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May 25
1966 - Mustang Drive-In theater opens on Soledad Canyon Road [story]
Mustang Drive-In


The Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to strengthen oversight of the civilian bodies overseeing the Sheriff’s and Probation departments, empowering each entity with the ability to subpoena data, documents and direct testimony.

The move to give the Civilian Oversight Commission (COC) this type of unprecedented power in the County stems from a motion by Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas and Supervisor Sheila Kuehl in October 2019 to grant the COC access to Sheriff’s Department information, including the authority – through a majority vote by the COC – to compel its production through the issuance of subpoenas by the Office of Inspector General.

This change comes after nearly a year of difficulty in obtaining information from the Sheriff’s Department and noncompliance with the Memorandum of Agreement that was in place governing the sharing of information, which has stymied both the COC and OIG’s ability to perform their core function of oversight, as highlighted in recent COC meetings.

“With (Tuesday’s) action, the Board is doubling down on reform, accountability and truth-telling to bring sunlight to what is happening in our jails and in our communities. Subpoena power will improve the COC’s access to information and enhance transparency. The County cannot and will not backslide on criminal justice reform. The Sheriff’s Department is a County department, and we will not allow the Sheriff or any other department head for that matter to violate basic rules of engagement,” said Supervisor Ridley-Thomas.

The Civilian Oversight Commission has asserted its need for enhanced authority to monitor and oversee the Sheriff’s Department. Patti Giggans, Chair of the COC and Executive Director of Peace Over Violence, said, “True oversight needs to have the right tools. The COC has evolved over the past three years and our experience now tells us that we need to have access to the tool of the subpoena to compel access and compliance when it isn’t given freely. It’s time.” Brian Williams, Executive Director of the COC, added, “It is not the desire of the COC to weaponize subpoena power, but rather it is to be used as a means for greater transparency, accountability, and justice.” Sheriff Alex Villanueva was present at the meeting to voice his concerns about the ordinances to the Board.

Dozens of community stakeholders, who have been advocating for enhanced oversight of law enforcement for years, came out in strong support of the ordinances. Sarah O. Clifton, Staff Attorney at the ACLU – Southern California and member of the Check the Sheriff Coalition, addressed the Board and said, “The time for a discussion of the MOA as the solution has long passed. The Office of Inspector General has encouraged the Sheriff to share information voluntarily, and the results have been inadequate. It’s time for subpoena power and for the COC to do the job they were tasked to do. If there is nothing to hide, then the Sheriff’s Department should have nothing to fear.”

Similarly, the adoption of a Probation Oversight Commission (POC) with unprecedented authority follows a year-long public process to gather community recommendations and a unanimously passed motion by Supervisors Mark Ridley-Thomas and Hilda Solis from October 1, 2019. The POC will be endowed with all the authority currently vested in the existing Probation Commission, as well as new powers, including the ability to conduct facility inspections, establish an independent grievance process, conduct investigations through the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) and compel information by issuing subpoenas. The POC, which will be comprised of nine appointed members, will be one of the first in the County to have designated seats for the formerly justice system-involved and family members of probation clients.

Advocates for probation reform, feeling the current Probation Commission is set up to be ineffective, have been pushing for a stronger oversight body. Cyn Yamashiro, Directing Attorney of the County’s Independent Juvenile Defender Office and Second District appointee to the Probation Commission, said in his remarks to the Board that, “The Board’s effort to create robust civilian oversight over the Probation Department is the first of its kind in the United States. It is not merely a juvenile issue or an adult issue, it is a criminal justice reform issue. This puts LA County squarely in the vanguard of reform efforts nationally.”

Ridley-Thomas, who has consistently led on Probation reform during his tenure on the Board, added, “For years, the Board has been concerned with excessive use of force, dysfunctional governance, and misuse of public funds haunting the Probation Department, and has spoken loud and clear about the need to enact robust oversight. Creating the POC is nothing short of game-changing, as is giving the ability to compel data, documents, and direct testimony. Probation reform is the order of the day, and stronger oversight will help us get there.”

These ordinances will go into effect in 30 days. Further implementation of the Probation Oversight Commission will occur during the coming months, with the approval of a staffing structure and the appointment of commissioners.

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LOS ANGELES COUNTY HEADLINES
Wednesday, May 25, 2022
The Los Angeles County Development Authority is pleased to announce that it has been awarded more than $1 million in grants from the California Public Utilities Commission, through the Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing Program, which provides financial incentives for installing energy efficient systems on multifamily affordable housing throughout the State.
Wednesday, May 25, 2022
As the nation observes Memorial Day and honors those who paid the ultimate sacrifice in service to our country, travel to gatherings with family and friends will dramatically increase vehicles on roadways during the holiday weekend. 
Tuesday, May 24, 2022
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed Tuesday nine new deaths and 3,589 new positive cases in Los Angeles County and 100 new cases in the Santa Clarita Valley. This new data brings Los Angeles County death totals to 32,095, county case totals to 2,945,669 and Santa Clarita Valley case totals to 76,205 since March of 2020.
Tuesday, May 24, 2022
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has released a new report, "Mortality in Los Angeles County, 2020: Provisional Report." The report compares the provisional number of deaths and associated death rates and leading causes of death among L.A. County residents in 2020 with what was reported in 2019.
Tuesday, May 24, 2022
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health is expanding its type 2 diabetes prevention efforts into the classroom in response to an increased prevalence of the disease in the county.

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Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
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1966 - Mustang Drive-In theater opens on Soledad Canyon Road [story]
Mustang Drive-In
The city of Santa Clarita is excited to announce the winners of the 18th annual Bike to Work Challenge, which took place Monday, May 16, through Friday, May 20, 2022.
Santa Clarita Bike to Work Challenge Winners Announced
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed Tuesday nine new deaths and 3,589 new positive cases in Los Angeles County and 100 new cases in the Santa Clarita Valley. This new data brings Los Angeles County death totals to 32,095, county case totals to 2,945,669 and Santa Clarita Valley case totals to 76,205 since March of 2020.
Tuesday COVID Roundup: Nine New Deaths, 3,589 New Cases in County
The College of the Canyons women's volleyball program invites girls and boys ages 9-14 to participate in the 2022 COC Volleyball Camp, with two sessions beginning in July.
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Science students from The Master’s University gained valuable hands-on experience and bolstered their resumes for graduate school last month when they presented original research at the West Coast Biological Sciences Undergraduate Research conference in San Diego.
TMU Students Present Original Work at Biological Sciences Conference
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has released a new report, "Mortality in Los Angeles County, 2020: Provisional Report." The report compares the provisional number of deaths and associated death rates and leading causes of death among L.A. County residents in 2020 with what was reported in 2019.
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The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health is expanding its type 2 diabetes prevention efforts into the classroom in response to an increased prevalence of the disease in the county.
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The city of Santa Clarita, in partnership with Frontier Toyota, Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, is proud to sponsor the 2022 White Ribbon Campaign in the Santa Clarita Valley.
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The Gibbon Conservation Center in Saugus has been challenged by two donors to increase membership by 100 new members by June 30 to earn an additional $6,500.
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Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station personnel participated in the annual Los Angeles Sheriff's Department Memorial Torch Relay Run honoring fallen officers throughout the nation.
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As aerospace and defense contracts started dwindling at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Donald Volkmann, owner of VP Manufacturing in Canyon Country, made the difficult decision to close in August 2020 after 33 years in the aerospace manufacturing business.
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The California Department of Public Health, working with Sacramento County Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is investigating its first suspected case of monkeypox infection in Sacramento County in a person who recently traveled abroad.
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Animation Career Review, an online resource site for those researching careers in animation, game design, graphic design, digital art, and related fields, has recognized California Institute of the Arts in six categories in its 2022 Graphic Design School Rankings, including two top spots for schools in California and the West Coast.
CalArts Graphic Design Program Scores High in Animation Career Review’s 2022 Rankings
The College of the Canyons men's basketball program invites girls and boys from third to eighth grade to participate in the 2022 Howard Fisher's Cougar Basketball Camp, with two sessions beginning in June.
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1860 - Colonel Thomas F. Mitchell arrives in Soledad Canyon [story]
T.F. Mitchell
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