” Varsity Coach Alvin Brown was proud of his players and coaches for sticking to the game plan and forging forward with their plan of taking the season one win at a time.

Rialto Unified Head Football Coach Resigns

Only in Rialto can you have a Head Coach of a popular local football program treated poorly and tossed aside.

Normally when coaches are forced out it has to do with poor performance from an amazing team or issues with parents & players. In Rialto we seem to mess things up in a very special way! Three years into his time at Eisenhower High School Head Coach Al Brown has resigned his position with the Football program in Rialto. This news comes on the heels of the Eisenhower Eagles return to greatness with a Division CIF Title the first one in 20 years and a very close second in the State Semi Finals against a very powerful Fontana Kaiser Cats football team.

Things all changed with the removal of Eisenhower High School Principal Scott Sparks who brought on coach Brown three years ago in an effort to return the football program to its former greatness. Coach Brown worked hard for two years under the support of Principal Scott Sparks to build a program that brought Eisenhower to its former glory but more importantly created amazing student athletes that are pillars in the community. The goal was to grow young student athletes that would continue to make Rialto proud.

Coach Brown not only raised up some amazing student athletes but he brought a CIF championship back to the Ronnie Lott stadium! Being close to Coach Brown and some of his prior players (now playing college football) this season was tough on Coach Brown. It was tough because the CTE (career Technical Education) class Life Management was not offered to Coach brown this year as new Principal Frank Camacho took over for the departing Scott Sparks. So in order to feed his family and remain available to coach Eisenhower’s Varsity team this year Coach Brown was forced to take substitute jobs. Working as a substitute offers no job security or medical benefits, also coach Brown had to be prepared for a different teaching situation each day. This fact alone made his CIF season even more amazing given what the coach was dealing with this season.

One constant face at Eisenhower High Football games was former Principal Scott Sparks. The former leader of Eisenhower High and a childhood friend of new Eisenhower High Principal Frank Camacho was at as many of Eisenhower’s games. Scott Sparks watched what he started blossom into a season and record that Eisenhower Alumni could brag about!

According to Coach Brown he was told that he would have a teaching contract this week solidifying his place with the Football team. When the deadline to offer this contract came and went coach Brown had no choice but to resign. Eisenhower High School staff have not been happy this year talking about how much life at the school has changed in just one year. Many people close to what Coach Brown was going through this school year hoped that the CIF season would be enough to prove to Eisenhower Administration that Coach Brown was a vital piece to the positive school culture at Eisenhower.

This writer is left wondering what is going on at District Office and what does Dr Avila and the School Board think this latest problem will do to moral and the culture at Eisenhower? According to Syeda Jafri the Communications Director from Rialto Unified “the district has not received a formal resignation from coach Brown, so it would be difficult to comment further on this matter”. Since posting this story it has come to light that the team is still waiting for the end of the year banquet. We have heard from sources that the school district is waiting for the CIF rings to come in so that they can be presented at the banquet. The rings can take 6 weeks to be ready.

One thing that we learned about this year was how difficult it is for schools in low income communities to get their rings. Kaiser High in Fontana was gifted a grant at the Inland Valley Classic Football game on January 26th to buy their CIF rings. Eisenhower High Schools rings are being taken care of by District Office. 

Most gut wrenching about this move is the $300k video that Westbound Communications did for San Bernardino on how hard Cajon High School in San Bernardino worked to keep an amazing sports program together. People gave up jobs and changed their lives to keep the coach in place and make it impossible for him to want to leave. One thing that Athletic Director Richard Imbriani says in this video is we teach kids life skills and how we don’t quit on people. Well apparently Rialto has a lot to learn from San Bernardino!

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Fire Tears Through Closed Rialto Business

Rialto, CA – Victim Rescued in Vacant Building Fire

Rialto Firefighters were dispatched to the 400 block of W. Foothill Blvd. shortly after 10:30 a.m. this morning. The first unit arrived on scene approximately 5 minutes after dispatch to find a vacant building with heavy smoke coming from a side door. The building was formerly Inland Empire Sewing & Vacuum repair shop and had been had been boarded up. One man who didn’t give us his name claimed that he was living inside this building. (see photo below)

Bystanders on scene reported one victim trapped inside of the building. Crews made quick entry to the building to perform an interior search. A female was discovered and a rescue was performed. The patient was in full arrest and brought to paramedics waiting outside of the building. Resuscitation efforts were started immediately and the patient was transported to local ER in critical condition.

 

The building a business that had been closed for some time now seems to have become a haven for homeless people. Shuttered businesses along the portion of Route 66 that runs through our city have become a common sight sadly.


Fire was knocked down 17 minutes after the first unit arrived on scene. Rialto Fire Arson Unit is on scene to conduct an investigation in coordination with Rialto Police Department. Two arrests have been made.


Crews were able to keep the fire to one alarm with assistance from San Bernardino County Fire and Rialto Fire. No other injuries were reported. Monetary loss from the fire is still being tabulated. The cause of the fire remains under active investigation.

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Rialto Police Track Down Hit & Run Suspect

Photo from Rialto Police Facebook Page

On January 27th at approximately 9:05 a.m., the Rialto Police Department received several 9-1-1 calls from citizens reporting that a young female was struck by a car in the 1500 block of Rialto Ave, in the City of Rialto.  After the 14 year old pedestrian was struck, the driver in the suspect vehicle fled the scene without stopping.  Rialto police officers arrived on scene within minutes and found the young girl lying in the roadway.  The Rialto Fire Department arrived on scene and she was transported to Loma Linda University Hospital with severe head injuries. She is currently receiving emergency medical treatment.

Through an initial investigation which included witness statements, the suspect vehicle was described as a dark colored Jeep last seen eastbound on Rialto Ave, and then northbound Cedar Ave. Rialto Police Officers responded to the area and began their investigation.  During an area check for the vehicle, officers were able to locate it in the Walgreens shopping center on the corner of Cedar and Foothill Blvd. Further investigation led officers to conclude the registered owner of the vehicle (Jesus Quinonez-Garcia), was the driver. Officers were quickly able to locate Quinonez-Garcia and place him under arrest.

After obtaining his statement and conducting a DUI investigation, Quinonez-Garcia was found to have a blood alcohol level of almost four times the legal limit.  He was later booked into West Valley Detention Center under the charges of Felony DUI and Felony Hit and Run causing injuries.

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Rialto High School Cheer Wins CIF Division

Our Rialto kids are amazing!!!!!

Rialto High School continues to find success in their Cheer program as they finished in 1st place at the CIF Division Competition this past weekend. This is the 1st year that the CIF has recognized Cheer as an actual sport. It all began with the C.H.E.E.R.S Act AB 949 sponsored by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher that made Cheer an actual sport (this writer had no idea it wasn’t until a few days ago). The Bill was signed into law by Jerry Brown in 2015. With Jerry Brown’s signature applied this began a clock on the CIF to develop a program for a new sport that had existed since 1898.

In a press release from the assembly woman Lorena Gonzalez:

Assembly Bill 949, known as the California High Schools Expanding Equality Respect and Safety (C.H.E.E.R.S.) Act, requires the California Department of Education to develop guidelines, procedures, and safety standards with the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) for high school cheerleading no later than July 1, 2017. To date, high school cheerleading has not enjoyed its own competition system like other high school sports and cheer athletes and their teams are forced to rely on private businesses to run competitions, which can be prohibitively expensive for the athletes and their families.

Rialto High Cheer Team with Coach and Cheer Adviser show off the new plaque and varsity patches.

With this being the 1st year of CIF sanctioned competition there was a race to be the first one to claim the honors of being #1. Rialto High School Placing 1st in the 4A Division isn’t that big of a surprise as they have been crushing it at the State & National USA cheer competitions for the last few years. In 2016 the team took 1st place in both State and Nationals and the following 2 years have either won state and or finished in the top three every year according to cheer adviser Valarie Campa.

Cheer is unlike other sports as the cheer squad is active all year long. “Cheer has always been a four-season sport for those teams that compete said Coach Kristy Streff. “We begin working with the team in April, attend camp and practice in summer, have football in fall, basketball in winter, and tryouts and competitions in spring”

“We as a team and school were very excited to participate in the inaugural CIF cheer season and are so proud to bring the first ever CIF-SS title to the city of Rialto.” Kristy Streff-cheer coach

This isn’t the end for Rialto High Cheer. The team will compete this Saturday at the OC Fair and Event Center for the State Championship.

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