Interm Police Chief Mark Kling to hold Coffee With the Chief Event

Last time there was supposed to be a Coffee with the Chief event it was canceled and notice was not widely put out as many complained that they drove all over looking for it. It was not odd to have the event canceled as Chief Deanda was entering retirement and an interm police chief was getting settled.   

Yet will residents give Chief Kling a fair shake? Well he should be able to slip right into the role he created over 10 years ago. Yes Interm Police Chief is the former Chief of Police before Tony Fararr and was the architect of programs in Rialto like Coffee with the Chief, Community Policing and Area Command Meetings. Chief Kling was also the one to bring in collaboration with code enforcement and beefing up parking enforcement. New residents are in for a treat as Chief Kling always seemed to enjoy the interactions he had with the community at these meetings. Now the community gets to see if a decade away from sitting in the seat as chief has changed him any.

Come on out to this meeting this will be one you don’t want to miss.

Spelling Out Rialto’s Financial Future Without The Utility Tax

Rialto is in a very critical point in our cities existence and many may be looking to the incoming development as a saving windfall. We are here to tell you that this isn’t the case Rialto is in a tough spot and its going to take everyone doing their jobs to get us through it.

The reason we say everyone doing their jobs is right now some staff and the community are the only ones stepping up to the plate and if the rest of the players don’t figure that out, own their bad and get on board with getting things back on track it is going to spell disaster.

Here are the players as we see it and what they need to do to get things moving the right way:

  1. The Community – This group of people have been doing a lion share of the heavy lifting. Most people believe they have no recourse and they must accept bad leadership and money mismanagement. This is not the case even though we may be on a certain leaders team it never hurts to remind those leaders we support we can no longer give them blanket support for a laundry list of bad calls. You can see how the city council is fracturing as they all split off to their specific groups and ask for help with dealing with the others. When it comes to the Utility Users Tax the community can’t support TAX AND SPEND Liberals in such high majorities when voting and then look at a tax that actually provides us services we all say we want to keep as a bad thing.
  2. The City Council – I have never been a fan of forming a consensus I believe it leads to to many back room deals and excludes the community at large as a few key power groups ideology reigns supreme. Yet on this issue I see it as juvenile to allow the whole city to suffer just to make a political point. I say this because the issue of declaring a financial emergency still hangs in the balance and is holding up Rialto’s ability to see where we are going over the next 10 years. City Council is playing political chicken with our future, information that has come from staff says that City Council is having an issue declaring a state of emergency because we still have a healthy surplus. A surplus that will only afford Rialto a 6 month time frame of stability if the worse was ever to happen. It seems like City Council wants us to be broke and defaulting on loans before we do anything to right our unstable future. I don’t know anyone that would look at their personal or business finances and see a real financial avalanche heading their way and not do anything within reason to stop what seems to be inevitable. One of City Councils epic failures was the 3% at 50 PERS offering. According to sources to help with employee retention Councilman Ed Scott brought this in. Now this program is no longer offered to new employees but employees already in this program have it no matter what.
  3. The Mayor – Mayor Robertson has done a very good job of pushing the blame for failures onto other people or pretending that things are better than they really are. Mayor Robertson is the biggest holdout when it comes to declaring a state of financial emergency in this city and this isn’t the 1st time she has pulled this stunt. Four years ago she pulled the same stunt as she threw a tantrum and asked public safety to make massive concessions like no longer being able to cash out comp, sick, holiday or vacation time, $300 cut in uniform allowance and no raise. Now she is taking things a step further as now Mayor Robertson wants to once again ask Public Safety to forgo a raise, loose all special assignment pay and take everyone back one full step in pay. Remember this is the same Mayor that wanted to give herself a massive raise for a very part time job.
  4. Staff – Staff plays a big role in what is going on here since they seem incapable of giving the Council, Mayor and Community a true and honest look at the consequences of staff recommended actions. Many times staff have fallen on the sword for the Mayor and City Council to shield them from the consequences of their actions. Yes staff works hard and puts in long hours but when they keep the truth from the community or shield the electeds from the consequences of their actions they sully all the hard work they have put in.
  5. City Attorney – Some day we will have a city attorney that doesn’t rip us off (Jimmy Gutierrez) and we will have one that has the testicle fortitude to stand in the gap and advocate for the community rather than cover up for the Council and Mayor. In one case the city has spent $720,000 already in defending the city in a legal case that could have been fixed had someone stopped everyone’s egos. Also the City Attorney needs to remind the Mayor that giving away buildings to friends and political allies is a slippery slope to gifting of public funds. We are not saying this is the case but a property on Riverside Ave in Downtown seems to have changed ownership without any other public consideration and it has a lot of people scratching their heads.

 

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California Recreational Marijuana Law Threatens Inland Empire Youth & Tramples on the Rights of Drug Free People

Since 1996 California has been slowly pushing harmful drugs into local communities. Not even the extremely liberal Obama administration would do anything to legalize Marijuana Federally, all the liberals did was stop enforcing Federal Drug and Immigration Laws.

Another issue is Pot Heads desire to smoke Marijuana doesn’t just effect them. Even before the 1st of the year Marijuana users have openly smoled this harmful drug without any fear of punishment. Shopping centers and neighborhoods have stuck of Marijuana’s awful smell. Shopping on Christmas Eve at the Food 4 Less in Rialto on Foothill we witnessed a male smoking Marijuana and driving, when we called dispatch we were told its not a crime and were hung up on. A few days later we were near the Del Taco on South Riverside Ave and a mother with a small child exhalled her Marijuana smoke into our window. The question is where does Marijuana users rights begin and others end? Is their right to get high more important than others right to not be exposed to such a harmful substance?

“If anyone gets hit by an Camary L.P. 3BIM196 let me know we can sue Rialto Police since dispatch told me it’s not illegal to drive a car and smoke weed and hung up on me”

Rialto is not immune to the problems that come with Marijuana use in California. Here is a brief list of some of the things Marijuana Legalization has brought to Rialto and the surrounding communities:

  • Back in August 2015 at an Area Command Meeting for Area’s 1&2 in the city of Rialto Officer Nick Partcher part of Rialto Police SCAT team the team responsible for gang, alcohol & drug enforcement said that Marijuana use is now just as big a problem with local youth as Alcohol use. That year youth Marijuana use exceeded both Alcohol and Tobacco use combined. (Rialto Now)
  • Back in May 2011 a home selling Marijuana turned shootout left two people dead in Rialto. The incident unfolded on the 900 block of North Beechwood Avenue at about 8:45 p.m. Wednesday. (ABC7)
  • Downey Police Officer Shot Three Times During Undercover Operation in San Bernardino. (KTLA)
  • Only On 2: Investigation Reveals Medical Marijuana Is Getting Into School Kids’ Hands. (CBS2)
  • SAN BERNARDINO >> SWAT officers served a high risk search warrant Friday at a medical marijuana dispensary where they found cocaine and a gun, police said. (SB Sun)
  • A 23-year-old woman has been arrested in connection with a February robbery attemptand shootout that left a security guard dead at a marijuana dispensary on the boarder of Rialto & San Bernardino, authorities announced Monday. (KTLA)
  • The pedestrian killed after being hit by a pickup has been identified as a 90-year-old Moreno Valley resident, the Riverside County Sheriff/Coroner’s office reported Sunday, Dec. 31 whose driver may have been under the influence of drugs. (PE)
  • Fontana Mayor Celebrates Drug Filled Rave As Three People Die, (Rialto Now)
  • December 2015 Amazon temp agency could not fill all of the jobs they had do to people not being able to pass a simple drug test. Over 60 percent of those who failed did so because they could not put their bong away. Even being given multiple chances to return and try again they could not pass the test.

In a message from the Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy to local prevention providers. This data and reports further confirm what prevention providers have been warning ever since the lie of Medical Marijuana began to take shape youth use is on the way up. One area where prevention providers have been looking to get to is kids in Elementary and they have been getting resistance due to the thought that these kids are to young to be involved in drug use. This study show a major increase in drug use among youth 12 and older meaning kids in 6th grade are being introduced to drugs.

Another thing that the data shows is a driving force behind an increase in youth use is the widespread use in adults. This matches what the Rialto Community Coalition found in February during their Strategic Planning Session was that one of the biggest reasons youth use drugs especially Marijuana is because  of the lax attitude from adults. The investigative reports from David Goldstein on medical marijuana dispensary’s acting as a hub to get Marijuana to youth should be an eye opening period for parents. Now people can have plants on their property and can have an ounce on their person without getting into trouble.

One of the areas where prescription drug use has taken over our communities and youth is the raiding of Senior Citizens medicine cabinets. What scares regular non drug using people is the fact that seniors are re-living the 60’s and linning up to buy Pot. If they couldn’t be trusted to keep prescription drugs away from others what makes us think they will protect their Weed from young people? The Press Enterprise wrote a glowing article about people lining up to fry their brains and here is a list of the elderly:

  1. Craig Reinarman, a 69-year-old.
  2. Jeff Deakin, 66.
  3. 72-year-old Cathedral City resident who was among 13 people lined up at West Coast Cannabis Club in Riverside County before 6 a.m. The man, who declined to give his name, bought raw flower and five pre-rolls for $1 each in his first purchase at a marijuana store. He said he planned to smoke while watching bowl games during the day.
  4. Oakland City Councilman Noel Gallo.
  5. A 55-year-old Oakland man who would identify himself only as Big Jon, said he retired Dec. 31 and was finally free from the requirements of a commercial Class A driving license. “It’s been 32 years,” Big Jon said, adding that he’d been hearing about edibles and other products he’d like to try.
  6. Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguin.
  7. Carol Wyatt of West Oakland and Carlos Hooks.
  8. Rome VanBergen, 57.
  9. Santa Ana Councilman Jose Solorio.
  10. Toby and Shara Edwards came from Florida to get high. Residents of Pensacola, Florida – “2,000 miles and 40 years away from California,” Toby Edwards joked – they bought $85 worth of cannabis-infused candies, topical lotions and pre-rolled cigarettes. “It’s completely illegal (in Florida),” he said. “The penalties are so severe you can lose your job. They can seize your property. It just isn’t worth it. This is so different.”
  11. Santa Cruz resident Tree Island, 69.
  12. Miguel Vargas of San Jose.
  13. Rigoberto Espinoza, 28.

State Sen. Nancy Skinner, who represents much of the East Bay, including Oakland and Berkeley, spent much of her morning between Berkeley Patients Group and Harborside in Oakland. “To me this is huge,” she said. “I want responsible use, but I also want use that is legal for everybody and equitable.” Recreational legalization, she hopes, will “finally put an end” to the criminalization of marijuana, which, she said, disproportionately affected black and brown Californians. Wow how are Liberals not the racist ones?

Another issue is the prevalence of youth using vaping products that people still try to push off as safe for youth use. As you see in the text below from the Press Enterprise article now our youth have a modern way to kill their brain cells.

By mid-morning, vapor pens and edible products were among the most popular items at the shop, with a number of Baby Boomers who smoked marijuana years ago interested in trying cannabis in new forms.

To add to an already troubling problem is the fear that Mayor Robertson is setting Rialto up to have Marijuana dumped on our poor city. As it sits now Marijuana shops are illegal in the city limits. Where we see trouble is the Mayors out right refusal to vote to put the Utility Tax on an April Ballot. Also the mayors appointee to the Budget Advisory Committee said at one meeting lets find the crappy part of Rialto and turn that into our Marijuana Zone!!!!

Only question is who gets to choose where the crappy part of town is?

The bottom line is that Rialto is in a serious mess. We have the following hurdles:

  1. No Police Cheif
  2. Officers leaving the city in massive numbers
  3. only 4 officers on patrol at any given tim
  4. No City Administrator
  5. $160 Million in unfunded liabilities
  6. Utility Tax Ending in June
  7. Out of control leaders with only their own best interest in mind

The Question remains when will we say enough is enough!!!!!!

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Rialto Police Benefit Association Helps Pay It Forward.

Sgt Royce is more than just a highly decorated employee of Rialto’s Police Department. He is also the current President of the Rialto Police Benefit Association (the police officer union). When we reached out to him to try and secure some way to help a local family in need he said what do you need.

This is nothing new in our experience with the police officers union or Sgt Royce. The Police union routinely looks for ways to help the community through a wide array of channels. Were eternally grateful for the generosity demonstrated to the Rialto Community.

So here is what you do just click this link and safely and securely tell us who you would nominate and why? There are no stipulations we just want to know who you think would like a SURPRISE this year right before the holidays.

We would like to thank the following people this year for helping us give back to you our readers:

Coffee Nuttz

Lou Worthy Realtor 

Rialto Police Benefit Association

Our Secret Santa

Those Who Do Not Learn From History Are Doomed To Repeat It

For 15 years the city council has been using the Utility Users Tax (UUT) to supplement our cities ability to operate. It didn’t begin this way the 1st time the UUT was put into place as a way to enhance services and provide a bridge to increased tax revenues that would replace the UUT giving the city the ability to allow it to sunset and go away. Well since then some very big things took place making that a hard pill to swallow, here is what has made that impossible:

  • The recession happened – The ever so wise politicians decided that everyone deserved to be able to purchase a home even if they could not afford it. So they created things like State your own income, 4 year interest only loans and allowed people to sell torn up houses for 10 times what they were really worth. Was it any surprise the whole thing fell down around itself and left cities in a very poor place?
  • RDA Money Taken Away – Gov. Brown in all his wisdom decided to take away Redevelopment money away from California cities. This money helped them grow their city and promote why people should spend their tax dollars there verses other cities. This money also made it possible to afford to give developers sweet deals to bring development to local cities.
  • The City’s PERS contract enhancement in 2010 – As a way to entice employees to sign a new employment contract without a raise as a way to say you will have a sweeter retirement later on.
  • Poor investment performance at CALPERS – This has led to the increased PERS cost in the City of Rialto.
  • Retail has come but – The retail stores and shopping are finally coming but not in the numbers that we were told. The new Lewis Shopping Center will bring no more than the new Super Walmart in the south end. Also Mayor Robertson’s warehouses are bringing more problems and not more money. Still many of the warehouses pay tax to cities like Ontario with agreements that cripple small towns like ours.

So last council meeting our city council and mayor were supposed to look at the cities financial future with the community present. According to Mike Story and Robb Steel at the last Budget Finance Committee meeting that city council had the following issues with the Budget Finance Committee’s recommendation:

  • The Budget Advisory Committee didn’t formally recommend what the committee thought city council should do with the cities surplus. Should it remain at 50%?
  • City Council wants to know if the committee would bless spending the cities reserves?
  • City Council doesn’t feel right declaring a state of physical emergency when we have a budget reserve.
  • City Council wants to increase the amount on businesses to as much as 12% and lower it on residents to 6%.
  • City Council no longer believes that Seniors alone should be exempt from paying the tax only low income seniors.

The reason we titled this story “Those Who Do Not Learn From History Are Doomed To Repeat It” the popular saying by George Santayana because we find ourselves walking down a similar path. The last time the Utility Users Tax was placed on the ballot for renewal Deborah Robertson was the lone wolf standing in the way. She was throwing a fit and holding her vote hostage until she got what she wanted. This year she is the problem once again but this time it doesn’t seem like public safety is going to blink. You see we have the #1 fire department in the State if not the Country you are more likely to survive a cardiac arrest event here than anywhere else. Also here in Rialto our paramedic program provides an income for the city budget offsetting fire costs, in every other city in the region these services are paid out to minimum wage workers for a private ambulance agency.

Keeping to the topic of public safety lets not forget that it was former police chief Farrar who did the 1st study on the use of body cameras on police officers. That study led to such amazing results that Rialto was one of the 1st agencies in the USA to use body worn cameras department wide. As you can see from the image above officer use of force has dropped as well as citizens complaints of use of force. Also Rialto is one of the few agencies that still has an active Community Policing program and youth intervention programs that are producing results.

Sadly the writting on the wall with everything going on right now is that our city council is playing chicken with our public services and a massive looming debt. Many members of the Budget Advisory Committee see the Mayor and Councils actions as dangerous ways to run a cities finances. One member said that looking at $170 Million pension and health debt over the next 10 years, not moving the Utility User Tax to a vote and even discussing spending reserves is a dangerous course of action. Another member said that council is saying I know I’m get a pay cut next year but I am taking the expensive vacation anyway, this is no way to budget.

So where are things now? Well Council refuses to address the public again with this topic or even the new information on just how bad our budget looks like if we don’t act now. The Budget Advisory Committee on December 18th will hear just what council and the mayor are looking for in regards to spending reserves and playing with the reserve limits. The topic of making seniors pay for the UUT when they have not been required to in the past will also be discussed. The Budget Advisory Committee is a public meeting even though staff refuses to use the cameras in the room and stream the meetings on You Tube the meetings are public. They start at 6 pm and end at 8pm.

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Rialto Schools Go All Out With Red Ribbon Pride

We got a chance to ride along in a plain white van with judges and dignitaries as Local Rialto Schools vied for a chance to place in the top three in their region (North, Central & South) to show off their school spirit and celebrate the benefits of living a drug free life. We rode in the Southern Region van this year and had the pleasure of joining Rialto Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Cuauhtemoc Avila, Board President Dina Walker, Director of Communications Syeda Jafri, Police Lt. Dean Hardin and Rialto Unified School District Security Chief Leary who drove us around.

Carter High School students greet the judging vehicles with cheers – Photo Provided by Rialto USD

Dr. Avila stated, “I echo our Board of Education’s sentiments that participating in this annual drug-free contest makes all our students, staff and parent-volunteers winners, but to keep the contest fair, I wanted make sure that each of the schools; the north, central and south sections, had their own sets of scoring. Again, the feedback from the judges was positive, and reinforces my faith that great things continue to happen at our schools. It was another proud moment to show the community that our schools have their focus on safety and promoting a drug-free lifestyle for our students.”

Each year has a Nationwide theme and this year the theme is “Your future is key, so stay drug free”. Each school that we saw that participated really took the theme and turned it into a visual representation of the overall message. Some schools really went all out which included a miniature version of District Superintendent Dr. Cuauhtemoc Avila (Garcia Elementary) a life size game of Life (Jehue Middle) or even tombstones of celebrities who died from drug and alcohol abuse (Milor High).

Some schools like Simpson Elementary you could see from a mile away and they made sure to get the judges out of the van and on their feet as they danced the Drug Free theme. Rialto Unified is one of the few school districts that has such a strong level of participation because of the importance that the District puts behind the annual event.

First place winners, Hughbanks Elementary School – Photo Provided by Rialto USD

“For years, Red Ribbon Week, here in Rialto, has become a pretty big deal, and that’s great,” said Rialto Police Lieutenant, Dean Hardin. “It was a fantastic commemoration and I was proud of the way that our students, led by staff and parents, participated. Drug use is a real issue, a serious issue for the younger generation and along with addiction, it can lead to anti-social behavior and lack of focus on education. The Police Department was happy to participate and we thank the District for making sure students understand the dangers of substance abuse.” As the South judging van pulled away from Simpson Elementary Lt Dean Hardin could be heard saying out the van window “Be Drug Free” and each time he said it the whole school repeated the mantra.

Schools earned points from 1 to 10 based on creativity, visibility and message. Judges were warned against giving out 10’s too freely as to help district officials from having to deal with tons of tie’s in the point totals. The Red Ribbon Decorating Contest ended in three-way ties for all three places — first, second and third — as well as a “Spirit” award initiated by Dr. Avila. Prize money is $1,000 for first; $750 for second; and $500 for third. The new “Spirit” award is also $500. Cash awards go to each school and are discretionary for each school.

The winning schools are:

1st Place Winners

Northern: Hughbanks Elementary School – $1,000

Central: Casey Elementary School – $1,000

Southern: Garcia Elementary School – $1,000

2nd Place Winners

Northern: Carter High School – $750

Central: Henry Elementary School – $750

Southern: Jehue Middle School – $750

3rd Place Winners

Northern: Kolb Middle & Kordyak Elementary Schools – $500

Central: Bemis Elementary School– $500 

Southern: Kelley & Simpson Elementary Schools– $500

Honorable Mentions

Milor High School – $250

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Rialto Top Officials Skip Out On Fallen Officer Remembrance Event’s

On Wednesday October 18th a Memorial and Remembrance Luncheon was held for fallen Rialto Police Officer Sergio Carrera Jr. who lost his life in the line of duty 10 years ago. Both the Graveside Memorial and Remembrance Luncheon were put on and put together with the hard work and support of Rialto Police Benefit Association without the police union this event would have never happened. Source tell us that if the Rialto Police Benefit Association had not stepped up nothing would have been done to honor this 10 year anniversary.

Those in attendance said that the event was a great way to remember a great officer who was taken away from his family and co-workers too soon. You may remember we called out the Mayor for not attending another event to honor Rialto’s fallen officers and Mayor Robertson got very upset with us and even Ed Scott barked at us for even suggesting that the Mayor and her council don’t support our fallen officers. Well actions speak louder than words and sources tell us that the council’s lack of actions speak louder than any words they may speak.

On October 19th sources close to the event reported that not one of the cities elected leaders even stopped by to say hello to the family or even give their condolences. Sources tell us that Captain Andy Karol from the command staff attended the Remembrance Luncheon on behalf of the Department. Also officers who stopped by the Luncheon that was in the city limits to remember their fellow fallen officer were scolded for doing so.

We reached out to those on Council and got a response from Councilman Andy Carrizales:

 “The Carrera family and our police officers were on my mind yet I was unable to attend due to being out of town”
When we asked Councilman Carrizales his thoughts on nobody from the city showing up to either event all he said was “wow”.

This is one of the many reasons local election advocates urge the community to look for sincere elected officials that will take these moments to show care and concern about their communities needs. As a son of a Military and Law Enforcement professional I can tell you that the pain of losing a loved one in the line of duty is a fear I am glad my family never had to endure.

 

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