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CDCC Minutes, February 8, 2006

Call to Order:

Chairperson Bambrook called the meeting to order at 6:30 PM.

  1. Roll Call

    Members Present:

    Barbara Bambrook
    Kay Miller
    Mark McGee
    Robert Elliott
    Jesus Silva
    Simon Karmarkar
    Dorothy Ruhnke
    Glenna Axe

    MEMBERS ABSENT:

    Irene Sandy

    Staff Present:

    Linda R. Morad, Housing Programs Supervisor
    Kim Husereau, Clerical Assistant

  2. Approval of Minutes

    A MOTION was made by Member Elliott to approve the Minutes of January 23, 2006 as amended with typographical corrections requested by Members present: Page 2, paragraph 6 $1.7 replaced with $1.7 million; Page 7, paragraph 1 2006-06 corrected to 2006-07; Page 7 Member Silva Appointed by Mayor Leland Wilson added; Page 8, paragraph 12, Member Ruhnke replaced with Members. The MOTION was SECONDED by Chairperson Bambrook and CARRIED unanimously to approve the Minutes as AMMENDED.

  3. 2006-2007 NON-PROFIT PRESENTATIONS

    Chairperson Bambrook advised the non-profit agencies that their presentations should be limited to five minutes, followed by a five-minute question and answer period. She explained that the time allowed for questions may be extended at the discretion of the Committee.

    Presentations began at 6:40 P.M.

    APPLICANT: Boys and Girls Club of Fullerton
    PROJECT: Commonwealth Branch New Window Project
    PRESENTOR: Fred Johnson, Executive Director
    Michael Herrera, Development Director
    Mr. Johnson began by thanking the Committee for the funds granted last year for electrical and lighting upgrades, which have provided significant improvement in the facility. He then described the current request for funds to replace several 54 year old windows. The older windows are an eye sore to the community, present a security risk to interior assets and cause a loss of energy due to leakage. Many of the windows cannot be safely opened and closed.

    Member Axe wondered if the window replacement could be done in phases. Mr. Johnson responded that the project could be implemented in phases, beginning with the Games Room, then Computer Lab and the front offices could be done last.

    Member Karmarkar noted that B&G had received CDBG funds in 2000-01 for a window replacement project and wished to confirm that the current request did not include the same windows.
    Mr. Johnson acknowledged that the prior project had replaced windows at the rear of the building and in the gymnasium area and affirmed that the current project did not include any of the windows previously replaced.

    Member Axe inquired about the age range of the boy and girls served. Mr. Johnson answered that the youth range in age from 5 to 18 years.

    Member Axe asked about the hours of operation. Mr. Johnson responded that the building is open at 8:00 A.M.; however, the participating youth generally arrive from 1:00 P.M. to 7:00 P.M., with extended hours in the summer.

    Chairperson Bambrook observed that the estimate provided for the population served is over 200 youth and asked about the increase over last year. Mr. Johnson stated that this site has been averaging over 300 youth per day, with attendance anticipated to increase this summer because the pool is now heated.

    Chairperson Bambrook commended the Boys and Girls Club for selecting a contractor that is based in Fullerton for this project. Mr. Johnson responded that he prefers to work with Fullerton-based businesses whenever possible, but does have to function within the guidelines established through Davis-Bacon.

    Member Elliott addressed all of the non-profit organizations present, and advised them that CDBG funds have been reduced by 10% for 2006-07 and the Committee has not yet determined how the reduction will be accommodated. He stated that funding requests may be cut, or perhaps some requests may be declined in order to fully fund others and remain within the budget.

    APPLICANT: Boys and Girls Club of Fullerton
    PROJECT: Richman Branch Roofing Project
    PRESENTOR: Fred Johnson, Executive Director
    Michael Herrera, Development Director
    Mr. Johnson explained that the roof on the Richman Branch is 22-25 years old and can no longer be effectively repaired to prevent leaking. He stated that, although additional interior repairs are needed, it would not be practical to proceed with any interior projects until the roof is replaced.

    Member Miller remarked that she is aware of several other social service projects in the Richman Park area, including a large grant recently awarded to the California State University of Fullerton (CSF) to build a structure at Richman Park, and wondered about how B&G interfaces with the other providers.

    Mr. Johnson stated that B&G has as a transportation system that delivers youth from other sites and that the various agencies in the area participate in each others events. Efforts are made to promote the site for multiple uses. He added that the Richman Branch serves approximately 110 youth per day.

    ** Member Ruhnke arrived at this time. **

    Member Silva commented that since the facility would not be in use during mid-day school hours, perhaps some type of co-operative use could be arranged with CSF that would enable funds to be directed to support the building. He asked if B&G had discussed this potential with CSF.

    Mr. Johnson responded that B&G is engaged in discussions with CSF regarding an interface with their internship program. However, the building is used by approximately 170 youth daily from 7:00 A.M. 9:00 A.M.; also the Fullerton School District uses the center for a kinder care program in morning hours. Mr. Herrera added that B&G works very closely with CSF, as a majority of the B&G employees are CSF students or alumni. There is also a very strong internship program.

    Members Silva and Miller expressed their hope that the structure to be built with grants funds received by CSF could be multi-use and provide a co-operative location for B&G programs.

    Ms. Morad interjected clarification that the Boys and Girls Club Richman Branch is located at Kiwanis Park and the location for the CSF facility will be at Richman Park.

    APPLICANT: Boys and Girls Club of Fullerton
    PROJECT: Valencia Park Branch Operations
    PRESENTOR: Fred Johnson, Executive Director
    Michael Herrera, Development Director
    Mr. Johnson related that this site is currently under-funded, although it is the number one site in attendance, with 125-150 youth served daily; there are six staff members on site at all times. The site was erected based upon an area survey done by CSF that indicated a high need for this type of facility. Services are provided to a broad age group, including kinder care and teen programs.

    Member Elliott requested Mr. Johnson to rank the three requests submitted by B&G.

    Mr. Johnson stated the Richman Branch Roof was a first priority because the structure cannot be used during rain until the roof is replaced. He perceived the Valencia Branch Operations to be second in priority due to the need for staffing for the high volume of youth served at that location. Finally, the Commonwealth Branch Window New Window Project.

    Member Silva asked if B&G is part of the Fullerton Collaborative

    Mr. Johnson responded that B&G is a member, but has found that the requirements do not allow for the roof replacement project since it is not a complete remodel and the B&G operates multiple sites.

    Chairperson Bambrook inquired about the term of the roof warranty at the Richman Branch. Mr. Johnson responded that the facility was acquired by B&G in 1988 and the roof was already in place at that time. However, B&G has not been able to locate documentation regarding the installation of the roof.

    Member Elliott reminded Mr. Johnson of the CDBG funding cuts for 2006-07 and wondered if the Committee were unable to approve full funding for all three requests, whether B&G would prefer to have full funding for one or two projects, leaving one or two unfunded, or to receive partial funding for all projects. Mr. Johnson stated that he would prefer to see full funding for as many projects as possible, with any left-over funds applied to the Commonwealth Branch New Window Project.

    APPLICANT: Family Assessment, Counseling & Education Services (F.A.C.E.S.)
    PROJECT: Family Preservation Program
    PRESENTOR: Hector Ceniceros, Director of Development
    Mr. Ceniceros outlined the F.A.C.E.S. program and explained the three core programs of counseling, adult education and monitoring services that are offered through their counseling center in Fullerton. He stated that the Family Preservation Program provides counseling services and establishes links with other entities throughout the community. This program utilizes Graduate Students that have completed their Masters degree and are working mandatory internship hours to obtain their MFT. The CDBG funds requested would be utilized to attract bi-lingual counselors of this caliber. Mr. Ceniceros described the strong demand for bi-lingual counselors, which makes it necessary to offer good pay in order to compete with agencies that may have a greater ability to pay.

    Chairperson Bambrook asked to clarify the number of persons proposed to be served by this program. Mr. Ceniceros stated that 135 individuals are seen, although some individuals are actually served as part of a couple or family being counseled.

    Member Bambrook asked how clients are qualified for CDBG funds. Mr. Ceniceros responded that information is collected during the initial application process through an Income Assessment form that is attached to the standard intake forms. A sliding scale is used to determine a clients ability to pay.

    Member Silva inquired about what other funding is available to meet the need. Mr. Ceniceros stated that F.A.C.E.S. submits numerous requests for corporate grants and grants offered by various national foundations.

    Ms. Morad advised that an audit remained pending from a previously awarded CDBG grant provided to F.A.C.E.S. through the City of Fullerton. Thus, it would be necessary for her to conduct a monitoring visit prior to the CDCC making a decision regarding the current application. Mr. Ceniceros assured Ms. Morad that this will be accommodated. It was agreed that Ms. Morad shall call to schedule an appointment for a monitoring/audit visit during the next few weeks.

    APPLICANT: Meals on Wheels
    PROJECT: Maintenance of Meals and Supportive Services
    PRESENTOR: Sandra White, Volunteer President
    Ms. White reviewed the administrative aspects of the program that coordinates 70 volunteers on seven routes daily. She explained that there is one full time Volunteer Coordinator and one part time Caseworker. The Meals on Wheels program in Fullerton is unique in that there are three food sources (St. Jude Hospital, Park Vista, Feedback Foundation), which allows for special diet plans including diabetic and full liquid requirements. Ms. White stated that there are 90 clients receiving meals (ages 37 to 97 years) with 30 people currently on the waiting list. The organization has expanded their service in an attempt to minimize the number of persons waiting to receive meals. However, Ms. White noted that the need is expected to continue to increase as the population ages.

    Member Axe asked Ms. White to clarify the number of persons served each year. Ms. White answered that 181 unduplicated clients were helped by the program cumulatively last year. There are 90 individuals served on active routes at all times.

    Chairperson Bambrook offered her compliments to the organization for addressing a vital need in the community and remarked briefly about a personal experience. Ms. White responded that the program success is largely due to the commitment of the volunteers involved. She noted that many of the volunteers are older than the clients they assist. Ms. White added that in some situations the client has no family. Thus, the volunteer is the only social contact made with the client.

    Member Silva inquired about other types of fundraising done by the Meals on Wheels organization. Ms. White stated that funds are raised through local letter writing campaigns and also through the National Charity League; which provides a source of funds as well as a renewable source of volunteers.

    APPLICANT: Orange County Bar Foundation
    PROJECT: Shortstop (English and Spanish)
    PRESENTOR: Maricela Rios, Director Diversion Services
    Ms. Rios stated that Orange County Bar Foundation has previously received CDBG funds for the Stop Short Program and explained that the Shortstop program differs in that it addresses a broader need. She explained that the Shortstop program serves youth as first time offenders along with their parents and is conducted in two evening meetings held at the North Orange County Court House. A Case Manager is also assigned to assess additional needs and facilitate referrals as appropriate in individual situations.

    Member Miller observed that the Orange County Bar Foundation application estimated it will serve twice as many persons through Shortstop as was previously served by Stop Short. Ms. Rios confirmed the estimate and explained that the Fullerton Police department refers a higher number of first time offenders than substance abuse issues. She added that the Shortstop program is designed to address all types of offenses and does include referrals in cases of substance abuse.

    Member Miller congratulated Ms. Rios on the programs low rate of recidivism.

    Member Miller asked about the funding provided by the Orange Police Department. Ms. Rios stated that the Orange Police Department contracts with Shortstop for individual clinical assessments.

    APPLICANT: Southern California College of Optometry (SCCO)
    PROJECT: Futures in Sight
    PRESENTOR: William Heaton, President
    Mr. Heaton began by highlighting the accomplishments of the program through CDBG funds received last year. Mr. Heaton explained that approximately 15,000 Third Grade students receive vision screening each year at Fullerton area schools. Referrals are generated by these schools and other community sources that send low-moderate income patients to the program for assistance. The SCCO provides vision correction and treatment for ocular diseases, as well as turning eyes and visual teaming and tracking problems. Mr. Heaton stated that all CDBG funds go directly to patient care.

    Member Silva shared his personal experience with students that had been referred to the program. He related that students returned to the classroom wearing glasses that made it possible for them to read the board and to become more successful with their homework assignments.

    Member McGee inquired about how children and their parents become aware of the assistance offered through SCCO. Mr. Heaton stated referrals are predominantly received from elementary school nurses and teachers. He added that although vision testing is mandated by Federal law for all Third Grade students, this basic vision screening may not detect some types of visual disorders and/or ocular disease.

    APPLICANT: Womens Transitional Living Center (WTLC)
    PROJECT: Independence from Dependence
    PRESENTOR: Kathy Strong Director Contracts Administration
    Ms. Strong provided an overview of the programs offered to Fullerton residents through the WTLC, describing the high level of confidentiality involved with protecting the well-being of program participants that are domestic violence victims. Other programs offered to the community include the Safety Net emergency hotel program, Second Step transitional living program and outreach programs. She explained the program goals targeted toward working with each individual to build long term independence in all areas of their lives; drug and alcohol addiction, mental health, employment, life skills, financial stability, English language skills and immigration status. The program has existed in the Fullerton community for 30 years and also participates actively with the Fullerton Police Department by providing an Emergency Response Team to assist Patrol Officers in the field.

    Member Silva asked Ms. Strong about how clients become aware of the services provided. Ms. Strong responded that information is put out through schools, Police Department personnel, hospitals and various community groups. Member Silva noted that the application indicates services are provided to cities that fund the program and concluded that more services might be made available to the Fullerton community if CDBG funds are provided. Ms. Strong concurred and stated that services are targeted in areas where funds exist to support the programs.

    Chairperson Bambrook wondered if fees are charged to the clients that utilize the programs. Ms. Strong answered that there are fees mandated by the Courts for persons that attend the Personal Empowerment Program (PEP); $10.00. Also, the Second Step Program requires the client to pay 10% of the rent for their individual residence. The emergency shelter program, Safety Net, outreach programs and counseling services are free of charge.

    Chairperson Bambrook asked why the organization has never requested funds for any type of construction project. Ms. Strong explained that the organization has been supported by volunteers in the construction industry and entities that donate materials for use in maintaining the structures utilized by the WTLC. Ms. Morad noted that WTLC has requested construction funding in the past, but because Davis-Bacon applies to all projects that would be taken on by WTLC, they have decided not to use CDBG funds.

    Member McGee inquired about whether the problems addressed by WTLC are being impacted by their efforts. Ms. Strong expressed her personal observations about changes in the type of need that incoming clients have compared to in prior years. She noted that two populations seem to be on the rise; victims of human trafficking and emancipated teen mothers. Ms. Strong stated that significant progress has been made with matters related to handling matters of domestic violence.

    Member Ruhnke observed that the WTLC application indicates the Placentia Library is involved with administering an ESL program. She wondered if La Sierra is utilized. Ms. Strong confirmed that La Sierra is utilized.

    Member Axe shared a positive experience that her friend had had with WTLC. Ms. Strong acknowledged this and added that Calworks had recently conducted an audit that revealed WTLC as the only shelter in Orange County about which no complaints were filed.

  4. PUBLIC COMMENT

    No public comment.

  5. ADJOURNMENT

    Member Axe MOVED to adjourn, SECONDED by Member Elliott. Chairperson Bambrook adjourned the meeting at 7:55 P.M.

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