News flash! Every week, following the Board meeting, we will feature five items that Supervisor Kuehl thinks you might find interesting, important, and/or fun. It’s your way to get a quick rundown of several highlights of the meeting in no more than 5 minutes! Looking for more? Click here to get the entire agenda from
At the meeting Tuesday, we strengthened the County’s anti-fraud efforts by requiring the Auditor/Controller, County Counsel, CEO and Human Resources to explore ways to resolve long-delayed cases. The County fraud hotline receives about 1,000 calls a year, 20-30% of which are substantiated. A subset of those annual substantiated claims are either never resolved or drag on for years as employees who are about to be investigated leave on sick leave or disappear. This will help clear those cases.
As part of our effort to expand prosperity and living wage jobs to County residents, we brought a motion to the board that asks the CEO to explore whether County fleet maintenance, which is almost entirely outsourced to private sector companies, could be brought in-house thereby creating additional good paying jobs for County workers at little additional expense. Stay tuned for the findings a few months from now!
The Board also heard from many of the County offices tasked with implementing Prop 47, the 2014 initiative that reclassified certain nonviolent felonies to misdemeanors. When California voters passed Prop 47, they were promised that a reduction in the number of incarcerated men and women would result in savings that could be directed toward services for that population, but that savings has proved elusive. Today I likened the search for Prop 47 savings to a “snipe hunt,” a quest for something that does not exist or cannot be done. Rather than continue this pursuit for elusive savings, I suggested that we be guided by the spirit of what voters wanted when they approved Prop 47 which was to shift our emphasis from incarceration to rehabilitation. I hope that, moving forward, all the County offices involved in our criminal justice system can focus on the best way to accomplish that goal.
For more than four decades the City of Santa Monica and its public, private and nonprofit partners, as well as its community members have worked to imagine and create a city of well-being.
Their efforts were praised and acknowledged recently with the prestigious Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Culture of Health Prize. I was very happy to recognize the hard work of city leaders and their non-profit, health and education partners at the board meeting. They offer a great example of how a city can work together to build a diverse, equitable and livable community.
Finally, the Supervisors adopted a new strategic plan that will help make the County more client-centered and humane. Now that the plan has been adopted, County Departments will be charged with developing workplans to implement the 10 strategies which include, among others, prevention, justice system reforms, community wellness, environmental sustainability, and workforce development. The new strategic plan also prioritizes data and metrics collection, so the County can better track its progress toward meeting goals.