Explaining yesterday’s wine ordinance vote.

While San Joaquin County Supervisors yesterday unanimously voted to approve revisions to the county’s winery ordinance that defined events and set limits on guests and music, among others, the discussion to get there took a lot longer than you can imagine.
The final 5-0 was reached only after supervisors voted to amend some aspects of the proposed revisions. Those aspects included the sale of beer at events, limitations on guests at accessory winery events, requiring a parking attendant, and when outdoor music needs to end.
The following is a breakdown of how those votes were cast.
1. Allowing wineries to sell beer at events: Passed 4-1, with supervisor Chuck Winn dissenting. Some in attendance suggested selling beer in addition to wine at events would give non-wine drinkers something to drink, or slowly introduce non-wine drinkers to the beverage. Those who suggested the sale included Visit Lodi! CEO Nancy Beckman and Lodi attorney Trent Diehl, who represents the Lodi Association of Wineries.
Winn explained that the events in question were geared toward marketing a company’s wine. If a guest was not a wine drinker, Winn suggested they could drink either soda or water on site.
2. Limiting the number of guests at accessory events to 100: Failed 2-3 with supervisors Carlos Villapudua, Kathy Miller and Winn dissenting. Community Development Department staff recommended a cap at 80. The Lodi Association of Wineries wanted the cap at 120. Chair Moses Zapien and Supervisor Bob Elliot wanted to come to middle ground and suggested a cap at 100.
3. Limiting the number of guests at accessory events to 80: Passed 3-2, with Elliott and Villapudua dissenting. Elliott still wanted to reach a middle ground. Villapudua suggested not placing a cap on attendance, stating it felt like the regulation was unfairly punishing many of the wineries who had been following the ordinance from the beginning. He also noted that many wineries make most of their income off accessory events, and the county shouldn’t be regulating how much a winery stands to make.
4. Requiring parking one parking attendant for every 50 vehicles: Passed 5-0. Supervisors said attendants would make sure guests don’t park on roads or cause traffic issues, which was one of the reasons revisions to the ordinance were first sough in 2014.
5. Requiring outdoor music to end at 9 p.m.: Passed 3-2, with Villapudua and Elliott dissenting. Events will end at 10 p.m., but music has to stop an hour before that. Elliott and Villapudua said the ordinance should just have everything end at the same time across the board. Having music stop and hour early might confuse both wineries and residents, because typically, when music ends at any event or party, that means the event is over. If events are allowed to continue until 10 p.m., so should the music.
County staff will come back to supervisors in a year to see if these revisions are working or not.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

SEIU storms county building, demands contract

The local SEIU 1021 was back out in the streets again on Aug. 17. Members gathered in front of the San Joaquin County Administration Building at 44 N. San Joaquin St. at noon on for a rally, demanding the county’s labor negotiation team head back to the bargaining table with a better contract to offer more than 4,400 employees.
Union members who attended the rally, which was announced this morning, stormed to the sixth floor and parked themselves outside county administrator Monica Nino’s office.
There, union member chanted “2-2-2 just won’t do” and “What do we want? Contracts! When do we want them? Now!”
Nino never appeared, most likely because she and her staff were at lunch.
It has now been 48 days since the union’s most recent contract expired, prompting a three-day strike last month. Union members have since appeared at three San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors meetings and an evening work study session to demand the county fill more than 700 vacant positions, as well as offer a 13 percent wage increase over three years.
The county is offering a 6 percent wage increase over three years.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Calculating SEIU pay raises

We received an email last Friday asking why readers are never told the pay scales currently used in my SEIU strike coverage last week.
The reason is simple. There are six bargaining units in the SEIU, with at least 59 different job classifications ranging from lab techs to building inspectors to probation officers to mental health clinicians to nurses to custodians.
Just finding the base pay for all 59 positions — many of which have four different pay grades — and then calculating the county’s proposed salary increase opposed to the union’s proposed increase would require me to only write one story each week while I crunched numbers.
Readers are free to crunch numbers on their own if they wish. The county’s offering a 2 percent pay raise this year, the union wants 4 percent.
Pay grades can be found here: www.sjgov.org/WorkArea/DownloadAsset.aspx?id=9638. A list of the 59 SEIU positions can be found here: http://www.seiu1021.org/wp-content/blogs.dir/74/files/2016/06/1219_001-1.pdf.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

FPPC reports slightly off

Ah, election time, when people want to know which candidates are spending how much on what, and who is donating to whom.
My story Monday regarding campaign finances for San Joaquin County Supervisor candidates has erroneous figures with regards to cash on hand.
What happened was total expenditures for the year-to-date were subtracted from the total contributions made for the year-to-date.
In reality, and according to the Form 460s that each candidate files with the Fair Political Practices Commission and the San Joaquin County Registrar of Voters, ending cash balances are calculated a different, more calculated way.
You take the ending cash balance from the previous filing period and add cash contributions (not non-monetary contribution values), then subtract cash expenditures made.
So, here are the cash balances as of the end of April, as reported on Form 460, and not by what would seem to be the more reasonable way of just subtracting expenditures from contributions.
District 1:
Moses Zapien : $76,997
Tom Patti: $60,028
Elbert Holman: $11,716

District 3
Gustavo Medina: $21,169
Miguel Villapudua: $9,360
Jennett Stebbins: $330
AngelAnn Flores: $127

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Probation officers pay raises

In Monday’s article regarding pay increases for San Joaquin County probation officers, http://www.recordnet.com/news/20160321/probation-officers-to-receive-pay-increase, I unknowingly omitted how much officers currently make, and how much they stand to make with the increase.

There are four probation officer position classifications, as well as part-time officers. Each position has five steps or pay grades.

Here is what the four positions currently make annually in the county probation department, from the lowest to the highest pay grade:

PO I — $42,259.20 to $51,398.40
PO II — $48,460.80 to $58,886.40
PO III — $53,433.60 to $64,934.40
Unit Supervisors — $62,764.80 to $76,300.80

These salaries will increase by 2 percent each year for the next three years. Instead of calculating each year’s increase, I calculated what each pay grade stands to make by the end of the three years. I rounded all decimal points upward when calculating, as is done when doing your taxes.

PO I — $44,794.76 to $54,482.31
PO II — $53,368.45 to $62,419.59
PO III — $56,650.22 to $68,830.47
Unit Supervisors — $66,530.69 to $80,878.85

Hope this helps readers who wanted to know more!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

South Burkett Avenue house ordeal continues

Late Monday, I received a call from Doris Carollo,the Visalia resident who has control over a house on S. Burkett Ave. in Stockton.


While she appreciated my effort to relate the ordeal she is going through with a local investor, she continued to attack the tenants who have moved in to her grandmother’s home with the help of said investor.

She said she told them to leave six months ago, and they haven’t. They do drugs. One of their sons collects social security for bogus reasons.

She then asked if I contacted the district attorney’s office. I said yes, and the office couldn’t comment because they had not received a complaint. This upset her, and she claimed she had spoken with the San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office, which directed her to start eviction proceedings, and that should qualify as a complaint. Eviction proceedings could cost $3,000.

I had to remind Ms. Carollo that I am not an attorney, nor a representative of law enforcement, I encouraged her to get an attorney then file a formal complaint against the investor with either Stockton PD or the Sheriff.

When she said she couldn’t afford an attorney, I told her it’s the only way to get the ordeal resolved.

It’s a sad situation, but I hope that after reading my article, an attorney or member of local law enforcement will investigate further. Hopefully, an attorney out there will step forward to help either Carollo and her family, as well as the tenants in the home.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Medical marijuana cultivation banned in San Joaquin County

All cultivation of medical marijuana is banned in the county.

My article in today’s Record states that commercial growers would be allowed to cultivate. However, that was based on the supervisors’ April 7 meeting in which the county ban was introduced.

At that time, it appeared that only personal cultivation would be banned, pending approval of AB 34, which would have allowed commercial growers to obtain licenses from the state. It also would have allowed agencies to determine if they wanted commercial operations in their jurisdictions.

Apparently, it did not pass in 2015, therefore, commercial cultivation, as well as dispensaries, is also banned in the county under its ordinance.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

SJC Republicans happy with FPPC ruling

Susan Vander Schaaf, president of the San Joaquin Republican Party, returned my call on Monday to comment on the recent fine her organization had been handed by the California Fair Political Practices Commission.

My story on the $5,000 fine levied by the FPPC ran Monday.

Vander Schaaf said the SJGOP was satisfied with the FPPC decision.

She also said the FPPC agreed that the misplacement of an entire $50,000 contribution was a simple oversight that didn’t cause any harm.

Vander Schaaf however would not comment as to why it did happen, just that it was a mistake that will not happen again.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

FPPC ruling clarification

Bill Emmerson did not lose his bid for State Senate in 2012 as reported in my FPPC article today. He resigned abruptly.

That was somehow omitted during my own editing process before being turned in for further editing.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

County display at the Capitol gets makeover

Susan Eggman’s legislative aide Christian Burkin let me know today that San Joaquin County’s display in the corridors of the State Capitol has been given a makeover.
Every one of California’s 58 counties touts its resources, attractions and features with their own display in the Capitol corridors, he said.
The project to update the display dates back to late-2013, when Eggman noticed the display was looking a little worn and dated.
The display, managed by San Joaquin County, had not been updated for at least eight years, according to Burkin, and no funding had been allocated for its maintenance.
Eggman’s staff worked with then-San Joaquin County Agriculture Commissioner Scott Hudson to create an advisory committee that included representatives from other elected officials in the county, as well as the SJC Board of Supervisors.
The group came up with some design principles, which were eventually brought to life by the Modesto-based Never Boring Design. the company was one of several that were considered, Burkin said.
The update cost about $7,000, borne by the county, and reflects San Joaquin’s combined urban and rural character. he said. It also incorporates the port, agriculture and the importance of the Delta.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
  • Blog Authors

    Wes Bowers

    A native of Pacifica, he lives in Lodi with his wife Lorraine. He’s covered just about every journalism beat in the Bay Area since 2000, as well as in the Lodi-Stockton area since 2013. He has a large collection of Judge Dredd comics, Spaghetti ... Read Full
  • Categories

  • Archives