Massage therapists in Petaluma may have wondered what decade they were in following discussion of a proposed ordinance regulating their profession. Police Chief Pat Williams presented the proposed new ordinance to the City Council this week, noting that occasional investigations have exposed prostitution operations masquerading as legitimate massage businesses.
Hundreds of vehicles throughout Petaluma have been abandoned or otherwise left on the street longer than the law allows. On Wednesday, Petaluma police fanned out in an effort to scour every city street to find them and either warn owners or tow violators.
Weedy, overgrown front yards. Junked appliances piled outside. Boarded up doors and windows. All spell ‘distressed property,’ and to some, an opportunity to illegally squat or vandalize a building forsaken by its owners. Petaluma’s new police chief is hoping to clean up city neighborhoods scarred by these abandoned, run-down houses.
Healdsburg police employees have a new labor contract that will require them to pay more toward their pension and medical benefits. The City Council late Monday adopted the new two-year union contract that which will require all employees to pay 10 percent of the cost of their medical coverage by 2014, in contrast to the last agreement where the city covered the full cost.
Sonoma’s police chief is asking the City Council to consider new restrictions on consuming alcohol in public following a raucous Fourth of July celebration that resulted in more than a dozen arrests. In a memo to City Manager Linda Kelly, Chief Bret Sackett attributed the unruly behavior to large crowds, warm weather and Sonoma’s ‘liberal alcohol laws.’
The man selected as Petaluma’s next police chief is leaving his job in Desert Hot Springs in the midst of a federal lawsuit filed recently by a female officer alleging she was harassed and fired because she testified against two rogue colleagues.
A former Santa Rosa police captain whose four-year wrongful termination suit so far has cost the city nearly $1 million has won a round in federal court. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals sent the case back for further hearings, ruling that a federal judge improperly ordered Jamie Mitchel to pay some of the city’s legal costs.
UPDATE 7:55 PM: After a week of warnings, Santa Rosa police gathered before dawn Tuesday and ousted dozens of protesters who didn’t have city camping permits for the Occupy camp outside City Hall. Twenty-five tents were removed, leaving 22 permitted tents at the lawn, less than a quarter of the encampment that first appeared three weeks ago. What do you think about the way the city handled things?
Occupy Sebastopol demonstrators made a last-minute application Tuesday night for a special events permit that would allow them to continue camping at the town plaza. A decision is expected by the end of the day Wednesday.
For some, the decision by local law enforcement officials to accept Mexican consular IDs represents a violation of the rule of law and an official acceptance of the growing presence of illegal immigrants. But police say it is the most sensible way to play the hand dealt to them by ineffective federal lawmakers who have failed to address issues surrounding illegal immigration. What is your take?