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Submitted By  Meeting Date:Type   _Title___________________________________________  _Department________________  _Submitted For________________
Timothy Ewell 12/17/2013:BOS  2013 YEAR-END REPORT ON ACCOMPLISHMENTS AND DISPOSITION OF REMAINING REFERRALS TO THE PUBLIC PROTECTION COMMITTEE   County Administrator 2012 PUBLIC PROTECTION COMMITTEE
  The Public Protection Committee (PPC) was established on January 8, 2008 to study criminal justice and public protection issues and formulate recommendations for consideration by the Board of Supervisors. At the December 2013 regular meeting, the Committee discussed all issues currently on referral and has made the following recommendations to the Board of Supervisors for the 2014 PPC work-plan:

1. Opportunities to Improve Coordination of Response to Disasters and Other Public Emergencies. Approximately three weeks following the November 2007 Cosco Busan oil spill, the Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Services (OES) presented to the Board of Supervisors its assessment of the emergency response efforts, including what worked well and didn’t work well, and what lessons were learned through those experiences. At the conclusion of the Board discussion, Supervisor Gioia introduced five recommendations that were approved by the Board.

On February 5, 2008 the Board of Supervisors referred this matter to the PPC for continuing development and oversight. PPC received a status report from the Office of the Sheriff and Health Services Department in February 2009 and requested the Hazardous Materials Program Manager to report back to the PPC on the development of mutual aid agreements from local oil refineries. Following a second briefing to the PPC by the Office of the Sheriff, the PPC reported out to the Board of Supervisors on May 6, 2009 with recommendations for follow-up by the Sheriff and Human Resources departments. The Health Services Department made a report to the PPC on April 19, 2010 regarding the resources and connections available to respond to hazardous materials emergencies and, again, on October 18, 2010 regarding who determines which local official participates in incident command if an event is in Contra Costa County. On December 5, 2011, Health Services reported to our Committee regarding training and deployment of community volunteers.

In January 2008, the Board of Supervisors referred to the PPC the matter of improving public response to emergency instructions and protocols through broader and better education, which had previously been on referral to the IOC. The Board suggested that the PPC work with the Office of the Sheriff, the Health Services Department, and the CAER (Community Awareness & Emergency Response) Program to determine what educational efforts are being made and what additional efforts may be undertaken to improve public response and safety during an emergency. In April 2011, the PPC met with CAER (Community Awareness Emergency Response) Executive Director Tony Semenza and staff from the Office of the Sheriff and Health Services to discuss what has been done to better inform the public and what more can be done to improve public response to emergency warnings. CAER provided a thorough report on its countywide community fairs, and programs targeted at the education system and non-English speaking populations. The PPC asked CAER to provide a written outreach strategy that describes how new homeowners are educated about emergency awareness. As the matter has not been brought back to the PPC since the April 2011 discussion, we recommend that this matter be continued to the 2014 PPC.

Recommendation: REFER TO 2014 PPC

2. Welfare Fraud Investigation and Prosecution. In September 2006, the Employment and Human Services (EHS) Department updated the Internal Operations Committee (IOC) on its efforts to improve internal security and loss prevention activities. The IOC had requested the department to report back in nine months on any tools and procedures that have been developed and implemented to detect changes in income eligibility for welfare benefits.

The EHS Director made follow-up reports to IOC in May and October 2007, describing what policies, procedures, and practices are employed by the Department to ensure that public benefits are provided only to those who continue to meet income eligibility requirements, explaining the complaint and follow-through process, and providing statistical data for 2005/06, 2006/07, and for the first quarter of 2007/08.

Upon creation of the PPC in January 2008, this matter was reassigned from the IOC to the PPC. PPC has received status reports on this referral in October 2008, June and October 2010, November 2011, November 2012 and, most recently, in December 2013. The Committee has reviewed the transition of welfare fraud collections from the former Office of Revenue Collection to the Employment and Human Services Department; the fraud caseload and percentage of fraud findings; fraud prosecutions and the number of convictions; and the amounts recovered.

As the PPC wishes to monitor performance of the welfare fraud program, it is recommended that this matter be retained on referral with a status report in one year.

Recommendation: REFER to 2014 PPC

3.
Multi-Language Capability of the Telephone Emergency Notification System. This matter had been on referral to the IOC since 2000 and was reassigned to the PPC in January 2008. The PPC met with Sheriff and Health Services Department staff in March 2008 to receive an update on the County’s efforts to implement multilingual emergency telephone messaging. The Committee learned that the Federal Communications Commission has before it two rulemaking proceedings that may directly affect practices and technology for multilingual alerting and public notification. Additionally, the federally-funded Bay Area “Super Urban Area Safety Initiative” (SUASI) has selected a contractor undertake an assessment and develop a five-year strategic plan on notification of public emergencies, with an emphasis on special needs populations. The Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Services reported to the PPC in April 2009 that little has changed since the March 2008 report.

On October 18, 2010, the PPC received a report from the Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Services on the Community Warning and Telephone Emergency Notification systems, and on developments at the federal level that impact those systems and related technology. Sheriff staff concluded that multi-lingual public emergency messaging is too complex to be implemented at the local level and should be initiated at the state and federal levels. New federal protocols are now being established to provide the framework within which the technological industries and local agencies can work to develop these capabilities.

In 2011, the Office of the Sheriff has advised staff that a recent conference on emergency notification systems unveiled nothing extraordinary in terms of language translation. The SUASI project had just commenced and Sheriff staff have been on the contact list for a workgroup that will be developing a gap analysis, needs assessment, and five-year strategic plan. This matter has been on committee referral for more than ten years and technology has yet to provide a feasible solution for multilingual public emergency messaging. 

On September 18, 2012, following the Richmond Chevron refinery fire, the Board of Supervisors established an ad hoc committee to discuss the Community Warning System and Industrial Safety Ordinance. Since that committee is ad hoc in nature, we recommend that this issue remain on referral to the PPC.

Recommendation: REFER to 2014 PPC

4. County support and coordination of non-profit organization resources to provide prisoner re-entry services, implementation of AB109 Public Safety Realignment, and appointment recommendations to the Community Corrections Partnership. On August 25, 2009, the Board of Supervisors referred to the PPC a presentation by the Urban Strategies Council on how the County might support and coordinate County and local non-profit organization resources to create a network of re-entry services for individuals who are leaving jail or prison and are re-integrating in local communities. On September 14, 2009, the PPC invited the Sheriff-Coroner, County Probation Officer, District Attorney, Public Defender, Health Services Director, and Employment and Human Services Director to hear a presentation by the Urban Strategies Council. The PPC encouraged County departments to participate convene a task force to work develop a network for prisoner re-entry services, which has been meeting independently from the PPC.

The PPC received a status report from County departments in April 2010. The Employment and Human Services department reported on its efforts to weave together a network of services, utilizing ARRA funding for the New Start Program and on the role of One-Stop Centers in finding jobs for state parolees. Probation reported on the impacts of the anticipated flood of state parolees into the county. The Sheriff reported on the costs for expanding local jail capacity and possible expanded use of GPS (global positioning systems) use in monitoring state parolees released back to our county. The Health Services Department reported on its Healthcare for the Homeless Program as a means to get parolees into the healthcare system and on its development of cross-divisional teams on anti-violence. The Public Defender reported on its Clean State Program, which has since been discontinued.

Supervisors Glover and Gioia indicated that their staff would continue to coordinate this local initiative when the Urban Strategies Council exhausts its grant funding from the California Endowment. The PPC continued to monitor progress on the initiative and, on February 7, 2011, received a presentation of the completed strategic plan and recommendations. In response to public testimony at the PPC meeting regarding concerns over the "Ban the Box" element of the plan, the plan recommendations were modified to exclude from the "Ban the Box" requirement certain identified sensitive positions in public safety and children’s services or as determined by the agency.

On March 22, 2011, representatives from the Urban Strategies Council presented the completed Contra Costa County Re-entry Strategic Plan (100 pages), an Executive Summary (6 pages) of the plan, and a slide show to the Board of Supervisors, which approved the strategic plan and implementation recommendations with one modification: rather than adopt a 'Ban the Box' policy as recommended, which would have removed the question about criminal records from county employment applications during the initial application, the Board agreed to consider adopting such a policy at a future date. The Board directed the County Administrator to work with the offices of Supervisors Glover and Gioia to identify the resources needed to implement the strategic plan and to report back to the Board with his findings and recommendations.

Later in 2011, the California Legislature passed the Public Safety Realignment Act (Assembly Bills 109), which transfers responsibility for supervising specific low-level inmates and parolees from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) to counties. Assembly Bill 109 (AB 109) takes effect October 1, 2011 and realigns three major areas of the criminal justice system. On a prospective basis, the legislation:

• Transfers the location of incarceration for lower-level offenders (specified non-violent, non-serious, non-sex offenders) from state prison to local county jail and provides for an expanded role for post-release supervision for these offenders;
• Transfers responsibility for post-release supervision of lower-level offenders (those released from prison after having served a sentence for a non-violent, non-serious, and non-sex offense) from the state to the county level by creating a new category of supervision called Post-Release Community Supervision (PRCS);
• Transfers the housing responsibility for parole and PRCS revocations to local jail custody

AB 109 also tasked the local Community Corrections Partnership (CCP) with recommending to the County Board of Supervisors a plan for implementing the criminal justice realignment, which shall be deemed accepted by the Board unless rejected by a 4/5th vote. The Executive Committee of the CCP is composed of the County Probation Officer (Chair), Sheriff-Coroner, a Chief of Police (represented by the Richmond Police Chief), District Attorney, Public Defender, Presiding Judge of the Superior Court or designee, and the Behavioral Health Director.

On October 4, 2011, the Board of Supervisors approved the CCP Realignment Implementation Plan, including budget recommendations for fiscal year 2011/12. Throughout 2012, the PPC received regular status updated from county staff on the implementation of public safety realignment, including recommendations from the CCP-Executive Committee for 2012/13 budget planning. On January 15, 2013 the Board of Supervisors approved a 2012/13 budget for continuing implementation of public safety realignment programming.

The Committee received several reentry/AB109 related presentations and updates throughout 2013, including program updates on the Federal Second Chance Act grant, reviewed the AB109 Community Programs RFP results and made recommendations, reviewed the proposed fiscal year 2013/14 AB109 Public Safety Realignment budget, and made appointment recommendations to the Board of Supervisors for the Community Corrections Partnership.

As public safety realignment is a work in progress and at the early stages of implementation, it is recommended that this matter be referred to the 2014 PPC.

Recommendation: REFER to 2014 PPC

5. Countywide 9-1-1 Wireless Capability. On December 14, 2010, the Board of Supervisors referred to the PPC a letter from the Emergency Medical Care Committee regarding the transmission of 9-1-1 emergency calls from cellular phones to the appropriate Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP). Our Committee met with representatives from the Office of the Sheriff on April 4 to discuss the status of establishing Sheriff's Dispatch as the PSAP for county unincorporated area wireless emergency calls.

Sheriff Department staff advised that the County is not accepting wireless 9-1-1 calls at this time. Staff explained that the GPS (global positioning system) technology exists to enable Sheriff's Dispatch to receive 9-1-1 system emergency calls from cellular phones and to locate the emergency location within some degree of precision. However, due to several years of tight budgets, Sheriff's Dispatch is not currently staffed at a level that is adequate to respond to the call volume associated with the wireless 9-1-1 calls, which are currently routed to the appropriate PSAP by the California Highway Patrol (CHP).

While our committee believes that transferring responsibility for handling wireless 9-1-1 calls from the CHP to Sheriff's Dispatch would be more efficient and would improve response time, it is unlikely that the County will be in a position, fiscally, to assume this responsibility in the next year. The PPC reported on April 12, 2011 to the Board of Supervisors and requested the Office of the Sheriff to provide a status report to the PPC in the spring of 2012 to advise if any outside funding becomes available to support such a transition of responsibility.

On April 2, 2012, the PPC (Supervisor Glover only; Supervisor Uilkema was absent) received a status report prepared by the Office of the Sheriff on the process that has been initiated to make the partial or full transition of 9-1-1 dispatching from the CHP to the Sheriff a reality within funding constraints. The Sheriff reports that if fully implemented, the call volume for Sheriff’s Dispatch is projected to nearly double (from 56,000 calls to about 100,000 calls annually). Since the County can expect no additional outside revenue or other resources to support the increased call volume, the Sheriff is planning a phased implementation at a rate and call volume that current resources will permit. The phased implementation beginning with smaller carriers will provide the necessary experience and feedback to inform future implementation phases. New carriers will not be added unless the previous carrier can be effectively managed.

On April 17, 2012, the PPC provided an update to the Board of Supervisors on this topic and recommended continued monitoring of this referral. For this reason, we recommend referring to the 2014 PPC.

Recommendation: REFER to 2014 PPC but only schedule at the request of the Sheriff

6. Civil gang injunctions. This matter was referred to the PPC on May 12, 2011 at the request of the District Attorney, who suggested under Public Comment at the April 4 PPC meeting that the Committee consider the use of gang injunctions to help prevent gang violence. The District Attorney has advised committee staff that he is currently focusing on implementing a Ceasefire Program with Richmond Police Department and has requested that this referral be postponed until further notice.

Recommendation: REFER to the 2014 PPC, but schedule only upon the request of the District Attorney

7. Report on Emergency Gas Shut Off Valves for various structures in Unincorporated Contra Costa County. On September 25, during a presentation on Emergency Preparedness within Contra Costa County, the Board of Supervisors referred to the Public Protection Committee a report on the county Gas Shut-Off valve ordinance (Ordinance Code § 718-8 et seq.). Originally, the former Building Inspection Department was responsible for regulation related to the Ordinance, now the Department of Conservation and Development (DCD) provides oversight through its Building Inspection Division. On November 5, 2012, the Conservation and Development Department provided a review of the program. The Committee requested additional information from staff at the February 2013 regular meeting.

The Department returned to the Committee in February 2013 and presented the requested information. The Committee accepted the staff report and recommended no further action. This implementation of the gas shut off valve ordinance continues to present issues. For this reason, we believe that this issue should remain on referral to the PPC.

Recommendation: REFER TO 2014 PPC

8. Evaluation of Establishing a taxicab Driver Permit Ordinance. On November 13, 2012, the Board of Supervisors referred to the PPC an evaluation of the establishment of a taxicab Driver Permit ordinance in the unincorporated area of the County. The County currently does not have an ordinance to require a taxicab driver to obtain a permit to operate in unincorporated areas. California Government Code Section 53075.5 states, in part, every city or county shall protect the public health, safety and welfare by adopting an ordinance or resolution in regard to taxicab transportation service. This referral will enable the Public Protection Committee to evaluate the County’s compliance with California Government Code Section 53075.5. This referral was transferred to the Transportation Water and Infrastructure Committee (TWIC) in early 2013.

Recommendation: TERMINATE REFERRAL (Transferred to TWIC in 2013)

9. Updates on the status of the EMS and Fire studies conducted by Fitch & Associates, LLC
. On December 11, 2012, the Board of Supervisors considered a proposal to authorize a reevaluation study of the County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Agency. As part of that discussion, the Board directed the County Administrator’s Office to integrate an operations study of the Contra Costa County Fire Protection District. The studies of both the EMS Agency and Fire District were to be provided by Fitch & Associates, LLC. The Board requested regular updates to the full Board of Supervisors and the Public Protection Committee.

The PPC received two staff reports regarding the studies in 2013; one in March, one in August. In September, the Committee received a presentation from Fitch & Associates, LLC on the EMS study. All presentations from Fitch & Associates regarding the Fire Services study have gone directly to the Board of Supervisors. The Fitch studies will be completed in 2014 and are at a point where all updates are going directly to the Board of Supervisors. For this reason, we recommend terminating this referral.

Recommendation: TERMINATE REFERRAL

10. Inmate Welfare Fund/Telecommunications/Visitation Issues
. On July 16, 2013, the Board of Supervisors referred a review of the Inmate Welfare Fund (IWF) and inmate visitation policies to the Public Protection Committee for review. The Inmate Welfare Fund is authorized by Penal Code § 4025 for the “…benefit, education, and welfare of the inmates confined within the jail.” The statute also mandates that an itemized accounting of IWF expenditures must be submitted annually to the County Board of Supervisors.

The Sheriff's Office has made several reports to the Committee throughout 2013 regarding funding of IWF programs, visitation/communication policies and an upcoming RFP for inmate telecommunications services. The Committee is still receiving information on these issues from the Sheriff's Office. For this reason, we recommend referring this issue to the 2014 PPC.

Recommendation: REFER to the 2014 PPC

LIST OF REFERRALS TO BE TERMINATED
  • Evaluation of Establishing a taxicab Permit Ordinance
  • Updates on the status of the EMS and Fire studies conducted by Fitch & Associates, LLC
LIST OF ITEMS TO BE REFERRED TO THE
2014 PUBLIC PROTECTION COMMITTEE

 
  • Welfare fraud investigation and prosecution
  • Multilingual capabilities of the telephone emergency notification system
  • County support and coordination of non-profit organization resources to provide prisoner re-entry services and implementation of AB109 public safety realignment
  • Directing 9-1-1 emergency calls to the appropriate Public Safety Answering Point (schedule at the request of the Sheriff)
  • Civil gang injunctions (schedule at the request of the District Attorney)
  • Inmate Welfare Fund/Telecommunications/Visitation Issues
  • Opportunities to improve coordination of response to disasters and other public emergencies
  • Report on Emergency Gas Shut Off Valves for various structures in unincorporated Contra Costa County
06/05/2014:TWIC  Regulatory Structure for taxicab Permitting   Conservation & Development TRANSPORTATION, WATER & INFRASTRUCTURE COMMITTEE
 

CONSIDER reviewing the proposed implementation framework related to the regulation of taxicab services within the unincorporated area; PROVIDE feedback; and DIRECT staff to draft an Ordinance to implement the proposed implementation framework, including establishment of a fee for services rendered for processing new applications and renewals for a taxicab permit by the Office of the Sheriff. (Timothy Ewell, County Administrator’s Office)
 

Anna Battagello 12/04/2014:TWIC  CONSIDER a report on the status of implementing a taxicab permitting process in unincorporated Contra Costa County.   County Administrator David Twa
  CONSIDER Report on the status of implementing a taxicab permitting process in unincorporated Contra Costa County. (Tim Ewell, County Administrator’s Office).
 
Kathleen Cyr 07/07/2015:BOS  Contract #26-378-5 with Concord Yellow Cab, Inc.  Health Services William Walker, M.D.
  APPROVE and AUTHORIZE the Health Services Director, or designee, to execute a contract with Concord Yellow Cab, Inc., in an amount not to exceed $250,000 to provide non-emergency taxicab transportation services to patients to and from Contra Costa Regional Medical Center and Contra Costa Health Centers and other health facilities, for the period from August 1, 2014 through June 30, 2016. (100% Hospital Enterprise Fund I)
Tasha Scott 10/06/2015:BOS  Amendment #26-378-6 with Concord Yellow Cab, Inc.  Health Services William Walker, M.D.
  APPROVE and AUTHORIZE the Health Services Director, or designee, to execute a contract amendment with Concord Yellow Cab, Inc., effective August 1, 2015, to increase the payment limit by $325,000 to a new payment limit of $575,000 to provide additional non-emergency taxicab transportation services from Contra Costa Regional Medical and Health Centers and other health facilities, with no change in the original term of August 1, 2014 through June 30, 2016.  (100% Hospital Enterprise Fund I)
Anna Battagello 11/02/2015:TWIC  taxicab Regionalization effort  Conservation & Development TRANSPORTATION, WATER & INFRASTRUCTURE COMMITTEE
  CONSIDER accepting a report on the status of implementing a regional taxicab permitting process in Contra Costa County, authorize staff to continue working with jurisdictions within the County to evaluate the feasibility of a regional permitting process and direct staff to return to the Committee once final options have been developed.  (Timothy Ewell, County Administrator’s Office)