Security Patrol Volunteers Meeting April 29 - 10 A.M.

Richard Scandaliato
President, South Shores Community Association

 

 

March 25 Recap

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Private Security Patrol Service for South Shores

Ad Hoc Committee’s Feasibility Study

Last summer, in response to requests from the South Shores community, the South Shores Community Association (SSCA) formed an ad hoc committee.  The committee’s purpose is to research the feasibility of a private security patrol service for South Shores. 

Because the costs of such a service would be borne exclusively by South Shores residents, the task at hand was to learn:

  1. The community’s level of interest in a security patrol service.
  2. The costs to the community of such a service.
  3. The number of homeowners willing to contribute financially to its support.

In short, the more residents are willing to pay for the service, the lower the cost per household.

To assist the committee in the next phase of its research, a focus group was  formed as a preliminary “sounding board” for the concept.  The focus group met January 7, 2017.  This group consists of approximately 15 South Shores residents representing a range of our community’s neighborhoods with a roughly 50:50 mix of upper and lower South Shores homeowners.

Input from this group helped provide a more complete understanding of this undertaking and prompted questions not yet asked in this research.

The as hoc committee has met, interviewed and obtained bids from 3 security patrol companies: 

  • ADT Patrol - based in Torrance.
  • Black Knight Patrol  Private Security Services - based in San Pedro.
  • Southwest Patrol, Inc. - based in Diamond Bar.

Several months ago, the committee made contact with ADT Patrol following an exploratory meeting with the Operations Manager of one of their clients, the non-profit SMPA  (Santa Monica Protective Association).

After examining the SMPA – ADT model, the committee asked the two competing security patrol companies to submit bids including the same service features as ADP Patrol to ensure true comparisons among the bids.

THE SMPA – ADT  MODEL AND HOW IT IS ORGANIZED

Early in its research, the committee learned of a neighborhood funded patrol program called the Santa Monica Protective Association (SMPA).  This organization has been operating continuously in Santa Monica since 1981.  It is located in the 90402 zip code area.  Since last summer, we have had several meetings with the SMPA Operations Manager to learn as much as possible that might apply to South Shores.

SMPA’s  2 square mile tract in Santa Monica consists of approximately 2,000 homes.  There are approximately 1,100 SMPA members.  In other words, more than 50% of the area’s homeowners are SMPA members.  By contrast, South Shores consists of 1,309 homes.

The organization managing this area’s security patrol consists of:

  • A five member volunteer staff called the Santa Monica Protective Association (SMPA).   
  • An SMPA Operations Manager.
  • A volunteer organization of 20 Street Representatives. 

THE SMPA OPERATIONS MANAGER

The Operations Manager is a salaried employee of SMPA.  This manager serves as the communications link between over 1,000 homes and ADT Patrol, the provider of the service.

The Operations Manager collects dues twice a year and turns over the funds to an SMPA bookkeeper.  The Operations Manager signs up new members and follows up on delinquent dues as the occasion warrants.

To enroll, residents sign a 3 party contract with SMPA and ADT.  Members may sign up for either a 6 month period or 1 year.   Dues are paid in advance of the service.

The Operations Manager produces a quarterly newsletter for SMPA members.

The Operations Manager is part of all communication with ADT, handling all complaints and comments directed to the provider.

The Operations Manager coordinates all communication and activities through 20 volunteer Street Representatives who provide ongoing feedback to the Operations Manager.  Street Representatives, for example, alert the Operations Manager of new residents on their streets and facilitate enrollment of new members. 

THE ROLE OF ADT AND BENEFITS OF SMPA MEMBERSHIP

The area is served by 2 ADT radio-dispatched security patrol vehicles 24 hours a day and 7 days a week.  ADT Patrol Officers are on constant patrol throughout the neighborhood.  The patrol vehicles are prominently marked “Santa Monica Protective Association”.   Patrol Officers are employees of ADT.  While Patrol Officers in the SMPA-ADT are armed, the question of whether South Shores Patrol Officers should be armed is currently under discussion.                                                

SMPA-ADT Member Benefits

Immediate Patrol Response

When a member sees suspicious activity in the neighborhood, the member calls the ADT dispatch office.  The dispatcher then calls the SMPA patrol officer who is never more than a few minutes away.  At a bare minimum, they demonstrate their presence when it may be needed most. 

The ADT Alarm Service and ADT Security Patrol Service are different entities within the same company and membership pricing in one does not affect pricing in the other.  However, subscribers to the ADT Alarm Service enjoy the added benefit of alarm notification to the ADT Patrol Service in addition to the LAPD with the probable advantage of a quicker response by the ADT Patrol Service.

Vacation Watches

When leaving town, members can advise ADT Patrol of the dates of their absence and Patrol Officers will conduct a perimeter check of the residence 3 times each day to the member’s specifications.  The officer will check for unsecured doors and windows, move mail, papers, flyers and packages to designated locations on the property.  They will also bring in trash cans after collection.  Some members will have the officer conduct extra drive-bys during their absence, even if it’s just for an evening out.

Escorts

Follow-home robberies are a common tactic of criminals.  Members can call ADT Patrol when they are coming home late at night and a Patrol Officer will meet them there upon their arrival.

Random Patrol

When Patrol Officers spot suspicious activity on a member’s property, they investigate.  If they spot a member’s garage open to the alley, they will alert the member.

Alarm Response

Although an alarm system is absolutely not required for membership in SMPA, if a member has a house alarm monitored by ADT or any other company, the Patrol Officers will respond if you give your alarm company the ADT dispatch number. The officers are well trained and can replace the response of the police, if the member chooses.  This can save the member hundreds of dollars in fees for false alarms. 

The officers are trained to check the perimeter for signs of forced entry, verify authorization of anyone they find on the property, alert the members by phone in case of emergency and call the police when criminal activity is found. 

The response time is usually much quicker than the police because the ADT Patrol Officers would cover only South Shores, a much smaller area than that covered by the LAPD.

COST OF MEMBERSHIP

As of December, 2016, bids have been obtained from all 3 providers.  Salary negotiations with a prospective Operations Manager are still under way. 

At this stage, it is impossible to know the actual cost of membership per household. That figure can be determined only when it is known how many households are actually willing to participate as paying subscribers.

The more households participating, the lower the cost per household.

However, it is possible to roughly project the cost per household assuming various levels of participation.  These levels and costs were discussed at the focus group meeting on January 7. This pricing information was discussed further in a community-wide Town Hall type meeting on March 25, 2017.  

COMMUNITY INPUT

In coming weeks, we will reach out to the community through the South Shores Community Association website and invite residents’ questions and comments regarding a patrol service.  We will poll as many homes as possible to quantify South Shores’ degree of willingness to share in the expense of this effort.  Once that number is finally established, we will know with certainty whether the concept of a security patrol service for the community of South Shores is viable and sustainable.

 


 

New LA City Vehicle Dwelling Regulations

 



 

Fencing Out Trails Used by 4x4 Off-Road Vehicles at Bogdanovic Park

Take a stroll along the new fence adjacent to the Bogdanovic parking lot and road to the Nature Center,
as promised by L. A. County Staff and Celina Daniels (see their response to Richard Welsh's letter below).

Coping with 4x4 Off-Road Violations:
Thanks to Board Member Richard Welsh

From: Richard Welsh <rwinsurance@yahoo.com>
To: Celina Daniels <celina.daniels@lacity.org>
Cc: Dolphin Tillman <dolphin.tillman@lacity.org>
Sent: Wed, Oct 19, 2016 at 4:28 PM

Hello Celina,

My name is Richard Welsh and I am with the South Shores Homeowners Association. Last night at our Board meeting we discussed the problem of late night reveling up at the park. One of the issues specifically that has come to our attention is a number of 4 Wheel Drive pick up trucks have been driving up to the top of the hill. They hop the curb near the storage container in the parking lot and proceed straight up the dirt road.

We are hoping you would be able to speak with your maintenance crew and please ask them to place some heavy boulders at the foot of the trail so vehicles cannot proceed up onto the hill.  Quite often, in the evening these trucks perform donuts in the parking lot at a high rate of speed and it is quite dangerous. I know getting the gates locked up on time is a challenge and your crew is not responsible, however, I think we can at least stop these vehicles from illegally driving off road. Your help is greatly appreciated and if you have any questions please feel free to touch base with me.

Regards,

Richard Welsh
310-729-0087
South Shores Homeowners Association board member

-----------------------------

Reply:

From: Celina Daniels <celina.daniels@lacity.org>
To: Richard Welsh <rwinsurance@yahoo.com>
Cc: Dolphin Tillman <dolphin.tillman@lacity.org>
Sent: Thursday, October 20, 2016 12:57 PM
Subject: Re: Bogdanovic Park off-roading

Hi Mr. Welsh, 

Last month, we met with LA County Staff. They will be installing log type fences along the trail. Installation is scheduled to start at any time now. During the installation, there was also talk of moving the boulders around to areas where is it needed to block off the rest of the trail to prevent trucks from off roading. 

I hope this information helps. 

Best Regards, 
Celina Daniels
Recreation Facility Director
Bogdanovich Recreation Center
celina.daniels@lacity.org
310-548-7590
FAX# 310-548-2156
Mailstop# 644/22

 

Coyote Management Plan Requested by City Council

The City has instructed the Department of Animal Services to create a detailed Coyote Management Plan and recommendations for improvements to control the coyote population in the City's residential neighborhoods. Part of this program will be a public outreach campaign to prevent and discourage people from feeding coyotes and reducing the ways the City feeds coyotes by ensuring parks wildlife-proof trash cans. Addressing the coyote issue requires cooperation from both the City and residents. Feeding coyotes reduces their fear of humans and makes them more bold in pursuing human food sources. However, coyote attacks are very rare and coyotes have only killed one person in the last 30 years in the US whereas bees kill 58 people a year, dogs kill 28 people a year and alligators kill one person every year. Remember, a fed coyote is a dead coyote. Watch video...

--------- REPLIES ---------

Hi--I was interested in the Coyote article but thought it greatly missed the point when it was trying to make the point that they are little threats to humans,  They are a GREAT threat to our pets and other animals.

 

Thank You

Harry Salevurakis
h300harry@aol.com

 

-------------

 

Board Member Jerry Gaines:

We need to stress that keeping pets under surveillance and not leaving food outside is called for to protect them from coyotes.

 

POISON CONTROL
1-800-222-1222

The California Poison Control System (CPCS) provides immediate, free and expert treatment advice and referral over the telephone in case of exposure to poisonous or toxic substances.

Pharmacists, physicians, nurses, and poison information providers answer the calls to 1-800-222-1222 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

OFFICER EVE WIGHT'S SENIOR LEAD OFFICER SERVICE IN SOUTH SHORES

The service of Officer Eve Wight as the local Senior Lead Officer has been special.  She has served for some eight years of her ten year career with the LAPD within the,Harbor Division.  Along with her duties as a Senior Lead Officer, she has worked with two Special Problem Units in the Narcotics Division.  Officer Wight has been actively engaged in the various neighborhood watch programs in San Pedro as well as work with the local neighborhood councils in addressing public safety issues in the area.  She has been a popular speaker at the SSHOA Annual Meetings each year.  We will miss her, but wish her well as she moves to a new assignment in downtown Los Angeles with the LAPD.

- Jerry Gaines

Farewell to Eve Wight
A very special LAPD Officer and Treasured Friend of South Shores

The San Pedro community honored a very special LAPD partner Saturday evening, May 14 at the Omelette and Waffle Shop on Gaffey St.  The event was hosted by the restaurant's owners Mona Sutton and Lesley Jones and was attended by over 100 people.  We all owe Mona and Lesley a debt of gratitude for making this wonderful event possible.

Those attending included members of the Coastal Neighborhood Council, neighborhood watch groups, including South Shores CyberWatch, LAPD's CPAB (Community Police Advisory Board) and the Harbor area's LAPD Cadets, a program for young people ages 13 to 20, aimed at bringing them valuable skills.

Omelette & Waffle Shop's owners Lesley Jones and Mona Sutton with Eve and CyberWatch's Bob Genest

Eve and Coastal Neighborhood Council Vice President, James Baeza

Eve Wight and LAPD Sergeant Catherine Plows

Eve Wight speaks to community leaders and supporters

Eve Wight speaks to community leaders and supporters

A tearful goodbye to Eve from one of the LAPD Harbor Cadets

Cake for Eve

Eve Wight receives a floral send off from neighborhood watch leader Shannon Ross

Another send-off for Eve was held at a special South Shores local neighborhood meeting held on May 6 and hosted by Shannon Ross, a South Shores CyberWatch member.  This meeting was attended by approximately 50 residents from the immediate area of Anabas Ave and Perch St.

 

We wish Eve the very best as she broadens her career experience through this  reassignment to the LAPD's Metro division.  We plan to maintain contact with Eve in the near future and hope she returns to visit us often.

-- Photos and text by Bob Genest

 

 

 

New Oversized Vehicle Signs

SLO Eve Wight Is Moving On

Eve Wight, our Senior Lead Officer (SLO) dropped by my home last evening (5/6/16) to inform me she will soon be leaving the Harbor Division.  She also wanted to thank us for the past few years of association through CyberWatch and to reflect on the many accomplishments of our partnership.

Eve has been reassigned to the Metropolitan Division where the tactical experience gained can help expand her contribution to the LA community

Eve will be working out of downtown LA, but as she will be assigned to the South bureau, we may see her occasionally in this area. 

Eve is saddened to leave South Shores and neighboring communities where she is held in such high regard.  It's a bittersweet transition for her and she will be missed by many of us.

Her replacement, for the time being, will be Officer Elliot Rubright who has worked at the Harbor Division for a number of years.  We look forward to meeting with Elliot shortly and already have his email address and telephone number.   We will also maintain ongoing communication with Eve in her new role.

Bob Genest, CyberWatch Chair

 

Barking Dogs

FYI to South Shores residents from L. A. County Animal Care & Control:
 
Barking Dogs: Any pet owner or custodian who allows a dog to bark continuously or for an extended period of time in a manner that annoys the neighbors and disturbs the peace and tranquillity of the neighborhood may be guilty of allowing a public nuisance and punishable by a misdemeanor with a fine of up to $1000 and/or six months in jail. (California Penal Code 373A and L.A. County Code Sec. 10.40.065) If you have a noise complaint, contact your local Department of Animal Care and Control agency or submit an Animal Complaint Form.
 

SSHOA Recommendation: Be a good neighbor -- work it out.
 

Anecdote: One Board member located the home of a barking dog and left a note calling the homeowner's attention to the barking dog with the Board member's phone number.  The homeowner promptly called to say the dog would not continue to bark as in the past.  The homeowner even visited the home of the Board member later on to express regret.  He left as a "good neighbor".