The Community Services District Security Committee got a preview this week of options the CSD board will consider for the community’s security services. The options are part of the process that began in May when the district’s legal counsel said community services districts don't have police power and can't enact ordinances to regulate personal conduct of citizens.
At Tuesday’s committee meeting, CSD General Manager Ed Crouse listed options for providing security services. They appear in a memo legal counsel Steve Rudolph is preparing for the August board meeting. “Those are the four policy decisions we’re going to bring back to the board to get (staff) direction on,” Crouse said. The options are:
- Have patrol officers continue to function as security officers.
- Expand service through legislation to enforce county and state laws within the district, which would take “a couple years” to accomplish.
- Assume more authority by having a police department, expanding powers to police.
- Do nothing, close the security operation down and give it over to RMA.
Crouse also talked about changes in the district code the board will consider to define security authority and eliminate things that require police power.
“Whatever way we decide to go in the policy decision, we should affirm the indemnity of all district employees with respect to the government code so long as they’re performing their job duty,” Crouse said. “There’s a broad-brush government code that says that any public employee is indemnified. But, for Security, if we really want to single them out, we can say if you are performing your duties under the policy decision, whatever it is, we’ll give you indemnity per government section code” and cite the section.
“The officers would really like a specific,” said Security Chief Greg Remson.
“As long as they’re behaving appropriately, I think … the board’s going to vote to indemnify,” said Director Bobbi Belton.
Security Chief Greg Remson provided the following updates at the meeting:
Enforcement: CSD Security issued 112 citations in July for Rancho Murieta Association rule violation. Driveway parking topped the list with 37 violations. There were 25 overnight street parking citations, 22 for speeding, 19 for stop sign violations, two for park hours, two unlicensed driver citations, and one each for parking on a sidewalk, Sunday construction, overloaded golf cart, resident vehicle in guest parking, and commercial vehicle signage.
There were 145 RMA rule violations admonishments and/or complaints for the month. There were 61 for open garage doors, 14 for park hours, 14 for speeding, and 10 for fireworks. A complaint does not necessarily mean a violation occurred or that officers responding to a complaint were able to locate it.
Staffing: The department has a patrol officer position to fill.
Another patrol officer is off due to injuries he received when he fell while investigating the source of a light under the pedestrian bridge at night. The officer was not seriously injured and is now on vacation leave.
The state Department of Fish and Game was notified of mountain lion sightings North residents reported during July and Security officers responded to reports of sightings but did not see the animals.
A patrol officer responding to a report of a party after midnight Aug. 5 located a group of residents and guests in their late teens preparing to camp at Lake Jean. A campfire set by the seven was extinguished. Fire Station 59 responded to make sure the fire was out, and an investigator for California Fire Department was notified, Remson
The RMA Compliance Committee is going forward with new non-architectural rules for curfew, vandalism, and skateboarding that reflect CSD ordinances which can no longer be enforced. There is some disagreement among committee members about fine amounts. “They’re talking about adjusting some of those violations to allow a first-time fine,” Remson said. “I think you violate a rule, you should have a fine.” CSD President Wayne Kuntz agreed, and said he had talked to other gated communities and all provide a fine for first violations. The RMA imposes a $100 fine starting with the second rule violation. As for imposing some of the larger fines being talked about, Kuntz said, “You’ll never get everybody to agree when you start talking about those great big numbers. … I’m talking about even the (RMA Compliance) committee people.”