Assembly Memeber Brown Introduces Bill 335 to Curb Costly Vehicle Impounds

Below you will find Assembly Woman Cheryl Brown’s latest Bill. This Bill by its own wording seems to further work against our Law Enforcement professionals when trying to enforce our Laws that you must have a valid driver’s license to operate a motor vehicle in California.

This bill claims it is aimed at helping low income families that can’t afford to pay impound fees by allowing a licensed driver to come pick up the vehicle. My biggest problem with this is what is keeping them from getting behind the wheel of that same vehicle the following day? If a licensed family member couldn’t keep the car from being legally driven the first time without the threat of penalty they won’t worry about the second or third……….

I find it mind boggling that we continue to raise taxes on purchases; gas and income then turn around and blame the police and long existing laws on the plight of the low income families.

In the second piece by the Assembly Woman’s office the statement is made that only people outside of the 47th district are upset about the new law. I don’t think that is true at all. I received this press release weeks ago and was torn on posting it. You see I have developed a relationship with Assembly Woman Brown’s office. They include me in her press releases and since local papers and media don’t seem to find her work important we have become the go to place to get the latest and greatest. Now that I am publishing this opposition piece that will probably go away.

Something my father told me was the only people afraid of the law is people living outside of it. Why would a low income person that has a valid license even have a reason to fear their vehicle being impounded? They wouldn’t here is a list of reasons you are without a license:

DUI

Reckless driving

Too many tickets

Owing child support

Not a Valid Resident

So pretty much this only affects people that drink and drive, have no respect for the road rules or they owe child support and refuse to pay. Hmmm ok now it’s clear why we need these laws right?

Now to the Police Departments, that is listed as already changing the laws to fit someone’s political leaning. All of these cities have 2 things in common high crime and felony disrespect for enforcing laws that are difficult at times. LAPD & LASD both have had tons of controversy over the last couple years are we really going to use them as a test study for a law like this?

So what do the stats say about unlicensed drivers and the cause and effect of impounding vehicles? Here is a break down:

  • In 2008 AAA (Triple A) conducted a study of accidents in 6 states titled “Unlicensed to Kill”, in those states California was included.
  • 7,700 fatal crashed per year.
  • 1 out of 7 drivers involved in those crashes had no license, an invalid license or an unknown status.
  • Annually 4,000 people are killed in collisions in California.
  • More than 20% of Drivers involved in these collisions are not licensed to drive.
  • A driver with a suspended license is 4 times more likely to be involved in a fatal collision.
  • California has 20 million licensed drivers.
  • 720,000 licenses have been suspended or revoked.
  • Estimated 1 million drivers are driving without ever being issued a license,

In Rialto alone the following stats are provided (2010-2011):

  • 2080 citations were issued for CVC 12500, unlicensed drivers.
  • 895 citations were issued for CVC 14601, suspension violations.
  • 129 drivers involved in collisions were unlicensed (21.99%).
  • 69 drivers involved in Hit & Run collisions were unlicensed (22.07%).

So if all of this isn’t enough to make you wonder why we would lessen the penalty of Driving without the proper license this story from one of the cities (San Francisco) that has a police department currently allowing unlicensed driver to keep their cars.

Drew Rosenberg, 25, was killed by an unlicensed driver who was in the U.S. under a program called Temporary Protective Status. Attempts at obtaining justice for this crime have thus far gone unheeded. Here is a detailed account of what has transpired. Read more about him and his families loss at http://unlicensedtokill.org/

Driving is a privilege and not a right…if you abuse it, then it is taken away.

If you would like to let The Assembly Woman know how you feel please contact her PR person:

CONTACT: Ashley Jones

(909) 381-3238

Ashley.Jones@asm.ca.gov

Assemblymember Cheryl R. Brown Seeks to Curb Costly Vehicle Impounds

SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Cheryl R. Brown (D-San Bernardino)  has introduced AB 335, a bill that will assist the working class communities by prohibiting law enforcement from impounding vehicles that can be parked legally or released to a licensed driver. AB 335 would amend the current law that requires a police officer to impound a car if the person is found driving a vehicle without a license or driving with a suspended or revoked license.

“The goal of this bill is to help curb the practice of impounding and holding vehicles for 30 days for drivers who are cited with a suspended or revoked license. A driver should never operate a  vehicle  without a license, but they shouldn’t be forced to pay thousands of dollars in towing and impoundment fees as a result of a mandatory 30 day hold,” said Assemblymember Brown.

Vehicle impounds have a devastating impact on working class drivers who depend on their cars to get to work, transport their children to school and take care of other necessities. The cost of retrieving the vehicle is often so high that they end up losing the car.

“There are several police departments around the state that have implemented their own vehicle impoundment policy against unlicensed drivers. Those departments allow such drivers to either park their cars in a legal parking space or move the car to avoid an impoundment. AB 335 would simply codify this policy to make it a statewide practice,” concluded Assemblymember Brown.

The bill was introduced yesterday and has been moved to the Assembly Rules Committee for assignment to the appropriate policy committee.

Assemblymember Cheryl R. Brown represents the 47th Assembly District, which includes Colton, Fontana, Grand Terrace, Rialto, San Bernardino, and the unincorporated communities of Bloomington and Muscoy.

Website of Assemblymember Cheryl R. Brown: http://www.asmdc.org/members/a47/

WHY OPPOSITION TO AB 335 IS BASED ON MISGUIDED ASSUMPTIONS

February 21, 2013

If you have not heard the misguided outrage over my introduction of AB 335 dealing with impounding vehicles for traffic violations, you probably live in the 47th Assembly District, which is the District I represent.

It appears that my legislation has been the focus of groups and individuals who do not live in the 47th Assembly District and are oblivious to the abuse the bill is designed to prevent. While I realize that the opposition is stemming from a certain mindset and predetermined judgments that have absolutely nothing to do with the purpose of the legislation, I would hope everyone reads the bill before they jump to assumptions that we are condoning unlicensed drivers.

First, this bill is drafted to protect low and fixed-income families who can’t afford to lose their only means of transportation for 30 days because someone in the household decided to drive without a valid driver’s license.  It is unquestionable that vehicle impounds have a disproportionate impact on low-income drivers because the cost of the impound fees are often greater than the vehicle’s value.  In fact, the cost of retrieving a vehicle from impound is sometimes so expensive that low and fixed-income families choose to walk away from their vehicles instead of paying the unaffordable impound fees.  Eventually, drivers who fail to pay the fees vehicles are routinely auctioned off to the benefit of the towing company.  Unfortunately, for those families, this is usually the only vehicle the family owns.

For example, in San Bernardino drivers of impounded vehicles pay a $225 towing fee and $50 a day in storage fees.  After a 30-day hold, it leaves owners with a bill of $1,725. Oakland has a $170 towing fee and $60 a day in storage fees, which is $1,970.  In 2010, Oakland towed 2,058 cars of unlicensed drivers, accumulating about $288,120 in tow release fees.  In the city of Escondido, towing fees generate approximately $400,000 a year.  These large fees and penalties are exactly the kind of fiscal incentive that too often leads to abuse of impounding laws.

AB 335 simply implements what several police departments around the state have voluntarily added to their own internal policy, which allows a driver with an invalid license to safely park their cars in a legal parking space, or they can authorize a licensed driver to take the car from the scene.  The police departments of Oakland, San Francisco, Berkeley, Vallejo, Los Angeles and the Los Angeles County Sheriff, in addition to several others are part of the growing list of agencies choosing to not impound driver’s vehicles.

In the 47th Assembly District as with all households, most are licensed drivers but there is always one or two that don’t have a valid license.  This is no reason to impound their vehicles for an inordinate amount of time, especially 30 days.  It does not take that long to clear up any deficiencies with one’s driving privileges.

Under this bill, unlicensed drivers will still be cited or arrested and pay the requisite fees/fines.  There is absolutely nothing in AB 335 that prevents full enforcement or punishment of unlicensed drivers.   However, if a vehicle can be legally parked or released to a licensed driver to avoid the impound costs, it will be permitted.

So assumptions that this bill allows unlicensed drivers to continue driving illegally for whatever reason are not true.  It is also not true that simply allowing a family member or individual to safely recover their only means of transportation empowers them to drive illegally.  To assume, that every car impounded is owned by the driver is also false.  The bill does not prevent any officer on site making the decision to tow; however, it does make it the officer’s last option.  This would be very important for grandma to get her car back because she did not know that her grandchild was driving on a revoked, suspended or invalid license.

I encourage you to visit my website to read more about AB 335.

Assemblymember Cheryl R. Brown represents the 47th Assembly District, which includes Colton, Fontana, Grand Terrace, Rialto, San Bernardino, and the unincorporated communities of Bloomington and Muscoy.

Website of Assemblymember Cheryl R. Brown: http://www.asmdc.org/members/a47/.

https://www.aaafoundation.org/sites/default/files/2011Unlicensed2Kill.pdf – 2011

https://www.aaafoundation.org/sites/default/files/UnlicensedToKillResearchUpdate.pdf – 2008

 

Rialto’s Farmers Market Today Wednesday

Beginning January 9th, every Wednesday, from 10:00 am – 2:00 pm,

Rialto City Hall, 150 S. Palm Ave.

rialto-healthy-new.jpg

(Grass Area off South Parking Lot)!

For more info, please contact the Rialto City Clerk’s Office at

(909) 820-2519 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting            (909) 820-2519     end_of_the_skype_highlighting

or cityclerk@rialtoca.gov.

Rialto Farmers Market

Dedication of I-10 Freeway Memorial Sign

We are dedicating a portion of the I-10 Freeway to memorialize the sacrifices of the three officers lost in the line of duty in the history of our department – Sgt. Darrell Lee, Sgt. Gary Wolfley, and Officer Sergio Carrera Jr.  We will be having a ceremony to honor our fallen heroes and their families.  We would like to invite you to join us in the unveiling of the freeway memorial signs, which will be erected on the I-10 Freeway, both eastbound and westbound, between Pepper Ave. and Cedar Ave.  After the presentation, lunch will be available at a discounted price.  Please come take the opportunity to meet and show support to the families of these heroes.

“SPOTLIGHT” with Ed Scott on the Elections & the Open Council Seat

Hello Rialto so you thought the elections were over right?

Wrong we still have an open council seat!!!!!!!

Ok so maybe the thought of more election pandering doesn’t excite you, if that’s the case this is right up your alley.

The city council has chosen to make an appointment verses spending money on an election. They gave candidates 3 days to get their letters of interest into the city clerk’s office (Friday 5pm) and now they have the task of choosing one of these people to fill the vacant seat for the remainder of the term (1.5 years).

Rumors are already circling that the 3 seated council members have already made up their minds? Is it simply rumor? Or is there something it?

There is no way to know what another person is thinking until you ask them to put it to writing. Here is the Interview from Ed Scott enjoy.

Ed Scott is seeking the open council seat

Ed Scott is seeking the open council seat

*What are your thoughts on how the local elections played out for citizens of Rialto?

I am happy with the two Councilmembers who were voted in. Obviously I am disappointed voters didn’t do more research on the Mayoral candidates as I feel the outcome would of been different. Having said that I am in full support of our new Mayor and wish her the best.

*In what ways will you try and remain a part of the work to make a better Rialto now that you’re no longer on the Council?

For 23 years I’ve been active in this community and will continue to do so in any way I can. I may run again sometime down the road.

*Are you seeking the appointed seat left vacant by your opponent for Mayor Deborah Robertson?

Yes I am I feel I would be a good asset to the new Council especially in business development and perchlorate.

*How do you thing this spot should be filled?

The Council should review applicants and pick a person qualified.

*What is the value of having it done now verses waiting till June in a special election?

We need leadership, there are major financial issues facing this city and a person with knowledge of these issues would be helpful.

*Can you explain the importance of having an odd number of people voting?

You certainly don’t want tied votes and if the council cannot come up with a consensus then a 3 – 2 votes is helpful. In a perfect situation if staff and the council are doing their homework a unanimous vote should take place. Voting on issues is not about one’s personal agenda it’s about what is good and right for the community.

*What was your greatest accomplishment & failure as a council member?

I think my hard work to bring new businesses into our community was important. i.e. Coco’s, Wal-Mart, Target, In & Out multiple distribution centers bringing job to Rialto and my work in bringing the perchlorate law suit to an end. But my greatest pleasure was when I could help a resident of small business with a problem and could leave them with the feeling that an elected official cared about them. There is no better feeling. As far as failures I don’t really look at anything that way. Would I have of done something’s different yes, hind sight is always important.

*There is talk of putting Measure “V” on the ballot again any thoughts on this? Why in your opinion did it fail in November?

It failed because people didn’t understand why the City was doing it and we let big oil companies come into our city and flat out lie to our residents. I worked for big oil companies for over twenty years and I tried to warn the city how ruthless they can be but my concerns fell on deaf ears.

*What in your opinion is the greatest hurdle in the community’s path between now and the next election?

Having enough money to keep the City solvent and at the same time maintain our necessary levels of service for public safety.

*Veolia will be the operator of both the Water and Waste Water for Rialto for the next 30 years, what are your thoughts on this? Can they handle both with minimal errors? Did you have a choice you wish was there instead?

Yes I am confident they can handle it my choice to run the water department was West Valley it just didn’t happen

*As a small business owner what can Rialto do to make this an attractive home for our local small businesses?

Make the permitting and government interaction easier. The City needs to understand that when a small business loses business because of safety concerns or because government is difficult to do business with it is devastating. Most small business people are not rich people they are hardworking residents.

*Residents of the country club area came out to the Coffee with the Chief in December commenting on the way the Golf Course has become a mess and attracts criminals and the wild life is moving in as well. What was done wrong there in your opinion?

The golf course was losing 20,000 a month the owners had a right to close it. The residents should have worked with the owners instead of suing them. No one won in that situation but lawyers. The best thing now is to support the new development at the golf course so it can be reopened and become prosperous.

Battle of the Badges Blood Drive

blood drive
Hello all,
Rialto Police Department, Rialto Fire Department, andAmerican Red Cross are hosting an upcoming blood drive.
Please join our lifesaving mission and schedule an appointment today!
Battle of Badges
Drive Details: Site: Rialto Community Center Date:
Tue Jan 8, 2013 Time: 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Coordinator Names: Kim Martin(RPD) and Frank Bekker (RFD) Coordinator Email Addresses:  klmartin@rialtopd.com or fbekker@confire.org
You may also contact one of the following peoplefor more information:
Lt. Kathy Thompson kthompson@rialtopd.com; Noretta Barker nbarker@rialtopd.com; LeAnne Fitch lfitch@rialtopd.com;Erin Lopez ealopez@rialtopd.com;or Amber Jones ajones@rialtopd.com
Click here to make an appointment
 
The need for blood is constant and only volunteer donors can fulfill that need for patients in our community. Nationwide, someone needs a unit of blood every 2 to 3 seconds and most of us will need blood in our lifetime.  Donors must be at least 18 years of agewith valid ID.
Thank you for supporting the American Red Cross blood program!

Press Release from Rialto Water Services (WasteWater)

 

 

Rialto Water Services selects Veolia Water

 

to upgrade and operate City of Rialto’s water, wastewater services

 

 

 

Partnership will focus on updating City’s infrastructure and adding efficiencies

 

 

 

RIALTO, Calif., December 3, 2012 – Rialto Water Services has selected Veolia Water West Operating Services (Veolia) to improve, operate and maintain the City’s water and wastewater services.

 

Under a public-private concession agreement signed between the City and RWS in March of 2012, RWS will manage the Veolia contract and oversee a $41 million capital improvements program improving the cost efficiency, compliance, water quality, and reliability of the City’s wastewater and water systems for the 30-year life of the concession. The capital improvements program produces 445 construction jobs, and all affected City employees have accepted jobs at Veolia.

 

The RWS concession refinances the City’s aging water and wastewater systems, and provides the capital necessary to fix and replace water and sewer lines, develop necessary new infrastructure and seismic upgrades, improve cost efficiencies, and provide lease payments back to the City supporting additional economic development and jobs locally. Rialto retains full ownership of the water and wastewater systems, control and ownership of the water supply and water rights, and transparent public authority over all rate setting.

 

For RWS, Veolia was a natural choice as Operator, considering Veolia’s 40-year history in California and 9 years providing environmental services and employment to Rialto residents as operator of the City’s wastewater plant and collection system.

 

Neighboring West Valley Water District will take an expanded leadership role on the City’s water supply side, heading up the perchlorate remediation to ensure the continued safety of the water supply, and expansion of the City’s water capacity. West Valley will continue to serve the balance of Rialto’s residents, and to innovate with the City on the 2013 debut of the nation’s first bioremediation plant approved for drinking water.

 

“The RWS partnership ensures that the City’s water and wastewater infrastructure is upgraded and run in the most cost-efficient manner, while also laying the groundwork for new economic development,” says City Administrator Mike Story. “We’ve worked with Veolia for years in the community, and with West Valley on water supply and treatment, and this arrangement allows for both continuity and improvement in the water resource and wastewater service, and assures us that the total commitment to the residents of the City of Rialto is met.”

 

Under the contract, Veolia Water will operate and manage (O&M) a sewer collection system consisting of more than 260 miles of pipeline, six lift stations, and a wastewater treatment plant currently operating at approximately eight million gallons per day. Veolia Water will also provide O&M services for the City’s water system, with a total user population estimated to be approximately 50,000. The water system includes five water reservoirs, distribution, eight groundwater wells, and related pumping infrastructure.

 

“We’ve worked with Rialto for almost 10 years and have established a relationship of trust that supports the community’s economic vitality,” said Laurent Auguste, president and CEO, Veolia Water Americas. “Rialto is taking the right step in restoring and improving its infrastructure, and we’re excited for the opportunity to help them through our new and expanded role.”

 

The financial backing and structuring of Rialto’s groundbreaking public-private concession was provided by San Francisco-based Table Rock Capital, led by Peter Luchetti. RWS is jointly owned with an affiliate of the labor-owned financial services company, Ullico Inc.

 

“With the loss of redevelopment financing, creative partnerships such as these are increasingly critical to communities who want to restore infrastructure, gain efficiencies, and get a competitive edge when it comes to creating jobs and economic growth,” said Luchetti.

 

Story praised all of the partners in the deal: “Table Rock has worked hard to back and structure this and get it right for Rialto, and we’re glad to see Veolia stepping in to take a supportive, expanded role in our community. Then the expertise West Valley brings to the City to manage the perchlorate remediation and ensure our water quality and supply is invaluable.”

 

 

 

###

 

 

 

Contact:

 

 

 

Steve Lambert, The 20/20 Network for Veolia/RWS, 909.841.7527, steve@the2020network.com

 

Mike Story, City of Rialto, 909.820.2525, mstory@rialtoca.gov

 

Megan Matson, Table Rock Capital, 415.497.2320, mmatson@t-rockcap.com

 

Sonia Axter, Ullico, 917.293.6754, saxter@ullico.com

 

RIALTO: Officials saving ambulances for emergencies

RIALTO: Officials saving ambulances for emergencies

STAN LIM/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Rialto Fire Department Firefighter/Paramedic Marcus Lynch helps guide in the cities ambulance after finishing up a call on Friday, Nov. 2, 2012 in Rialto. Starting Monday the fire department will be reserving its ambulances for true medical emergencies.
BY RICHARD BROOKS
BY RICHARD BROOKS The Press EnterpriseSTAFF WRITER

rbrooks@pe.com

Published: 04 November 2012 03:10 PM

Anxious to keep his city’s three paramedic ambulances available for medical emergencies, Rialto’s fire chief no longer is sending them to treat broken fingers and other minor problems.

“I’m still going to send a paramedic to every call,” Chief Mat Fratus emphasized. “But I’m not going to send multiple paramedic units to every call.”

Beginning Monday, Nov. 5, dispatchers will assign only a paramedic fire engine to minor medical calls in Rialto. The aim is to keep the three Fire Department ambulances available for more serious emergencies, including heart attacks, strokes, injury traffic crashes and violent crimes because studies show that saving time reaching those calls tends to save lives.

Other agencies around Inland Southern California will track the new program in Rialto and assess its effectiveness.

The heart of the new system is San Bernardino County’s regional dispatch center, where call-takers have undergone more than 18 months of re-training to enable them to question callers more quickly and thoroughly.

“If you know more accurately what the problem is, you can more accurately assign the proper units,” said Rick Britt, director of the Confire communications center.

And the dispatching happens fast. Based on the new training, dispatchers ask specific questions in a specific order, beginning with the caller’s address and phone number — so if the call gets interrupted, they can still send firefighters or police to the correct location.

Then, the caller is asked the nature of the problem. If it’s a medical situation, the dispatcher immediately sends the nearest available paramedic fire engine.

If the patient’s not breathing, the dispatcher begins offering CPR instructions. Dispatchers also have a list of instructions for callers reporting, for example, suffocations, or attempted suicide-by-hanging.

And for all serious-injury or illness calls, an ambulance or additional fire engines will be dispatched.

“My dispatchers are the true first responders because they stat helping the caller immediately,” said Britt, whose staff serves 12 fire agencies, including San Bernardino County Fire Department and municipal fire departments ranging from Barstow south to Colton and from Redlands west to Rancho Cucamonga.

At least some of those agencies will be studying the results of Rialto’s experiment.

“What I’m picking up from the chiefs is that they’re all interested in it,” Britt said. “They want units available for the serious calls that require them.”

Traditionally, fire departments have sent two paramedic units to each 911 medical-aid call, regardless of how minor the injury or illness. In Rialto, a fire engine and an ambulance were dispatched. In other communities, the mix varies – sometimes two fire engines, or a fire engine and a paramedic squad, for example.

Fratus is confident that the so-called Medical Priority Dispatch System will work. He implemented the same system in San Bernardino, where he previously worked as Deputy Chief. His responsibilities included emergency medical service for that city’s fire department.

By cutting down the number of paramedic units sent to minor incidents in San Bernardino, response times to the most critical medical emergencies improved by roughly 30 percent, he said.

Britt’s dispatchers took the process one step farther, becoming the 169th emergency communications center to obtain full accreditation by the National Academy of Emergency Medical Dispatchers.

“My chiefs wanted us to be accredited before they take the risk in liability and modify the response,” Britt acknowledged. “There is some risk to it.”

By cutting back on the number of units assigned to a call, the door is open to criticism and legal liability, he said. But he believes the risk is minimal to patients and taxpayers. Under the new system, dispatchers have been trained to triage calls, in much the same way newly arrived patients are triaged at a hospital emergency room, he said.

“You only have so many (paramedic) units to put out there,” said Britt, who emphasized that officials simply want to avoid dispatching multiple fire engines to calls where they’re not needed. “In days of shrinking budgets, you can’t afford to do that anymore.”

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