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Board of Supervisors

County declares local health emergency; Still no cases in the county

The San Bernardino County Public Health Officer and the Board of Supervisors today declared a local health emergency to help ensure county government and the public are prepared for the possibility that COVID-19 will appear within the county.

No local cases have been reported in the county, although cases have been identified in neighboring Riverside, Los Angeles and Orange counties.

“The purpose of this declaration is not to alarm people but to increase the focus on preparedness for both the public and county government departments and agencies,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Curt Hagman. “The health risk to the general public in San Bernardino County remains low at this time.”

Various appropriate county departments and agencies have been working together since Jan. 25 to prepare for the possible arrival of the virus within the county. That is when the county was notified an aircraft carrying U.S. citizens evacuated from the region in China where the virus had originated might be arriving at Ontario International Airport. The flight was eventually diverted to Riverside County. The County Department of Public Health activated its Department Operations Center on March 3.

Among the county departments and agencies meeting regularly to coordinate efforts are Public Health, Arrowhead Regional Medical Center, Office of Emergency Services, County Fire, Sheriff, and the Inland Counties Emergency Medical Agency.

County Public Health continues to work with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the California Department of Public Health to respond to reports of COVID-19. Although Governor Newsom declared a State of Emergency to help the state prepare for broader spread of COVID-19, the health risk from COVID-19 to the general public in San Bernardino County remains low at this time.

  • As with any virus, especially during the cold and flu season, there are a number of steps you can take to protect your health and those around you:
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Wash hands with soap and warm water for 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose or mouth, especially with unwashed hands.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using regular household cleaning spray or wipes.
  • If someone does become sick with respiratory symptoms like fever and cough, they should stay away from work, school or other people to avoid spreading illness and seek assistance from their healthcare provider if symptoms become severe.
  • N95 masks are not recommended outside a healthcare setting. Surgical masks can be worn by sick individuals to reduce the likelihood of spreading germs to others.

For more information on COVID-19, please call (800) 722-4794 or visit the County Public Health COVID-19 webpage at http://wp.sbcounty.gov/dph/coronavirus/. Information is updated as soon as it is made available.

Applicants sought for retirement board vacancy

The County invites qualified members of the public to apply to fill a vacant seat on the Board of Retirement.

The Board of Retirement’s primary role is to have the sole and exclusive fiduciary responsibility over the assets of the retirement system and to administer the system in a manner that will assure prompt delivery of benefits and related services to the participants and their beneficiaries. For more information regarding the Board of Retirement, visit https://www.sbcera.org.

Those seeking appointment should possess:

  • At a minimum, a bachelor’s or equivalent degree in economics, business/public administration, finance, accounting or other closely related field. Advanced degrees in these fields or other related fields such as law, or certifications in finance, accounting or other closely related fields shall be desired qualifications;
  • A minimum of two years of recent experience performing budget/financial analysis or managing financial investments in a public agency or private institution. Prior knowledge or experience with fiduciary responsibility is desirable;
  • Advanced communication skills to express ideas with conviction and clarity;
  • Strong analytical skills to understand investment policies and concepts;
  • A strong forward-thinking visionary approach to recognize the value of present-day decisions and their impact on future plan benefits and investments;
  • The ability to clearly articulate SBCERA’s general policies and concepts to various audiences;
  • A demonstrated ability to work well with a board, commission, committee or other deliberative body.

Those interested in being appointed as a Board of Retirement member must submit a resume before 5 p.m. on Feb. 24, 2020 to ExecRecruit@hr.sbcounty.gov or at the following address:

San Bernardino County Human Resources Department

157 West Fifth St., First Floor

San  Bernardino CA 92415-0440

Attn: Silvia Zayas

For more information, see legal notice at http://www.sbcounty.gov/Uploads/CAO/Feature/Content/retirement_board_notice.pdf.

Fire Chief Munsey to attend State of the Union, promote federal support for public safety

San Bernardino County Fire Protection District Chief Dan Munsey will attend the president’s State of the Union address on Tuesday as the guest of San Bernardino County Congressman Pete Aguilar. Chief Munsey said he sees his attendance as an opportunity to build upon the good working relationships the County has with federal agencies and lawmakers.

County Fire Chief Dan Munsey

“I’m honored to have the opportunity to represent our region and San Bernardino County Fire at the president’s State of the Union address,” Chief Munsey said. “Our county depends on the relationship we have with our federal partners to ensure the safety of our residents, and I look forward to the chance to reinforce that relationship.”

“The County is proud and fortunate to have Chief Munsey represent us and the public safety needs of our residents in Washington and at the State of the Union address,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Curt Hagman. “When disaster strikes our county, the men and women of County Fire stand bravely on the front lines. It is appropriate to have their organization stand as a symbol of the value in partnerships with the federal government.”

Dan Munsey was appointed County Fire Chief in November. Munsey began his career in the fire service in 1995 as a paid-call firefighter. He became a full-time firefighter in 1998, where he was assigned to Lake Arrowhead. He has worked in every division of County Fire, promoting to captain in 2004, battalion chief in 2008, and assistant chief in March 2014.

The San Bernardino County Fire Protection District has about 1,000 employees, covers approximately 19,000 of the county’s 20,105 square miles, and serves more than 60 incorporated municipalities and unincorporated communities within four Regional Service Zones – Mountain, North Desert, South Desert and Valley – including the City of Grand Terrace, City of Hesperia, City of Needles, City of San Bernardino, City of Twentynine Palms, City of Upland, Town of Yucca Valley, and unincorporated areas. Additionally, County Fire provides contractual fire protection services to two cities: Adelanto and Fontana, via its independent fire protection district.

County Fire is a community-based, all-hazard emergency services organization providing emergency mitigation and management for fire suppression, emergency medical services, ambulance services, hazardous materials response, arson investigation, hazard and terrorism/weapons of mass destruction abatement, and technical rescue, including water-borne, flooding and mudslide, and winter rescue operations.

 

A Message from Chairman Curt Hagman

Monday marks the fourth anniversary of the December 2, 2015 terrorist attack in San Bernardino. On that day, 14 people, including 13 members of our County family, were taken from us. Many more were wounded, physically and emotionally.

We will always remember these 14 souls, and we will continue to support those who are still healing.

The County Government Family invites you to join us wherever you may be in observing a moment of remembrance at 10:55 a.m. on Monday, December 2.

At that time, the County will pay tribute on our FacebookTwitter, and Instagram platforms. I have directed flags at all County facilities to be flown at half-mast on Monday. If you fly an American flag at home or at your place of work, we ask that you lower your flags to half-staff on Monday in honor of those who were taken from us on that tragic day four years ago.

If you are experiencing trauma stemming from the events of December 2, 2015, resources are available to help you. Please click here for more information.

Please continue to support those who are still hurting and healing and continue to care for each other.

Sincerely,
Curt Hagman
Chairman, Board of Supervisors

 

Assistant Fire Chief Dan Munsey appointed new County Fire Chief

Assistant Fire Chief Dan Munsey

Assistant County Fire Chief Dan Munsey will serve as the new Fire Chief for the San Bernardino County Fire Protection District effective immediately following his appointment by County Chief Executive Officer Gary McBride, with concurrence from the Board of Supervisors.

Munsey, who has served with County Fire since 1995, succeeds Mark Hartwig, who left the department in February to accept a job as fire chief for Santa Barbara County. Deputy Fire Chief Don Trapp has served as interim chief since Hartwig’s departure.

Munsey’s appointment concluded a nationwide recruiting effort that began shortly after Hartwig’s departure and yielded a broad field of applicants.

“There were several outstanding candidates,” McBride said. “But the Board and I concluded that Assistant Chief Munsey offered the best combination of the traits we were seeking: the leadership skills and commitment to operate County Fire effectively and professionally, and the ability and desire to work productively with public safety agencies throughout the county.”

“Being chosen to serve as fire chief for this organization is a tremendous honor,” Munsey said. “This is a team of highly skilled, dedicated professionals who serve a great community. I am excited about this opportunity to lead them and provide them with the tools and the environment they need to help County Fire fully achieve its great potential.”

In his most recent assignment as Assistant Chief, Division 11, Munsey was responsible for rescue operations, fire, and emergency medical response in the High Desert region, which is the largest of the five regions served by San Bernardino County Fire.

Munsey began his career in the fire service in 1995 as a paid-call firefighter. He became a full-time firefighter in 1998, where he was assigned to Lake Arrowhead. He has worked in every division of County Fire, promoting to captain in 2004, battalion chief in 2008, and assistant chief in March 2014.

Munsey holds a master’s degree in public administration with an emphasis on business and government and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Grand Canyon University. Munsey is the current president of the Operations Section of the California Fire Chiefs Association and president of the Hi-Desert Water District Board of Directors. He has been active for a decade in the Rotary Club of San Bernardino, Victorville, and Yucca Valley.

In 2013, Munsey graduated from the San Bernardino County Management & Leadership Academy, a program that provides comprehensive management and leadership training to county employees. Participants gain theoretical and practical knowledge of public service management and leadership practices, with specific emphasis on understanding their application within San Bernardino County government.

The San Bernardino County Fire Protection District has about 1,000 employees, covers approximately 19,000 of the county’s 20,105 square miles, and serves more than 60 incorporated municipalities and unincorporated communities within four Regional Service Zones – Mountain, North Desert, South Desert and Valley – including the City of Grand Terrace, City of Hesperia, City of Needles, City of San Bernardino, City of Twentynine Palms, City of Upland, Town of Yucca Valley, and unincorporated areas. Additionally, County Fire provides contractual fire protection services to two cities: Adelanto and Fontana, via its independent fire protection district.

County Fire is a community-based, all-hazard emergency services organization providing emergency mitigation and management for fire suppression, emergency medical services, ambulance services, hazardous materials response, arson investigation, hazard and terrorism/weapons of mass destruction abatement, and technical rescue, including water-borne, flooding and mudslide, and winter rescue operations.

Judge rules against release of sexually violent predator into Joshua Tree

Ventura County Judge Nancy Ayers ruled today against the release of Sexually Violent Predator Ross Wollschlager into the unincorporated community of Joshua Tree. Last month, Judge Ayers proposed releasing Ventura County resident Wollschlager into San Bernardino County, sparking massive opposition from the community and elected officials. San Bernardino County Third District Supervisor Dawn Rowe attended the hearing and spoke in opposition to Wollschlager’s proposed placement.

“I must commend Judge Ayers for listening to my concerns and those of the local residents who would’ve been impacted by this predator’s release,” said Rowe. “Because of the efforts of Sheriff John McMahon, District Attorney Jason Anderson, and the hundreds of residents who attended the community meeting last month, we were able to stand against this injustice. I’m proud of what we accomplished here today,” added Rowe.

The Board of Supervisors on Oct. 22 unanimously adopted a resolution opposing Wollschlager’s release into San Bernardino County.

Wollschlager, a convicted rapist and child molester, was scheduled to be released from the custody of the State Department of Hospitals under a program known as Conditional Release. Unable to find a landlord willing to house him in Ventura County, Judge Ayers ordered the state to look at other housing options, which included San Bernardino County.

However, following public comment at the hearing on Thursday, Judge Ayers reversed her decision citing concerns with the threat Wollschlager would pose to Joshua Tree National Park’s three million annual visitors, the number of vulnerable residents living in close proximity, and the long response times for law enforcement calls for service in the Morongo Basin.

“The judge’s ruling demonstrates that when a community bands together over a common cause, we can make a difference. Because we had so many community members and elected leaders who were willing to stand up and fight for what is right, Joshua Tree residents won’t have to live in fear for their safety. I’d also like to highlight the efforts of Deputy District Attorneys Maureen O’Connell and Dan Ross, and the deputies from the Morongo Basin Sheriff’s Station for their work to make the public aware of Wollschlager’s proposed placement,” state Rowe.

Urgent community meeting Oct. 21 on possible release of sexual predator in Joshua Tree

Third District Supervisor Dawn Rowe, Sheriff John McMahon and District Attorney Jason Anderson will conduct an urgent community meeting in Joshua Tree on Oct. 21 regarding plans by the state to release sexually violent predator Ross Wollschlager into Joshua Tree.

District Attorney Jason Anderson

Sheriff John McMahon

Supervisor Dawn Rowe

The purpose of the meeting is to “present information to concerned community members and voice our collective opposition of Wollschlager’s placement within San Bernardino County, for the specific purpose of public safety and awareness,” Supervisor Rowe said.

Today, Oct. 17, the District Attorney’s Office announced it had received a letter from the State of California Department of Hospitals concerning a residential placement recommendation made to the Ventura County Superior Court for the community placement of Wollschlager, who was committed as a sexually violent predator, into the community of Joshua Tree.

Under Welfare & Institutions Code §6609.2, the sheriff has authority to give notice of any impending release of a sexually violent predator. During Monday’s meeting, the Sheriff’s Department will summarize the court proceedings to date, as well as those subsequently scheduled, while informing the public regarding options available to the community.

The meeting will take place on Monday, Oct. 21, at 5:30 p.m. at the Sportsman’s Club, 6225 Sunburst St. in Joshua Tree.

 

Statement regarding Inland Empire United vs. Board of Supervisors

Supervisor Dawn Rowe’s status as a member of the San Bernardino Board of Supervisors has not changed as a result of Wednesday’s lower court decision. The County appealed the decision this morning and maintains the judge’s decision was in error. The appeal stays the ruling until it can be scrutinized by a higher court.

The Dec. 18 appointment of Supervisor Rowe was legal, proper, and conducted with full transparency and multiple opportunities for full public participation, including public testimony, opportunities for all applicants to publicly address the Board of Supervisors, public interviews, and the inclusion of a seemingly endless amount of mail and email correspondence from residents. The County considers Wednesday’s action as the latest step in a lengthy legal process.

“Our appointment of Dawn Rowe to the Board of Supervisors was conducted openly and honestly, and for the past nine months she has served the people of this county very well,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Curt Hagman. “Supervisor Rowe represents the Third District with integrity, intelligence, compassion and fairness. We should not have to defend the appointment, but we will do so every step of the way.”

San Bernardino County has a longstanding tradition of serving as perhaps the most open and transparent local government agency in California. For example:

  • The County was the first in the state to post Board of Supervisors agendas and all supporting materials, including contracts, on the Internet.
  • San Bernardino County was among the first to require the online posting of statements of economic interests by its elected and appointed officials.
  • The County was the first, and is perhaps the only, county to establish Board of Supervisors meeting videoconferencing to allow people in remote locations to participate in meetings and address the board.

The County has won more than 300 state and national awards for innovation and efficiency since 2010 – more than any other county in the nation.

County wins top statewide award for reports on 2015 terror tragedy

San Bernardino County’s Terrorist Attack Legacy Report & Organizational Review created following the December 2, 2015 tragedy won a prestigious California Counties Innovation Award on Monday from the California State Association of Counties (CSAC) and was considered one of the top two projects in the state by CSAC’s judges out of 284 entries.

One report is an organizational review documenting County government’s response to and recovery from the attack. The other is a first-of-its-kind legacy report designed as a resource for other agencies coping with or preparing for a similar incident.

“Our County suffered a terrible tragedy when our employees were attacked on December 2, 2015. There was no guidebook for us to follow to help us deal with an endless array of unprecedented immediate and long-term challenges,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Curt Hagman.  “We hope that something like this never happens again, but we knew that we had a duty to commission these reports to help other public agencies navigate the circumstances no one ever hopes to face. We are deeply honored by this recognition.”

The legacy document can be viewed here and the organizational review is available here. Both reports can be found at sbcounty.gov in the “Where to Find” section under “December 2 Legacy Report and Organizational Review.” The County also provided the reports to leaders at CSAC, the National Association of Counties, the League of California Cities, the National League of Cities, and the International City/County Management Association as a resource to them and their members.

The reports were created by CPARS Consulting which assembled a team of experts in emergency management and response, communications and public information, and human resources and employee services to interview hundreds of County employees and review documents.

CSAC also recognized the San Bernardino County Department of Aging and Adult Services with two awards – a Challenge Award for their Mobile Health Outreach – Anatomical Models program which helps educate older and disabled adults on self-examinations and identifying potentially life-threatening health issues; and a Merit Award for their Coordinated Care Collaborative program, which ensures low-income seniors and persons with disabilities, who qualify for both Medicare and Medi-Cal, receive optimal case management services.

The San Bernardino County Department of Child Support Services also received a CSAC Merit Award for their Service of Process program, which expedites service of summons and complaints for child support and reduces costs by utilizing certified mail for child support customers residing outside of California.

Each year, CSAC honors best practices in county governments in California. This year, CSAC received 284​ entries from counties throughout California. The County of San Bernardino won five CSAC Awards in 2018, four in 2017, four in 2016, three in 2015 and 2014, five in 2013, three in 2012, two in 2011 and one in 2010.

The County has won more than 300 state and national awards for innovative and cost-saving programs since 2010, including 52 awards from the National Association of Counties in May.

“Our County is proud CSAC and other organizations consistently recognize the commitment to public service and work ethic our employees exhibit on a daily basis – whether it be another community impacted by violence, or seniors and children who need and deserve services in our county,” Hagman said.

CSAC will present the awards to the County at an upcoming San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors meeting.

Census address canvassing has started in county neighborhoods

You may have noticed or will soon see U.S. Census employees in your neighborhood. It’s not 2020 yet, but in preparation for the 2020 U.S. Census, these locally hired workers are on foot throughout San Bernardino County and the nation checking addresses to help ensure next year’s decennial count is as accurate and as complete as possible.

Funding to support and improve our communities depends on a successful census, so please cooperate with anyone carrying a Census I.D. badge as they might have some very simple questions for you. For more information and a helpful video, please click here.

The San Bernardino County and Riverside County boards of supervisors have joined forces to create the Inland Empire Complete Count Committee, a leadership body that draws on representatives from the nonprofit, government, education, business and philanthropic sectors to focus energy and leverage various resources toward ensuring a complete and accurate count in our region. Why? Because, Together, We Count.

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