Intent to Withdraw from

L.A. COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT

Updated Page

July 23, 2021

"Operating a public health department requires a serious financial investment - stable

funding stream - that attracts top talent who are specialized in environmental health and

infection prevention." 

Public Comment submitted to City Council from Jaime Garcia, Regional Vice President,

Hospital Association of Southern California, April 6, 2021.

The West Covina City Council majority decided to create a Health Department with no needs assessment, no project plan, no estimated revenue or expenditures, and no cost-benefit analysis. 

 

This page summarizes the issue, monitors the actions the City of West Covina takes, and provides general information on the health department issue in general. 

Summary of Issues and Concerns

 

  •   State Audit of City Finances

West Covina is currently ranked the 9th worst fiscally risky city in the State of California by the State Auditor.  The city is currently undergoing an audit by the State Auditor. This City Council did not perform a fiscal analysis to identify costs before voting to take this action and by doing so, is taken an action contrary to the State Auditor’s report that states:

 

"The City’s management has failed to perform sufficient analysis when making important

financial decisions".

 

Read State Auditor Report Commentary.

 

The current City Council majority routinely states the city’s financial problems are the result of past city council decisions.  They deny the reality that they have continued to make financial decisions leading to a worsening of the City's status.  The State Auditor's report states:

 

"West Covina’s Ineffective Fiscal Management Threatens Its Ability to Meet Its Financial Obligations and to Provide City Services".

 

Read State Auditor Report Commentary.

 

The potential costs to the city associated with starting a health department is potentially in the millions of dollars.  Attempting to start a high cost, complex venture such as a health department without a needs assessment/cost analysis is not a responsible course of action.  

 

  •  Misuse of the Urgency Ordinance

 

The use of the urgency ordinance is questionable. The purpose of an urgency ordinance is typically used to handle emergency situations such as an “eminent public health threat”.  The mere use of the word “health” does not justify the rush to set up a health department.  West Covina residents are being provided services by the Los Angeles County Department of Health and will continue to do so until the City of West Covina creates a State-certified and approved health department. 

 

The “emergency” is self-imposed by the City Council majority to meet an annual Los Angeles County March 1 budget deadline.  There was no need to rush this process without conducting the appropriate needs assessment/cost/financial analysis.

COMMUNICATE YOUR VIEW AND CONCERNS

List of key contacts we've compiled for residents desiring to communicate their views and/or concerns on this issue.

Contact information for the West Covina City Council, City Manager, and City Clerk.

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

About West Covina

  • City Council Meeting Reference Sheets

Our reference sheets consist of City Council meeting agenda, staff reports, and other documents related to this issue.  Links to the City Council meeting are also provided.  When a discussion is lengthy or involves multiple speakers, specific topics listed and speakers are identified.

Updated 07/16/21

Updated 07/17/21

December 1, 2020    Regular City Council Meeting, Item 12

 

January 19, 2021      Regular City Council Meeting Medical Consultant Presentation

February 23, 2021     Special City Council Meeting

March 16, 2021         Regular City Council Meeting, Item 4

April 6, 2021             Regular City Council Meeting, Public Hearing, Item 15

April 20, 2021           Regular City Council Meeting, Item 8

May 4, 2021             Regular City Council Meeting, Item 3

May 18, 2021           Regular City Council Meeting, Item 5

  • Press Release

February 24, 2021      West Covina to create Municipal Health Department

 

March 4, 2021            COVID-19 CVS Pharmacy Vaccination Sites Open in

                                West Covina

  • Other Documents

Contracts/Agreements

December 16, 2020     City of West Covina Professional Services Agreement with

                                 Valley Physicians Medical Group Inc. for Consulting Services

                                 Relating to Exploring Options for Establishing Local Health

                                 Department

Legal Notices

February 25, 2021        Letter notifying Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors

                                 of the City's intent to terminating Los Angeles County

                                 Health Officer Services Provided Pursuant to Health and

                                 Safety Code section 101375.

 

March 8, 2021             Notice published in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune

                                 terminating Los Angeles County Health Officer Services and

                                 establishing a local health department. 

April 19, 2021             Notice published in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune repealing

                                 and replacing designated West Covina health code sections

                                 and adopting by reference certain L.A. County health and

                                 safety rules and regulations; sets forth penalties for

                                 violation.

April 19, 2021             Notice published in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune

                                 establishing a Public Health Director position.

April 29, 2021             Notice published in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune

                                 establishing fees and charges for services provided by the

                                 West Covina Health Department. (Public Hearing)

May 12, 2021              Notice published in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune formally

                                 establishing the West Covina Public Health Department.

                    

About the Issue

  • City Staff Reports - Health Dept.

January 12, 2021      City of San Dimas

 

February 23, 2021     City of West Covina

  • Letters from Agencies & Associations

West Covina Unified School District (WCUSD)

               

Los Angeles County Department of Public Health  (LACDPH)   

Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors

  • March 8, 2021             Hilda L. Solis, Supervisor, 1st District        

  • March 13, 2021           Hilda L. Solis, Supervisor, 1st District

     (Sent to residents)

    Note:  This letter was originally sent to the city council in 2019 regarding the BKK

                 landfill, a safety issue of concern to residents.

  • March 16, 2021           Ryan Serrano, Assistant Field Deputy / Caseworker

                                      to Chair Hilda L. Solis, Supervisor, 1st District

                                      East San Gabriel Valley Field office

Hospital Association of Southern California

  • April 6, 2021                     Jaime Garcia, Regional Vice President, Los Angeles

  • Podcasts / Townhalls / Newscast

Added 07/22/21

February 22, 2021      Isabelle in San Dimas

Should San Dimas Break with the Public Health Department

“In this episode, Shawn Granger sheds light on why West Covina is embarking on this monumental undertaking as well as what the potential benefits and costs would be. As a San Dimas resident, public administration doctoral student at the University of La Verne, and IT Manager for West Covina, Shawn’s personal, professional, and academic interests intersect around this important topic.”

February 25, 2021      NPR Take Two

West Covina Moves Ahead with its Plan to Start Own Health Department

 

Note:   West Covina is the first segment. The segment starts

            after the "sponsored by" messages end.  The West

            Covina segment is about ten minutes long.

March 11, 2021          Hilda L. Solis, Supervisor, 1st District

 

                                L.A. County Public Health West Covina Townhall

July 22, 2021             CNN Newsroom With Alisyn Camerota and

                                  Victor Blackwell

                                  Coronavirus Pandemic

                                West Covina, CA Pushes for Own Health Department

                                Alisyn Camerota segment on Los Angeles County's latest mask

                                mandate included an interview with West Covina City Council-

                                man Tony Wu.

  • Professional Health Associations

Professional associations provide guidance and support to individuals working in their chosen profession as well as advocacy on a variety of issues.  The websites below are provided to assist residents with understanding the complexity associated with operating a health department.  No endorsement or support is implied.

 

Suggested page to review:  HOAC Strategic Map:  2016-2018

Suggested page to review:  Health Care Topics

  • News Articles

Added 07/11/21

Added 07/23/21

About West Covina

 

   

 

 

 

About the Issue

Articles that mention the City of West Covina are marked with an asterisk (*).

 

For articles on related or additional issues, see Resources.