Sunday, June 5, 2016

The Five P's and caring about results

County Recorder Helen Purcell: 'I take full responsibility for what happened' in Arizona elections

Election officials are taking 'full responsibility' for the long lines and confusion Arizona voters experienced during Tuesday's presidential election.
"I would just like to reiterate again, I take full responsibility for what happened yesterday," Maricopa County Recorder Helen Purcell told the county's Board of Supervisors on Wednesday, a day after voters waited in hours-long lines--some up to 5 1/2 hours--to vote in Tuesday's presidential preference election.
"I made an error in judgment in planning this election," Purcell said.  "I should have had more polling places, and I am very sorry about that."
All day Tuesday, many polling booths in Maricopa County showed lines of voters snaked around buildings waiting hours-to cast their ballots.
There were 60 polling locations in Maricopa County. A dramatic decrease from the 200 during the 2012 presidential primary. Most elections have about 700.

San Jose Police Department Hoping "Retention Program" Slows Officer Retirement Rate
VIDEO at Link
The San Jose Police Department is proposing what some call a drastic measure to stem the flow of retirements. The plan is coming out as newly released police academy numbers reveal the department faces more problems recruiting new officers.
The number of San Jose police officers has dropped by several hundred over the past five years, mainly after a bitter pension fight with the city. Thursday, Mayor Chuck Reed and mayoral candidate Sam Liccardo both endorsed an “officer retention program” proposed by the police chief. The program, which NBC Bay Area first revealed last week, offers longtime cops a chance to retire but stay on the job. In essence, they can bank pension money while earning pay.
"We've certainly seen in other departments that this is something that is very popular with officers,” Liccardo said. “We'd expect that to be true here. Obviously, it needs to be negotiated at the bargaining table."
Police union president Jim Unland said similar plans have caused other cities major problems.
"To be concentrating their efforts on some political 'double-dipping' stunt, two months before the election, they need to be concentrating on what it's gonna take for us to recruit and retain new officers,” Unland said.
New police academy numbers show, for the second time this year, only 29 recruits in a class that fills 60. "Again, starting next year we'll see historic low staffing numbers in San Jose,” police union board member James Gonzales said.
The efforts to solve the staffing problem will get major tests soon as the city finds out just how many academy graduates stay on the force, as well as if or when the proposed officer retention program proposal goes before the full city council.
Tom Saggau, spokesman for the union, said changes in the city's rules granting disability retirement to officers injured in the line of duty who can no longer serve as cops are leading to a lack of qualified recruits.
Before the rules took effect, based on city policies after the passage in 2012 by city voters of the Measure B pension reform measure, police and city firefighters received "guaranteed" disability retirement when they were injured, but now they may have to take other jobs with the city unrelated to police work, Saggau said.
"Nowhere else in the state does that happen" aside from San Jose, Saggau said.
Recruits are bypassing San Jose for academies elsewhere, thinking that "if I get hurt, I may not get taken care of" and "do I really want to drop into the mosh pit or go to another city in California?" Saggau said.
"Twenty-nine in 60 in the tenth largest city in the country is pretty pathetic," Saggau said.
San Jose's police training facility used to have to turn away applicants until now, Saggau said. "No other police agency is having trouble recruiting."
The drop in recruits, coupled with 51 officer resignations in 2014, three pending resignations, 30 officer retirements and another 69 retirement applications pending, comes as the department is having a hard time responding to reports of serious crimes, which can take an average of 20 minutes in some parts of the city, according to Saggau.
"That is just bad for everybody," he said.
But David Vossbrink, spokesman for the City Manager's office, said while the union was right there are 29 recruits, the city had budgeted for only 45 trainees, not 60, as the capacity for the third academy authorized this year.
Vossbrink said it was not true that the city does not provide city police and firefighters with disability retirement if they are injured to such an extent they can no longer work for the force or at all for the city.
New regulations, however, do require that if an officer is injured and cannot continue as an officer but is able bodied enough to fill another position in city government, such as crime prevention, they are offered to work that new city job, Vossbrink said.
The tougher standards on disability retirement were put in force by the City Council after an auditor's report revealed San Jose's rate of disability retirement for police and fire employees "has been much, much higher" that other cities, to the point of abusing the retirement system, Vossbrink said.
"The union comes back with the same old trope here," Vossbrink said. He acknowledged that the city's police force, based on the approximately 400 officers lost in recent years, is "well under" the number that the city has committed funds to in its current budget and that it is a "challenge to fill vacancies."
"No one disputes that," Vossbrink said.
Other factors making it harder to recruit more cops is that San Jose's overall compensation package is "not as competitive as other agencies" and Mayor Chuck Reed has maintained that the POA "is actively encouraging" recruits not to apply to the academy and "encouraging officers to leave" the force, Vossbrink said.
The city itself sets higher standards than other cities for those it selects into the police academy, including the equivalent of a minimum of two years of college, because "our goal is to have a quality police force," he said. 

An evaluation from someone that was law enforcement:

Just my opinion ( I am retired LE). Anyone of ANY rank in LE that forgets that the absolute basic reason for LE existence is to protect life and property needs to find another job. ALL sworn officers have a DUTY to protect people and their property. As a former Marine Corps Officer, I was not obligated to follow any order that was either illegal or immoral. In fact, if someone senior to me ordered me to do something illegal or immoral, they were committing a crime and subject to arrest for doing it . Just my opinion, but when innocent civilians are being attacked and I have a riot stick, handgun, less lethal available and a bunch of my buddies around me, there is only ONE course of action - defend the innocent. Any mayor, police chief or any other elected official that doesn't understand what I just wrote needs to find a new job or profession. They disgrace those of us who have worn uniforms and/or badges.
One, I worked nights with a man who had flown F-4 Phantoms off a carrier and over Vietnam.  He said early on in his Navy Flight Training, he was introduced to the five P's: 
Prior Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance
In the case of the Maricopa County (Around Phoenix AZ) Recorder, there were SEVEN presidential primaries before Arizona's. In ALL of them, turn-out was well over 100 per cent of any previous primaries.
SO, you reduce the number of Polling places from 200 to 60? 
In the case of San Jose, Trump has been to several locations in California prior to this. In each case, "Activists" AKA Thugs, showed up to create havoc. 

A crowd of anti-Trump demonstrators gathers in front
Consider the Following factors: 1. The City authorities knew where the rally would be. 2. They knew that those attending would have to park at a predictable location. (At least the Thugs figured it out and jumped the rally attenders going back to their cars) .
Logically, a Police planner would provide a protected access to and from the Rally from Parking. 
The Result: Officers in riot gear, standing with their backs to walls, not taking any action when observing a rally goer being assaulted.
There are two possible conclusions: 
1. The San Jose police leadership is incompetent 
2. Police personnel were ordered NOT to take any action against Thugs when they attacked Trump supporters 

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