Burgis gets Blackhawk Country Club to donate $40,000 per year for 10 years for police services
By Daniel Borsuk
Supervisors unanimously approved cost of living increases to three major elected office holders but withheld a salary boost for county assessor Gus Kramer citing “a salary adjustment for the Assessor will be considered at a later date once other issues in the Department have been resolved.”
That citation is in reference to an ongoing sex harassment case lodged against Kramer by county employees. Kramer would have been in line to have received a 1.96 percent cost of living adjustment increase that would have increased his pay to $208,013.
In compliance with a Dec. 11, 2018 Board Resolution, County Administrator David Twa said his office conducted a salary comparison of analysis of elected office officials in Alameda, Marin, Napa, Sacramento, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano and Solano counties and discovered in order to bring the salaries up to Bay Area average, the salary of Auditor-Controller Robert Campbell will rise 8.45 percent to an annual salary of $225,594. The annual salary of Clerk-Recorder Joseph Canciamilla will increase 5.48 percent to a yearly salary of $210,686. The yearly salary of Treasurer-Tax Collector Russell V. Watts will rise 4.77 percent to a yearly salary of $235,611.
There was no discussion from either the supervisors or public on the topic.
Blackhawk Country Club Donates $40,000 Per Year for 10 Years for Police Services
Notching a political victory in the tony enclave of Blackhawk, District 3 Supervisor Diane Burgis of Brentwood played a role for steering the Blackhawk Country Club to donate $40,000 a year over a 10-year span to help cover police services provided by the Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Department.
A dispute had erupted recently when the Blackhawk Homeowners Association, led by association president Ron Banducci, who had called on county supervisors to intervene in urging the Blackhawk Country Club to contribute funds towards the community’s police force that consists of three deputy sheriffs and one lieutenant. Up until now, the country club had not provided funds for police services since formation of County Service Area P-2A in 1985.
Since the creation of P-2A, homeowners have shouldered the financial costs for police protection, but the county club has never provided any financial assistance for P-2A coverage. Last May, Banducci, who also serves as chairman of the Blackhawk Police Advisory Committee, warned supervisors of “any backroom deal” like the one Burgis and the country club were then discussing, the 10-year, $40,000 a year donation.
Banducci did not return a Contra Costa Herald phone call to respond to the $40,000 a year donation consent agenda item at Tuesday’s board of supervisors meeting. There was no comment from either the public or supervisors on the item.
“I appreciate the Blackhawk Country Club’s donation to the county to support supplemental law enforcement services in the Blackhawk community,” Burgis said in a statement to the Herald. “I look forward to continuing to work with the Blackhawk Police Advisory, the Sheriff’s Office and other community shareholders to support the level of police service that the community wants.”
In a July 26 letter, sent to Burgis, that lays out details about the donation, Country Club President Scott Batiste states that this is a donation, not a tax.
“Residents of P2-A have authorized a special tax for police protection services in this area,” he wrote. “The BHCC does not pay this tax. The BHCC Board of Directors has authorized making a donation to the County of Contra Costa of $40,000 per year to support the Sheriff’s law enforcement services in P-2A each year for a ten-year period.”
Over the next 10 years, the county will receive a donation totaling $400,000 from the country club.
Supervisor Glover Postpones Youth Summit Over Mass Shooting Concerns
Citing the series of weekend deadly shootings triggered by ultra-right shooters in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio, Supervisor Federal Glover of Pittsburg announced that the Youth Summit, a one-day event that he co-sponsors at Los Medanos College in Pittsburg has been postponed.
Originally slated to be held this Saturday, August 10 to draw thousands of youth in Contra Costa County, Glover announced at the supervisors meeting, “I will convene a meeting of the stakeholders, including law enforcement, to make sure we are ready to deal with active shooter scenarios and other public safety emergencies that may arise. The Youth Summit brings together a number of youth and I need to be confident as well as be able, to assure their parents that we have taken all reasonable measures to ensure their children’s safety at such a large public event.”
“As we review our protocols and formulate our plans, we will notify members of the public of our plans for a future youth summit,” Glover said in a press statement.
Approve $19.2 Million Multifamily Housing Revenue Rehab Bonds for Bay Point Apartment Building
Keeping in mind the county’s affordable housing shortage, supervisors approved a resolution authorizing the issuance of $19.2 million in Multifamily Housing Revenue Bonds to finance the costs for the acquisition and rehabilitation of 88 units of rental housing known as Hidden Cove Apartments at 2900, 2911, and 2921-2931 Mary Ann Lane in Bay Point. The apartments will be initially owned at the time of the financing by Hidden Cove Apartments, LP, a California Limited Partnership.
OK Contract With Canine Companions for Independence
In another consent act, supervisors approved an agreement with Canine Companions for Independence to provide a dog to the Contra Costa District Attorney’s Office. The dog offers comfort and assistance to victims of crimes during interviews, in-court testimony, and other traumatic situations. The cost of expenses for the care and feeding of the facility dog is estimated to be about $5,000 a year and will be covered from the District Attorney’s general fund budget.