Raising Cane’s Opening in San Bernardino!

Are you ready for the grand opening of the newest Raising Cane’s!

Our team got a chance to check out this awesome location as the staff trained for the upcoming crowds that will flock to this location once the doors open. Those who attended the event found the food had great flavor. The chicken was juicy, Texas toast buttery and the Cane’s sauce was something we had never tasted before.

Unlike most fast food places today Raising Cane’s has a core concept and they do that one thing very well:

“Our concept is simple and unique… we only have ONE LOVE – quality chicken finger meals! At Raising Cane’s® you get an exceptionally high quality product served quickly and conveniently. We can do this because we offer a limited menu. The specialized systems developed by Raising Cane’s® allow us to maintain a level of quality unmatched in the industry. Our commitment to this concept will not allow us to compromise our quality, cut corners or clutter our menu with new products that do not fit our core menu offering.”

On Thursday January 18th the 2nd Inland Empire Location will open which will lead to 17 more stores in California in 2018. Other cities slated to get a Raising Cane’s are Ontario, Menifee and Fontana. When speaking to corporate staff Rialto was not on their list of slated locations.

20 Lucky Caniacs will receive Free Cane’s for a year! Entry period begins at 6:30 am on Thursday 1/18 and winners will be drawn at 7:30 am. Must be 13 years or older and present to win.

First 100 dine-in customers to make a purchase will receive a Raising Cane’s T-shirt and a voucher for a Free Box Combo on your next visit.

Doors open at 9:00 am.

Where

1857 S Tippecanoe Ave, San Bernardino, CA 92408

Kicking off the event will be The Go Country 105 Street Team, San Bernardino Area Chamber of Commerce, Santa Clause Incorporated, and The Unforgettables Foundation.

Image

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!!!!!!

Image

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.

Image

Rialto Budget Hinges On City Council & Mayor Doing Their Jobs

Years of bad choices, out of control litigation and overbearing pension costs have put Rialto in a very uneasy place when it comes to being able to pay its financial obligations. One of the most pressing matters in regards to the cities budget is the upcoming expiration of the cities Utility Users Tax that accounts for about a third of the cities budget. If the Utility Users Tax is not continued for another five years Rialto will find itself unable to meet its obligations and our reserves will be depleted in 2 years. (see image below)

You may ask yourself what is fueling this budget busting trend? Employee Pensions are killing our city the same way they killed cities like San Bernardino. Rialto has not fully paid their PERS obligations hoping that PERS investments will preform better than expected and bail us out. Well they have not done that and now the city finds itself $130 Million in debt to PERS. Rialto’s pension payment will increase by $1.5 Million each year for the next 10 years!!!!!

Rialto not only did not pay what they knew they had to pay but sources close to major bargaining units and City Hall itself say that payments were regularly late under the watch of former Finance Director George Harris. Mr. Harris no longer works for the city of Rialto and the circumstances surrounding his forced departure remain a mystery filled with rumors and speculation.

The chart above shows how expensive each residential unit is in Rialto Vrs the amount of money that is brought in by these units and where a lion share of the money comes from. As you can see the single largest amount of revenue is from the Utility Users Tax. The chart above also spells out that each residential unit costs the city $800 Thousand more than they bring into the city.

 

As you can see keeping the Utility Users Tax gives us the funds necessary to find better solutions to our pension obligations all the way to 2024! Nobody likes taxes and we all know that we live in the most heavily taxed state in the country but, many look at reduced police and fire services as a bad trade off for continuing to pay what we already have been paying.

What does need to change in the minds of many is the reckless disregard for the citizens money. Some on council and in City Hall have been putting this city under a financial obligation that we should have never been in. They have been unable to properly administer workmans comp and that has cost us millions, they have gone on personal which hunts after people that they think are plotting against them and are costing us millions and they have refused to control high ranking employees and have allowed them to put the city under a horrible financial obligation and have chased employees out in droves.

Tonight city Council and the Mayor will once again be asked to:

  • Declare a State of Financial Emergency.
  • Putt the Utility Users Tax on the ballot for April.
  • Keep the Utility Users Tax at it’s current rate and term.

They were unwilling to do this earlier this year with the same information meaning they didn’t seem to care if we found ourselves in financial ruin.

So the question is where do you want to see Rialto in the next 5 to 10 years?

 

Image

Meet West Valley Water Board Candidate Linda Gonzalez

Welcome to our individual interviews with Candidates running for local elections. All candidates were given the same questions and allowed the freedom to answer as they see fit. We did not alter any of the responses so you are hearing things directly from them.

In this interview we are introducing you to Linda Gonzalez. Mrs. Gonzalez  is a person who has spent a long time in the Rialto area. Mrs. Gonzalez is also one of the elected incumbents seeking re-election to the West Valley Water board.

 

1) Tell us about yourself where did you grow up, go to school and work before?

I was born in Los Angeles. In 1985 I was married and we decided to buy our first house in the City of Fontana in 1986.
I have attended local community colleges in the area and raise our four children who are young adults now. I currently work at our family owned business since March 3, 1988 in Fontana California. In 1990 we relocated to Bloomington California and decided that is where we raise our four children, all our children attended grade school through Bloomington high school and graduated and continued on to colleges and universities.

2) How does your past make you a good candidate for West Valley Water Board?

My whole life I have been a community advocate in our local areas I care about our cities and towns.
I have served in the following boards or Business organizations.
A. Bloomington municipal advisory Council (MAC) served 13 years.(1998-2011). Four years as chairwoman.
b. Fontana Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors served six years. (2000-2006).
C. Bloomington woman’s club served as President four years.
(2010-2014).
D. Colton unified school district (measure G) committee served as the vice chair for six years.
E. Volunteered in the Girl Scouts of America many years.Bloomington Little League volunteered as a team mom.
F. I currently serve as vice president on West Valley Water District board from December 2013 -to present.
I understand what it is to have a well fiscal year budget balance. I have the knowledge on how to implement ideas on the table to help our general manager and the water district team to succeed in securing future funds for the water district and on behalf of our ratepayers.

3) Some of you are incumbents what have you learned since being elected or appointed that you didn’t know until you sat in the elected seat?

I am currently the vice President of our West Valley Water District.
I currently served on
A. Executive committee.
B. Human resource committee.
c. External Affairs committee.
I have Learned that water is more difficult than what it seems. Water has to be treated and it has to be transferred from point A to point B meaning from our wells and reservoirs to your homes and business.The state regulates water very highly.

4) How important is transparency to you? 

Transparency is very important to me. From always respecting our water district ratepayers to our internal departments. We should always have open communication. There should always have an open door policy at this water district.

5) Do you believe that partisan politics have a place within a water board seat?

I am here to represent all people across the board all walks of life.

6) What is your impression of the communities freedom of speech?

Our First Amendment gives us rights to freedom of speech.

7) What are your thoughts on budget surpluses? Should they be a certain percentage of the overall budget or are they even important? 

The district should have a budget surplus for in case of a natural disaster or to slowly address aging infrastructure,1/3 of the budget surplus is for restricted funds for our bonds.

To find out more about Linda Gonzalez go to  https://www.facebook.com/2013lindagonzalez2017/

Image

Meet West Valley Water Board Candidate Robert Bourland

Welcome to our individual interviews with Candidates running for local elections. All candidates were given the same questions and allowed the freedom to answer as they see fit. We did not alter any of the responses so you are hearing things directly from them.

In this interview we are introducing you to Robert Bourland. Mr. Bourland is a person we didn’t know a lot about and he was appointed to the West Valley Water Board by the Board of Supervisors to fill the appointed spot that Rafael Trujillo vacated after he was elected to city council. Mr. Bourland was the successful candidate and appointed to this position by the San Bernardino County Supervisors after an exhaustive search and interview process over a number of other potential candidates.

There are a couple of candidates that have an extensive background in providing utility services to this region and Robert Bourland is one of those candidates, enjoy.

First, I’d like to express my appreciation for bringing out the real issues the voters should be looking at and not the partisan political statements, the slander that’s been so freely flowing and the made-up promises that cannot be delivered unless appropriate due-diligence is done, contrary to some of the political propaganda being propagated.

 

1)      Tell us about yourself where did you grow up, go to school and work before?

  • I have lived in Rialto since 1964. I went to Morgan elementary, Frisbie Junior High, Eisenhower High, San Bernardino Valley College and California State San Bernardino. While attending college I worked full-time at Stater Brothers grocery stores. After obtaining my Bachelor’s degree I started my career at Southern California Edison as a meter reader, ultimately retiring as an Executive. Along with serving on the WVWD board, I currently serve on the Board of Directors at Anand-PAG LLC.
  • For a more detailed review of my extensive work experience please see my LinkedIn profile: www.linkedin.com/in/robertbourland

 

2) How does your past make you a good candidate for West Valley Water Board?

  • I have over 35 years of experience in the utility industry, including water, gas and electric. Prior to my retirement at SCE, I was responsible for the entire portfolio of applications at the company including Customer Service, Transmission & Distribution, Generation, Conservation, Technology etc. This is exactly the same work that West Valley Water District does, except that SCE was on a much larger scale. I KNOW this business, how to run it, fix it, make it more efficient which ultimately leads to safer, more reliable and the most affordable water possible.
  • At SCE I ran an organization of several hundred people and was responsible for budgets of well over $200. Million (about 10 times what the WVWD budget is)
  • I currently serve on the Board of Directors of Anand-PAG LLC, a mid-size technology company
  • I have previously served as Board President of the El Rancho Verde MAC committee
  • I have previously served on the Visitors Board of Claremont College

 

 

3)      Some of you are incumbents what have you learned since being elected or appointed that you didn’t know until you sat in the elected seat?

  • Overseeing a water district is very similar to overseeing any other utility which I have spent my last 35+ years doing very successfully.  I’ve been disappointed to learn that in dealing with elected officials and “wannabe” elected officials, they are willing to say things to garner votes, instead of doing what’s right for the district, employees and ultimately the rate payers.
  • My commitment is to always focus on the issues at-hand and deal with them keeping in mind the best interests of our constituents, employees and the water district. I will not be influenced by political inclinations or other outside influences.

 

 

4) How important is transparency to you?

  • Transparency in an organization builds trust amongst employees and our ratepayers. It is a critical success factor for the newly elected board to rebuild that trust that has eroded over the past several years. I will accept nothing less than full transparency as we work towards the success of our District.

 

5) Do you believe that partisan politics have a place within a water board seat?

  • Absolutely not! Decisions made by the WVWD board should be based entirely on the facts of the matter at hand to ensure safe, reliable and affordable water to our ratepayers. As opposed to the stated view of some of the candidates (per their campaign literature), I do not believe partisan politics should have any influence, at all, on the policies adopted by this board.
  • In regards to partisanship on the board, I think it’s important to note that I’m supported by both Josie Gonzales (D) and Janice Rutherford (R).

 

6) What is your impression of the communities freedom of speech?

  • Freedom of speech is everyone’s lawful right in our wonderful country and I fully support that. I also believe that we should self-impose some moral and ethical boundaries upon ourselves out of respect for one another and our diverse beliefs. Although to-date none of this has been targeted against me, I’m abhorred at some of the campaign literature mailed during this election. Candidates should focus on what they stand for and their value proposition, not putting out half-truths and disparaging remarks about others.

 

7) What are your thoughts on budget surpluses? Should they be a certain percentage of the overall budget or are they even important?

  • As a government entity, WVWD is a not-for-profit organization. The budgeting process is intended to anticipate all costs needed for normal operations as well as unexpected events. Because WVWD is a government agency, there is no “budget surplus” built into the budget. The budget will be “even” where the incoming revenue is equal to the expected expenditures for the upcoming year.
  • What some people inaccurately perceive to be a “surplus” are in fact essential items needed for the effective operations of the water district. Examples are:

o   Government mandated reserve policies to insure liquidity

o   Emergency funds for leaks, breaks, failures etc.

o   Contingencies for expected costs that might overrun anticipated costs

o   Ongoing liabilities such as bond covenants, pension liabilities, capital improvement projects

o   Capital improvements for projects to replace the miles of pipelines that are aged and are in dire need of replacement before catastrophic failure

o   Capital improvement projects to expand and insure our water services are not interrupted

  • My commitment is to insure that the costs to obtain our water, to purify our water, to deliver our water to our constituents will be the lowest possible, which will lead to the lowest possible rates to our customers.

 

List any and all contact info people can use to get a hold of you or learn more. Also please include a photo we can use for your article. If you have any video links you would like included please Include those as well.

 

Image

Meet West Valley Water Board Candidate Anthony “Butch” Araiza

Welcome to our individual interviews with Candidates running for local elections. All candidates were given the same questions and allowed the freedom to answer as they see fit. We did not alter any of the responses so you are hearing things directly from them.

In this interview we are introducing you to Butch Araiza. Mr. Araiza is a person who has basically lived his entire life in the Rialto area given back in so many ways and has worked his entire life at West Valley Water. There are a couple of candidates that have an extensive background in providing utility services to this region and Butch Araiza is one of those candidates, enjoy.

1) Tell us about yourself where did you grow up, go to school and work before?

I was born and raised in Rialto. I was in one of the first classes to go through Boyd Elementary, and then I went on to Rialto Middle School and Eisenhower High. I’ve taken courses at Valley College and Cal State San Bernardino, and while those were important in helping me learn the science behind water distribution, my real education came on the job. I started at West Valley Water District when I was 19 years old, thinking it would be a good summer job–I went on to work there for 52 years. I started out in irrigation, working to help get water to the citrus groves that used to cover the area, and I slowly worked my way up through just about every department in the district until I reached the level of Superintendent. As Superintendent I was responsible for all field operations for several years. After that I become Assistant General Manager for 10 years before becoming the General Manager. I served as General Manager for 20 years.

2) How does your past make you a good candidate for West Valley Water Board?

I have been involved in water for almost my entire life. I’ve served in the management of the District for over 35 years. I know water. And I also know this community because I’ve been involved in it my entire life too. I’ve been a member of Rialto Rotary for over 20 years, and have served as president of the club several times. I’ve been one of the organizers of the Rialto Run Whatcha Brung car show since it began. I was a member of the Rialto Planning Commissionfor 8 years, and served as Chairman for several of those. I spent over 20 years on the board of the Friends of the Rialto Police K-9s. And finally, I was a member of the Oversight Committees for the last two school bond measures for Rialto Unified School District. Almost all of that work was as a volunteer, because I care about this community.

3) Some of you are incumbents what have you learned since being elected or appointed that you didn’t know until you sat in the elected seat?

I am not an incumbent, but I have been involved with the water board for the last 20 years. The thing that has most surprised me about recent elections is the amount of partisanship that has become a part of it. In the past we’ve had people with different viewpoints on the water board, and there have been disagreements over policy, but I never once questioned that board members were making decisions based on the well being of the district. In the past four years that has changed. Certain board members have become far too involved in the hiring and firing practices of the district, and they have taken a direct hand in managing the district by directly overruling the day-to-day decisions of district management (the people who have experience in these issues, and who are paid to make those decisions). Additionally, I have seen board members do things like initiate baseless investigations just so that they could send out negative campaign literature claiming that other candidates are “under investigation.” And, of course, those investigations are dropped as soon as the campaign is over. I would encourage voters to research these issues carefully before believing anything they receive in the mail. And I hope, that if I am elected, I can help restore an ethical water board (I know that Linda Gonzalez and Robert Bourland also share this hope which is why I have endorsed them for the other open seats).

4) How important is transparency to you? 

I believe transparency is extremely important to good governance. Many of the changes that have been made to the Board of Directors’ rules and procedures since I left management are troubling to me because I feel that they decrease transparency. I support an ethics code for the board and a return to the rules of order that existed prior to last four years.

5) Do you believe that partisan politics have a place within a water board seat?

No. A board seat is a non-partisan position meant to oversee the management of the Water District. The board is there to set overall policy for the district, approve budgets, and to make sure that the district manager is doing his or her job. Those are not partisan issues. 

6) What is your impression of the communitiesfreedom of speech?

I believe that freedom of speech is the cornerstone of our democracy. Without a free discussion of the issues no consensus or compromise could be reached, and only those with the right “opinion” would be allowed to participate–a system like that is not sustainable and it’s not good for the people. On my Facebook page you can find my direct cell phone number. I put that there because I want the people in this community to be able to speak to me directly; to voice their concerns, criticisms, and even just to talk about the district. I welcome it all. Speech is very important to me.

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/ButchAraiza/

Cell Phone(909) 644-2417

7) What are your thoughts on budget surpluses? Should they be a certain percentage of the overall budget or are they even important? 

The district should not have extreme budget surpluses. Of course, in any given period of time there will be times when the district is able to get good deals or somehow decrease costs resulting in a short term budget surplus, and that’s good–it’s a sign of good management. But sustained budget surpluses are a sign that rates can be decreased. Now that is not to say that the district should not have savings. If a large natural disaster struck our community, without savings the district would have no efficient way to rebuild any infrastructure that is damaged and it would be difficult to restore service to the community without taking out expensive loans. Everyone needs a rainy day fund and the district is no different. That said, the district currently appears to be in a good financial situation and I feel confident in guaranteeing that I will not vote for any rate increases unless there is some catastrophic change in that.

Image

Previous Older Entries