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The Pension Trust Fund for Operating Engineers is as concerned about campfires and other unauthorized activity on undeveloped property in the back area as community officials are, members of the Joint Security Committee were told this week.

Rancho Murieta Association General Manager David Stiffler said he had contacted PTF representatives about concerns that have been expressed in recent months about the fire risk and found they’re “very, very interested and concerned about what is going on out in that back area.…  They’ve got a liability issue out there.”

Stifler said at Monday’s meeting that he has met with staff and officials from the RMA and Community Services District to develop approaches to the problem that will be shared with the PTF.

At the CSD Security Committee meeting the following day, Security Chief Greg Remson said the group is looking at using gates, boulders, ditches and signage to discourage access to wooded and grassy areas around the back lakes and the river. “Keeping the cars out of there is what we really want to do,” said Remson. He added that fire officials have told him the landowner has to be willing to bring charges against trespassers who build fires or otherwise damage property.

The PTF property is within the district, and Security patrols the area.

At the Joint Security Committee meeting, RMA President Dick Cox again said he has “major concerns” about security, and views the community as “unprotected by law enforcement.” He said CSD Security patrol officers “can’t do a damn thing except observe and report” and told the CSD directors who were present, “You guys are sitting on your hands.”

“I thought about writing a letter to the editor of the Sacramento Bee and saying … if you want to rob us, come on out because there’s nobody out here that can stop you. We have no protection. You can come out here and hold up our commercial businesses with a gun and be gone into another county before the sheriff even probably gets it on the radio.… Until we do something along the lines of getting authority for our Security we’re never going to have security.”

Country Club Vice President Dennis Martel, who represents the club on the committee, disagreed, saying Cox's view of security isn’t shared by everyone. “Most people I talk to out here, including a lot of law enforcement, think this is the safest place you can live,” Martel said.

Cox said Security officers should be able to catch and detain people, and their ability to make a citizen’s arrest was not sufficient.
When he said they should also be able to stop speeders and stop sign runners, CSD Director Bobbi Belton pointed out that no one – including law enforcement agencies like the Sheriff’s Department and the CHP – can do that “until RMA passes a resolution asking the county to allow for enforcement of the vehicle code on the private streets of the community.”

The RMA board recently discussed such a resolution, but hasn’t taken any action. Cox said the board will revisit the matter.

Martel said he was unsure about how much support there was for full law enforcement. “I just don’t know if the majority of the population in Rancho Murieta wants it, nor do they want to pay for it,” he said.

CSD President Wayne Kuntz said surveys and focus groups conducted over the years show people won’t pay the cost and don’t want “real” tickets that would be part of their driving record.

“I don’t give a damn what they think,” Cox said. “I’m more concerned about the overall membership … being safe driving on our streets.…”

Belton noted that security is paid for through a special tax, and it would take a two-thirds vote of approval in an election to raise it.

Deputy District Attorney Kimberly Zdobnikow, who has worked with the community on security issues for over a year, pointed out that the Sheriff’s Department observes and mediates much of the time.

Martel said he’s seen Security patrol officers deal effectively with problems that have come up a couple times at the club. “Just the fact that this guy comes in in a uniform with a gun on is usually enough for most people to sober up and to shut up,” he remarked.

The Joint Security Committee will continue to meet every other month to discuss security issues in the community. The next meeting is scheduled for February. The CSD Security Committee meets monthly at the CSD Building. Both meetings are open to the public.


Lisa Taylor's picture
Joined: 01/09/2008
Posts: 365
Post rating: 30

Let's be clear about this...

I don't know whether or not this is an issue of how the meeting was reported, but having the vehicle code enforced is a completely different thing than being able to enforce other state and local laws withing RM.  Apples and Oranges.  Given the correct authority, our security officers *can* enforce state and local laws. However, enforcement of the vehicle code is up to RMA and also someone around with LE authority.  Mixing these two issues together, leads to further confusion.   They are separate issues -- perhaps trying to keep us confused is part of the agenda?

  RMA President Dick Cox again said he has “major concerns” about security, and views the community as “unprotected by law enforcement.” He said CSD Security patrol officers “can’t do a damn thing except observe and report” and told the CSD directors who were present, “You guys are sitting on your hands.”

One issue is that we do have a relatively safe neighborhood, which is why we don't warrant law enforcement coverage that is given in other areas -- they have to delegate resources according to serious crime.  It is good that we are getting increased coverage since the SSD alignment, and since the Mobleys have taken an interest in the security out here. Luckily, we don't have the serious level of crime that would warrant SSD putting a couple of deputies out here 24/7 and involved in the community as we would want to direct them.  HOWEVER, we do have issues, we have crimes, we have criminals and a number of relatively undesirables that either live or frequent here. I guess we will have to wait before it gets much worse for the residents to push the board in a different direction.  For now, it's a train that has been derailing for quite some time.

It may be that fire officials have told him the landowner has to be willing to bring charges against trespassers who build fires or otherwise damage property.

But what good is the willingness to prosecute when most of the time there is still not anyone here on a regular basis that is able and willing to enforce? 

We should keep in mind the following resolution passed by the CSD board of directors:

[security officers]...are not responsible for and shall not engage in any law enforcement activities, including but not limited to: chasing, apprehending or detaining suspected criminals; investigating criminal acts; or enforcing state or county laws, including traffic violations.

Not only are they "not responsible for", but they "shall not".  IF OUR SECURITY OFFICERS DO ANYTHING OTHER THAN OBSERVE AND REPORT, THEY COULD BE DISCIPLINED. This really has nothing to do about people not wanting their taxes raised.  It wouldn't take much to have the level of enforcement that we need locally.  There are rumors that it takes 70K to do a background search for employment?  Well, when I talked to the other police departments that would be our size, they quoted me a price of $400-$700.  So what's with the CSD board member that is quoting the 70K amount?  Is that someone that has an agenda?  Someone that hasn't done her homework??????

The DA has been working with RM to "solve" these issues. Can I ask what solutions we have found?  I think she said we could pass out slips of paper to skateboarders at the Plaza saying that they could get into trouble.  Do we have a full report of solutions that have been developed and thus implemented so far?  Joint Security Committee members -- are there any reports on this for the community? Or are we just using the DA as an excuse for the district's own lack of action?

 

**************

Lisa

www.indyeve.com

My Blog:  http://www.ranchomurieta.com/blog/775

(will be updated this weekend)

Mike Burnett's picture
Joined: 07/31/2007
Posts: 183
Post rating: 0

Security issues are blown way out of proportion!

Greg Remson indicated that the PTF lands are within their district and that they patrol those properties.  Does PTF and the landowners pay for RMCSD security patrols or is the RMA paying for these services?

In order to enforce trespassing on the undeveloped lands, the property owners need to post no trespassing signs in accordance with county and state laws.  These signs will need to be posted along all the boundary lines with RMA, RMCSD, County and state roads.  The CHP and Sheriff are the only agencies that can enforce trespassing.

This whole issue is way overblown and a can of worms.  For the life of me, I can't understand what Dick Cox is so afraid of to warrant this constant exaggerate rhetoric over security.  Knock it off and move onto a more productive issue. 

Lisa Taylor's picture
Joined: 01/09/2008
Posts: 365
Post rating: 30

promoting apathy?

Greg Remson indicated that the PTF lands are within their district and that they patrol those properties.  Does PTF and the landowners pay for RMCSD security patrols or is the RMA paying for these services?

 

The PTF is paying for those services, but it is RMA residences (and perhaps nearby ranchers) that will be in danger if that back country catches fire.  RMA pays for nothing other than driveway parking, and garage doors at night, and I believe certain lock up services. I'm curious why this is relevant?

Btw, I don't think that the signs are an absolute requirement, but do expediate the process:

http://tinyurl.com/67qafn

Also, what good is having the law, if there is no one here that can enforce it on a regular basis?  We've seen great improvement with SSD presence since the alignment, but they are still often 35-50 minutes away.  Heck, common sense dictates that, when you only have an average of 2-3 deputies on duty in a district as large as they are serving. 

Perhaps Dick Cox is trying to pay attention to the security issue because no one else is.  Certainly you aren't trying to promote continued apathy on this matter, are you?

**************

Lisa

www.indyeve.com

www.ranchomurieta.com/blog/775     (updated 12/5/08)

Mike Burnett's picture
Joined: 07/31/2007
Posts: 183
Post rating: 0

Security Concerns

Lisa,

In my opinion, you, Dick Cox, and a select few others keep pulling our community thru the muck on these issues.  We have enforcement just like any community that relies on the Sheriff and CHP to respond.  With the RMCSD Security, that puts us a notch ahead.

I understand your personal interests.  Quit citing comparisons to larger established communities stating what we don't have and start focusing on what we do have.  If you are compelled to cite statistics or compare RMA to other Sac County communities, then begin with the number of crimes reported.  You will quickly break thru the smoke and mirrors you are putting out there.

Mike Burnett's picture
Joined: 07/31/2007
Posts: 183
Post rating: 0

Tresspassing on Open Lands

Lisa,

You need to be more accurate in your comments.

 "Any time you own private property, especially large pieces of land that is farm property, you should post 'no trespass' signs correctly according to the law to keep violators off of your property," said Sgt. Lou Fatur of the Sacramento County Sheriff's ýepartment. "This (new law) may put some more teeth in the trespassing laws, but you still have to protect your property with correct signage, correct fencing and good gates so that people cannot just drive onto your property. Plus, it is good to post these signs for liability reasons."

Lisa Taylor's picture
Joined: 01/09/2008
Posts: 365
Post rating: 30

accuracy

The new law is explained by Sgt. Fatur here:  http://tinyurl.com/6q4uba

The analysis of that bill is here:  http://tinyurl.com/64p5mp

And the full text of the bill is here:  http://tinyurl.com/56noja

 

In fact, Penal Code 602 covers trespass, and PC 602(h), the one modified by the bill above for properties where animals are raised for human consumption, is the only one that I could find with the sign requirement, mentioned in PC 602(h)(1) and (2).

 

Seems to me that since PTF is not raising animals for human consumption, the signage requirement does not apply to PTF properties.

Am I mistaken -- are there PTF lands that are leased by ranchers to raise cattle???  On the property that is not used in such a manner, Mr. Burnett, do you have a link to a law that outlines the sign requirement?

I certainly want to make these statements accurate.

 

**************

Lisa

www.indyeve.com

http://www.ranchomurieta.com/blog/775

(updated 12/5/08)

Lisa Taylor's picture
Joined: 01/09/2008
Posts: 365
Post rating: 30

We aren't like any other community

Lisa,


In my opinion, you, Dick Cox, and a select few others keep pulling our community thru the muck on these issues.  We have enforcement just like any community that relies on the Sheriff and CHP to respond.  With the RMCSD Security, that puts us a notch ahead.


I understand your personal interests.  Quit citing comparisons to larger established communities stating what we don't have and start focusing on what we do have.  If you are compelled to cite statistics or compare RMA to other Sac County communities, then begin with the number of crimes reported.  You will quickly break thru the smoke and mirrors you are putting out there.

 

 

Thank you for your opinion Mike, I know that there are some that share that opinion, just as there are some that share mine, and there are many with different shades in between.

We are no like any other community.  Security used to one of the selling features of this community -- it's false advertising if it's used that way now.   

In 2006, the average response for the SSD to respond to a life threatening call was just under 16 minutes.  Out here, typically it's been 30-50 minutes.  Nowadays, we might be lucky to have a deputy in the area, but things haven't changed that much with the realignment.  The SSD is still understaffed and has a few deputies to cover a large area.  It's the realities of the situation -- RM is a small pond in a big district.

Exactly how does our security put us a notch ahead?  If people are still relying on them to intercede, then I might suggest that they are asking the officers to do something illegal and something that could get them disciplined, if they follow the resolutions that are being passed by the current board.  Their appearance will deter a handful, but I hear folks tell them F-you and the culture is changing, and word will get out....

Crime reports -- we all know that many of the crimes here have never had a report filed.  If you go by the calls that used to be handled and the calls that are handled now, then it's clear there is problem. Unless folks want to bury their heads in the sand. 

 

So Mr. Burnett, what exactly do we have?  What do you think that security can do?  What do you expect them to do when there is a domestic violence call and SSD is 40 minutes away?  Or a fight at the gazebo?  Or our resident vandals -- heck we've even had burglars, dealers and even arsonists -- I guess you don't mind them living in the neighborhood?  They were all caught with the help of security.  I guess we don't need that anymore?

 

**************

Lisa

www.indyeve.com

http://www.ranchomurieta.com/blog/775

(updated 12/5/08)

Ryan Fogleman's picture
Joined: 07/30/2007
Posts: 125
Post rating: 0

THANK YOU Mike!

JFC ! I'm glad someone said it ! "so afraid of to warrant this constant exaggerated rhetoric over security"

 

Live in FEAR Live in FEAR !

Mike Burnett's picture
Joined: 07/31/2007
Posts: 183
Post rating: 0

Let Focus on Rebuilding the North Gate!

I support RMCSD Security and believe they do a good job for what they are capable of under the law and guidance from their management.  We have CHP, Sheriff, and other law enforcement personnel living in Rancho Murieta.  We all have a responsibility to observe and report.  I personally believe we get the appropriate level of attention given our size, frequency and severity of crime in our community.

Enough with the idle banter, move onto something more important, like rebuilding the North Entrance Gate that RMA has had access to the Funds for several years!  If you want improved Security, then use the existing available funds and improve our gate.  It is ridiculous to push the noddle across the plate for unfunded activities that the community doesn't support. 

Lisa Taylor's picture
Joined: 01/09/2008
Posts: 365
Post rating: 30

Backsliding

We all have a responsibility to observe and report.

 

Okay, so we all have the same responsibility now as our security officers.  (Btw, how is our Neighborhood Watch doing?)  However, you have not answered my question -- what exactly do you expect security to do?  Please be specific.  If there is a situation, do you expect them to intercede?  

How will a better North Gate improve the problems with fires in the back country?  Response times for violent calls? Help when the Country Store has a theft or a suscpicious call at the Plaza?  Help if the Neighborhood Watch is actually watching something take place?   Etc.????

This is *not* about asking for things we have never had -- this is trying to regain what we have had for two decades. Heck, I would be happy to maintain the status quo here, rather than backslide while the community grows and we no longer have options.  Oops, the status quo is already gone, and the door to those options are being closed by the current CSD BOD.

 

**************

Lisa

www.indyeve.com

http://www.ranchomurieta.com/blog/775

(updated 12/5/08)

Bobbi Belton's picture
Joined: 07/30/2007
Posts: 275
Post rating: 442

Neighborhood Watch

The local Rotary Club has assumed the responsibility for coordinating the Neighborhood Watch program throughout our community. The SSD contact name and number have been provided to them via Dave Stiffler, RMA GM.

Bobbi Belton

Steven Mobley's picture
Joined: 08/07/2007
Posts: 261
Post rating: 325

Kudos Mike

Mike,

Thank you for your keen insight and clarity of thought regarding this matter. It is refreshing to see one comment who has no hidden agenda or conflicts of interest. You comments are no doubt shared by the vast majority of the community. Thank you again for sharing your thoughts.Laughing

All my Best,

Steven Mobley 

  

 

Raelyn Mobley's picture
Joined: 02/11/2008
Posts: 140
Post rating: 80

Well Said Mr. Burnett!

I could not have said it any better myself!! 

Raelyn Smile

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