12/04/07

NORTH COUNTY GANG COMMISSION TO BE FORMED

SAN DIEGO – County Supervisors today voted to create a seven-member North County Gang Commission to form a regional plan aimed at combating gang activity in North County.

The plan was brought forward by Fifth District Supervisor Bill Horn and Third District Supervisor Pam Slater-Price.

“Gang suppression by law enforcement is not enough,” said Supervisor Horn. “We need to have experts who will partner and bring communities together. The children and families of North County deserve the chance to live in safe neighborhoods.”

The commission, made up of five individuals from the Fifth District and three from the Third District will collaborate with law enforcement and local nonprofits to work on after-school programs, workforce training and to pursue grant funding to benefit the region.

“My first nominee,” said Supervisor Horn, “will be retired Oceanside Unified School District Superintendent Ken Noonan. He is a major force in the community and will be a key individual in making this more than just another commission. The group will target gang prevention, intervention and suppression.”

The remainder of the volunteer commission will be chosen from education, law enforcement, business, social and health services and young people formerly involved in gangs.

“We need to stop the cycle of pushing gang members back and forth on the 78 corridor,” said Supervisor Horn. “Law enforcement should not have the sole responsibility for dealing with gangs. We want to hear ideas from our community partners who are on the front lines. Their input will help form a plan and then we will take action.”

Today’s decision calls for the Chief Administrative Officer to return to the Board within 60 days with an ordinance to establish the commission.