This past Monday night the Sunnyside City Council heard the recommendations and requests from the Public Safety Committee. The ONLY correct answer from the Council should have been "We accept the plan 100 percent, we'll meet to find a way to put it into the budget, and be back to affirm our action with a yes vote next Monday.
Mike Farmer and Don Vlieger were the only Council members to voice that opinion.
Only four people in the packed Council chambers had the expertise to critically evaluate the proposal...Police Chief Dave Charvet of Grandview, Sunnyside Police Chief Ed Radder, Sunnyside Deputy Police Chief Phil Schenck and Councilman Vlieger (a former L.A. County Sheriff).
The large audience (an unusual turnout) was unfortunately limited to 10 comments...a left-handed welcome to those who seldom attend. That audience stated a resounding approval of support for our police force and the 'enforcement package'. We do not need additional study - we need action.
Councilman Paul Garcia wanted to study the package to determine which of the strategically integrated items could fit into the budget. Councilwoman Theresa Hancock wanted to insert an element of prevention into this well-thought, highly technical package. Before saying yes, Mayor Jim Restucci wanted to assure we have enough reserved funds in the event our sewer system is overloaded.
This capable Public Safety Committee was delegated by the Council to come up with a plan. This committee has studied, had expert consultation and devised a strategically integrated package to initiate a stand against this horrific and costly crime wave in Sunnyside. An examination of motive and competence must be considered for the Councilmen who have any answer except an affirmative YES for this package.
/s/ James E. Stevens, President, Sunnyside I-Watch