City Council Acceptance of a Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Grant through the Grant Assistance Program (GAP).

LIVINGSTON CA / June 03, 2013 —

Meeting Date June 04, 2013

Item #5. City Council Acceptance of a Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Grant through the Grant Assistance Program (GAP).

Note from TheGardeningSnail: The following are excerpts from the Staff Report and Attachments. If there are any goofs, gaffs, or textual gremlins in the text below, sorry. Copies of the actual pages can be found below the text.

STAFF REPORT

AGENDA ITEM: City Council Acceptance of a Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Grant through the Grant Assistance Program (GAP).

MEETING DATE: June 4, 2013

PREPARED BY: Ruben Chavez, Chief of Police

REVIEWED BY: Jose Antonio Ramirez, City Manager

RECOMMENDATION:

The Police Department applied and was approved for a multi-agency grant to enforce alcohol violations in the cities of Livingston, Atwater, and Gustine. The Police Department recommends approval of this grant.

BACKGROUND:

The Police Department has implemented the Community Enhancements and Safe Environments (CEASE) Program to provide public safety for the residents of Livingston. As a component of the CEASE Program, one of the goals was to reduce the use of alcohol by underage minors. The Department realizes this problem exists in many jurisdictions and applied for a multi-agency grant to enforce prohibiting the sales of alcohol to minors. The Atwater and Gustine Police Departments were included to provide a more effective and comprehensive regional enforcement program. The grant will fund the training of and overtime enforcement of alcohol related violations, especially those pertaining to youth.

DISCUSSION:

This grant is for a one-year period and will involve coordination between the three agencies for enforcement utilizing personnel from all three agencies within all three cities. This is effective to prevent recognition of police personnel enforcing violations in their own cities during undercover operations. The Livingston Police Department will manage and host the grant.

FISCAL IMPACT:

The Police Department will receive grant funding via the State of California Alcoholic Beverage Control (grant host) in the amount of $47,168.00. There is no impact to the General Fund.

ATTACHMENTS:

I. ABC Grant Assistance Program (GAP) Application and Narrative

2. Grant Acceptance Letter

 

PROJECT NARRATIVE SUMMARY

AGENCY AND DEMOGRAPHIC DESCRIPTIONS

The Livingston Police Department is an organization of 23 sworn personnel and 1O non-sworn personnel. The department is composed of three bureaus: Administration Bureau, Operations Bureau, and the Communications Bureau. The Livingston Police Department is a full service agency and is committed and focused on community safety and community engagement.

The City of Livingston was incorporated in 1922 and is a culturally diverse community with a population of approximately 14,000 people. The major population groups in the city are Hispanic (73%), East Indian/Sikh (16%), Caucasian (8%), and other (3%). The city is located in the northern part of Merced County and is a mixture of single family and multi-unit housing, commercial establishments and industry. The City of Livingston has 29 ABC licensed establishments within its city limits with 11 on-sale sites and 18 off-sale sites.

The Atwater Police Department is an organization of 30 sworn personnel and 7 non-sworn personnel. The department is composed of two divisions: the Field Services Division and the Administrative Services Division. The department follows a traditional chain of command with the Chief of Police being the highest ranking official in the department.

The City of Atwater was incorporated in 1922. The city is seven square miles with a population of approximately 30,000 people. The two major population groups are Hispanic (53%) and Caucasian (36%). The city is composed of a mixture of single family and multi-unit housing, commercial establishments and industry. The City of Atwater has 49 ABC licensed establishments within the city limits with 19 on-sale sites and 30 off-sale sites.

The Gustine Police Department is an organization of 12 sworn personnel and 2 non-sworn personnel. The Gustine Police Department follows a traditional chain of command with the Chief of Police being the highest ranking official in the department.

The City of Gustine was incorporated in 1915 and currently has a population of approximately 5500 people. The city has two major population groups: Hispanic (50%) and Caucasian (46%). The city is located is the western part of Merced County and has 15 ABC licensed establishments within its city limits with 6 on-sale sites and 9 off-sale sites.

AMOUNT OF GRANT FUNDING REQUESTED: $47,168.00

GOALS AND OBJECTIVES

The Livingston, Atwater, and Gustine Police Departments are committed to working together to form an ABC GAP Task Force that will address alcohol-related crime in all three cities. All three agencies that make up the task force have always enjoyed a close working relationship with Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC). The task force will concentrate on education in the form of IMPACT inspections and follow-ups, party patrols to combat underage drinking and driving under the influence offenses, and the use of Minor Decoys and Shoulder Tap operations. The collective departments feel that concentrating on the above areas within each city will result in having a positive impact on crime and benefit the people who reside and do business in each of the participating cities.

PROBLEM STATEMENT

There are a total of 93 ABC Licenses issued in the three cities participating in the ABC GAP Task Force. Each of the three cities participating in the ABC GAP Task Force has identified similar issues that have become problems within their jurisdictions in regards to alcohol-related crimes. These issues include incidents and

calls for service at on-sale establishments, public intoxication, driving under the influence incidents, underage drinking, and selling alcohol to minors at ABC licensed establishments. We believe an aggressive and proactive approach to each of these problems with the assistance of the ABC GAP Grant and the collective of the task force officers will greatly assist with the enforcement of these concerns.

The City of Livingston has had a problem with The Blueberry Hill Bar & Grill with a total of 5 reported verbal and /or physical altercations involving subjects who had been drinking in the bar along with multiple calls for service regarding public intoxication during 2012. The Livingston Police Department had a total of 25 public intoxication arrests, 35 driving under the influence arrests, and 6 DUI vehicle collisions. We have also taken another 33 reports where alcohol was involved. These reports included domestic violence reports, sexual assault reports, and a shooting that was gang related and involved alcohol.

The City of Atwater has several off-sale establishments that have been problematic with an increase in gang activity, minors arrested for alcohol possession, and the establishments selling alcohol to minors. The most serious offenders that will be targeted during the grant period are Maximart Food & Liquor, Sure Stop Market, New Olive Market, and Broadway Market. Along with these issues the Atwater Police Department had 110 public intoxication arrests, 47 driving under the influence arrests, and 5 DUI vehicle collisions during 2012. There were also 11 drinking in public violations during that year.

The City of Gustine has experienced problems with local bars "over serving" patrons and then sending the intoxicated patrons back into the community which creates possible driving under the influence and/or public intoxication incidents. The Gustine Police Department has also had both on-sale sites and off-sale sites serving and selling alcohol to minors. During 2012, Gustine Police Department had 47 driving under the influence arrests and19 public intoxication arrests. Gustine also had several other alcohol-related offenses including reports of subjects causing verbal and/or physical altercations and assaults on peace officers where the arrested subject is intoxicated.

In conclusion, all three cities involved in the ABC GAP Task Force have dealt with budget cuts over the past few years which have hampered the ability to direct focus to some of these alcohol-related issues. The volume of crime, calls for service and growing demands often and quickly deplete departmental resources, hence the need for additional partnerships and resource sharing. An award of an ABC grant for fiscal year 2013-2014 will enable all three agencies to resume strong enforcement efforts in order to control disorderly liquor outlets, reduce crime and discourage teenage consumption of alcohol in our communities.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

The ABC GAP Grant will allow all three agencies to focus on and significantly address alcohol-related problems throughout each city. The following are solution-based strategies that will support the stated goals and objectives in an attempt at reducing crime and improving the quality of life for the citizens of Livingston, Atwater, and Gustine:

l.M.P.A.C.T. (Informed Merchants Preventing Alcohol Related Crime Tendencies)

We will conduct IMPACT inspections at our on-sale and off-sale premises to ensure that they are conforming to ABC regulations and to educate them on any potential violations. We also involve our businesses in a community oriented police approach to deter crime. Our goal will be to conduct 5 IMPACT inspections in each city that is participating in the ABC GAP Task Force. Once the initial inspection is completed we will allow licensees time to rectify any potential problems before we begin other enforcement measures. We will conduct follow up with each inspected location and through these measures we will hope to develop positive relationships between the licensee, ABC, and the local police department.

Minor Decoy and Shoulder Tap Operations

Minor decoy and shoulder tap operations have proven to be successful in reducing the number of minors who succeed in obtaining alcoholic beverages. As business owners, sales clerks, and bartenders gain knowledge of operations, they will become more vigilant in checking identification. The issuance of citations becomes a necessary tool in keeping the number of underage buyers or alcoholic beverages low. In addition to minor decoy operations, the task force will conduct shoulder tap operations.

Minor Decoy

We will conduct Minor Decoy operations in an attempt to discourage the provision of alcohol to underage minors. We will utilize a minor decoy to enter both on-sale and off-sale licensed premises and attempt to purchase alcohol without being asked for their identification or while underage. We will conduct a total of two operations in each city participating in the task force. This training will reinforce our efforts and maintain a constant reminder that licensees and their employees need to be conscientious of their duties.

Shoulder Tap

It is common practice for minors to solicit adults to purchase alcoholic beverages for them due to their age. Alcohol in the hands of minors leads to a multitude of problems including intoxication, driving while under the influence, victimization, and criminal activity. By using a minor decoy to ask adults if they will purchase alcohol from them, we can target this common practice in our attempt to prevent adults from furnishing alcohol to minors.

We will conduct two Shoulder Tap operations in each city, one during the first half and one during the second half of the grant period. By continuing our efforts in this area especially if the media is willing to become involved, we can educate the public and raise their awareness that there are penalties for furnishing alcohol to a minor and that we need to make a concerted effort to protect our youth and keep alcohol out of their hands. Results will be measured by the number of arrests/citations.

Party Patrol

Loud party calls for service are a big problem with calls escalating during the summer months. Many of these types of calls expose our officers to intoxicated and confrontational partygoers. The party patrol operations would utilize a zero tolerance approach to alcohol-related violations especially in dealing with minors. We would looks for any violation of ABC regulations such as beer keg registration, and deal with responsible parties appropriately. The goal would be to prevent minors from consuming alcohol and to provide for their welfare, prevent intoxicated people from operating a motor vehicle and potentially causing injury to self or others, and to provide peace for the community.

We will conduct two party patrol operations in each city during the grant period. Our efforts could be measured by the amount of repeat calls for service to any given location as we would be employing a zero tolerance approach at the onset of the complaint, as well as the amount of any arrests made in relation to the operations.

Project Personnel

Operations would be conducted with ABC utilizing the following personnel:

Livingston Police: Sergeant Ramirez, Sergeant Perry, Detective Radke, Officer R. Silva, Officer Kirk, Officer Kang, and Officer Vieira

Atwater Police: Corporal Snyder, Officer Vargas, Officer Duncan, and Officer Dasilva

Gustine Police: Sergeant Hamara, Officer Warner, Officer Rossiter, Officer Nelson, Officer Palleschi, and Officer Hosaka

The average operations such as Minor Decoy and Shoulder Tap would utilize six officers which includes a supervisor. The number of officers for the IMPACT operations would be four for each detail which includes a supervisor. The Party Patrol operations would be conducted by two officers per operation. The operations would be overseen by the supervisor in the given city of the operation. Media relations would be established by Livingston Police Administrative Sergeant Ray Fong. Additional personnel will be utilized if the above personnel are unavailable.

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