​These are the Summaries, Findings, Commendations, Recommendations, and Requests for Responses only. For the full Report, click here. Alternatively, all of the full Reports including this one can be found on the Shasta County Grand Jury's website here.

 
2010-11 Cover
 

Audit of Shasta County Accounts

"No Exceptions Noted"

SUMMARY

The Audit and Finance Committee is required by law to annually examine the financial accounts and records of Shasta County. This examination is conducted in conjunction with the annual audit required by Government Code 25250.

FINDINGS

None.

RECOMMENDATIONS

None.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

None.

 

Redding Ballot Measures A and B

"Misuse of City Funds or Negotiating Tool?"

SUMMARY

The Grand Jury decided to look into ballot measures A and B on the November, 2010 ballot for City of Redding voters. The focus of the investigation was whether these measures should have been put into place by a vote of the City Council or whether the Council's decision to place these measures before the voters constituted a misuse of City funds.

FINDINGS

F1. The Grand Jury found that the Redding City Council did not misuse City funds because it acted within its authority.

RECOMMENDATIONS

Since the decision to place Measures A and B on the November 2010 ballot was favored by a majority of the members of the Redding City Council and ultimately approved by the voters, the Grand Jury makes no recommendation.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

None.

 

Nuisance Water Run-Off from Neighboring Properties

"Violation of Subdivision Map Act?"

SUMMARY

A City of Redding property owner submitted a complaint to the Grand Jury alleging the City of Redding Planning Department had violated Government Code Section 66411, part of the California Subdivision Map Act when it approved three new subdivisions in her neighborhood. She alleged that the construction of those subdivisions has caused a health hazard and environmental damage to her property with the loss of native trees.


The Grand Jury found the city is in compliance with the Subdivision Map Act and the California Building Code, but did find nuisance water flow (irrigation and domestic) migrating onto the claimant's property.

FINDINGS

F1. Developers, consultants and city planners should take into consideration the possibility of nuisance water flow onto nearby properties during the design phase of a project, including single family dwellings, subdivisions, commercial properties and projects requiring a city permit.

F2. Measures are available to reduce nuisance water flow such as French drains on downstream properties, if irrigation water is foreseen. Those measures should be included in the drainage system during the planning stage of a project.

RECOMMENDATIONS

The Grand Jury makes no recommendation on this complaint because there is no evidence the City violated Section 66411 of the Subdivision Map Act.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

None.

 

Shasta County Coroner's Office

"Excellence and Professionalism"

SUMMARY

The duties of the Coroner’s office are to identify the deceased, the medical cause of death, the manner of death and the mechanism of death in all cases of homicide, suicide, accidental, suspicious or unexplained death.


The Shasta County Coroner's office is currently staffed with qualified and dedicated employees and is fortunate to have one of the only two forensic pathologists in the north state. The Grand Jury would like to commend the Sheriff, Chief Deputy Coroner and all of the employees of the Shasta County Coroner's Office for their continued excellence and professionalism.

FINDINGS

F1. The Grand Jury has determined that the Coroner's office is in dire need of new gurneys.

RECOMMENDATIONS

R1. The Grand Jury recommends Shasta County allocate resources in next year's budget or seek grant funding for much needed newer gurneys.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

Shasta County Sheriff:

F1

R1

 

Fire Arms Training Simulator

"Making Split Second Decisions"

SUMMARY

The 2010-2011 Shasta County Grand Jury attended one part of the firearms training for the Shasta County Sheriff’s Department. This training is called FATS (Fire Arms Training Simulator). Law enforcement officers are exposed to a number of dangerous situations in the field and FATS training is designed to help them make smart split second decisions, no matter what position they find themselves confronted with.

FINDINGS

None.

COMMENDATIONS

The Grand Jury commends the Sheriff's Department for providing this training to its deputies and finds FATS to be essential training that should be continued in the future.

RECOMMENDATIONS

None.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

None.

 

Shasta County Jail

"Inspection Report"

SUMMARY

The 2010-2011 Shasta County Grand Jury inspected the Shasta County Jail. The jail is being operated efficiently, despite an entire floor of the jail being closed for budgetary reasons.

FINDINGS

None.

RECOMMENDATIONS

None.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

None.

 

Shasta County Jail Cell Searches

"Cold Redding Winters"

SUMMARY

The Grand Jury received a complaint from an inmate of the Shasta County Jail. The complainant alleges that during cell searches in December of 2010 and again in January of 2011, inmates were taken outside in the winter cold while a search was conducted of the inmate housing unit. The Grand Jury determined that the inmates were not provided with adequate protection from the elements during the searches.

FINDINGS

F1. Inmates are not provided with adequate protection from the cold during the inmate housing unit searches that occur in winter.

RECOMMENDATIONS

The Grand Jury recommends that:

R1. Inmates are relocated to other areas of the jail during pod searches.

R2. If required to be relocated outside, inmates be provided with adequate means for warmth.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

Shasta County Sheriff:

F1

R1, R2

 

Shasta County Juvenile Hall

"Inspection Report"

SUMMARY

California Penal Code Section 919 mandates that the Grand Jury inspect the condition and management of all public prisons located within Shasta County which would include Juvenile Hall.

FINDINGS

F1. Medical care for the Juvenile Hall is provided by the California Forensic Medical Group (CFMG), a privately owned provider of health care for correctional institutions. A full time nurse is on site during the day with other medical professionals, including mental health workers on call in the evenings.

F2. Inmates attend school five days a week from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. There are currently two teachers and two aides assigned to the Juvenile Hall school.

F3. Drug and alcohol programs are available to the minors, as well as religious services. In addition, Project 18 teen mentoring program makes visits to Juvenile Hall to give minors an opportunity to interact and talk with juveniles of their own age. On occasion, military recruiters come and talk with the minors.

F4. Some minors are used for preparing and serving meals. This gives them an opportunity to develop job skills and a work ethic that can benefit them later in life. On the Grand Jury' initial visit, the aroma of homemade baked goods permeated the grounds.

F5. The Grand Jury was pleased to see the progress in building a new Juvenile Hall as it was evident that the current facility is showing its age.

RECOMMENDATIONS

None.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

None.

 

Sugar Pine Conservation Camp

"Inspection Report"

SUMMARY

California Penal Code Section 919 mandates that the Grand Jury inquire into the condition and management of all public prisons located within Shasta County.

FINDINGS

F1. There are currently eight correctional officers, two sergeants and a lieutenant on staff at Sugar Pine.

F2. Inmates are responsible for meal preparation and serving. The kitchen area toured was clean and organized. The lunch meal provided to the Grand Jury by the inmates was impressive in both taste and quality of the food and the kitchen staff obviously took pride in their work.

F3. The grounds and facilities were very clean and well maintained.

F4. The Grand Jury talked with inmates who conduct meetings such as Narcotics Anonymous, Alcoholics Anonymous and Bible studies. Classes to obtain a GED are also offered.

F5. There is no medical facility at Sugar Pine other than basic first aid. Inmates that require emergency medical care are transported to Redding, if non-emergency care is required, inmates are transferred to Susanville.

F6. Inmates learn job skills and a work ethic that will help them after their prison sentence is completed.

F7. Sugar Pine Conservation Camp is to be commended for maintaining a well run facility that saves the State of California money by providing labor to fight fires and assist in other conservation efforts.

RECOMMENDATIONS

None.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

None.

 

Sugar Pine Conservation Camp

"Inspection Report"

SUMMARY

California Penal Code Section 919 mandates that the Grand Jury inquire into the condition and management of all public prisons located within Shasta County.

FINDINGS

F1. There are currently eight correctional officers, two sergeants and a lieutenant on staff at Sugar Pine.

F2. Inmates are responsible for meal preparation and serving. The kitchen area toured was clean and organized. The lunch meal provided to the Grand Jury by the inmates was impressive in both taste and quality of the food and the kitchen staff obviously took pride in their work.

F3. The grounds and facilities were very clean and well maintained.

F4. The Grand Jury talked with inmates who conduct meetings such as Narcotics Anonymous, Alcoholics Anonymous and Bible studies. Classes to obtain a GED are also offered.

F5. There is no medical facility at Sugar Pine other than basic first aid. Inmates that require emergency medical care are transported to Redding, if non-emergency care is required, inmates are transferred to Susanville.

F6. Inmates learn job skills and a work ethic that will help them after their prison sentence is completed.

F7. Sugar Pine Conservation Camp is to be commended for maintaining a well run facility that saves the State of California money by providing labor to fight fires and assist in other conservation efforts.

RECOMMENDATIONS

None.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

None.

 

City of Redding's Use of Sobriety Checkpoints

"Deterrent for Impaired Drivers"

SUMMARY

The Grand Jury initiated an investigation into the City of Redding’s Sobriety checkpoint and DUI Enforcement Program. The purpose of the program is to maximize the deterrent effect and increase the perception of “risk apprehension” of motorists who would operate a vehicle while impaired by alcohol.


Members of the Grand Jury observed Sobriety Checkpoints in action and rode with Redding Police Department’s DUI Saturation Patrol. Interviews were conducted with Officers of the RPD and volunteers from MADD. (Mothers Against Drunk Driving).


The Grand Jury found that Sobriety checkpoints when integrated with an aggressive enforcement program and judicial support are an effective deterrent to combat the impaired driving problem.

FINDINGS

F1. Impaired driving and impaired related crashes are a threat to the safety and well being of the citizens of Redding.

F2. Sobriety checkpoints should be integrated with DUI saturation patrols, public information and education.

F3. Prosecutorial support is needed for the DUI enforcement program to be successful.

F4. Sobriety checkpoints when integrated with an aggressive enforcement program and prosecutorial support are an effective deterrent to combat the impaired driving problem.

RECOMMENDATIONS

R1. The Grand Jury recommends that the City of Redding continue to fund the Sobriety Checkpoint Program, as well as the DUI Enforcement.

R2. That the Redding Police Department continue the use of specialized DUI patrols that can focus on removing impaired drivers from the roadways.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

Redding City Council:

F1 through F4

R1, R2

Chief of Redding Police Department (invited):

F1 through F4

R1, R2

City Manager of Redding (invited):

F1 through F4

R1, R2

 

What It Takes to Become a Law Enforcement Officer in Shasta County

"Finding the Best Applicants"

SUMMARY

The Grand Jury initiated an investigation into the hiring practices of three law enforcement agencies in Shasta County: the Anderson Police Department, the Redding Police Department and the Shasta County Sheriff's Department. Administrative staff from all three agencies were interviewed and provided the Grand Jury with materials that are routinely distributed to potential applicants as part of the hiring process.


The Grand Jury found all three agencies engage in similar hiring practices.


Although certification is not mandatory, the Grand Jury determined that not all police agencies in Shasta County utilize POST certified background investigators in their screening process. The cost of POST training is very reasonable. All Shasta County law enforcement agencies could take advantage of that training.

FINDINGS

F1. The Anderson Police Department is the only police agency in the county that does not use a POST certified background investigator.

RECOMMENDATIONS

None.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

None.

 

Mountain Gate Community Services District

"Claims of Questionable Decisions by the Board"

SUMMARY

The Grand Jury initiated an investigation into the Mountain Gate Community Services District after several citizens from that district questioned the conduct of the board of directors. Complaints addressed the possibility of violations of the Brown Act, misuse of the district’s credit card policy and tailoring a job description to fit a predetermined candidate.

FINDINGS

F1. The Mountain Gate board was advised by its legal counsel that there was no conflict of interest in the hiring of the General Manager. The Grand Jury, however, determined there was the appearance of favoritism when the board lowered the employment standards and hired the former board member to be general manager.

F2. Prior to the board implementing a policy on credit card usage, charges to the district’s credit card were incorrectly reported as fuel expenses when actually they were meals for employees. Although the bylaws allow for a per diem, there is no specific authorization in the bylaws for employees to charge meals on the district’s credit card.

F3. After receiving training, board meetings attended by the Grand Jury were orderly.

RECOMMENDATIONS

The Grand Jury recommends:

R1. The board create a policies and procedures manual separate from the bylaws for all operations of the district The manual should state which personnel may use the district’s credit card and for what purpose.

R2. All board members complete training on the Brown Act and government ethics every two years as required by law.

R3. The policies and procedures manual should designate the maximum reimbursement rates for lodging. Further, meal reimbursement should be limited to authorized out-of-county travel.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

Mountain Gate Community Services District board:

F1 through F3

R1 through R3

 

Burney Water District

"Financial Solvency of Local Swimming Pool"

SUMMARY

The Grand Jury received a complaint claiming the Burney Water District is “utilizing monies intended for water and sewer services paid for by the district’s rate payers to balance the community swimming pool (fund) without voter approval is a violation of Proposition 218 and an injustice to the community as a whole.”


The complaint also states that the pool has not been financially self-sufficient since it became the responsibility of the district and the fees charged to the public for the use of the pool do not cover the cost of maintaining the pool, requiring the district to subsidize pool operations.


The Grand Jury determined the Burney Water District is in compliance with Proposition 218 but did find that the district has been deficit spending to maintain its water and sewer service and the operation of the community pool. The district does not maintain enough money in the three enterprise funds to cover operation expenses and depreciation of equipment. Reserve funds have fallen dangerously low and will not cover the cost of system upgrades, modernization and catastrophic repairs in the future.

FINDINGS

F1. Has sufficient funds to maintain operations.

F2. Does not consider depreciation, equipment costs and future upgrades when pool expenses are budgeted.

F3. Did not transfer funds from water or sewer accounts into the pool fund for the period covered by the Grand Jury’s investigation.

F4. Did not violate Proposition 218 because voters approved all fees and increases in fees for the community pool.

RECOMMENDATIONS

R1. The district needs to eliminate its operating losses and be able to handle unanticipated future expenses.

R2. The district should continue to designate funds for system upgrades and replacement, as cash flows permit. It should carefully monitor operations to bring the district into a break-even position.

R3. The district should continue to look at all sources to increase the revenue stream.

REQUEST FOR RESPONSES

Burney Water District board of directors:

F1 through F4

R1 through R3

 

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