(DISCUSSION) Chief Probation Officer’s Report
a. Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative update
G. Bieringer was on vacation, so there was no update
b. Budget update
M Lui gave an oral report. He said that Harvey Rose has already recommended an additional $121K of cuts from the Mayor’s submitted budget. The categories are: equipment for the new JH (reduced $30K, MIS equipment by $38K, and a 9708 employment specialist position, another $52K. They also asked for an elimination of empty positions: 2-8414 Supervising POs, 2-8444 DPOs, 8340 Asst Dir JH, 8323 Sr. Counselor at LCRS, 8142 public defender.
He said the final decisions on our budget would be made July 2, in the Bd chambers.
Comm Hale asked how the Bd/Rose, as non-experts in this field, could recommend cuts of professional positions. Lui said that they (the Dept) would be going back and explaining to them the impact of these cuts. He said that they would agree with most of those (Rose’s) decisions but some they will be addressing.
Comm Hale said that these recommended cuts were a policy decision. He opposed someone like H. Rose coming in from outside, and making the decisions without even discussing it with the Commission. He said this action flies in the face of the SF Charter.
Comm Stiglich asked Lui; the Dept had designated 5 positions for salary savings? Lui didn’t catch the question. She repeated, they had listed 5 positions that were going to be taken off the books. Lui said, deleted, for lay offs. Stiglich: so they existed, for lay offs. So there were people who hold those positions who are going to be laid off? Lui; yes. Stiglich: with respect to the one that’s going to be counted against the budget, nobody is in that position? Lui; the positions …are all vacant positions, so there is no budgetary…or no dollar reduction in our budget.
Stiglich: they were vacant positions because we were not allowed to fill them?
Lui; correct. And we do not anticipate getting the authority from the Controller and the Mayor.
Comm Stiglich asked how long the vacancies existed. Lui gave one estimate for one position but didn’t have the exact fact for every one. There were no specific answers given.
Comm Hale repeated his displeasure about others (Bd of Supes, H Rose) making decisions without consulting the Commission.
The Chief said, “one of the things we wanted you to take note of, is of the public protection agencies, Juvenile Probation Dept is taking a 15.4 cut, Fire Dept is taking a 5.9 cut, Police Dept is taking a 1.4 cut, and the Sheriff’s Dept is taking a 1.2 cut. So, we are taking a significantly heavy cut in terms of public safety agencies.” “Additionally, we were notified less than a month ago, on June 2, that the Sheriff’s would no longer be covering the front door, which has a significant public safety issue.” (sic)
The Chief said that the courts’ budgets were cut and they would no longer pay for the Sheriffs. The cost of 2 deputies would be $200K. She reported that the Sheriff agreed to keep covering the door for a while after July 1, until the Dept could resolve the problem.
Comm Hale cited the refusal of the City to allow us to charge other depts. for use of our facilities, but now expect us to pay the costs necessitated by having other depts. in our facilities, as an unfair proposal. He asked if the Dept ever brought that up to the Mayor’s office. The Chief said no they had not said that to the courts or the Mayor. She has given the information to Murlene Randle of MOCJ.
Comm Stiglich asked how much Adult Probation was cut. The Chief said very little, but then said they had a slight increase. (“a slight increase of 1.”)
M Lui said the Commission asked them to come up with a list of add-back items. There are 8: $250K for additional community services to help address the increased violence on the streets. This would be put back into the baseline program funding
The 2nd item would be 2-8444 POs. the layoffs of 2 Supervising POs would eventually affect staff level POs in layoffs of 2. 3rd is 2-8320 counselors (similar situation as the POs).
4th is $200K for security at YGC. 5th is a 1022 IS position. 6th is a 1430 transcriber/typist 7th is $52K in MIS equipment.
Comm Stiglich asked about the 6 positions that were recommended eliminated, by H. Rose, and that Comm Hale had a problem with, because they were important positions. Then why is $811K being asked for, for other positions and not these?
The Chief said, “the positions we are asking to be put back in are the positions that have already been notified that they are being laid off. The positions that Harvey Rose is proposing to be cut to reduce our budget are vacant positions. They represent a potential to fill the positions at a later time when the budget is better. The 14 people we are laying off, that is like a forgone conclusion, the way this budget has gone through. The 15.5% cut includes those 14 people that are to be laid off. What we are saying is, I guess, let me explain the process. When the Mayor turned in the budget, the proposal was 14 people being laid off. When we turned that over to the Bd of Supervisors, they accept that or they evaluate it. They have evaluated and accepted those 14, and then they’re going…. Harvey Rose, who is from the Bd of Supervisors,…is recommending additional cuts, cuts that are.. not people but… vacant positions. So those are vacant positions they are talking about cutting. So they are talking about cutting our budget in addition to the 15.2. this is a hundred and some, addition. So what we are saying is, we are suggesting to the Commission that these would be the things which we would asked to be added back, because it is our understanding that we cannot ask for these things to be added back. It has to be something that is done by the Commission.” “We cannot go before the Bd and ask for add backs. This is the document that we prepared and we have the Commission, with Commissioner,..Commissioner Ricci wanted to know what the Commission could do in help with the budget, given that we were getting cut so deeply. So we looked, given the fact that we were cut 14 positions, a total of 15.4, that these were the things that we would want, if there is lobbying, you know, if there is possibility of add backs. These are the priorities that we thought, but it would be your decision, and our priorities were framed in the policies and procedures that you have defined.”
Comm Hale said that it was always contemplated that those positions would be filled.
There was a discussion regarding the guarding of the front door. If it is for the safety of the courts, then it should not be paid out of Juvenile Probation Dept budget. M. Baumgartner, Dep. City Attorney said the charter only requires the Sheriffs provide bailiffs for the courts. Comm Stiglich questioned why the cost should be borne by this dept. The Chief said Judge Hitchens said clearly the courts weren’t going to pay a dime for that. Comm Stiglich commented that before we go ask for $200K for security, rather than for say restoring some of those positions, it would be important to see where we could draw the line on the cost of security. We should check out how other depts. (eg. Police) do it.. who pays for them?
Comm Bonilla said perhaps this Dept should say we will not pay for it. The Chief said that would be chaos.
Comm Queen asked Comm Stiglich to propose a course of action. Comm Stiglich said that she recommends we go back to the table with whomever to negotiate this.
Comm Hale said he’d like us to start charging the other depts., if we are to pay this cost.
Comm Queen said that we should present our position to the Mayor, giving them the options we see before us.
Comm Hale proposed evicting the courts from the building. The Chief said there would be costs for getting the youth to and from court. There are other problems associated with this idea.
Comm Ricci asked Comm Stiglich to follow up on this issue of security. She accepted.
c. Status of TANF funding, and the Dept’s RFP process
The Chief reported that the State restored the $134 mil in TANF, but placed it in general funds. That means that the total $201 mil is available to the state. She said they do not know the “access vehicle” for which they will receive that (sic). It may be the BOC. She said that “the big five have committed to it. And now it’s just a matter of how we will access it. It is supposed to be with the same regulation, the same distribution, the same allocation. There can be complications in terms of how we access it, because right now there are laws and the JJCC determines how that TANF money is distributed. So we have yet to find that information. The other thing we’ve been advised, our lobbyist, is that there are no guarantees from year to year now. It is general funds and it will be a fight every year. So we can celebrate in terms of this battle is over but the war is not won yet. But it’s positive and we’re excited that all the lobbying we have done, all the chief probation officers, the lobbyist we have paid, in fact, produced the results that we wanted.”
Liz Jackson-Simpson gave a brief summary of the RFP process. They are now in the selection process. She requested the Commission call a special meeting in order to review the staff recommendations and to approve contracting with those selected proposals, within the next 2 wks.
There was none.