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[00:00:03]

FOR NOON.

AND I AM OFFICIALLY

[CALL TO ORDER 4:00-4:05pm]

CALLING TO ORDER THE MEETING OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN PUBLIC SAFETY COMMISSION ON SEPTEMBER 7TH, 2021 AT 4:00 PM.

UH, AS YOU CAN SEE, WE ARE IN VIRTUAL FORMAT TODAY.

WE HAVE A QUORUM AT CITY COUNCIL CHAMBERS, AND WE HAVE THE REST OF OUR COMMISSION AVAILABLE ONLINE AND VIRTUAL.

THANK YOU ALL FOR ATTENDING.

UM, SO FIRST BEFORE WE GET STARTED, I WOULD LIKE TO TAKE A MOMENT TO HONOR THE MEMORIES OF THE THREE AUSTIN PUBLIC SERVANTS THAT HAVE LOST THEIR LIVES TO COVID-19 IN RECENT WEEKS, SENIOR OFFICER RANDY BOYD, SENIOR SERGEANT STEVE ODS AND FIREFIGHTER, RODNEY KELLY.

WE ARE KEEPING THEIR FRIENDS, FAMILY, AND COLLEAGUES IN OUR HEARTS TODAY.

AND I WOULD LIKE TO REMIND EVERYONE THAT THE FIGHT AGAINST COVID-19 IS FAR FROM OVER.

PLEASE GET VACCINATED, GET PROTECT YOURSELF AND PROTECT THOSE THAT YOU LOVE.

AND WE WILL HOLD THEIR MEMORIES AS WE CONTINUE WITH OUR WORK TODAY.

SO, UM, I WOULD LIKE TO REMIND OUR COMMISSIONERS ONLINE THAT, UH, THAT ARE PRESENT VIA CONFERENCE TWO.

PLEASE MAKE SURE THAT YOU ARE VISIBLE AND CAMERA THROUGHOUT THE MEETING.

IF YOU NEED TO STEP AWAY, PLEASE LET US KNOW AND WE WILL HAVE TO PAUSE THE MEETING ACCORDINGLY.

SO THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR PARTICIPATION.

ALL RIGHT.

SO THE FIRST ITEM ON OUR AGENDA TODAY IS A CITIZEN COMMUNICATION, BUT I BELIEVE WE ARE HAVING SOME ISSUES WITH SOME OF THE CITIZEN COMMUNICATION, UH, PRESENCE.

SO I THINK WE WILL HAVE TO SKIP OVER THAT AND GO ON TO OUR NEXT AGENDA ITEM.

SO ITEM NUMBER ONE

[1. APPROVAL OF MINUTES – August 2, 2021 4:20pm-4:25pm]

IS THE APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES FROM AUGUST 2ND.

DO WE HAVE ANY EDITS, ANYTHING CHANGES, ANYTHING THAT NEEDS TO BE BROUGHT UP IF YOU WERE ONLINE AND YOU'D LIKE TO SPEAK, RAISE YOUR HAND AND HERE DO THE SAME, NO QUESTIONS, ANYONE ONLINE.

OH, ALL RIGHT.

BECAUSE THERE ARE NO QUESTIONS OR EDITS.

WE WILL COUNT THE MINUTES FROM LAST MONTH'S MEETING AUGUST 2ND AS APPROVED.

ALL RIGHT.

THE NEXT ITEM

[2.a. Public Safety Organizations Quarterly Report – Austin Fire Department (sponsors: Commissioner Hausenfluck and Gonzales) 4:25pm-4:40pm]

OF NEW BUSINESS IS THE PUBLIC SAFETY QUARTERLY REPORT.

THIS MONTH.

IT IS AUSTIN FIRE DEPARTMENT.

UH, BUT UNFORTUNATELY DUE TO THE SERVICES, THE FUNERAL SERVICES FOR FIREFIGHTER, RODNEY KELLY IN SAN ANTONIO, UH, OUR, UH, STAFF MEMBER, CHIEF ROB FIRES IS ATTENDING.

SO WE DO NOT HAVE HIM HERE TO PRESENT.

HOWEVER, I WOULD LIKE US TO GET HIS PRESENTATION UP, HAVE US, UM, WALK THROUGH.

AND THEN OF COURSE, IF THERE ARE ANY QUESTIONS WE WILL DOCUMENT THOSE, UM, FOR OUR NEXT, UH, FOR THE NEXT MEETING, UM, MINOR, UPSIDE DOWN.

ALL RIGHT.

YES.

OKAY.

SO IF YOU CAN JUST GO AHEAD AND MOVE PAST THAT FIRST SLIDE, PLEASE.

UM, YES.

SO THE NEW FIRE STATIONS HAVE OPENED ON JULY 18TH.

THAT WAS FIRE STATION 51 EMS STATION 40, AND THAT'S IN COUNCIL DISTRICT EIGHT.

AND I AM NOT DOING CHIEF VIRUS JUSTICE, BUT HE'LL HAVE TO FORGIVE ME THIS TIME.

ALL RIGHT, NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

THIS IS THE REQUEST FOR SERVICE Q3 COMPARISON BY DISTRICT FROM FYI 2020 Q3 TO FYI 20 21, 2 3.

AND THESE ARE ALL INCIDENTS REGARDLESS OF PRIORITY.

NEXT SLIDE.

THIS IS THE REQUEST FOR SERVICE Q3 COMPARISON BY SERVICE FIRE, MEDICAL RESCUE, HAZMAT, AND OTHER OTHER OF COURSE IS, UH, FIRE ALARMS, ET CETERA.

THE COMPARISON FROM Q3 2020 TO Q3 2021.

ALL RIGHT, NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

HERE ARE THE CODE THREE EMERGENCIES BY DISTRICT FROM LAST QUARTER, THIRD QUARTER Q3 LAST YEAR IN Q3 THIS YEAR.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

HERE ARE THE EMERGENCY INCIDENTS COMPARISON FROM FYI 22 F Y 21 2 3.

[00:05:01]

NEXT SLIDE PLEASE.

THIS NEXT SLIDE IS SLIDE SEVEN, EMERGENCY RESPONSE TIMES COMPARISON BY DISTRICT.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

HERE ARE THE COVID 19 AND AFD NUMBERS FROM 2020 THROUGH AUGUST 25TH.

WE'VE GOT POSITIVE COVID CASES, CASES COVERED BY WORKMAN'S COMP EMPLOYEES CURRENTLY OFF DUE TO COVID.

THIS WAS THROUGH THE END OF LAST MONTH.

UM, ADA NUMBERS, CITY EMERGENCY LEAVE NUMBERS AND CITY EMERGENCY LEAVE AND EXPANDED F M L A NEXT SLIDE.

THIS IS THE VACCINATION EFFORT BY AFD AND WE'LL HAVE MORE OF THIS INFORMATION ON THE LATER, UM, TOPIC AROUND VACCINATIONS AND THE NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

THIS IS THE UPDATE ON THEIR CADET HIRING AND NEXT SLIDE IS THERE, UH, AS ALWAYS, I THINK THIS IS A CALL FOR APPLICATIONS FOR AUSTIN FIRE DEPARTMENT.

SO HAPPY TO GET THAT PLUGIN FOR THEM AT THE END OF THIS PRESENTATION.

SO I KNOW WE WENT THROUGH THAT PRETTY QUICKLY.

DOES ANYONE HAVE ANY QUESTIONS THAT THEY WOULD LIKE US TO, UM, DOCUMENT FOR CHIEF FIRES? UM, I DID ACTUALLY, I KNOW THAT WE'VE BEEN LOOKING AT THE NUMBERS COMPARED TO, UM, 2020, AND IT'S ALWAYS SORT OF STARK TO SEE THE RISE, BECAUSE AT THIS POINT LAST YEAR WE WERE PRETTY LOCKED DOWN.

I WAS JUST HOPING THAT WE COULD MAYBE GET A SENSE OF TO 2019, HOW FIGURES ARE SORT OF, UM, COMPARING TO THAT.

AND SO THAT WE CAN GET A SENSE OF HOW NORMAL THIS VOLUME IS.

IT'S BEEN KIND OF DIFFICULT TO GET A SENSE OF HOW NORMAL THIS, THIS VOLUME OF CALLS AND INCIDENCES.

GREAT.

THANK YOU.

COMMISSIONER RAMIREZ, COMMISSIONER HODGSON FLAG, PLEASE.

UM, SIMILARLY, UM, IT SEEMS LIKE, YOU KNOW, WE'VE GOT THE NUMBER OF INCIDENTS, OBVIOUSLY HIGHER IN 2021 VERSE 2020, BUT THE RESPONSE TIMES ARE DOWN.

AND SO JUST ANY KIND OF COMMENTARY ON HOW THAT WOULD, HOW THAT IS HAPPENING.

YEAH.

ONE OF THE THINGS I DID LOOK, LOOK AT IS IN THE DISTRICT WHERE THEY OPENED THE NEW FIRE, UH, RESPONSE TIMES WERE DOWN.

SO I HAVE A FEELING THAT HAS SOMETHING TO DO WITH THAT ONE DISTRICT, BUT YEAH, THAT'S A GOOD POINT THEN ALL ACROSS ALL CAUSE CALLS ARE UP YOU'RE RIGHT.

ALL RIGHT.

ANYONE ONLINE HAVE ANY QUESTIONS THAT WE WANT TO DOCUMENT FOR CHIEF BUYERS? ALL RIGHT.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

MOVING ON TO

[2.b. Bi-annual wildfire readiness update-Resolution #20160512-016 (Sponsors: Commissioners Gonzales and Webber) 4:40pm -5:05pm]

THE NEXT, UH, NEW BUSINESS.

WE HAVE THE BIENNIAL WILDFIRE READINESS UPDATE ON RESOLUTION 20 16, 0 5 1 2 DASH 0 1 6.

AND I BELIEVE WE HAVE MR. JONES FROM AFD HERE.

GOOD AFTERNOON COMMISSIONERS.

AND THANK YOU FOR THE KIND WORDS OF OUR FALL PUBLIC SERVANTS.

I AM HAPPY TO STILL BE ABLE TO BE HERE WITH Y'ALL TODAY IN LIGHT OF THAT, AND LOOK FORWARD TO PROVIDING THIS UPDATE ON THE GREAT WORK THAT'S HAPPENING IN THE CITY OF AUSTIN RELATED TO WILDFIRE PREPAREDNESS.

YOU CAN MOVE TO THE NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

ONE THING THAT I DID WANT TO MAKE YOU AWARE OF IS WE'VE AUTOMATED OUR SIX MONTH ANNUAL BY UPDATE, AND YOU CAN ACCESS THROUGH THE AUSTIN AND TRAVIS COUNTY WILDFIRE HUB.

UM, AND I JUST SEARCHED FOR THE KEYWORD UPDATE.

YOU'LL BE ABLE TO FIND THIS LIVING DOCUMENT AT YOUR LEISURE.

AND OF COURSE, WE'RE ALWAYS MORE THAN HAPPY TO SHARE WITH YOU THE GREAT WORK WE'RE DOING THE ANSWER, ANY QUESTIONS, BUT I WANTED TO MAKE YOU

[00:10:01]

AWARE THAT WE'VE PAID THIS, UM, RESOURCE AVAILABLE AT YOUR FINGERTIPS.

SO WHAT I'LL BE TALKING TO HIM ABOUT TONIGHT IS THE NUMBER OF COMMUNITY WILDFIRE PROTECTION PLANS COMPLETED AND IMPLEMENTED THE NUMBER OF LOCAL LEVEL COMMUNITY WILDFIRE PROTECTION PLANS THAT STARTED, BUT HAVEN'T BEEN COMPLETED THE PERCENTAGE OF HIGH RISK AREAS IN WHICH IDENTIFICATION OF POTENTIAL LOCAL LEVEL CWPP IS STILL ONGOING.

AND THE NUMBER OF PUBLIC PRESENTATIONS AND HOME SYSTEMS WE PROVIDED AS WELL AS THE NUMBER OF SIDE, THE TYPE OF LOCATION OF OUR PANELS, MITIGATION ACTIVITIES, AS WELL AS THE HOURS THAT WE'VE DEDICATED TO TRAINING BOTH INTERNALLY AND EXTERNALLY.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

THE FIRST COMPONENT OR UPDATE IS, UH, THE NUMBER OF ONGOING CWPP USE WE HAVE IN THE CITY OF AUSTIN, UM, FOR THOSE COMMISSIONERS WHO, UM, WE HAVEN'T HAD A CHANCE TO SHARE THIS GREAT INFORMATION WITH AUSTIN HAS THE CITY COUNTY WIDE COMMUNITY WILDFIRE PROTECTION PLAN.

SO OUR COMMUNITIES ARE ESSENTIALLY COVERED UNDER AN UMBRELLA PLAN, BUT WE WORK TO BRING THESE STRATEGIES DOWN TO THE LOCAL LEVEL WHERE WE CAN GET GRASSROOTS, IMPLEMENTATION, IDENTIFY COMMUNITY DRIVEN PROJECTS AND HELP EMPOWER, ENGAGE COMMUNITY RESIDENTS THROUGH A STRUCTURED PLANNING PROCESS.

WE CURRENTLY LEAD THE STATE AND THE NUMBER OF COMMUNITIES THAT ARE NATIONALLY RECOGNIZED AS FIREWISE FIRE CWPP FOR ALL OF OUR FIREWISE COMMUNITIES.

AND WE'LL CONTINUE TO STRIVE TO LEAD THAT CHART.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

THE NEXT METRIC IS THE NUMBER OF LOCAL CWPP THAT WE STARTED AND NOT COMPLETED.

WE'RE CURRENTLY WORKING ON 21 MAYDAY LEVEL PLANS AND SUPPORTING OUR COMMUNITIES AND DEVELOPING THOSE PLANS AND TAKING OWNERSHIP OF REDUCING THEIR WILDFIRE RISK AND BY ACTIVE ENGAGED, WE MEAN THAT, UM, WE'VE INTERACTED WITH THESE COMMUNITIES AND WE'VE VISITED THE COMMUNITY AND PROVIDED A RISK ASSESSMENT.

AND WE'VE GOTTEN BUY-IN FROM THE COMMUNITY THAT THEY DO WANT TO TAKE ACTION TO MITIGATE WILDFIRE RISK.

SO JUST A LITTLE BIT OF BACKGROUND ON THE LANGUAGE WE USE.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

AND THAT'S A REQUIREMENT IS THE IDENTIFICATION OF HIGH RISK BLUE AREAS WHERE POTENTIAL CWPP ARE NEEDED.

AND WE FOCUSED ON THE HIGHEST RISK AREAS IN AUSTIN, WHICH IS ABOUT 14% OF OUR OVERALL RISK AREAS.

AND 51% OF THOSE HIGHEST RISK AREAS ARE COVERED BY A LOCAL LEVEL COMMUNITY WILDFIRE PROTECTION PLAN.

AND WE HAVE IDENTIFIED THE ADDITIONAL 49% OF THOSE OPPORTUNITIES THAT PRESENT THEMSELVES EITHER THROUGH NUDITY, RECEPTIVITY ENGAGEMENT BY COMMUNITY MEMBERS TO START THAT PLANNING PROCESS.

SO WE'LL CONTINUE TO FOCUS ON OUR HIGHEST RISK AREAS, BUT WE ALSO WANT TO ENCOURAGE COMMUNITIES THAT MAY NOT BE IN THE HIGH RISK CATEGORY, BUT STILL WANT TO TAKE ACTION, REACH OUT TO US, AND WE'LL WORK WITH YOU IN DEVELOPING A LOCAL LEVEL LAND FOR YOUR COMMUNITY.

NEXT SLIDE PLEASE.

OKAY.

THIS SLIDE SPEAKS TO THE NUMBER OF OTHER PRESENTATIONS THAT WE'VE DONE HERE IN THE CITY OF AUSTIN AND THE NUMBER OF ALMOST HAZARD ASSESSMENTS WE'VE PROVIDED TO THE PUBLIC WE'VE CONDUCTED AS WELL.

UM, COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT, PRESENTATION, AND EVENTS, UM, INCLUDING VIRTUAL EVENTS, LIKE OUR ANNUAL WILDFIRE SYMPOSIUM, AND WE'RE PIVOTING IN THE COVID ENVIRONMENT TO TRY TO REACH AS MANY PEOPLE AS WE POSSIBLY CAN WHILE MAINTAINING EDUCATION, UH, PUBLIC AND PRIVATE SAFETY.

SO WE CAN, WE CONTINUE TO CONDUCT HOME ASSESSMENTS WITH PROTOCOL IN PLACE, BUT WE'LL ADJUST THAT A QUARTERLY BASED ON THE RISK.

AND AS THAT CONTINUES TO INCREASE, WE MAY SHIFT OUR ACTIVITIES MORE OR VIRTUAL A MODEL AGAIN NEEDED.

SO WE REMAIN NIMBLE IN THE WAY THAT WE'RE REACHING OUT TO OUR COMMUNITIES AND ENGAGING THEM.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

THIS SLIDE SPEAKS TO THE NUMBER OF SIZE AND TYPE OF HILLS MITIGATION ACTIVITIES THAT WE'VE CONDUCTED IN THE LAST SIX MONTHS.

I'VE DEDUCTED THREE PRESCRIBED BURNS IN PARTNERSHIP WITH OUR LAND MANAGEMENT AGENCY AGENCIES IN THE CITY OF AUSTIN, NAMELY AUSTIN, MORE UTILITY.

THEY'VE BEEN VERY PROACTIVE AND THEY'RE BURNING THIS YEAR AND TAKING ADVANTAGE OF WINDOWS THAT WE HAVE THAT ARE CONDUCIVE TO BEING ABLE TO CONDUCT EFFECTIVE BURNS.

BUT WE'RE ALSO CONTINUING TO IMPLEMENT SHADED BUILD BREAKS, WHICH ARE STRATEGIC FUELS, MITIGATION THAT ARE CONDUCTED IN THE AREA OF COMMUNITY PROTECTION ZONES, WHERE THE DATA AND SCIENCE TELLS US WE HAVE THE GREATEST POTENTIAL FOR RISK REDUCTION.

THE GOAL WITH OUR SHADE OF PILL BREAKS OR DELETE THE CANOPY INTACT, REDUCE THE UNDERSTORY AND FUELS THAT CAN CARRY A FIRE FROM THE SURFACE UP INTO THE TOPS OF THE TREES AND LOWER THAT FIRE INTENSITY POTENTIAL DIRECTLY ADJACENT TO COMMUNITIES WHERE IT MATTERS THE MOST WE'VE PROTECTED 146 HOMES IN THE LAST SIX MONTHS AT A VALUE OF OVER $54 MILLION.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

UM,

[00:15:01]

THIS SPEAKS TO THE NUMBER OF TRAINING HOURS, BOTH RECEIVED AND CONDUCTED WITHIN THE FIRE DEPARTMENT.

AND WE'VE BEEN FOCUSING HEAVILY WITH THE INCEPTION OF OUR WILDFIRE BATTALION, MAKING SURE THAT OUR MEMBERS HAVE THAT NEXT LEVEL OF WILDFIRE TRAINING THAT BRACES AND PREPARES THEM FOR, UH, OUR FUTURE FIRE SEASON, WHICH WE KNOW IS INEVITABLE.

WE'VE CONDUCTED 6,065 TRAINING HOURS, AND THAT'S BEEN RECEIVED BY OUR DEPARTMENT AND OUR MEMBERS.

AND WE'VE PROVIDED OVER 5,360 TRAINING HOURS, UM, TO THE PUBLIC, UM, WHICH ALSO INCLUDES OUR RECENT, UM, RESPONDING TO THE INTERFACE, UH, FUNCTIONAL READINESS EXERCISE.

THAT WOULD BE A BIG SUCCESS FOR OUR DEPARTMENT AND OUR COMMUNITY.

NEXT SLIDE.

SO WITH THAT, I'M HAPPY TO TAKE ANY QUESTIONS REGARDING THE ELEMENTS OF THE COUNCIL RESOLUTION OR ANY QUESTIONS THE COMMISSIONERS MIGHT HAVE.

AND I THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME.

THANK YOU, MR. JONES.

I APPRECIATE YOUR TIME AND ENERGY TO THIS.

YOU ARE A, A, UM, WELCOME COMMENTATOR TO OUR MEETINGS.

I ENJOY ALL OF YOUR UPDATES.

UM, I THINK MY FIRST QUESTION TO YOU IS DO YOU FEEL LIKE YOU AND THE, UM, BATTALION, THE WILDFIRE READINESS BATTALION, WHAT ARE YOUR NEXT CHALLENGES? YOU GUYS ARE MAKING GREAT PROGRESS.

YOU'RE, YOU'RE ENGAGING WITH THE COMMUNITY.

YOU'RE, YOU'RE DOING ALL THESE THINGS THAT YOU SET OUT TO DO.

WHAT, WHAT'S YOUR NEXT CHALLENGE AND, AND WHAT CAN WE, IS THERE ANYTHING WE CAN DO TO HELP YOU? WELL, I THINK, UM, ESTABLISHING THE WILDFIRE DIET BATTALION WAS ONE OF THE SOLUTIONS TO OUR BIGGEST CHALLENGE, WHICH WE KNOW WE'RE GOING TO EXPERIENCE ANOTHER EXTREME FIRE SEASON.

IT'S A, IT'S AN APP ABILITY.

UM, SO THERE ARE CHALLENGES THAT WE'RE EXPERIENCING NOW OR THE GOOD CHALLENGES OF FORMING AND NORMING AND STANDING UP THE BATTALION AND GETTING IT OPERATIONALLY READY IN A VERY SHORT AMOUNT OF TIME.

THE GOOD NEWS IS THAT'S GOING TO CREATE A HUGE MULTIPLIER EFFECT OF SUBJECT MATTER EXPERTS WITHIN AUSTIN FIRE DEPARTMENT, UM, WHICH WE FEEL LIKE WILL HELP US REACH A CRITICAL MASS AND THAT WHEN WE DO THE NATURAL EVOLUTION WILL, UM, EXPANSION OF WILD-LAND CAPABILITIES ACROSS THE AFE, WHICH WAS ALWAYS THE PLAN OF WE'RE EXCITED TO CONFRONT THE CHALLENGES THAT WE'RE FACING IN RELATION TO EXPANDING OUR ASTI AND, UM, ENGAGING RESIDENTS TO UNDERSTAND WHY OUR RETIREMENT EXISTS, IT'S TO HELP PROTECT STRUCTURES AND LIVE STARING AT A WILD LAND FIRE, BUT WE HAVE TO HAVE OPERATION AND PARTNERSHIP FROM THE PUBLIC FOR THIS WILDFIRE BATTALION TO BE AS SUCCESSFUL AS POSSIBLE.

SO WE'RE TRAINING OVER TIME MEMBERS SPECIFICALLY ON WILD LAND FIREFIGHTING, BUT WE'RE NOT STOPPING THERE.

WE'RE PUTTING WITH THE SKILLS TO ALMOST ASSESSMENTS FOR OUR COMMUNITY MEMBERS AT RISK, AND TO GET OUT THERE AND UNDERSTAND THE CHALLENGE THEY'RE FACING THROUGH THAT TYPE OF INTERACTION AND PLAY.

THANK YOU.

UM, IS THERE ANY OTHER QUESTIONS FOR MR. JONES? EXCELLENT, PLEASE GO AHEAD, SIR.

UM, MR. JONES, I JUST, I NOTICED PARTICULARLY ON THE FIRST FEW SLIDES, UM, THAT THERE'S BEEN A HUGE AMOUNT OF EDUCATION AND OUT REACH AND PREPAREDNESS IN DISTRICT 10, UM, WHICH IS FABULOUS.

AND I KNOW THAT THAT'S DEFINITELY A HIGH RISK AREA, UM, BUT REALLY, UH, NOT AS MUCH AT ALL IN A DISTRICT ONE.

UM, AND PARTICULARLY ON THE EAST SIDE, WHICH, UM, STILL HAS A SIGNIFICANT WILDFIRE RISK.

UM, AND I'M WONDERING, UH, YOU KNOW, MAYBE WHAT WE CAN DO AS COMMISSIONERS AND, UH, WHAT THE FIRE DEPARTMENT CAN DO, UM, TO, UH, SORT OF, UH, ADDRESS THAT IMBALANCE AND MAKE SURE THAT, UH, THE RESIDENTS ON THE EAST SIDE, UM, ARE, UH, GETTING AS MUCH, UM, COMMUNITY EDUCATION AND, UM, UH, BEING AS PREPARED, UH, FOR THE WILDFIRE RISK THAT EXISTS ON THE EAST SIDE.

YEAH.

AND THAT'S ABSOLUTELY OUR GOAL TOO.

SO THANKS FOR BRINGING THAT IMPORTANT QUESTION.

LIKE, UM, SOME OF WHAT WE WE DO IS REACTIONARY BASED ON COMMUNITIES WANTING TO TAKE ACTION AND REACHING OUT AND AGING US.

WE DO MAKE AN EFFORT TO BE PROACTIVE AND GET INFORMATION OUT TO COMMUNITIES.

BUT WHAT I THINK WOULD BE THE BIGGEST HEALTH IS HELPING YOUR, UM, DISTRICT MEMBERS UNDERSTAND THEIR RISKS.

THAT'S ALWAYS OUR FIRST LEVEL.

AND WITHOUT THAT, WE DON'T REALLY GET A LOT OF ENGAGEMENT, BUT ONCE THEY UNDERSTAND THE RISK, UM, HAVE THEM REACH OUT TO US, WE'RE EAGER TO HELP THESE COMMUNITIES PLAN.

IF YOU HAVE A FOOT IN THE DOOR AND A WAY TO ENGAGE WITH THEM, WE ABSOLUTELY WANT TO CAPITALIZE ON THAT.

WE RECENTLY ADDED MORE BROAD REACHING OUTREACH BILLBOARDS AND OTHER CAMPAIGNS THAT, UM, WE WILL BRING VISIBILITY TO THE WILDFIRE SITUATION.

SO WE HOPE WITH THE COMBINATION OF OUR NEW WILDFIRE HUB, WHICH PUTS OFF OUR INFORMATION, EVERYBODY'S FINGERTIPS PUSHED BY CITY LEADERSHIP LIKE YOURSELF AND THE COUNCIL MEMBERS TO INCLUDE WILDFIRE IN THEIR DISTRICT NEWSLETTERS

[00:20:01]

AND OTHER, UM, ONGOING EFFORTS HAS REALLY GRADED THAT PEAK IN INTEREST.

AND WE WANT TO REPLICATE THAT WHEREVER WE CAN DRIVE SLOWLY, RIGHT? WE'VE GOT RISKS ALL ACROSS THE CITY AND EVERYONE DESERVES TO HAVE THEIR INFORMATION TO PREPARE THEMSELVES ANOTHER RESOURCE I WOULD DIRECT FOLKS TO IS, UM, OUR WILDFIRE VULNERABILITY.

YOU WERE ONE OF THE FIRST MUNICIPALITIES IN THE COUNTRY TO DEVELOP A VIEWER BASED ON NOT JUST YOUR SUSCEPTIBILITY TO WILDFIRE IMPACTS, BUT YOUR RESILIENCY AND ABILITY TO RECOVER FROM THOSE IMPACTS.

SO THAT'S ANOTHER GREAT TOOL THAT WE USE TO ENGAGE OUR VULNERABLE POPULATIONS.

THANK YOU, MR. JONES, COMMISSIONER BERNHARDT.

IS THAT, UH, DO YOU HAVE ANY FOLLOWUPS? NO, THAT WAS VERY HELPFUL.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

AND WE APPRECIATE YOUR TIME.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

ALL RIGHT, MOVING ON TO OUR

[2.c. Update from Public Safety Organizations on Vaccinated Personnel (sponsors: Commissioner Webber and Bernhardt) 5:05pm -5:25pm]

NEXT ITEM OF NEW BUSINESS.

WE HAVE AN UPDATE OF THE PUBLIC SAFETY ORGANIZATIONS ON VACCINATED PERSONNEL, AND I BELIEVE WE HAVE A DIVISION CHIEF PIKER FROM AUSTIN, TRAVIS COUNTY EMS. AND THERE WAS SOMEONE FROM APD.

I APOLOGIZE.

I DON'T KNOW THE NAME AGAIN.

RANDALL RICK RANDALL.

HI, THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

OKAY, SO LET'S GO THROUGH THIS.

UM, THE FIRST ONE ON THE TOP IS EMS. SO CAN WE START WITH YOU MR. PIKER CHAIR? IF I COULD REALLY QUICK GO, GO AHEAD PLEASE.

OKAY.

IT'S REBECCA WEBER.

I DON'T KNOW IF YOU CAN SEE ME.

UM, SO THIS IS MINE AND REBECCA BERNHARD'S REQUEST, AND I THINK EVERYONE KNOWS WHERE THIS IS COMING FROM.

THERE'S BEEN THESE JUST PROJECT DEATHS OF PUBLIC SAFETY PERSONNEL.

AND, UM, A LOT OF US IN THE COMMUNITY ARE WONDERING, YOU KNOW, WHAT WE'RE DOING TO PROTECT OUR PUBLIC SERVANTS.

AND SO WE ASKED EACH DEPARTMENT TO FILL OUT THE SAME CHART, AND THEN WE ALSO ASKED THEM TO ATTACH AS BACKUPS EACH POLICY THAT RELATES TO MASKING OR, UH, VACCINATIONS.

AND WE DID NOT RECEIVE ANY POLICIES.

SO I THINK IT WOULD BE A GOOD IDEA AS WE GO THROUGH THE DEPARTMENTS PRESENTATIONS FOR THEM TO AT LEAST, UH, YOU KNOW, GIVE US THE NAME OR NUMBER OF THAT POLICY.

AND, UH, HOPEFULLY WE CAN LOOK THOSE UP THINGS.

THANK YOU, PERMISSION OR WEBER.

AND WE WILL FOLLOW UP ON THAT.

OKAY.

SO IF WE CAN START WITH, UH, EMS, SIR.

HELLO, IT'S AT PIKER DIVISION CHIEF WITH AUSTIN, TRAVIS COUNTY EMS. THE PAPERWORK THAT WAS SUBMITTED REFLECTS THAT, UH, 90% OF OUR SWORN STAFF IS VACCINATED AS OF THE DATE OF SUBMISSION AS OF TODAY, 91% OF THE VALUE OF THE SWORN STAFF IS VACCINATED.

UH, THERE IS A HIGHER PERCENTAGE IN EMS THAN IN THE PARTNER AGENCIES OF BREAKTHROUGH CASES.

WE BELIEVE THAT THAT'S PROBABLY DUE TO THE FACT THAT THERE'S A LARGE, SIGNIFICANTLY LARGER NUMBER OF PEOPLE IN OUR AGENCIES THAT ARE VACCINATED.

SO ANY CASES WOULD LIKELY FALL IN THE, IN THE VACCINATED POPULATION.

THEY'RE ALSO GOING INTO HIGH RISK ENVIRONMENTS, SUCH AS LONG-TERM CARE FACILITIES, THE HOSPITALS, OTHER COMMUNITY, UM, OR OTHER GROUP COMMUNITY AREAS WOULD POTENTIALLY HAVE A HIGHER PREVALENCE OF COVID IN THOSE ENVIRONMENTS.

IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS SPECIFICALLY ABOUT THE DATA, I'D BE HAPPY TO ANSWER IT WITH REFERENCE TO THE QUESTION ABOUT THE POLICY.

THERE IS NO SPECIFIC POLICY IN EMS REQUIRING THE USE OF MASKING.

WE JUST REFER THE, UM, WE REFER THE SWORN STAFF TO THE CITY MANAGER'S POLICY THAT REQUIRES IT IN CITY BUILDINGS AND ON CITY PROPERTY.

AND SO WHEN THEY ARE IN STATION, UH, OR IN AN AMBULANCE, WHICH IS CITY PROPERTY, THEY ARE REQUIRED TO MASK DURING THOSE PERIODS, AS WELL AS DURING THEIR ENGAGEMENT WITH THE PUBLIC, DURING A, UH, VARYING A CALL CONTACT.

SO DURING, DURING A CALL FOR SERVICE, THEY WOULD BE MASKED THE ENTIRE TIME, NOT JUST IN A FACE COVERING, BUT AT AN N 95 RESPIRATOR.

DOES ANYONE HAVE ANY QUESTIONS FOR, AND THIS CHAIR, THIS IS CHIEF BROWN.

I JUST, UM, I APOLOGIZE FOR NOT SENDING IN OUR VACCINATION POLICY.

IT'S POLICY 4 0 4 OF OUR POLICY MANUAL LOT COULD SEND IT TO THE COMMISSION.

IT DOES NOT HAVE ANYTHING REGARDING THE COVID VACCINE.

IT TALKS ABOUT OUR NORMAL VACCINATIONS REQUIRED UPON ENTRY INTO THE DEPARTMENT.

SO, UH, IT DOES NOT SAY ANYTHING ABOUT THE COVID

[00:25:01]

VACCINE BEING REQUIRED.

UM, THERE IS A MANDATE FROM THE GOVERNOR AND WE'RE LOOKING AT OPTIONS, WHAT WE CAN DO IN THE FUTURE, UM, UH, WITH OUR LEGAL DEPARTMENT.

THANK YOU TWO FROM, UH, COMMISSIONER WEBER, PLEASE GO AHEAD.

YES.

I WAS JUST HOPING THAT WE COULD GET THE POLICY NUMBER OF THE POLICIES REGARDING, UH, PPE PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT THAT YOU MENTIONED, COMMISSIONER, WHEREVER YOU'RE LOOKING FOR OUR POLICY ON PPE OR VACCINATIONS.

I'M, I'M HOPING TO COME OUT OF THIS, UH, MEETING WITH A LIST OF EVERY POLICY THAT HAS TO DO WITH MASKING OR PPE OR VACCINATIONS.

AND SO YOU'VE TOLD US THAT 4 0 4 RELATES TO VACCINATIONS, BUT DOES NOT RELATE TO THE COVID VACCINATION.

I UNDERSTAND THAT YOU'RE DOING WHAT YOU CAN LEGALLY.

AND SO I'M JUST, I'M ASKING FOR THE, THE IDENTIFICATION OF THE OTHER POLICIES THAT RELATE TO THIS AGENDA ITEM.

OKAY.

WE CAN SEND IN TO THE COMMISSION, THE POLICIES REGARDING OUR, UH, PPE USAGE ON CALLS.

AND WE'LL SEND THAT TO YOU THOUGH.

AND THAT'S THE ONLY OTHER POLICY THAT WITH REGARDS TO COVID THAT EMS HAS, UM, THAT'S THE, WE FOLLOW ALL THE CDC GUIDELINES.

WE ARE, UM, WE SEND OUT UPDATES AS FAR AS PPE UTILIZATION THAT'S CHANGED EVER SINCE THE BEGINNING OF COVID, UM, REQUIRING DIFFERENT TYPES OF PPE.

UM, UM, SO THAT THAT'S AN EVOLVING PROCESS THAT WE'VE TOGETHER WITH THE, UH, OPS OF CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER, UM, DR.

ASCOT IN, IN, IN UPDATED AMONGST ALL THE PUBLIC SAFETY AGENCIES THAT WHEN PPE HAS REQUIREMENTS HAVE CHANGED, THOSE HAVE BEEN COORDINATED AMONGST ALL THE AGENCIES AND SENT OUT TO OUR STAFF.

AND WE CAN, WE CAN SEND YOU THE LATEST ONE.

UH, AGAIN, IT'S CHANGED SINCE THE BEGINNING.

YEAH.

I THINK WE'RE TRYING TO GET BOTH OF YOU FROM THE BEGINNING AND ALSO A SNAPSHOT OF YOU AS OF SEPTEMBER 1ST.

SO I THINK IT WOULD BE APPROPRIATE FOR YOU TO CIRCULATE EVERY POLICY HAVING TO DO WITH BASICALLY KEEPING PUBLIC SAFETY PERSONNEL SAFE FROM COVID ON THE JOB.

THAT'S WHAT WE'RE ASKING FOR.

AND SO, YES, WE WOULD LIKE TO SEE THE, I GUESS, MOST CURRENT PPE, UH, IS IT, UH, IS IT A POLICY, YOUR RECOMMENDATION? WHAT DO YOU CALL IT? THAT GUIDANCE? IT'S A GUIDELINE.

OKAY.

ANY FURTHER QUESTIONS FOR EMS COMMISSIONER RAMIREZ? UM, I HAD A QUESTION JUST IN TERMS OF THE NUMBERS THAT WERE GIVEN TO US, IF YOU COULD EXPLAIN THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN INSTANCES AND PERSONS AND THE NUMBER OF SWORN PERSONNEL, I DIDN'T NECESSARILY UNDERSTAND THAT DISTINCTION.

SO I WROTE THIS CHART, UM, LET'S SEE, YOU'RE LOOKING AT THE THIRD ROW NUMBER OF SWORN PERSONNEL WITH COPE THAT HAVE BEEN COVID POSITIVE.

AND THEN YOU'RE COMPARING THAT TO THE PERCENTAGE THAT IS THAT YOUR NOTE IN EMS RESPONSES, THERE WAS A NUMBER OF SWORN PERSONNEL OFF BECAUSE OF COVID BECAUSE OF EXPOSURE TO COVID PLUS, AND THEN THERE'S THE NUMBERS BROKEN DOWN INTO TWO CATEGORIES.

IT'S BROKEN DOWN INTO INSTANCES AND PERSONS, AND THERE'S A SLIGHT VARIATION IN THOSE NUMBERS.

SO I WAS JUST TRYING TO FIGURE OUT WHAT THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN WHAT, WHAT THAT MEANS, WHAT ARE INSTANCES VERSUS PERSONS.

I SEE.

YEAH.

SO THEY PUT SOMETHING SEPARATE UP IN THERE.

THANK YOU.

THE NUMBER OF INSTANCES AND THE NUMBER, THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE NUMBER OF INSTANCES AND THE NUMBER OF PERSONNEL IS THAT MULTIPLE PERSONNEL WERE OFF MULTIPLE TIMES.

SO THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE REFLECTS THE NUMBER OF SWORN PEOPLE ON THE INSTANCES REFLECT THE NUMBER OF TIMES THAT SOMEBODY ENTERED INTO THAT CATEGORY.

OKAY.

THANK YOU FOR THAT.

ANY OTHER QUESTIONS FOR EMS? ALL RIGHT.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

UM, SINCE FIRE IS NOT REPRESENTED, LET'S MOVE TO, UM, MR. RANDALL AND POLICE.

OH, YOU CAN HEAR ME.

I'M HAVING AUDIO PROBLEMS. I'M HAVING TO LISTEN TO YOU BY PHONE.

OKAY.

YOU HEAR ME? YES, WE CAN HEAR YOU.

OKAY.

SO I, I'M ASSUMING THAT ONE OF THE FIRST QUESTIONS THAT WE'RE GOING TO HAVE IS, UH, THE FACT THAT YOU HAVE, UH, UNKNOWN ON THE NUMBER OF SWORN PERSONNEL WITH THE VACCINE.

CAN YOU EXPLAIN WHY, UM, YOU DON'T HAVE THAT NUMBER? IS THIS JUST NOT SOMETHING, UH, APD IS TRACKING AND YOU HEAR ME? YES.

OH, OKAY.

PEOPLE ARE NODDING.

OKAY, GOOD.

UM, SO I CAN ANSWER SPECIFIC QUESTIONS

[00:30:01]

ARE, UH, WE DID A SURVEY, UH, BACK, UH, IN APRIL OF LAST YEAR TO, UH, DETERMINE HOW MANY PEOPLE WOULD GET VACCINATED IF A VACCINE WERE AVAILABLE.

UH, THOSE ARE THE LATEST NUMBERS THAT, THAT WE HAVE.

UH, WE ESTIMATE THAT ABOUT 50% OF OUR POPULATION AT THIS TIME HAS BEEN VACCINATED GIVEN THAT OUR FOLKS COULD BE VACCINATED AT THE WELLNESS CENTER.

THE PUBLIC SECTOR WELLNESS CENTER COULD BE VACCINATED.

IF THEY WORKED, FOR EXAMPLE, AN OVERTIME CONTRACT WITH A SETON HOSPITAL, THEY COULD HAVE BEEN VACCINATED THE HOSPITAL.

AND THEN OF COURSE, PEOPLE CAN GET VACCINATED AT ANY LOCATION, WALMART AGB, ET CETERA.

BUT THOSE ARE OUR BEST GUESTS THAT OUR BEST GUESSES ABOUT FIT.

ABOUT HALF OF OUR EMPLOYEES HAVE BEEN VACCINATED.

UM, AND, UH, AS FAR AS POLICIES ARE CONCERNED, UM, WE WOULD COMMISSIONER WHOEVER WE WOULD OPERATE MORE IN THE REALM OF TRAINING BULLETINS FOR COVID SINCE, UH, WE DIDN'T ANTICIPATE IT AS A LONG-TERM ISSUE.

SO WE WOULDN'T HAVE CREATED A POLICY THAT THEN LATER ON WE'D HAVE TO AMEND, UH, INSTEAD WE USE TRAINING BULLETINS, WHICH WE CAN UPDATE, AND I'LL BE HAPPY TO SEND YOU THOSE, UH, THE TRAINING BULLETINS ADDRESS, THE WEARING OF MASKS ON CALLS, WHERE THE, UM, THERE'S SOMEONE THERE THAT'S, COVID POSITIVE.

SO THERE'S EXTRA PPE.

THAT'S BEEN ISSUED THAT THE PERSONNEL ARE EXPECTED TO DAWN WHEN THEY'RE IN THOSE KINDS OF CALLS.

AND THEN THERE'S OUR TRAINING BOLTON ALSO OUTLINES KIND OF STANDARD BEHAVIOR, UH, WHEN THERE'S NOT NECESSARILY A COVID EXPOSURE, UH, THAT FOLKS ARE HAVING, AS YOU CAN SEE FROM OUR NUMBERS, OUR BREAKTHROUGH INFECTION RATE IS UNDER 2%.

AND THAT PROBABLY GOING BACK TO WHAT EMS SAID, THAT PROBABLY GOES BACK TO THE FACT THAT WE HAVE, UH, A SMALLER PERCENTAGE OF OUR POPULATION THAT'S BEEN VACCINATED.

SO MOST OF OUR INFECTIONS SINCE THE 1ST OF MARCH HAVE BEEN, UM, BECAUSE OF PEOPLE BEING UNVACCINATED AND THAT'S ABSOLUTELY TRUE OF OUR TWO RECENT FATALITIES, UH, BECAUSE OF THOSE NEITHER ONE OF THOSE WERE VACCINATED.

I'D BE HAPPY TO ANSWER ANY MORE SPECIFIC QUESTIONS YOU HAVE ABOUT OUR DATA.

ANY OTHER QUESTIONS FOR ABD? UH, COMMISSIONER WEBBER, PLEASE GO AHEAD.

YES, YES, SIR.

UM, MY, MY QUESTION IS ABOUT THE TRAINING.

I CAN'T HEAR YOU ON THE PHONE NOW.

OKAY.

WHAT SHOULD I DO? CHAIR? JUST GO LIKE THIS AND HENDERSON.

CAN YOU PUT ME BACK ON SPEAKERPHONE? OKAY.

OKAY.

WE'RE DOING THIS REALLY? THIS LIKE STRETCH THE CAN TIGHTER.

OKAY.

SORRY.

CAN YOU HEAR ME? YES.

OKAY.

THANK YOU.

UM, SO MY QUESTION IS ABOUT THE TRAINING BULLETINS AND YES, WE WOULD VERY MUCH APPRECIATE GETTING THE LATEST ONE OF THOSE.

UM, IS IT, IS IT, UH, IS IT AS A SWORN OFFICER REQUIRED TO FOLLOW TRAINING BULLETINS? IS THAT PART OF THEIR JOB? YES.

OKAY.

SO LIKE YOUR DISTINCTION ABOUT POLICY IS NOT NECESSARILY, I THINK WHAT IS MORE LIKE A, THE COMMON WAY THAT I THINK PEOPLE MIGHT USE THE WORD POLICY.

YOU'RE SAYING THERE IS NO POLICY, BUT REALLY THERE IS A POLICY, RIGHT? JUST, IT'S A DIFFERENT WAY OF TALKING ABOUT POLICIES.

DO YOU WANT TO SPEAK TO THAT? YES.

IT'S NOT CODIFIED.

SO WHEN WE CREATE A POLICY THAT IT RECEIVES A CODE AND GOES INTO OUR POLICIES AND PROCEDURES MANUAL, THE TRAINING BULLETINS FOR COVID, IN FACT, MOST OF THE, THE REACTIONS OR ACTIONS WE HAVE TAKEN AS A RESULT OF COVID.

SO FOR EXAMPLE, WHEN WE SUSPENDED OUR BEARD, UH, THE POLICY THAT WE HAD THAT ALLOWED BEARDS TO BE WORN, WE SUSPENDED THAT WITH A TRAINING BULLETIN THAT SAID BECAUSE OF THE BEARDS INTERFERED WITH THE MASKS, UH, CEILING, THAT FOR THE, FOR THE DURATION UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE THERE WAS THAT THEY COULDN'T GROW, THEY COULDN'T HAVE FACIAL HAIR.

UM, SO TRAINING WAS DIRECTED, RIGHT? YES.

OKAY.

YEAH.

YEAH.

SO I THINK, I THINK THERE IS, YOU KNOW, I, I WROTE A BROAD REQUESTS FOR POLICIES AND WE GOT NO POLICIES.

AND I THINK THE PROBLEM HERE IS THAT WE'RE ALL TALKING ABOUT A DIFFERENT DEFINITION OF POLICY, BUT WHAT WE'RE TRYING TO UNDERSTAND IS WHAT ARE PUBLIC SAFETY PERSONNEL REQUIRED TO DO? UM, AS FAR AS KEEPING THEMSELVES SAFE, WHEN THEY'RE TAKING CALLS, THAT'S WHAT WE WANT.

THAT'S THE, THE WRITTEN, UH, GUIDANCE DIRECTIVES, WHAT HAVE YOU, WHATEVER YOU'RE GOING TO CALL IT.

SO I'M HAPPY TO SEND YOU OUR TRAINING BULLETINS.

I THINK EVERYONE'S AWARE THAT WE ARE IN A REALLY PECULIAR SITUATION WITH THE CONFLICT BETWEEN THE GOVERNOR'S ORDER AND THE MAYOR'S

[00:35:01]

ORDER REGARDING MASKING.

SO WE HAVE TRAINING BULLETINS AND DIRECTIVES ABOUT WEARING MASKS AND CITY POLICY AND CITY FACILITIES OR THE MAYOR'S ORDER.

WE STILL HAVE THAT TENSION BETWEEN, UH, ANY PENALTIES THAT MIGHT BE IMPOSED FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT WEARING THE MASK, GIVEN THE GOVERNOR'S ORDER AND WOULD BE HELPFUL.

I THINK FOR ALL THREE OF OUR AGENCIES TO HAVE THAT WORKED OUT, DOES APD BELIEVE THAT THE GOVERNOR'S MANDATE DOES NOT ALLOW, UH, YOU KNOW, LEADERSHIP TO, TO FIND OUT WHO IS VACCINATED? IS THAT PART OF THE PROBLEM? WHY ATB DOESN'T KNOW HOW MANY OF ITS SWORN PERSONNEL ARE VACCINATED? I THINK THE QUESTION IS WHAT'S WHAT CAN BE DONE REGARDING ENFORCEMENT OF MASK WEARING, GIVEN THE STATE OF THE GOVERNOR'S AWARD? SO THERE'S NOTHING PREVENTING APD FROM FINDING OUT WHICH EMPLOYEES ARE VACCINATED AND WHICH ARE NOT, OH, NOW YOU'RE MASKING, VACCINATION ARE TWO DIFFERENT THINGS.

WE HAVE, WE HAVE KEPT THE WHOLE VACCINATION INQUIRY, UM, SEPARATE IN TERMS OF, OF, UH, MEDICAL INFORMATION.

WE DON'T ASK, UH, WE DO HAVE VACCINATION REQUIREMENTS FOR STUFF LIKE HEPATITIS.

UM, AND, BUT, BUT COVID HAS BEEN TREATED SOMEWHAT DIFFERENTLY BECAUSE OF THE CONTROVERSY.

OKAY.

SO WHAT I'M GETTING AT IS I JUST WANT TO RULE OUT THE POSSIBILITY THAT ABD IS NOT FINDING OUT WHICH OF ITS EMPLOYEES ARE VACCINATED BECAUSE THE GOVERNOR WON'T LET THEM, NO, WE'RE NOT INQUIRING ABOUT VACCINATION STATUS PERIOD, UNLESS SOMEBODY TURNS UP COVID POSITIVE AND THAT'S A CHOICE THAT'S BEEN MADE BY THE ROOMMATE THAT WHO'S THE DECIDER OF THAT.

UM, I WILL, I BELIEVE OUR WORKER'S COMP PEOPLE, OUR RISK MANAGEMENT PEOPLE MADE THAT DECISION.

COMMISSIONER RAMIREZ, PLEASE GO AHEAD.

MY QUESTION IS, UM, YOU MENTIONED THAT THERE ARE REQUIREMENTS AROUND, UM, VACCINATION FOR, UH, FOR OTHER VACCINES.

CAN WE GET THAT POLICY OR THAT THOSE GUIDELINES, WHATEVER THEY MAY BE CALLED SO THAT WE CAN SEE, UM, WHAT IS CURRENTLY IN PLACE WITH REGARDS TO VACCINES OVERALL? SURE.

AND, UH, I THINK WE'RE GOING TO BE VERY SIMILAR TO WHAT EMS DOES WITH THAT REGARD.

OKAY.

THANK YOU.

COMMISSIONER SIERRA MARLOWE, PLEASE GO AHEAD.

ALL RIGHT.

UM, MR. RANDALL, YOU'VE BEEN INVOLVED WITH, UH, HEALTH AND SAFETY FOR THE APD AND CITY EMPLOYEES FOR QUITE SOME TIME.

ONE OF THE NUMBERS THAT JUMPS OUT AT ME IS THE DISCREPANCY BETWEEN APD EMS AND AUSTIN FIRE IN TERMS OF PERCENTAGE OF SWORN THAT ARE VACCINATED.

I KNOW YOU CAN'T HAVE ANY DEFINITIVE ANSWERS.

YOU DON'T HAVE A RESEARCH STUDY HERE, BUT GIVEN YOUR EXPERIENCE, YOUR EXPOSURE TO FIRST RESPONDERS, I'M HOPING THAT YOU CAN PROVIDE SOME INSIGHT INTO WHY WE HAVE SUCH A LARGE DISCREPANCY IN THE PERCENTAGE OF SWORN THAT ARE VACCINATED AND WHAT YOU AND OTHERS AT APD HAVE THOUGHT ABOUT TO TRY AND SHIFT THOSE NUMBERS IN A DIRECTION THAT CAN PREVENT FURTHER TRAGIC LOSSES OF LIFE FOR WHAT IS CURRENTLY THE LEADING CAUSE OF DEATH FOR POLICE ACROSS THE U S NOT JUST IN 2021, BUT IN 2020 FAIR.

AND I CAN ANSWER THE LAST QUESTION.

FIRST, WE HAVE CONTINUED TO PUT OUT, UM, REGULAR INFORMATION, ENCOURAGING PEOPLE TO GET VACCINATIONS.

WE HAVE DONE POP-UP CLINICS, UH, VACCINE CLINICS AT SUBSTATIONS IN ORDER TO GET PEOPLE TO SPONTANEOUSLY KIND OF RESPOND AND, AND GET A VACCINE.

AND WE ARE IN THE PROCESS RIGHT NOW OF CREATING A VIDEO WHERE WE'VE HAD A COUPLE OF OUR EMPLOYEES WHO HAVE, UH, WHO DIDN'T GET VACCINATED, GOT, COVID GOT VERY SICK, UH, FORTUNATELY RECOVERED, BUT THEY'RE GOING ON TO TELL THEIR STORY PUBLICLY NOW TO ENCOURAGE THEIR COWORKERS, TO GET VACCINATED WHAT'S HAPPENING IN AUSTIN IS NOT RADICALLY DIFFERENT.

FROM WHAT WE SEE ACROSS THE COUNTRY.

POLICE AGENCIES ACROSS THE COUNTRY ARE GENERALLY VACCINATED AT A LESS ROBUST RACE RATE THAN FIRE AND EMS. AND I THINK THAT SOME OF THAT HAS TO DO WITH THE FACT THAT FIRE AND EMS ARE MORE CONSIDERED MEDICAL CARE PROVIDERS THEN ARE POLICE OFFICERS.

AND THEN THERE'S A WHOLE OTHER SOCIAL CONTEXT IN WHICH PEOPLE ARE, HAVE MISINFORMED

[00:40:01]

IDEAS ABOUT VACCINATIONS AS A DEPARTMENT, WE'RE DOING EVERYTHING WE CAN TO PUT OUT SOLID INFORMATION AND KEEP AND HELP PEOPLE MAKE A RATIONAL DECISION FOR THEIR HEALTH AND FOR THE HEALTH OF THEIR COWORKERS.

THANK YOU.

ANY OTHER QUESTIONS FOR APD? ALL RIGHT.

THANK YOU.

YES, PLEASE GO AHEAD.

ONE MORE.

SAY I MESSAGED A CHIEF HENDERSON, UM, AND ASKED HER IF SHE COULD JUST EXPLAIN TO US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THE CURRENT GUIDANCE OR DIRECTIVE, WHATEVER WE'RE CALLING IT AT APD ABOUT TAKING CALLS WHERE A COVID, UM, COVID, UH, EXPOSURE IS SUSPECTED AND WHETHER THAT'S UP TO OFFICER DISCRETION OR, UM, OR WHAT WE PLEASE TELL US.

YES MA'AM.

SO IN RESPONDING TO THE CALL ENDED UP ITSELF.

OFFICERS DO NOT HAVE DISCRETION AS TO WHETHER OR NOT THEY WERE GOING TO RESPOND TO THAT PARTICULAR CALL FOR SERVICE.

NOW, ONCE THEY UNDERSTAND THAT THERE'S A POSSIBLE COVID, UH, EXPOSURE OR COVID ENCOUNTER, THEN WE ARE STRONGLY ENCOURAGING TO USE THEIR PPE IN THOSE ENCOUNTERS.

OR IF THEY'RE GOING TO HAVE AN INTERACTION, IF IT CAN MOVE OUTSIDE OF CLOSE QUARTERS OR OPEN AIRSPACE, THEY'RE BEING STRONGLY ENCOURAGED TO DO THAT, BUT THEY DO NOT HAVE THE DISCRETION OR THE ABILITY TO REFUSE TO RESPOND TO A CALL WHERE THERE'S A POSSIBLE COVID RELATED PATIENT OR POSSIBLE COVID EXPOSURE.

COMMISSIONER RAMIREZ, PLEASE GO AHEAD.

A QUICK FOLLOWUP QUESTION TO THAT.

SO DOES THAT MEAN THAT THEY, THAT THEY ARE NOT REQUIRED TO WEAR PPE ON ALL CONTACTS WITH THE PUBLIC? THAT IS CORRECT.

THEY ARE NOT MANDATED TO WEAR PPES ON ALL CONTEXTS.

THAT IS CORRECT.

OKAY.

AND THAT'S DIFFERENT FROM EMS, IS THAT CORRECT? CAUSE WITH EMS, IF, IF CHIEF BROWN IS STILL THERE, UM, EMS, I BELIEVE THEY'RE REQUIRED RIGHT NOW TO MASK DURING ALL CALL CONTACT.

IS THAT CORRECT? IS CORRECT.

OKAY.

THANK YOU.

I HAVE A QUESTION.

GO AHEAD, COMMISSIONER.

I MEAN, COMMISSIONER BERNHARDT, WELL, I JUST WANT TO SUM ALL THIS UP.

SO WE'RE SAYING THAT AUSTIN POLICE OFFICERS ARE MAYBE 50% VACCINATED.

THEY DON'T WEAR MASKS IN INTERACTIONS WITH THE PUBLIC, OR THEY DON'T HAVE TO WEAR MASKS IN INTERACTIONS WITH THE PUBLIC.

AND WE'RE SUPPOSED TO BELIEVE THAT THIS IS A PUBLIC SAFETY ORGANIZATION, JUST TO WRAP ALL THIS UP TOGETHER IN A, IN A NICE BALL.

THEY ARE STRONGLY ENCOURAGED TO WEAR MASKS AT ALL TIMES IN CONTACT WITH THE PUBLIC.

OKAY.

I'M JUST SAYING, I MEAN, WE'RE HAVING A BIG PUBLIC GO ON.

YEAH, YEAH.

SORRY.

I DO THINK WE NEED TO TEASE OUT HERE.

THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN WHEN WE TALK ABOUT PPE AND MASS SQUARING FOR US, PPE IS IN 95 MASKS MAY EVEN INCLUDE, UM, YOU KNOW, A COMPLETE HAZMAT SUIT.

UM, WHEREAS THE MASKS, THE DAILY MASK WEARING IS A KIND OF A DIFFERENT SUBJECT.

ARE OFFICERS WEARING JUST MASKS IN THEIR EVERYDAY DUTIES? ARE THEY REQUIRED TO, IT IS OUR EXPECTATION THAT THEY WEAR MASKS IN THE WORKPLACE.

AND WHEN THEY'RE OUT IN THE PUBLIC, THEY WEAR A MASK IF THEY ARE REQUESTED TO DO SO BY THE, BY THE, BY THE PUBLIC.

SO YOU HAVE TO ASK THEM TO PUT ONE ON IN INTERACTION.

THAT IS CORRECT.

IF THE OFFICER IS NOT WEARING A MASK, IT IS NOT MANDATED THAT IN ALL CONTEXTS, THAT OFFICERS WEAR THEIR MASK.

OKAY.

I'M JUST, THIS IS KIND OF SURPRISING TO ME.

UM, AND I I'M, I'M, I JUST THINK IN WE'RE HAVING A NATIONAL CONVERSATION ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT POLICE KEEP US SAFE.

UM, AND I THINK IT'S RATHER ASTOUNDING THAT 50% OF AUSTIN OFFICERS ARE NOT VACCINATED, UM, AND COULD BE WALKING AROUND, INTERACTING WITH THE PUBLIC WITHOUT MASKS ON, UH, DURING A PANDEMIC.

I THINK IT ACTUALLY RAISES A REASONABLE QUESTION ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT AUSTIN POLICE OFFICERS ARE KEEPING THE PUBLIC SAFE.

UM, I REALLY THINK IT'S, IT'S QUITE RIDICULOUS THAT THEY, THEY DON'T HAVE TO WEAR MASKS IN EVERY ENCOUNTER WITH THE PUBLIC, PARTICULARLY IF ONLY 50% OF AUSTIN

[00:45:01]

POLICE OFFICERS ARE VACCINATED.

I'M JUST, I'M JUST GOING TO PUT THAT OUT THERE.

I UNDERSTAND THAT THE GOVERNOR DISAGREES, BUT I THINK MOST PEOPLE ON THIS CALL UNDERSTAND THAT THE GOVERNOR IS WRONG AND HE'S UNDER A LOT OF POLITICAL PRESSURE FROM RIGHT-WING CRAZY PEOPLE TO TAKE THE POSITION THAT HE'S TAKEN.

UM, AND, AND WE NEED TO KEEP THE PEOPLE OF AUSTIN SAFE, UM, AND, AND NOT LISTEN TO RIGHT WING CRAZY PEOPLE.

THANK YOU, COMMISSIONER BERNHARDT.

WE HAVE ANOTHER QUESTION FROM THE DIOCESE.

UH, GO AHEAD.

COMMISSIONER SIERRA VELO.

UH, THIS IS A FOLLOW-UP OF A KIND, I WAS HOPING IF, UH, THE CHIEF COULD EXPLAIN THE RATIONALE BEHIND THE APDS, UH, CURRENT POSITION ON NOT REQUIRING EITHER A TRAINING BULLETIN OR A CODIFIED POLICY ON MASK WEARING, IS THERE A LEGAL BARRIER TO DOING SO? UH, IF SO, COULD YOU PLEASE EXPLAIN IT AND IF NOT, CAN YOU PLEASE ARTICULATE WHY THERE HAS BEEN NO MANDATE INSTITUTED WITH AN APD TO REQUIRE MASK WEARING IN ALL INTERACTIONS WITH THE PUBLIC? YES, SIR.

SO AT ONE POINT AND TIME, THERE WAS A MANDATE TO DAWN, A MASK AND ALL INTERACTIONS WITH THE PUBLIC THAT WAS RESCINDED AT A LATER DATE.

I DON'T HAVE THAT SPECIFIC DATE FOR YOU, BUT I CAN PROVIDE THAT TO YOU.

BUT FROM WHEN WE INITIALLY HAD OUR PPES PUT IN PLACE AT THE ONSET OF COVID, THERE WAS A MANDATE THAT AT ALL TIMES ALL CONTACTS, THAT IT WAS MANDATED THAT YOU WORE PPES THAT HAS SINCE BEEN BEEN CHANGED.

BUT I CAN'T GIVE YOU THE SPECIFIC DATE ON THAT, BUT, BUT IT HAS BEEN.

AND WHY WAS IT CHANGED THE HANDLE? I'M NOT SURE IF YOU COULD GIVE SOME INSIGHT INTO WHEN THAT CHANGE WAS MADE.

IT WOULD BE PROBABLY IN APRIL AND EARLY MAY WHEN THE RATE OF INFECTION WAS DOWN AND WE START AND THINGS STARTED RELAXING.

GENERALLY AUSTIN WAS IN A STAGE TWO OF A COVID PROTOCOLS, AND THAT WAS WHEN SOME OF THE POLICIES STARTED RELAXING, CHANGING, RIGHT? AND WE ARE A BELIEVER CURRENTLY AT A STAGE FIVE WITH A HIGHER INFECTION RATE THAN THIS TIME.

LAST YEAR, IT SEEMS ODD NOT TO HAVE A MASK MANDATE OR AT LEAST A TRAINING BULLETIN THAT CAN BE INSTITUTED RATHER ORGANICALLY AT THE DEPARTMENT LEVEL.

UM, HOPEFULLY SOMEONE COULD SPEAK TO WHY THERE SEEMS TO BE THIS LAG WHEN THERE ARE LITERALLY OFFICER'S DYING.

SO I THINK THAT THE, THE EMS FOLKS ALLUDED TO THE FACT THAT WE HAVE BEEN IN CONVERSATION, THEY HAVE BEEN IN CONVERSATIONS WITH CITY LEGAL AS HAVE WE TO TRY TO FIGURE OUT WHAT WE CAN DO WITHIN THE LAW, GIVEN THE STATE OF TENSION BETWEEN THE CITY AND THE STATE AND WHERE WE ARE RIGHT NOW, QUITE FRANKLY, IS BEEN ADVISED BY CITY LEGAL.

THIS IS A WEEK WE STRONGLY URGE PEOPLE TO BE MASKED TO WEAR MASKS, BUT WE CAN'T, WE HAVE NO REAL ENFORCEMENT CAPABILITY.

WAS THERE A STATE LEGAL CHANGE THAT HAPPENED AFTER THE INITIAL MANDATE? I'M I GUESS I'M JUST CONFUSED AS TO WHY THERE WAS A MANDATE THAN THERE WASN'T WAS THERE SOME STATE LEVEL CHANGE? THAT MEANS THAT MANDATE CAN NOT BE RIGHT INSTITUTED.

YEAH, IT WAS THE GOVERNOR.

IT WAS THE GOVERNOR'S ORDER.

GOTCHA.

THANK YOU.

ALL RIGHT.

ANY FURTHER QUESTIONS OF APD COMMISSIONER WEBBER EACH YEAR? I THINK CHAPLAIN RANDALL, I MEAN, WHAT WE'RE ALL REALLY WONDERING IS WHY HASN'T APD SURVEYED ITS EMPLOYEES TO SEE WHO'S VACCINATED.

WHY, YOU KNOW, WHEN FIRE AND EMS HAVE DONE.

SO, AND, UM, I MEAN, THERE'S PROBABLY A LOT OF REASONS WHY THEY HAVE BETTER, MORE RESPONSIBLE VACCINATION RATES AT THOSE DEPARTMENTS, BUT POSSIBLY, MAYBE IT HAS SOMETHING TO DO WITH THE FACT THAT PEOPLE HAVE BEEN ASKED TO SAY WHETHER THEY ARE OR NOT.

AND SO I'M WONDERING WHY AT APD, YOU'RE NOT ASKING WELL, UH, WE'RE I HAVE NO PROBLEM WITH, UH, DOING SUCH A SURVEY.

WE JUST DIDN'T FEEL LIKE IT WOULD GIVE US, UH, A DIFFERENT SENSE THAN WHAT OUR NUMBERS FROM THE PUBLIC SAFETY WELLNESS CENTER.

WHEN THEY TELL US HOW MANY VACCINATIONS HAVE BEEN ADMINISTERED THROUGH THE WELLNESS CENTER.

AND THEN WE EXTRAPOLATE THOSE NUMBERS ONTO OUR POPULATION.

UM, WE DIDN'T THINK THAT THE PEOPLE THAT WERE CHOOSING NOT TO BE VACCINATED ARE GONNA READILY TELL US, UM, THAT THEY'RE NOT BEING VACCINATED.

WELL, I HAVE TO PROVE THAT I'VE BEEN VACCINATED.

IF I WANT TO GO TO A MUSIC FESTIVAL.

I MEAN, CAN'T POLICE OFFICERS PROVE TO YOU THAT THEY'VE BEEN VACCINATED.

WE HAVE NOT ASKED

[00:50:01]

FOR PROOF OF VACCINATION.

AND AGAIN, WE'VE GOT BETWEEN THE STATE AND THE CITY.

WHY, WHY HAVEN'T YOU ASKED? I BELIEVE THAT OUR LAST ADVISE FROM CITY LEGAL WAS THAT WE COULDN'T ASK PEOPLE IF THEY'D BEEN VACCINATED, WE COULDN'T REQUIRE PEOPLE TO SHOW PROOF OF VACCINATION.

WE COULD ASK THEM, BUT IF THEY CHOOSE NOT TO TELL US WE HAVE NO OPTION.

OKAY.

DOES THAT SOUND RIGHT TO YOU FROM, I MEAN, ARE, DO YOU ASK YOUR WORD TO TELL YOU WHAT TO PROVE, WHETHER THEY'RE VACCINATE? SO MOST OF OUR RECORDS CAME, UM, EITHER WE COORDINATED THE VACCINATIONS WHEN, UH, SETON WAS FIRST GIVING THE PFIZER OR WENT THROUGH OUR PUBLIC SAFETY WELLNESS CENTER WHEN WE WERE DOING THE MEDINA.

SO WE KNOW A LARGE MAJORITY OF WHO WENT THROUGH AND GOT REGISTERED AND GOT THEIR SHOTS THAT WAY.

WE DID DO A SURVEY FOR, TO ASK FOLKS IF THEY WERE, UH, HAD VACCINATED THROUGH THEIR PRIVATE PHYSICIAN.

AND, UH, WE DID GET SEVERAL PEOPLE ANSWER THAT THEY DID GET VACCINATED THAT WAY.

WE DID NOT REQUIRE PROOF TO SAY, ABSOLUTELY YOU DID, BUT WE ASKED THEM, DID YOU GET IT SOMEWHERE ELSE OTHER THAN OUR OWN INTERNAL, UH, MEANS, UM, WE DO KNOW OF A SMALL NUMBER THAT HAVE, UH, ALSO WE KNOW THAT IF NOT RESPONDED EITHER WAY, UM, WE'VE REACHED OUT TO THOSE NUMBERS TO, YOU KNOW, OFFER ANY WAY THEY'D LIKE TO GET VACCINATED ANY MEANS.

UM, AND SO WE ARE AWARE PRETTY MUCH HAVE EXACT NUMBER OF WHO WE KNOW WHO, UH, IS NOT VACCINATED AND IS RESISTANT TO VACCINES RIGHT NOW.

THANK YOU.

CAN I, CAN I SAY SOMETHING? IT, IT SEEMS THAT APD SHOULD BE ABLE TO ASK WITHOUT MAKING IT MANDATORY THAT PEOPLE ANSWER AND COLLECT QUITE A BIT OF USEFUL INFORMATION FROM PEOPLE WHO ARE WILLING TO ANSWER AND PROVIDE INFORMATION ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT THEY'RE VACCINATED AND PROVIDE PROOF OF VACCINATION WITHOUT MAKING IT MANDATORY.

WHEN I GO TO THE CAPITOL TO ENTER THE BUILDING RUN BY THE STATE GOVERNMENT, I SHOW A VACCINATION CARD.

I JUST, I CAN'T BELIEVE YOU CAN'T ASK.

YOU MAY NOT BE ABLE TO MANDATE AN ANSWER.

THANK YOU.

WHAT I CAN SAY IS THAT WE WILL GLADLY CONDUCT A SURVEY.

UH, WE SHOULD BE ABLE TO GET THAT DONE BEFORE YOUR NEXT MEETING AND USE THOSE NUMBERS TO SUGGEST WHERE WE ARE WITH OUR VACCINATION RATE.

UH, I THINK THE REQUESTING PROOF OF VACCINATION MAY BE A LITTLE MORE PROBLEMATIC, BUT I WILL GO BACK AND CONSULT WITH CITY LEGAL AND SEE WHAT IT IS THAT WE'RE ALLOWED TO DO AND NOT ALLOWED TO DO THAT.

THANK YOU, MR. RANDALL, UM, COMMISSIONER RAMIREZ, ONE MORE QUESTION.

AND THEN WE'RE GOING TO WRAP THIS UP JUST TO FOLLOW UP COMMENT THAT EVEN JUST ON A PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT LEVEL, IT SEEMS LIKE IT IT'S, IT'S USEFUL INFORMATION, ESPECIALLY AT A TIME WHEN, UM, THE POLICE DEPARTMENT IS, YOU KNOW, UM, PULLING PEOPLE FROM PATROL AND LIKE, YOU KNOW, YOU KNOW, WE SEE THE, THE REPORTS FROM CHIEF GAIL AT THE TIME THAT THEY'RE STAFFING SHORTAGES.

SO IT JUST SEEMS LIKE FROM A PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT PERSPECTIVE, KNOWING HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE OUT, LIKE I ALSO NOTICED IT IN THE REPORTS, UM, APD WAS THE ONLY ONE THAT HAD NOT CALCULATED THE NUMBER OF HOURS THAT SWORN PERSONNEL HAS BEEN OFF BECAUSE OF COVID.

AND THAT'S JUST LIKE A HUGE IMPACT WHEN YOU HAVE, UM, YOU KNOW, HUNDREDS AND HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE THAT HAVE BEEN INFECTED OVER THE COURSE OF THE PAST YEAR AND A HALF TO NOT HAVE A SENSE OF WHAT SORT OF IMPACT THAT'S HAVING ON YOUR PERSONNEL JUST SEEMS, YOU KNOW, UM, LIKE SHOOTING YOURSELF IN THE FOOT A BIT.

THE PROBLEM WITH OUR SUPPLYING THOSE NUMBERS ARE THAT NUMBER IS A SINGLE NUMBER IS FOR OUR PEOPLE THAT GOT COVID OR WERE EXPOSED TO COVID OVER THE LAST 18 MONTHS WE HAVE ABOUT LEAVE THAT'S POTENTIAL.

THEY COULD HAVE TAKEN, UM, EMERGENCY LEAVE, FMLA SICK LEAVE.

UH THERE'S UH, THERE'S JUST, WE DON'T HAVE A CALCULATION OF A WAY OF DISCRIMINATING SPECIFICALLY COVID BECAUSE WE DIDN'T DO THAT AT THE OUTSET CHIEF BROWN.

I SEE YOU.

GO AHEAD.

SORRY.

I JUST WANTED TO MAKE ONE LAST COMMENT.

I KNOW YOU'RE GETTING OFF THE SUBJECT, BUT WE ALSO REQUIRE, AND I BELIEVE AUSTIN FIRE DEPARTMENT ALSO REQUIRES AT THE BEGINNING OF SHIFT.

ALL OUR PERSONNEL ARE, ARE BY NEXT OR

[00:55:01]

GOT RAPID COVID TESTED, UM, UH, W WHATEVER SITE THEY'RE AT, WHETHER IT'S, UM, IN YOUR ADMIN ROLE OR, UM, IN A STATIONS, AND THEY'RE ALL BUYING NEXT TEST OR BEGINNING OF THE SHIFT.

UM, AND WE'VE HAD SEVERAL PEOPLE THAT COME UP POSITIVE BECAUSE OF THAT INITIAL TESTING, UM, AT SHIFT, THANK YOU, CHIEF BROWN.

UM, I WANTED US TO NOT TO IGNORE THE FIRE DEPARTMENT.

I KNOW WE DON'T HAVE ANYONE HERE TO ANSWER THE QUESTIONS FOR AFD, BUT I WANTED TO GET, UH, ANY QUESTIONS THAT ANYONE MIGHT HAVE OF FIRE.

SO IT SEEMS THAT THEY HAVE A 77% SWORN VACCINATED, UH, AND THAT IS PER THEIR, UM, A SURVEY THAT THEY CONDUCTED AT THE END OF JULY.

SO OBVIOUSLY THAT DOES NOT, THEY DON'T HAVE THE NUMBERS FOR AUGUST OR SEPTEMBER.

UM, AND IT LOOKS LIKE THERE'S 25 PEOPLE OFF BECAUSE OF EXPOSURE AND IT'S 163,000 HOURS, UH, THAT PERSONNEL HAVE BEEN OFF DUE TO EXPOSURE FROM COVID.

SO ARE THERE ANY QUESTIONS ANYONE WANTS TO ASK OF FIRE THAT WE CAN DOCUMENT TO GET TO CHIEF FIRES? NO ONE HERE ON THE DAYAS OR COMMISSIONER RAMIREZ? UM, YEAH, JUST SAME THAT WE GET THE POLICY AND SORT OF GUIDELINES THAT ARE IN PLACE FOR PERSONNEL, BOTH FOR PPE AND VACCINES.

JUST MAKING SURE THAT WE GET THAT FROM AFD AS WELL.

THANK YOU.

ANYONE ELSE? GO AHEAD.

I WASN'T SURE WHO THAT WAS.

GO AHEAD, WHOEVER, OH, THIS IS COMMISSIONER LANE SPEAKING.

GO AHEAD, COMMISSIONER LANE.

I JUST WANT TO KNOW IF THERE'S A POLICY THAT, UH, THAT HELPS US KEEP UNVACCINATED SLOPES OFF OF MEDICALLY SENSITIVE SCENES.

COVID-19 EITHER OF THESE DEPARTMENTS SO THAT WE CAN PROTECT POTENTIALLY VULNERABLE SAYING THAT THEY HAVE ANY POLICIES AROUND THAT.

I'D LIKE TO SEE THAT TOO.

THANK YOU.

ANY OTHER QUESTIONS FOR AFD? OH, RIGHT.

I THINK THAT IS ALL.

UM, SO WE, WE HAVE MADE THE REQUEST AND I WILL FOLLOW UP VIA EMAIL TO HAVE, UM, APD RUN A SURVEY AND HOPEFULLY THEY CAN GET THAT DONE BEFORE OUR NEXT MEETING.

WE WILL FOLLOW UP AND HOPEFULLY WE WON'T BE, UH, YEAH, GO AHEAD PLEASE.

SORRY, THIS IS AMANDA I'M CHAIR LEWIS.

I AM CONCERNED JUST THINKING ABOUT APDS.

UM, IT SOUNDS LIKE A RELUCTANCE OF A MAJORITY OF POLICE OFFICERS TO BE VACCINATED, WHAT THAT SAYS ABOUT THE CULTURE WITHIN THE DEPARTMENT.

I THINK, UM, I, YOU KNOW, AND I, I THINK I WANT TO THINK ABOUT WHAT THAT MEANS ABOUT RECRUITMENT.

WE'RE BRINGING IN, IF THERE'S NOT AN UNDERSTANDING OF PUBLIC SAFETY AND PROTECTING YOUR FELLOW, YOU KNOW, CITIZENS.

I W I I'M VERY, UM, I'M JUST CONCERNED ABOUT WHAT THAT CULTURE MEANS.

I DON'T UNDERSTAND WHY THERE'S NOT A SHARED COMMITMENT TO SAFETY.

UM, BY VACCINATION, YOU KNOW, I WORK AT A, AT A PLACE THAT ALSO IS REQUIRED, YOU KNOW, THAT THE GOVERNOR MADE RECOMMENDS EVAN.

WE COLLECTIVELY ARE CHOOSING TO KEEP EACH OTHER SAFE.

UM, AND SO I'M WORRIED ABOUT, AND QUESTIONING THE CULTURE THAT ALLOWS FOR SO MANY PEOPLE TO GO IN BACK TO NATIVE.

THEY'RE NOT TO BE QUESTIONS ASKED OF EACH OTHER AND COMMITMENTS MADE IT UP EACH OTHER.

UM, AND YEAH, I JUST, YOU KNOW, UM, UH, I THINK THE CHAPLAIN KIND OF ALLUDED TO MISINFORMATION.

AND SO HOW ARE WE, YOU SAID THERE'S, UM, INFORMATION BULLETINS, BUT LIKE, HOW ARE WE ADDRESSING THE FACT THAT THERE'S A REAL DISCREPANCY HERE, UM, AROUND, YOU KNOW, SAFETY, UM, AND, AND ANTI-SCIENCE AND ANTI INTELLECTUAL.

I'M NOT SURE WHAT THE ISSUE IS, BUT IT SEEMS LIKE IT'S SYSTEMIC, UM, CULTURAL ISSUE.

.

SO OTHER THAN OBVIOUSLY US BRINGING THIS UP AS A DISCUSSION ITEM, IS THIS SOMETHING THAT YOU FEEL, UH, THE COMMISSIONERS FEEL WOULD LIKE TO MAKE A POLICY RECOMMENDATION OR A, UM, A RECOMMENDATION AROUND THESE POLICIES AND MANDATES? THAT'S SOMETHING THAT I WOULD GIVE TO YOU, UM, TO SEE IF THAT'S SOMETHING YOU WOULD LIKE TO GET ONTO OUR AGENDA FOR NEXT MONTH.

WE OKAY WITH THAT? FANTASTIC.

SO WE'LL, WE'LL SET THAT UP.

GREAT.

SO WE'LL SET THAT UP ONLINE AND WE'LL,

[01:00:01]

WE'LL GET SOMETHING WORKING ON, UH, DISCUSSING THE, YOU KNOW, THE ADMITTED MISINFORMATION THAT APD IS DEALING WITH.

AND LET'S, UH, LET'S SEE IF WE CAN GET SOME SORT OF A RECOMMENDATION OR POLICY RECOMMENDATION PULLED TOGETHER.

OKAY.

THANK YOU.

GOOD CONVERSATION.

UM, NEXT

[2.d. Discussion on APD Police Chief hiring process (sponsors: Commissioners Gonzales and Ramirez) 5:25pm -5:55pm]

ITEM IS ITEM D AND UNFORTUNATELY, UM, ACM ARIANA WAS NOT ABLE TO JOIN US TODAY, BUT I AM GOING TO READ, UH, WHAT HE SENT US VIA EMAIL.

AND THEN WE CAN SEE IF THERE'S ANY DISCUSSION OR QUESTIONS AROUND THAT.

SO VIA EMAIL, UH, ACM ARIANO SAID ON AUGUST 30TH, THE CITY MANAGER AND ASSISTANT CITY MANAGER RECEIVED FEEDBACK FROM THE COMMUNITY SESSIONS HELD AUGUST 17TH THROUGH 19TH.

IN ADDITION TO REVIEWING THIS INFORMATION, THEY ARE CONNECTING WITH REPRESENTATIVES IN LOS ANGELES, DALLAS, AND AUSTIN, TO HELP INFORM THEIR FINAL DECISION.

THE CITY MANAGER INTENDS TO ANNOUNCE THE SUCCESSFUL CANDIDATE IN EARLY TO MID SEPTEMBER.

THE EARLIEST COUNCIL MEETING THAT THE CITY MANAGER CAN PRESENT.

THE NEW POLICE CHIEF FOR CONFIRMATION IS SEPTEMBER 3RD.

YES.

SO THAT IS WHAT WE HAVE FROM ACR, M ARIANO S SEPTEMBER 30TH.

IT LOOKS LIKE THE DATE THEY ARE FOLLOWING UP WITH THE CANDIDATES THAT A FEW OF US WERE ABLE TO BE ON THOSE, UH, INFORMATIONAL SESSIONS WITH, IF ANYONE HAS ANY OTHER QUESTIONS FOR ACM ARIANO, UH, I CAN OBVIOUSLY TAKE THOSE NOW AND WE CAN SEND THOSE TO HIM VIA EMAIL.

DOES ANYONE HAVE ANY FURTHER QUESTIONS? I DO HAVE A QUESTION.

UM, AND THIS IS JUST IN, IN REGARDS TO QUESTIONS THAT THE CANDIDATES ARE BEING ASKED.

UM, I'VE HAD HEARD SEVERAL PEOPLE FROM, UM, THE SURVIVOR ADVOCACY COMMUNITY, UM, SAY THAT THEY HAVEN'T HEARD ANY THINGS FROM, I GUESS, THE CANDIDATES ABOUT THEIR EXPERIENCING WITH THEIR EXPERIENCE WITH DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, SEXUAL ASSAULT, UM, THOSE TYPES OF ISSUES, UM, KNOWING AUSTIN'S HISTORY, UM, OF KIND OF MISS MISMANAGEMENT OF THOSE ISSUES.

UH, IS THERE A POSSIBLE WAY TO GET THOSE QUESTIONS FRONT OF THE CANDIDATES BEFORE SOMEONE IS SELECTED? OR IS THERE A WAY MAYBE CITY COUNCIL, UM, CAN BE ASKING THOSE THINGS WHEN, WHEN, UM, THE CANDIDATE IS PUT BEFORE COUNCIL? UM, BUT THAT IS SOMETHING THAT I'VE HEARD.

I'VE HEARD THAT THERE'S BEEN A LACK OF ENGAGEMENT AROUND, UM, GENDER BASED VIOLENCE, LACK OF ENGAGEMENT AROUND MENTAL HEALTH, FIRST RESPONSE.

UM, AND JUST GENERALLY THAT A LOT OF FOLKS IN THE COMMUNITY HAVE FELT LIKE THEY HAVE NOT HAD ADEQUATE OPPORTUNITIES TO ENGAGE WITH CANDIDATES.

AND I THINK THAT GOES BEYOND JUST THE THREE REMAINING CANDIDATES, BUT ALSO WHEN THERE WAS MORE, UM, YOU KNOW, I THINK PEOPLE KIND OF FELT THE PRIZE THAT HERE ARE THESE THREE EMBARRASSMENT, LESS ENGAGEMENT THAN THEY WERE EXPECTING.

I THINK A LOT OF PEOPLE SAID THAT THERE WAS MORE ENGAGEMENT WHEN WE HIRED AN EQUITY OFFICER, THEN THERE WAS FOR THE CHIEF OF POLICE.

SO I WANTED TO PUT THAT COMMENT, THEN I CAN ASK THOSE QUESTIONS AND, UH, WE'LL, WE'LL SEE WHAT, UH, ACM ARIANO GETS BACK TO US, MR. HALSTON, FUCK, PLEASE.

I WAS JUST WONDERING IF YOU GUYS, SINCE WE HAVE SOME TIME, UM, KIND OF EXPLAIN WHAT OUR COMMISSION'S INVOLVEMENT WAS WITH THAT, AND JUST KIND OF BIG, SOME CANDID REMARKS ABOUT THE EXPERIENCE AND WHAT Y'ALL LEARNED.

SO I CAN TELL YOU THAT, UM, WE WERE INVITED TO PARTICIPATE IN ONE OF THESE ZOOM CALL, UM, INTERVIEWS OF THE FINAL THREE CANDIDATES.

UH, WE WERE NOT GIVEN ANY OPPORTUNITY TO ENGAGE BEFORE IT WENT DOWN TO THE FINAL THREE CANDIDATES, UH, MYSELF COMMISSIONER RAMIREZ, COMMISSIONER WEBBER, COMMISSIONER LEWIS, AND COMMISSIONER BERNHARDT.

I, I CAN'T REMEMBER IF YOU WERE THERE OR NOT, YOU ARE CORRECT.

YES.

SO WHAT WE WERE ABLE TO DO IS WE WERE ABLE TO GET A FEW QUESTIONS IN EARLY, UM, AND IT DIDN'T SEEM LIKE MANY PEOPLE HAD DONE THAT.

THEY D DID A FEW, UH, COMMISSION INVITES AND WE BASICALLY, UM, IT WAS A ROUND ROBIN INTERVIEW.

WE DIDN'T HAVE A WHOLE LOT OF ONE-ON-ONE INTERACTION BECAUSE THERE WAS ABOUT 20 PEOPLE SITTING ON THE CALL VERY MUCH, LIKE WE'VE HAVE OUR EXPERIENCE OF THESE COMMISSIONS.

UM, SO WE WERE ABLE TO ASK A COUPLE OF QUESTIONS AND, AND REALLY THAT, THAT WAS IT.

IT WAS, UM, THE HR REPRESENTATIVE WHO WAS, UH, MANAGING KIND OF THE LOGISTICS OF THE SEARCH WAS ASKING THE QUESTIONS.

EVERYONE GOT ASKED THE SAME QUESTION.

THEY CAME ON LIVE ONE AT A TIME AND THEN HAD SOME FOLLOWUPS.

AND THEN WE WERE ASKED TO GIVE OUR FEEDBACK OF THE CANDIDATES, UH, VIA A, UH, FEEDBACK

[01:05:01]

FORM.

WOULD YOU LIKE TO ADD ANYTHING? UH, COMMISSIONER RAMIREZ? YEAH, I'LL ADD THAT.

UM, I WILL SAY THAT I DON'T THINK THAT I WATCHED THE PUBLIC SESSIONS THAT, UM, THAT WERE TELEVISED OR PUT ON A TEXAN, UM, ON THE 18TH AND 19TH.

AND THERE WAS NOT ANYTHING MARKEDLY DIFFERENT SAID DURING THOSE SESSIONS THAN WHAT WAS SAID PUBLICLY.

UM, THEY WERE VERY CONTROLLED, SCRIPTED SORT OF, UM, UM, INTERVIEWS.

UM, AND WE HAD VERY LIMITED TIME TO SORT, WE GOT VERY LIMITED ADVANCED NOTICE EVEN WITH REGARDS.

SO IT DID FEEL VERY SIMILAR TO WHAT WAS DONE WITH THE PUBLIC.

UM, UM, I THINK I INITIALLY WAS, UM, HOPEFUL THAT THERE WAS GOING TO BE A LOT MORE COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT BECAUSE SOME OF THE EARLY SESSIONS THAT THEY DID ON THE SORT OF JUST GENERAL PUBLIC LEVEL FELT, UM, MUCH MORE OPEN.

AND I WAS DISAPPOINTED TO SEE HOW MUCH, UM, AFTER THAT INITIAL, THERE WAS JUST SORT OF A REALLY LONG BLANK SORT OF AREA.

AND THEN THERE WAS A HURRY UP AND GET FEEDBACK TOWARDS THE END.

UM, SO, UM, IN GENERAL, MY, MY QUESTION TO THE CITY MANAGER'S OFFICE IS JUST, HOW CAN WE GET MORE ENGAGEMENT AND HOW CAN WE MAKE THE PROCESS MORE TRANSPARENT? AND QUITE FRANKLY, AS THE PUBLIC SAFETY COMMISSION, UM, WE ARE SUPPOSED TO BE REPRESENTATIVES FROM ALL OVER THE CITY, UM, SPECIFICALLY WITH REGARDS TO PUBLIC SAFETY.

AND I FEEL LIKE THE COMMISSION AS A WHOLE SHOULD HAVE BEEN MORE INCLUDED IN THE PROCESS, NOT