Larry Lees is running a bit late, so bear with us.
Here's how our chat will work. There will not be any streaming video. Instead, Michelle Rogers, Nathan Solis and Jenny Espino will be typing in and recording Lees' responses to our questions. If you have questions, please use the hashtag #BlueprintChat or submit it in the box below.
Larry Lees is in the building and we'll be starting shortly.
Technical difficulties with Jenny Espino connecting to wifi. Just another minute or two.
Welcome to the Record Searchlight and Redding.com.’s live chat with Shasta County Executive Officer Larry Lees.
Mr. Lees is our final guest in this series of chats we have hosted this month on the Blueprint for Public Safety. We thank him for coming out in the pouring rain to take questions from us as well as our audience. For those of you following along, participate in the chat. If you are on Twitter, use the hashtag #BlueprintChat to ask questions and comment.
QUESTION: It’s been nearly two weeks since you received the final version of the blueprint. What are you hearing from your departments?
Larry Lees: Hearing from his departments, what's the next step. Also on the mind of the community.
Lees: we're hearing that, what's the next step. That's the question that's on everyone's mind, including the community.
Larry Lees: Said this is the first step in the process. Now need to figure out next step in the process. He is part of on implementation team to look at recommendations in blueprint and determining if anything want to implement.
Lees: The implementation team will be taking those next steps. I'm on the committee, as is Redding City Manager Kurt Starman and Redding City Councilman Brent Weaver.
QUESTIONS: Have you and City Manager Kurt Starman set a date for the blueprint implementation team to meet? And by the way, can you please tell us who from the county will be on the team?
Lees: Supervisor Leonard Moty is also on the executive committee.
Larry Lees: A date has been set, but he can't remember the exact date, probably first weeks of new year.
Lees: A date has been set. The plan was to do it in the first couple of weeks in the new year. We want to jump on it, we don't want to lose momentum. We have lots of community support.
Larry Lees: There is strong community support now and interest from the city and county.
Lees: Second part to your question, who else is on the team. Can't speak on behalf of city. We (county) are going with our original team, Leonard Moty, Sheriff Bosenko and myself.
Lees: Mental health and social services will be giving input, as well as probation. As we look at what we want to go after, what dept. does that relate to and then go to that dept. and get their expertise.
Lees: Not all of it will be implemented right away. Some things we will need to find out where the revenue will come from.
QUESTION: If this is the first step, how many more steps are you anticipating?
Lees: this is the way I envision it. There are too many steps to number. We are going to be dissecting blueprint. There are things we can get to right away that aren't an increase in cost.
Larry Lees: Anticipates numerous steps for implementation team. Need to prioritize. What are the most important steps. What can we now, midway and a year or two down the road.
Lees: Some of those are the changes in schedules in certain departments. I envision us looking at entire packet and prioritize. What will be first? What will be most important and prioritize that and determine what we can do now, what we can do later down the road.
Lees: We want to make sure we have public participation in this. If we want to come back with new taxes, we want to be sure they're engaged with the process.
QUESTION: Moving forward, what is the single biggest challenge you face in putting the blueprint into action?
Lees: The resources. That's code for money.
Lees: I would love to be able to do some things as it relates to mental health resource center, some of those things Blueprint spoke about at a higher level.
Lees: Toughest part is prioritizing the revenue. Right now there isn't money laying around to do these things, so it will have to come from somewhere else. May come from another department. May come from a sales tax increase.
Lees: Moty said in the last meeting that it is time for the city and county to discuss again a shared tax compact.
Lees: I don't think we're going to ha
ve argument on what needs to be done. We have data on what needs to be done. What's going to be hardest is finding the revenue to support these things.
QUESTION: Name three recommendations that are absolute musts for you.
Lees: Mental health and substance abuse.
Larry Lees: Absolute musts in blueprint: mental health and substance abuse.
Lees: If we can crack the code on recidivism rate on those who have substance abuse, mental health issues, we knock off about 60 percent of law enforcement activity in county.