City Council Seeks Input On Dumping Woman’s Shelter into Two Neighborhoods

The city of Rialto after a heated and contentious city council tab item on September 11th 2018 is finally giving Rialto Residents what they deserve, a right to voice their concerns on the proposed project.

The City of Rialto’s Neighborhood, Housing Preservation, and Beautification Commission is hosting a workshop to consider a transitional housing facility proposed by the Time For Change Foundation (“TFCF”). The meeting is on Thursday, November 15, beginning at 6:00 p.m in the Rialto City Hall City Council Chambers, 150 S. Palm Ave. Rialto

The City and TFCF considered several sites in Rialto, but narrowed the choice to two locations:

(1) a 1 acre site at the northwest corner of Olive Avenue and Rialto Avenue owned by the Rialto Housing Authority/Rialto Successor Agency

(2) a 2.2 acre site at 475 N. Linden Avenue, just north of Foothill Boulevard owned by a private party.

The City would appreciate your input on any aspect of the project proposal. The City Council will ultimately decide the project location and characteristics after taking public input.

Both proposed sites have created concern in the minds of residents. The original site is in a downtown area zoned for cottage commercial and is not a desirable addition to the current residents in the area. The 2nd and most recent proposed site is even worse. The 2nd area is an area already dealing with large amounts of crime from other multi family dwellings and has multiple homes that are used as group homes where homeless and mentally ill people roam the streets and harass residents and in some cases have defecated on homeowners lawns. The community on Linden is a older neighborhood and nobody wants to see more transitional housing dumped there.

Even though everyone keeps calling the work being done here a feasibility study the mayor has been jumping into every picture she can and is doing her best to push this facility on Rialto.

Residents with questions or concerns should email jdutrey@rialtoca.gov or call (909) 820-8014

 

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Rialto Now Voter Guide

Hello Rialto Now readers we are here to give you a digital look into what we believe are the best people to vote for and a little education on the propositions. We would like to thank Shaun Nieves owner of Unity Escape Rooms for helping us with our guide this year!

Governor:

John Cox – The other choice for Governor has been in power for years and produced horrible results Gavin Newsom will make it more expensive to live in California and over regulate things even more.

Secretary of State:

Mark Meuser – Alex Padilla says he expanded the right to vote but refuses to investigate fraud. It would be easy to run a query of voter registrations against commercial addresses. I wonder why he refused to do it?

Controller:

Konstantinos Roditis – Konstantinos is a Greek man running for election and his main promise to uncertify the funding for the Bullet Train to nowhere is reason enough to vote for him.

Treasurer:

Greg Conlon – One of the major issues California has is the out of control pension system. We need a fiscally conservative with the drive to convert the system into a new contribution based plan. One where we honor the commitments to the people that worked for the state and retired but we also reduce our liability for new employees moving forward.

Attorney General:

Steven Bailey – Our current attorney general took up his entire statement bragging how he’s fought against conservative values during his tenure. Steven Bailey talked about how he wants to make California safer and how the AG needs to be above partisanship.

Insurance Commissioner:

Steve Poizner – This was a hard one. Ricardo Lara made a strong case but it all came down to partisan rhetoric in his statement. Steve is running as an independent and said the commissioner needs to be above that which I believe in. He also served before from 2007-2011 and did a great job so he has my vote.

State Board of Equalization, District 4:

Joel Anderson – This was another hard one. Mike Schaefer has a really good statement and has a pretty good record. The key for me was Joel led the charge to get the gas tax repeal on the ballot.

United States Senator:

Diane Feinstein – Kevin DeLeon would be a disaster…

United States Representative, District 31:

Sean Flynn – I follow the incumbent on Facebook and found it fascinating to see the evolution of his campaign. I watched for 2 years how much pride he had in being part of the resistance. But, when it came time to campaign, it became about common ground. I watched him vote against veterans purely along party lines. In Sean Flynn’s statement he says, “The inland empire is a great place to live and raise a family, but failed policies and blind commitment to party leaders and party politics have made life unaffordable”. I’ve seen him support the president and I’ve seen him speak out against him. Sean Flynn has my vote and I hope those of you in my district choose him too.

State Senator, District 20:

Matthew Munson – Connie Leyva is looking to make California the most expensive place to live in the nation. She spends more time fighting at the democrat convention than she does representing the people. She also does not represent everyone in her District. If you fall out of favor with her politics then her office won’t even help you. What we like about Matthew is he isn’t a career politician and he takes every situation with a how can we make this better for everyone position. Matthew isn’t going to jump into bed with special interests and will represent everyone not just one party. Another danger circling around Connie is her lack of concern about Youth Drug use. Connie Leyva has worked to derail funding that would help address youth drug use.

Judicial Offices:

VOTE NO ON ALL JUDGES!!!!

Superintendent of Public Education:

Marshall Tuck – Marshall will be way less destructive to public education than the alternative.

Member of County Board of Education:

Hardy Brown II – Hardy Brown has proven that of the others on the county board of education he is by far the least dangerous of the group. You can talk to Hardy and he seems to care. Hardy heartaches kids and teachers about the plights of slavery and the underground railroad. We do wish he would engage more on the massive issues of drug use in our teens by in large Hardy is the best choice.

Governing Board Area 2 San Bernardino Community College District:

Joseph Williams – Joseph Williams is dedicated to students well being and success. I have never seen a politician outside of my friend Shawn Oconnell that is more dedicated to doing what is right. You may not always agree with Joseph but he always comes at every situation from an angle of what is good for the greatest amount of people. His challenger is a plant put up to running by Councilman Rafeal Trujillo. Councilman Trujillo is holding some grudge against Joseph and is looking to enact some old revenge by unseating him.

Rialto Unified School Board:

Teresa Hyden – Rialto Unified is out of control! District office spends Hundreds of thousands of Dollars on bloated staff and still can’t right the ship. Board member Edgar Montes is a hot mess and cares only about his seat of power not representing the parents, students and voters. Who he is there to represent even when it comes at a cost to students and parents are the unions that fund his campaign and puff up his ego. For an example when a Elementary School special needs child was threatened with arrest for having a bad day Edgar was more worried about getting blamed than getting to the bottom of the issues. Dina Walker has become a champion of one party and one race, if you fall outside those boundaries she will do nothing for you. You know there are problems when a Head Football Coach is 11-0 in the playoffs and wasn’t offered a teaching job but we are hiring managers like they are going out of style!

Rialto City Council:

Ana Gonzalez – Ana isn’t perfect and she has made some mistakes but so have we all. What makes Ana the only clear choice this year is she wont give up and she wont back down. Also Ana isn’t a corrupt career politician. In 2016 when she wanted to run for city council she was told by the Bacas it is not your turn I told her even though I was running for city council too if she was passionate about city council then run for that. When she decided to run this time around she was told by the Bacas it is not your turn. This time she didn’t listen to failed voices that bring nothing to the table. In this election you have the incumbents and Ana Gonzalez. Ed Scott and Joe Baca Jr are so afraid of Ana that they put up a fake candidate (a latina female) to wash out the vote. Also Ed Scott used the police department to kick Ana out of National Night Out this year. Vote for only 1 vote for Ana Gonzalez!

Proposition 1

Proposition 2

Proposition 3

Proposition 4

Proposition 5

Proposition 6

 

Proposition 7

Proposition 8

Proposition 10

Proposition 11

Proposition 12

 

 

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Change of the guard at West Valley Water

Normally when we are writing about West Valley Water it is to talk about employees being fired and questionable actions from the organizations Board of Directors.

This week things took a change where some Like Diana Araiza are claiming a victory for ratepayers and transparency.

An Article penned by The IE Voice  said “After two years of ongoing controversy, West Valley Water District (WVWD) Board of Directors ousted President Dr. Clifford O. Young and Vice-President Greg Young at last Thursday’s board meeting”.

According to reports complaints about suspected misuse of ratepayer funds created by West Valley Water District Ratepayers Association were forwarded to the California Fair Political Practices Commission and eventually to the State Attorney General’s Office for investigation. No word has yet surfaced on what actions have come from these elevated complaints.

The West Valley Water District Ratepayers Association is just the latest group to call out questionable moves by West Valley Water Board led by Clifford Young and supported by Greg Young. For more than three years now local councilmen, community members, community advocates and ratepayers have been railing on this Elected Board to change what they call questionable tactics.

Many people that have been involved over the years have begun to loose faith that anything would be done about the perceived corruption because in the last election for the Board Clifford Young had stacked the deck to show he had a 4-1 margin against any opposition with the election of Michael Taylor and Kyle Crowther.

Yet last week Michael Taylor and Kyle Crowther proved everyone wrong when they took action to remove both Clifford Young from his role as president and Greg Young as Vice President joined by Don Olinger.

At the WVWD meeting last Thursday, board member Donald Olinger was joined by fellow board members Michael Taylor and Kyle Crowther to facilitate what some have described as nothing less than a coup. By a 3-2 vote they removed Clifford Young from his role as board president and also voted for the removal of Greg Young from his position as vice president. In their places, board member Michael Taylor was elected board president and Kyle Crowther assumed the role of vice president.

Taylor took immediate control of the board meeting and wasted no time charting a new way forward. He recommended that in the future, each director serve a two-year term as president and called for an annual review of the president’s performance by his peers on the board to make sure whoever is serving in the role of president is doing a good job.

He also called for legal to examine the decorum of the board members toward fellow board members and WVWD employees themselves. Taylor wasted no time expounding on exactly what he meant by this. “I don’t want them yelled at. I don’t want them cussed at. I don’t want them to have their jobs threatened.” He asserted adamantly. – IE Voice

For more on this story go to the IE Voice

 

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Big Checks Written to Pay off One Union for Pushing Permanent Tax on Residents

The city is super proud of themselves for taking the last bit of control away from the voters on getting spending in this city under control. As they were preparing for the June 5th vote the city was working out a lucrative payoff program for the Police Department.

“On May 31, 2018, the parties reached an oral tentative agreement on the terms for a successor MOU, the deal points of which are set forth below and affirmed by the execution of this formal written Tentative Agreement by the parties’ labor representatives.” (Police Union Agreement)

Let us tell you why we believe that this agreement is a slap in the face to the people who live in Rialto. Let us go over a few key points before we move on:

  • We are not against the Police getting paid for the job they do.
  • We realize that the Police were working on a contract that was two years old.

What happened is that the city of Rialto approved an 8% back pay lump sum check for Rialto Police Officers and Management for two years, then a 8% pay increase for the 2018-2019 fiscal year. There are two big problems with this move:

  • The city has no extra money – for the last 5 years we have been basically cash balanced meaning we can pay our current bills but if the car breaks down we are screwed. Our budget has zero room for any sizable hit to it.
  • The Vote to make the Utility Tax Permanent was only an increase in the respect that it is here forever. The only way the city can make more money on it is by increasing the rate above 8%.
  • The city is $150 Million in debt to PERS and Retiree Health Benefits and there is ZERO plan on how to pay those costs.

Another problem with this raise is the fact that as our population is increasing our police force is shrinking. Nobody inside city hall seems concerned with the fact that Rialto Police Department is less likely to be able to handle this city with less and less staff. Not to mention popular shopping and dinning centers that are coming on board. How is Rialto going to handle the influx when staffing levels continue to drop?

Members of the Rialto Budget Advisory Committee wanted to add staff positions to the department while giving a 1.5 percent pay increase to the Police. The community members saw that just throwing money at the problem wouldn’t solve the issue of the public’s ability to feel safe. Chairman Stacey Augustine said as a manager of a major plant in Rialto he learned that simply giving employees more money would not change everything that was wrong in a workplace. Members Joe Rayden and Michelle Sanchez were concerned that the additional funds were not spent on hiring new officers.

Rialto Police have had a lot of recent turnover. The turnovers have applied pressure to the city to make a move to make employees happy and pay them back for pressuring community members into backing the permanent Utility Users Tax. Was this turnover simply about making less money or are there deeper roots? We do know that for the last two years the following has happened:

  • Police Chief Randy Deanda ripped apart a happy and functioning police department.
  • Officers were targeted for removal just because the current political power players didn’t like them.
  • Money was spent on personal witch hunts.
  • Police management staff have abused travel spending and lied to justify travel.
  • A long standing non profit that supported the police department with providing vital funds for specialized departments is still barred from doing their work.
  • Officers, Cpls, Sgt’s and Lt’s all have left the city for other departments.
  • Outside of pay the latest class and comp study showed Rialto Police Officers making at or above the median for other agencies of similar size..

If money was the sole issue why is the Dispatch Supervisor and a veteran officer still leaving after this deal was approved? Also one prominent Sgt recently made his intentions of an early retirement known, if he kept working he would make more in retirement than he will now? So if it is just money why is he leaving?

The problem is that Rialto is not learning from any past mistakes:

  • You can’t promise what you don’t have.
  • You can’t spend what isn’t coming in.
  • You can’t depend on the leadership of intern staff in high level positions in difficult years.

Rialto has spent money or promised to spend money they do not have over and over again. They added $2 million to redeveloping Frisbee park, They have locked Rialto into an agreement to build a 22 acre park in the new Renaissance area with no funds for that park, handed over hundreds of thousands of dollars to the police with this new raise (regular officer alone will make an extra $6 thousand a year with the new raise) and still funnel money to special interests and development buddies that dump money into their campaigns.

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More Employees Exit the City as Police Department Remains in Turmoil

Former Police Chief Mark Kling has quite a task before him as he was brought in to clean up the mess his former Lt. made when he was promoted to Police Chief in 2016. Former Chief Randy Deanda ripped through the department and left a wake of corruption and destruction that are still being felt today. Many saw Police Chief Kling’s return as a sign that better days are ahead but that hasn’t happened.

Both the rank and file in the department have not seen the action everyone was expecting and promised with Kling’s return. Everyone has been left with a weird feeling that normally comes after someone you trust comes by and slugs you in the stomach then walks away with the thing you care about most. Even this blogger has been left with a sour taste in my mouth as there seems more corruption to expose in Rialto than there are people worthy to defend.

Rialto has already seen an exodus of staff fleeing the city leaving many jobs to fill and other staff members to pick up the slack. Development services is not only down 4 or 5 key positions but we have interim staff making recommendations for the next 10 years of critical budget shortfalls due to extremely generous retirement packages.

Rialto Police is probably one of the hardest hit by this exodus of staff. According to sources close to the Police Department there are 10 sworn officers working for Rialto that are testing with other agencies. Two female staff members are already on their way out. Dispatch Supervisor Angela Haddad and Police Officer Cheri Shaffer are both leaving Rialto.

Dispatch has been one of the areas hardest hit with employee retention. Many of the dispatchers who worked in Rialto were subjected to poor working environments, quite a few were married to someone on the job and when their spouse fell into one of the departments witch hunts they were collateral damage and other agencies pay better and have more room for moving up in your career.

In 1997 Rialto had 124 sworn personnel now they only have 89. In 1997 Rialto had a population of 83,000 people. As of 2016 Rialto has a population of 103,314 people. These figures show that Rialto’s population grew by 20,314 residents and the amount of officers dropped by 25 sworn personnel. Add to that the addition of the In & Out area, Super Walmart shopping center and now the Renaissance shopping center opening this year there will be many more people here in the city of Rialto.

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Why were the unintended consequences of Rialto’s shelter switch not considered?

On June 12th 2018 Rialto moved into a direction that would change how Rialto handles shelter services. Many other things are and will be effected with this change. When this blogger asked specific questions about consequences of moving shelter services from Devore to Riverside County everyone points you back to minor savings.

Let’s look at these consequences in light of the $67,000 savings:

  • 32% of Rialto residents do not have reliable transportation to get to a shelter that is 55 mins away – More low income families will be impacted by this change and will be separated from their pets in some cases forever.
  • Current Cat rescue programs will no longer be able to help with the stray cat load – Programs currently working with Devore on our stray cat load will not be able to work with Riverside County do to the added distance.
  • Overload of animals and hitting capacity – Even though John Welsh from Riverside County Animal Control and Lt Smith from Rialto Police are sure we wont hit capacity there doesn’t seem to be a plan in place for the what if’s. With Rialto, Colton, Grand Terrace, Loma Linda and Fontana all sending animals OUTSIDE of the county of origin many believe that capacity will be reached.
  • Slower response from animal control staff – Our 2 animal control officers already do a ton of work and work hard to get to calls as soon as possible. Now they are going to travel farther and fight the same traffic as everyone else meaning more calls will be pushed off until the next day. Also the police chief is pushing off adding staff until NEXT YEAR!!!!
  • San Bernardino County has set aside $10 Million to develop a state of the art facility in the greater Rialto Region – This means that the county is looking for an opportunity to build a state of the art facility that is closer than even Devore.
  • If partner cities like Rialto don’t come back this will effect how the facility is developed – Contract cities like Rialto, Grand Terrace and Fontana help keep shelter facilities open and operating. If San Bernardino County can’t get cities to come back the the new center will be built for a different population and placed closer to existing contract cities.

There is an answer to this abuse of power and lack of fore site the people must call the council and demand action. From where the people stand there are 2 options:

  1. Return to San Bernardino County and broker a better deal that help’s Rialto deal with budget issues but keeps shelter services closer.
  2. Address distance issues and sit down with rescue organizations that are unable to preform vital services at the new shelter.

Want to talk about Humane Treatment of animals? Lets talk about this dog right here. This Police K9 was left in a cage not aloud to do his job or be with the police he was trained to work with just because the city council decided to attack his human handler. We spent almost $8,000 on locking this dog in a cage and ruining his career. Just in case you were wondering the dog we bought to replace this one cost $10,000 and the city bought the replacement dog and paid the bill for the kenneling of this dog. Prior to this witch hunt the Friend’s of Rialto K9’s used to cover K9 costs but our council has allowed them to be chased off and abused.

Want to help? Well it is time to email, call and text our leaders and let them know you wont stand by and allow them to act recklessly while things get out of control. We need to act now to make a change time is on nobody’s side.

MAYOR: DEBORAH ROBERTSON
MAYOR PRO TEM: ED SCOTT
COUNCIL MEMBER: JOE BACA, JR.
COUNCIL MEMBER: RAFAEL TRUJILLO
COUNCIL MEMBER: ANDY CARRIZALES

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Travel and Transparency Remain Out of Control in Rialto

Rialto Police Department wants you to believe that they are concerned with providing money to keep your Police Department fully staffed. They went as far as to scare local residents into voting for a permanent tax this month to keep police services at their current levels.

This blogger would like to remind you of the following:

  • We have harped on out of control spending on travel.
  • We have told you that there is Zero transparency in the City of Rialto.
  • Outside of this blog NOBODY is reporting on or writing about Rialto.

At the June 12th city council meeting the city council approved

Request City Council to Approve a Travel and Training Request for
Lieutenant Dean Hardin to attend Senior Management Institute for Police
(SMIP) of the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) in the Estimated
Amount of $10,405.60, Budgeted in the Proposed Fiscal Year 2018/19
Budget.

As you can see from the photo above the estimate that Rialto Police Department submitted was from April 30th yet they are barley bringing this item forward on June 12th? The date of travel is July 7th, not sure about you but airline rates get more expensive as you wait to book your flight closer to the departure date. Don’t worry being frugal with tax dollars is a thing of the past now.

Literature that looks like it was copied on a machine from the 80’s state this is a training for Chief’s of Police. Are we spending over $15K to give a Lt. andance training so he can qualify for a promotion? Shouldn’t that be the burden of the employee not the Tax Payers?

“Chiefs must find new ways to address these issues and deliver a wide’r scope of services, often with fewer resources.”

Also this was stuck on the consent calendar meaning their was no discussion and very little input on why this travel expense was relevant in the 1st place. This must be why people like to work in Rialto they get to travel for FREE on your tax dollars.

Are you done wasting tax money on wasteful spending?

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