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Monthly Archives: April 2014

Board of Supervisors encourage citizens to Give BIG on May 8

givebigbannerThe Board of Supervisors produced a special video message asking citizens to get involved in Give BIG San Bernardino County, a 24-hour fundraising web-a-thon on May 8, 2014.

Watch the special message here.

The County in partnership with the Community Foundation encourages businesses, community leaders and volunteers to help reach a goal of $300,000 in new donations for nonprofits on May 8.  The Give BIG campaign follows a growing trend of 24-hour online and technology-based fundraising efforts.

Give BIG San Bernardino County offers participating nonprofit organizations training on how to use social media, marketing, donor cultivation and more in the lead up to the web-a-thon. The hope is that the event will provide an opportunity for nonprofit organizations in the county to become self-sustaining entities through a stable donor base with less reliance on grant funding. Participants will learn to fine-tune their fundraising capabilities and benefit those they serve.

Give BIG San Bernardino County is the first countywide campaign supporting organizations that help those most in need. Their website is

Follow Give BIG San Bernardino County on Twitter @givebigsbcounty or on Facebook at

Deputy public defender recognized for her work with children

imageDeputy Public Defender Sandra “Sandy” Wingfield from the Central Juvenile Unit received an award for her tireless work representing children at the 16th Annual “Shine A Light On Child Abuse” Awards Breakfast.

Numerous individuals from many county departments such as Children and Family Services, and Department of Behavioral Health, and individuals from the community and private sectors were also honored.

Sandy is a respected fixture in the Juvenile Court community. She helps find housing for the children who are aging out of juvenile services and have no place to live. She locates services in the community for minors with special needs. She is instrumental in finding mental health care, counseling, medication, and available drug rehabilitation beds for children who suffer from drug addiction. Overall, she is just a great asset to the office and the juvenile community in San Bernardino.

Within the office, Sandy has been a mentor for the newer attorneys in the office. She is always available to answer questions, advise on cases and challenge attorneys to do better in their representation of children. She is also the lead attorney in all of our juvenile specialty courts, Drug Court, 241 committee, CITA court, to name a few. Her professional demeanor and presentation is respected by the court, her peers, opposing counsel, and most of all, by the children she serves.


Children’s Network to hold interactive child abuse prevention discussion

children's networkThe Children’s Network is inviting those who work with children to come together to discuss ways to address child abuse during an interactive, web-based discussion “Connect to Protect: Preventing Child Abuse and Exploitation” on Tuesday, April 15 from 4 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. The Google+ Hangout format discussion will explore the effects of child maltreatment and how to prevent child abuse and exploitation in communities. Panelists for the discussion include Dr. Amy Young, a pediatrician with Children’s Assessment Center; Anne-Michelle Ellis, Coordinator of the San Bernardino County Coalition Against Sexual Exploitation and Dr. Kiti Randall, a pediatric neurodevelopmental psychologist.

It will be the first time Children’s Network hosts a Google+ Hangout event. The goal is to engage child and family-serving agencies in the County, community organizations and family resource centers. Anyone who works with children is invited to register for the free web discussion including parents, caregivers, foster parents, and members of the community.

To register for the free online event and to post questions in advance for the panelists, visit If one does not have a Google account or is unable to create one, the discussion may be watched live on YouTube at

“The purpose of this interactive Google+ Hangout is to discuss how child abuse and exploitation impacts a child throughout their lifespan, and how to identify and respond to suspected child maltreatment,” Amy Cousineau, Children’s Network Officer. “In addition, our aim is to educate a wide variety of stakeholders, thus increasing the safety and well-being of our children.   We hope that by using this new media, Children’s Network will be able to deliver a message about positive child development in a way that engages our community at-large.”

The Children’s Network of San Bernardino County works to improve the quality of life for

“children at risk” who because of behavior, abuse, neglect, medical needs, educational assessment, and/or detrimental daily living situations are eligible for services from one or more of the member agencies of the Children’s Policy Council.

Children’s Network is doing its part to help the community achieve the Countywide Vision by ensuring residents have the resources they need to provide the necessities of life to their families. Information on the Countywide Vision can be found at

District Attorney’s Office hosts National Crime Victims’ Rights Week memorial

crimevictimsmemorialDistrict Attorney Michael Ramos joined a crowd of hundreds of victims of crime and community leaders today in the San Bernardino County Government Center Rotunda to commemorate National Crime Victims’ Rights Week.

Sponsored by the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office, the event took place from 12-1 p.m., and started with an invocation by Bishop Gerald Barnes of the Diocese of San Bernardino.

Community organizations dedicated to providing resources and programs for victims were on hand outside the county building to share information with the public.

Following the presentation of the Colors by the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Honor Guard, Sheriff John McMahon led the crowd of approximately 400 in the “Pledge of Allegiance.”

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Public Defender’s truancy program highlighted by state association

PD logo finalMaking Attendance a Priority (MAP) is a collaborative, grant-funded program designed by the San Bernardino County Public Defender’s Office to reduce truancy in the City of San Bernardino.

MAP assigns a social services practitioner to visit families of truant students in their homes on a weekly basis to address issues leading to the child’s truancy. From 2008-13, MAP served more than 1,800 children. In a recent sampling of 43 students, 32 of them attended 70 percent more classes than before they were identified by the school district for the program.

MAP has also increased revenue to the San Bernardino City Unified School District at an average of $21,000 per year because of the increase in attendance.

In November, the California State Association of Counties chose Making Attendance a Priority for a 2013 CSAC Challenge Award, one of the most prestigious awards in the state.

The MAP program is just one example of how the County is using collective impact to solve complex problems as part of the Countywide Vision’s Cradle to Career goal.

Here is a video CSAC recently produced about the program:

Flood Control District celebrates 75th anniversary

"E" Street and Santa Anita River in San Bernardino - March 5, 1938

“E” Street and Santa Ana River in San Bernardino – March 5, 1938

On April 20, 2014, the San Bernardino County Flood Control District celebrates its 75th anniversary and the strides it has made to help reduce flooding risks and damages in San Bernardino County.

In celebration of the 75th anniversary, Public Works is featuring in its lobby located at 825 East Third Street in San Bernardino a display of photos and newspaper articles from the years of the severe floods. Public Works will also feature the display at the San Bernardino County Museum on May 10th as part of Public Works Week “Building for today. Planning for tomorrow.”

With the Flood Control District’s 75th anniversary approaching, the District operates and maintains 151 miles of levees, 226 miles of channels, 40 miles of storm drains and 119 basins.

Flood history in the Santa Ana River Basin is traceable since the entry of the Spanish Mission Fathers into the Los Angeles and San Bernardino areas between 1769 and 1776. In more modern times, one of the most devastating storms in the County occurred on March 2nd and 3rd, 1938, and flood waters caused 14 known deaths and damages estimated at $12 million (that’s more than $194 million in today’s dollars).  Practically no part of the San Bernardino Valley or Mojave River Valley escaped the wrath of this storm with almost every community isolated and hundreds homeless.

The district was formed the following year in 1939 as an urgency and progressive measure for the preservation and promotion of public peace, health, and safety as a direct aftermath of the disastrous floods of March 1938.

Santa Ana River at 10/215 Interchange in San Bernardino - 1969

Santa Ana River at 10/215 Interchange in San Bernardino – 1969

Eclipsing, in many respects, the flood of 1938, were the “great” floods of January and February 1969, occurring a month apart.  Rainfall intensities and amounts were greater and, except for the Mojave River and its tributaries, runoff peaks were higher during these two floods.  Although Flood Control facilities functioned splendidly during the January flood period, there was insufficient time to perform necessary repairs and maintenance before the late February storm struck, which caused nearly twice as much damage.  Monetary losses in San Bernardino County alone amounted to more than $23 million from the January storm and over $31 million from the February storm.  This is, however, only a portion of the losses which would have been sustained had no flood protection been provided at all.  The severe flooding throughout Southern California inflicted costly damages exceeding $213 million in tangible property losses and exacted 115 human lives.  San Bernardino and six neighboring counties were declared national disaster areas.

Many flood events have plagued the county since those early times but the damage has not been as devastating since the formation of the district. The district’s programs have placed a special emphasis on the control of the county’s principal streams and channels.  One shining example of that is the Seven Oaks Dam, completed in November 1999 as a collaborative effort between Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino Counties and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.


Seven Oaks Dam in Highland

The Seven Oaks Dam collects storm water from a 177-square-mile area at inflow rates of as much as 58,000 cubic feet per second and then meters the water out at a rate of 5,500 cubic feet per second. This dam provides significant protection to communities along the Santa Ana River from the base of the San Bernardino Mountains to the Pacific Ocean.

Along with reducing flooding risks and damages, many of these sites provide wetlands mitigation, habitat for wildlife, and green space for all to enjoy. By acquiring land for conservation, flood storage and other multi-use projects, the district is ensuring an effective blueprint for flood damage reduction, now and in the future.

For further information please contact the San Bernardino County Flood Control District at (909) 387-7995.

Save money with SCAQMD lawn mower exchange program

mowing the lawn

Starting April 16, citizens may register to get up to 75 percent in savings on a new electric lawn mower with the South Coast AQMD’s popular Lawn Mower Exchange Program.

Now in its 12th year, the program helps the wallet and air quality by trading residents’ used, highly polluting gas-powered lawn mowers for environmentally friendly, cordless battery-electric models.
This year’s program offers 4,000 mowers for trade-in. SCAQMD encourages residents to act fast once registration opens and secure a spot at one of four events being held this year in Long Beach, Pasadena, Riverside and Anaheim.

“By participating in the Lawn Mower Exchange Program, residents will get a brand new mower that is easier to operate and quieter than a gas model for just a fraction of the retail price,” said William A. Burke, Ed.D., SCAQMD’s Governing Board Chairman. “In addition to taking advantage of this great offer, residents will also help better their community by eliminating air pollution from old gas mowers.”

In fact, an older gas-powered lawn mower can spew more pollution into the air in a single year than a car driven more than 22,000 miles.

Residents have the opportunity to register and choose from one of five Black & Decker and Greenstation battery electric models ranging from $100 to $250:
— Black & Decker 18” 36 volt, $100 (Retail price: $379) (75 percent savings!)
— Black & Decker 19” 36 volt, $180 (Retail price:  $429)
— Black & Decker 19” 36 volt self-propelled, $250 (Retail price: $479)
— Greenstation 20” 24 volt, $160 (Retail price: $430)
— Greenstation 19” 24 volt self-propelled, $230 (Retail price: $470)
To take advantage of this great offer, residents must pre-register at by clicking on the Lawn Mower Exchange banner, or calling 1-888-425-6247. Registration opens April 16 at 8 a.m. and is on a first-come, first-served basis.

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Second installment of county property taxes due Thursday

County Seal No BackgroundThursday marks the last day San Bernardino County property owners can pay the second installment of property taxes without penalty.

Property taxes are the largest discretionary source of funding for the County, and a significant source of funding for school districts, community college districts and special districts.

There are several ways property owners can pay.

In addition to the Auditor-Controller/Treasurer/Tax Collector office in San Bernardino, a property tax payment center opened in Hesperia on April 1 and will remain open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Thursday at the High Desert Government Center, 15900 Smoke Tree Street. Checks will be the only form of payment accepted at this location.

Online and telephone payments can be made at or by calling 909-387-8308. Electronic payments accepted include checking or savings account free of charge. Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover credit card payments are also accepted; however,
a convenience fee is charged and required by the credit card companies. If using online bill pay through a banking institution, taxpayers should contact their bank regarding procedures for ensuring timely payment of taxes and their bank’s use of USPS cancellation marks. These transactions result in a mailed check and payments received after April 10, 2014, without a USPS cancellation mark will be considered late and incur a penalty.

Mailed payments should be sent to the Tax Collector’s Office, 172 West Third Street, First Floor, San Bernardino, California, 92415. Only payments with a USPS postmark cancellation on or before April 10, 2014 will be considered timely. Payments in person can be made by cash, check, or money order at 172 West Third Street, Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

Healthy eating, lifestyles highlighted during National Public Health Week

Woman Eating Fruit OutdoorsThe Department of Public Health will celebrate the 2014 National Public Health Week, April 7  to 11 by hosting Public Health Resource Exhibits throughout the county.   Each exhibit will promote a daily theme under the overall National Public Health Week’s campaign, “Public Health: Starts Here” while promoting the programs and services available to the community.

“Promoting healthy lifestyle behaviors and showing the residents that living healthy lives starts with small steps is an essential responsibility of the Department of Public Health” said Dr. Maxwell Ohikhuare, M.D., Public Health Officer.  San Bernardino County continues to make great strides in saving lives by promoting healthy lifestyle behaviors and creating awareness of services and resources available to residents.

National Public Health Week educates and engages Americans to create a healthier nation for ourselves and generations to come.  Hundreds of events will take place nationally showcasing the value of healthy eating, physical activity and the preventing chronic illnesses.

Public Health will promote its services and resources at the following locations:







April 7, 2014


Be Healthy From the Start Ontario Mills Mall 1 Mills Circle
Ontario, CA 91764

April 8, 2014


Don’t Panic Fontana Lewis Library & Technology Center 8437 Sierra Ave
Fontana, CA 92335

April 9, 2014


Get Out Ahead San Bernardino Valley Collage 701 S. Mt. Vernon

San Bernardino, CA 92410


April 10, 2014


Eat Well City of Redland’s Market Night 35 Cajon Street
Redlands, CA 92373

April 11, 2014


Be the Healthiest Nation in 1 Generation DPH Hesperia Clinic 16453 Bear Valley Road
Hesperia, CA 92345


For more information about San Bernardino County National Public Health Week Celebrations, call 1-800-782-4264.

Motorists advised of several closures along I-215 throughout April

caltransCommuters and motorists who travel on Interstate 215 through Grand Terrace are advised of several freeway closures throughout the month of April.

The interstate will shut down intermittently as Caltrans moves four Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad bridge spans on Interstate 215 between Iowa Avenue and Barton Road.

All of the northbound and southbound lanes of Interstate 215 will close from 11:30 p.m. to 11:30 a.m.on Fridays and Saturdays, April 4-5, 11-12, 18-19 and 25-26.

A full closure the northbound lanes of Interstate 215 will occur from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. on Wednesdays and Thursdays, April 2-3, 9-10, 16-17, 23-24.

Motorists should use alternate routes during the closures. A detour map is available here:

For more questions about the project, visit

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