Page 1 of 6
Posted on August 7 at 7:31 p.m.
To the last two commenters, I would suggest that is why the driver was arrested at the scene, along with the fact that his disregard of the law(s) cited resulted in a death, which could either be Murder 2 or Manslaughter (or some other lesser charge resulting from a plea bargain). I doubt that he will be tried as an adult, unless there are circumstances about which I am not aware, so whatever charges tare proved will not last beyond his 21st birthday, since he is a minor. So, the maximum sentence he could get is less than 5 years, vs. the loss of a 19 year old girl's entire life, plus the lifetime of grief and pain that he has caused her family and friends.
Granted, the deceased victim and the others in the bed of the truck exercised pretty poor judgment, and it cost her her life, but the penalty for bad judgment by a teenager should not be death, or there would be very few teenagers around. The driver will have to live with this for the rest of his life, but at least he will have a life to live.
(Aside to Bill Clausen: the driver's actions may have been "ill-advised", but they were also ILLEGAL. I don't think you were trying to euphemize what he did, and even your description of the regular disregard of the law on 154 is disturbing).
I would like to believe that the CHP, or whichever agency has jurisdiction over that route has done all that they can to reduce the regular disregard of the speeding law on 154, but having lived here for more than 50 years, I refuse to drive "The Pass" any more - ever, since the descriptions that you gave have been the norm since back then, and probably before that, and continue today. I refuse to believe that there is nothing that can be done.
This is a very sad and tragic situation for all concerned, and my heart goes out to the family of the young girl who died, as well as to all those affected by this tragedy.
On Teen Arrested For Fatal Rollover Crash
Posted on July 19 at 3:40 p.m.
One note to pay close attention to - As soon as the bankruptcy filing becomes public record, the predatory credit card lenders will "come out of the woodwork", offering you credit cards, to "rebuild your credit". These cards usually offer a credit limit "up to $1,000), but they are always "approved for $250", due to your bankruptcy. They always have a "One-time Approval Fee" of $99), an "Annual Fee" of $49,and some sort of an "Initiation Fee" of $35 or so, So, when the card arrives, it already has a balance of about $185, leaving an available balance of about $65. To use an ATM, there could be a fee as high as $3.50 PLUS the fee that the ATM vendor charges. If you make monthly payments, and are even late one day (mail ten days before due date), there is a late fee of $45, and, if that $45 puts you over your $250 limit when added to your first purchase of say, "$66, they charge you an "Over limit fee" of another $35. So, for the "convenience of buying $66 worth of anything using your credit card, within one month of it being issued to one, one can already be over one's credit card limit, and beginning to wrack up endless fees and penalties in perpetuity, unless one can pay it all off and cancel the thing! BEWARE, and read the fine print!
On How Bankruptcy Affects You as an Individual
Posted on July 18 at 11:18 p.m.
Just out of curiosity, Nick, exactly what ARE the "host of bureaucratic and stubborn reasons" (an interesting descriptive phrase)?
There are many statements which have been made about this situation since the news broke a month or so ago about the dire nature of the SBNC which are "sort of true", but not exactly true.
There are many variables that go into calculating health care reimbursement (particularly for the poor and uninsured) at a public health level, and there are multiple manners in which reimbursement is paid, based upon the type of clinic that is operating, and, more importantly, the type of patients that it is predominantly being treated. I would like a little more specificity in exactly what those factors are, so that the public can better understand what really happened to the SBNC. If she doesn't already, I am sure that Ms. Breuninger would benefit from knowing that, too.
I have asked twice before on the Indie site for the name of the consultant who was engaged by Cottage to study the SBNC problem. Was the report delivered? To whom? What did it say? How much did it cost? Is it available for public review and/or input? If not, why not?
I'm just an interested citizen who wants the SBNC to survive, as the existing system cannot "pick up the slack" left by the vacuum in patient care delivery that will exist if the SBNC "goes under".
We have gone from "We are almost broke, and we're going to have to close the doors at the end of July" a couple of months ago, to "Cottage has hired a consultant to study this", to the CEO resigning and the Board Chair taking over CEO duties temporarily. Then, less than two months before the public even knew there was a problem they have HIRED an interim CEO! When was the recruitment process? How was in conducted? How was this person selected (AIH&S is the designated Indian clinic in SB, and is reimbursed accordingly, along with numerous IHS grants) so her Native American background won't necessarily apply with the SBNC). How could ANYBODY turn around a sinking ship in 100 days, especially coming in cold? Has ANYONE asked ANY of these questions before now?
On Health Clinics Secure Donations, Hire Temp CEO
Posted on July 16 at 9:54 a.m.
I am an interested citizen, as I have both been a patient at the SBNC, have family members who currently are patients there, and I was a consultant to them when they were awarded FQHC status, and assisted them in getting a favorable reimbursement rate for Medi-Cal patients.
I am curious as to who the consultant is that was hired by Cottage, and if his/her/their report is completed and is available to the public for review and comment.
Usually, if Cottage puts up the money for ANYTHING, they expect something in return, so I would like to see whether or not the consultant examined this situation from the SB community's best interests or Cottage's best interests, or, as one would hope, both.
On Neighborhood Clinics Buying Time
Posted on June 6 at 2:13 p.m.
What is the name of the consultant who was hired? Though I understand that Cottage has a big financial stake in this matter, what is their angle in all of this for THEM to fund the study? Aside from the fact that Cottage can AFFORD to pay for the study (how much was it, BTW?), my experience with Cottage is that when they hire a consultant to do a "survey" there is an implicit "unspoken agreement" in advance as to what the outcome will be. Cottage always does what is best for Cottage, and if that also serves the community in a positive way, so much the better.
Who vetted this firm and when, how much were they paid, and what EXACTLY did the RFP and, ultimately, the contract agree to study and to what end? Were they hired by Cottage with the input of the SBNC Board?
From what I read and know personally about he SBNC, they have been having management issues for several years. I know why the American Indian Clinic gets $100 per visit more than SBNC, and merging with SBNC will not transfer that rate to all the new patients. The rate that the Indian Clinic is based upon the number of "Federally-Qualified" health care visits by the number of "documented" Native Americans that are treated annually by the clinic. Actually, the SBNC has a reimbursement rate 3-4 what a normal PCP gets from Medi-Cal, and they get reimbursed the same rate that all doctors get from Medicare.
I have been privy to the manner in which the FQHC rate (reimbursement for Medi-Cal patients) was calculated for both clinics, and it is a minor "miracle" that the SBNC has as good a rate as they do. I have also been privy to watching how the upper management of the SBNC operates, and this last minute, "the sky is falling, help us avoid disaster", is just the latest in a line of bad management decisions, some of which are mentioned in the article.
The public needs to keep an eye on how this "plays out". The good of the community should trump the good of Cottage Health System. The County of SB Public Health Dept. should weigh in on this issue, as they have as much or more at stake than Cottage. This is a big deal!
On SOS for Neighborhood Clinics
Posted on May 27 at 9:36 p.m.
Got your goat, did I, Kenny? It's all about ME, now?
On Neighborhood Clinics In Real Danger of Closing
Posted on May 27 at 8:13 p.m.
Ken_Volek - You are a negative blowhard, and what does your last post even mean? Of the first 22 comments, 15 of them were from you and others going off about City politics and your pet peeves about taxes, vagrants, "Eating the Rich", the Montecito Association", "Occupy bulbouts", Fiesta, Randy Rouse, etc.. "foofighter" was trying to make some valid counterpoints, which eventually led him/her off the subject, too, and LH Thom actually attempted to get on point, too. I DID read the entirety of ALL the comments (not just yours, though you probably would rather it be so), and a large percentage of the discussion up until my first post was NOT specifically about the issue discussed in the article, and, more importantly, what we, as a community can or should do about it. I was just trying to draw the discussion back to the severe crisis that this community may face in a couple of months and what could be done in the short term. What's wrong with that? (I'm sure I will regret THAT question).
WRT to the contrast between a bunch of rich insurance fat cats wasting tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars "rewarding" themselves for huge profits with a "down low" celebration at the Sunken Gardens and Bacara Resort - I don't get what your "ha!" means. Is it that you support their huge profits and tone deaf celebration while local public health clinics go bankrupt .... or what, were you agreeing with me? I can't tell.
I guess if the discussion isn't about the City Council or some other local issues that personally excite your "sensibilities", it doesn't matter, right? Just because you have nothing better to do than post comments to the Indie all the day, every day, that doesn't mean that there are not REAL issues and REAL discussions to be had by those of us who care more about the community as a whole than you do about your "pet" issues. Just because you have lived here a long time doesn't give you a monopoly on the truth - a lot of us have lived here a long time. I've read your comments on other issues before, and you tend to be long on snarky opinions and short on facts. You never even addressed the substance of my first comment - you just attacked me, in "typical Ken V" fashion.
What kind of health insurance do you have Ken? Is it threatened by the possible closure of the SBNC? Do you even care, or is that not even on your radar? I'm just asking, since your comments don't seem to reflect a point of view either way - just attacks on this or that - anything but the topic at hand. "foofighter" was bending over backwards to try to engage you in a substantive discussion, to no avail, except for you to label him/her a "partisan hack". Ken - it takes one to know one.
Posted on May 27 at 5:32 p.m.
One other comment - Read The Angry Poodle for a stark contrast to this story. Disgusting!
Posted on May 27 at 5:30 p.m.
What a non-productive conversation! If one started about three comments in, they would have no idea that the SBNC system is in danger of going out of business. This is NOT even a City Government issue, it is a County Public Health Issue. SBNC plays a critical role in SB County's public health safety net, along with American Indian Health & Sevices and the County of SB Health Care Services. If SBNC goes out of business, the 2 remaining entities will be left to absorb the 17,000 patients and 56,000 visits referred to in this article. This is not feasible, as they are already stretched to the max. Cottage Hospital is the single private entity that has the most to lose in this crisis, as they will be the ones "eating" the ER uncompensated care, but the community as a whole will suffer as well. This private-sector issue can turn into a County Public health emergency, and a behemoth like Cottage has the resources to help to mitigate this problem, until, like "foofighter" suggests, Obamacare kicks in, but that is not until January. Cottage's BOD might see fit to part with some tiny percentage of that gazillion-dollar endowment of theirs and help the community get through this. If they could raise enough money to build the state-of-the -art facility that they currently have, they can come up with the $1.5M from "petty cash". The bigger question going forward is, what then?
I have worked within the local public health system in the past. I have firsthand knowledge what they are up against. I also know that this did not happen "over night", and question why we are just hearing about this now, allegedly 2 months before "Armageddon", when there are systems in place that can and should be able to forecast more than two months at a time. Not time to point fingers, but in order to save a necessary local asset, there needs to be proactive management in place to do so. This is a combination of a "perfect storm" of unfortunate events - the increasing number of uninsured patients since the economy tanked in '08 and, while unemployment may be decreasing, employers who provide healthcare are not., often "gaming" the system to hire more part-time workers to avoid having to provide health benefits, which forces these folks into the "system" to get health care. There is no where to go except for these local clinics.
The other interested party which IS governmental is the County of SB, who has the unfunded legal responsibility to care for these folks as the "provider of last resort". What this means to everyone now getting care at the County Health Care System, you will get less care with longer waits, which always costs more in the long run.
This is a major public health issue that should be addressed immediately by the entities with the means to do so. If there are private donors with the means, they should step up as well for the good of the community.
Those of you debating "vagrants" and "tourists" are off the mark.
Posted on July 19 at 10:41 a.m.
SB County's manner of "finding a way off the streets" is the jail. Over and over again, the mentally ill keep finding themselves charged with "crimes" that end them up in the County Jail, usually without their meds, any treatment, and necessary personal belongings, such as reading glasses or other necessary personal care items.
Since the penal system is the County's default mental health system, most homeless mentally ill persons eventually find themselves in jail, with nobody to represent them, and usually without the meds they need to function. If they don't have an interested family member, they are at the mercy of the system, which shows very little mercy.
Then mentally ill are treated as "less than", which means that they are considered with less dignity than even violent criminals. I have witnessed it with my own eyes, and it is deplorable how they are treated - mostly ignored, not listened to, and mistreated when their mental health symptoms are misinterpreted as hostile acts of defiance, which, in jail are punished. Sometimes the punishment is physical, but mostly it's emotional. The jail system has sadism down to a "science". If non-violent drug offenders and the mentally ill were removed from this system, there would be enough money left over to adequately treat these populations, not to mention freeing up the judicial system to prosecute REAL criminals. Go figure!
On Doing Our Best
Casa del Herrero will be hosting an annual party with ... Read More
Previous Month | Next Month