Archive for June 21st, 2010

The county bargaining units of the San Bernardino Public Employees Association (SBPEA) have voted to accept a package of concessions negotiated by the unions leadership and forgo a 6% salary increase that would have been effective later this month.

The vote count was as follows:

To accept the modified contract:     2,385 Votes  50.66%
To reject the modified contract:     2,323 Votes  49.34%

The result all but guarantees a rough time for the struggling union and an upcoming period of discontent due to such a “razor thin” margin.

It’ll be interesting to know if there was any disallowed ballots.

NYTimes: Fannie and Freddie tab is $146B and rising

By BINYAMIN APPELBAUM
NEW YORK TIMES
06/20/2010

CASA GRANDE, Ariz. — Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac took over a foreclosed home roughly every 90 seconds during the first three months of the year. They owned 163,828 houses at the end of March, a virtual city with more houses than Seattle. The mortgage finance companies, created by Congress to help Americans buy homes, have become two of the nation’s largest landlords.

Bill Bridwell, a real estate agent in the desert south of Phoenix, is among the thousands of agents hired nationwide by the companies to sell those foreclosures, recouping some of the money that borrowers failed to repay. In a good week, he sells 20 homes and Fannie sends another 20 listings his way.

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By Mark Wilson, Getty Images

WASHINGTON (AP) — Regulators on Friday shut down a Nevada bank, raising to 83 the number of U.S. bank failures this year.

The 83 closures so far this year is more than double the pace set in all of 2009, which was itself a brisk year for shutdowns. By this time last year, regulators had closed 40 banks. The pace has accelerated as banks’ losses mount on loans made for commercial property and development.

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OCRegister: OC pension pay data? We’re still waiting

June 21st, 2010, 3:00 am · posted by Tony Saavedra, Register investigative reporter

Justice may be blind, but in the hands of the Orange County Employees Retirement System, it’s also gum-footed slow.

The Watchdog reported two weeks ago that an Orange County Superior Court judge ruled OCERS must provide the names of retirees, how much they collect and where they last worked. Judge Luis Rodriguez’ decision came in response to a lawsuit by the California Foundation for Fiscal Responsibility, with help from the Orange County Register.

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InlandPolitics: The Rex Gutierrez trial – week two

Gutierrez

Today starts week two of the trial of Rancho Cucamonga City councilman and former Assessor employee Rex Gutierrez.

State and county prosecutors are attempting to weave a conspiracy theory with allegations of time card fraud allegedly committed by Gutierrez, while he was employed by Assessor Bill Postmus.

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The results of a contract concession vote by San Bernardino County’s largest union is due to be announced today.

The San Bernardino Public Employees Association representing more than ten thousand county workers is set to announce the results of a vote by its membership on a series of contract concessions. The givebacks proposed are meant to aid the county in managing a stated budget deficit of $90 million.

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iePolitics: Is it really double dipping? (Revised)

www.iepolitics.com

Written by Administrator
June 20th, 2010 at 4:26 pm

This past week San Bernardino County Deputy District Attorney John Goritz and state of California Deputy Attorney General Melissa Mandel unveiled their “conspiracy theory” in the trial of former Assessor’s Office employee Rex Gutierrez. In addition to having worked for the county, Gutierrez also is an elected member of the city of Rancho Cucamonga City Council. Gutierrez is accused of conducting city of Rancho Cucamonga business on county time.

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10:00 PM PDT on Sunday, June 20, 2010

The Press-Enterprise

For a decade at least, Republican politics in Riverside County has been defined by which of two camps someone fell into.

Now there is just one.

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Democratic candidate Jerry Brown gives his first post-primary news conference in Los Angeles. Republican candidate Meg Whitman works the phones to thank supporters of her campaign. (Mark Boster, Los Angeles Times; Lawrence K. Ho, Los Angeles Times)

By Seema Mehta, Los Angeles Times

June 21, 2010

The candidates fighting to become California’s next governor each faced stumbles in recent days, but the polar-opposite ways in which Meg Whitman and Jerry Brown dealt with the fallout say much about their personalities and the campaign machines they’ve built.

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SBSun: D.A. to use fewer prosecutors

Staff reductions proposed despite budget increase
Mike Cruz, Staff Writer
Posted: 06/20/2010 08:18:15 PM PDT

Editor’s note: Part one of a two-part look at San Bernardino County’s justice system.

A reduced work force could have a significant impact on operations in the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office, despite a $1.5 million budget increase.

The proposed budget for fiscal 2010-11 includes a staffing reduction of 34 positions – more than half of which were already vacant. But three prosecutors also were elected to the judicial bench this month, and five to six other personnel have retired or left for various reasons.

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SBSun: Budget cuts might shutter West Valley juvenile hall

James Rufus Koren, Staff Writer
Posted: 06/20/2010 07:02:42 AM PDT

The San Bernardino County Probation Department may close West Valley juvenile hall in Rancho Cucamonga to help cut the department’s budget for the coming year.

Chief Probation Officer Michelle Scray said shuttering the facility is one of several options being considered, though Scray would not disclose what other measures are being studied.

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SBSun: Trustee takes heat

Advocate or agitator?

Navarro accused of having conflicts
Michael J. Sorba, Staff Writer
Posted: 06/20/2010 07:02:42 AM PDT

County Board of Education member Gil Navarro has never shied away from controversy, whether on education, immigration or billing taxpayers for conferences he’s attended.

The 67-year-old, who also works as a paid education advocate, says he works toward the greater good, although his critics may view him as an agitator.

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DailyBulletin: Elrod set to be arraigned Wednesday

Elrod

Wendy Leung, Staff Writer
Created: 06/20/2010 07:02:35 AM PDT

Chino Councilman Earl Elrod is expected to be arraigned Wednesday in Chino Superior Court in connection with his alleged involvement hit-and-run accident this year.

The San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office filed a misdemeanor hit-and-run charge against Elrod after a Feb. 14 accident at C and 10th streets in Chino. A Lexus driven by Elrod was hit by a bicyclist heading west on C Street. The councilman drove off without identifying himself, according to authorities.

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DailyBulletin: Expert: CHP couldn’t go after Elrod

Officers went to home after crash but did not enter
Lori Consalvo, Staff Writer
Created: 06/20/2010 07:02:25 AM PDT

CHINO – Why didn’t California Highway Patrol officers knock down the door to Councilman Earl Elrod’s house the night of his suspected hit-and-run?

The short answer – they’re not allowed to.

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DailyBulletin: Fire units to charge visitors

County medical services to impose nonresident fees
James Rufus Koren, Staff Writer
Created: 06/20/2010 09:35:33 PM PDT

A plan to bring money into the San Bernardino County Fire Department’s coffers could make the drive to and from Vegas just as expensive as Sin City itself.

The Fire Department plans to start charging noncounty residents for medical services, Fire Chief Danny Wurl said this week. He said charging outsiders for medical services could bring in about $250,000 in the coming year.

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RivPE: Supervisors propose pit bull spay/neuter law

10:12 PM PDT on Sunday, June 20, 2010

By IMRAN GHORI
The Press-Enterprise

Concerned about the increased number of pit bull attacks in recent years, San Bernardino County officials are proposing an ordinance that would require owners to spay and neuter their pets.

In the past five years, four people have died due to injuries from pit bull attacks in the county, according to the county’s Animal Care and Control Division. Just this year, six attacks involving pit bulls were reported, including two that involved young children who died as a result.

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RivPE: Lawmakers battle over foreclosure remedies

10:00 PM PDT on Sunday, June 20, 2010

By JIM MILLER
Sacramento Bureau

SACRAMENTO – The number of mortgage defaults and home foreclosures is falling in the Inland area and around the state, but the tug of war between the lending industry and people pushing for new borrower protections is still going strong at the state Capitol.

“Foreclosures have dropped. That’s a good sign,” said Assemblyman Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, the author of several bills on the subject. “But we still have to do more because there are a lot of people not communicating.”

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Published: Monday, Jun. 21, 2010 – 12:00 am | Page 3A
Last Modified: Monday, Jun. 21, 2010 – 12:11 am

While Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and legislators wrestle with the latest version of the state’s perpetual budget mess, the two people who aspire to succeed him seven months hence aren’t offering voters any direction on how they’d close the income-outgo deficit.

How Jerry Brown or Meg Whitman would resolve the state’s fiscal crisis is not merely an academic question. There’s about a 99.9 percent chance that when one of them receives the keys to the governor’s Capitol suite, the budget problem will be at least as big as it is now – and will probably be bigger.

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