Los Angeles supervisors take away sheriff as head of emergency operations
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The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors eliminated Sheriff Alex Villanueva as head of the county’s emergency operations heart on Tuesday, a day after he reversed an order to shut gun outlets amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The supervisors mentioned the unanimous vote was in response to the 2018 Woolsey Hearth that charred almost 100,000 acres in Los Angeles and Ventura counties and destroyed numerous buildings, and the necessity to centralize catastrophe operations, the Los Angeles Occasions reported.
“The brand new protocols convey Los Angeles County into alignment with trendy greatest practices that advocate use of deeply-trained catastrophe administration professionals to handle emergency capabilities that usually span a full vary of vital capabilities reminiscent of public well being, housing and well being companies, along with public security,” a board assertion mentioned.
The change replaces Villanueva with the county CEO, who can be chargeable for coordinating response actions.
Villanueva blasted the board’s choice, calling it a “silent coup.” In an announcement, he mentioned he’s dedicated to the protection of Los Angeles County residents.
“I am nonetheless ready for the Board of Supervisors and CEO to supply a transition plan,” he mentioned. “Within the meantime, we are going to preserve staffing on the County Emergency Operations Heart till the county gives appropriate replacements.”
In the course of the board’s digital assembly, Villanueva referred to as the transfer irresponsible, based on the Occasions.
“It’s not gonna add extra ventilators, it’s not gonna add extra masks on the market to first responders, it undoubtedly doesn’t enhance capabilities,” he mentioned. “In relation to life and dying issues, I don’t take it evenly.”
“It’s actually concerning the security of the 10 million folks in L.A. County. … He was probably not elected to signify county residents,” Supervisor Sheila Kuehl mentioned. “The 5 of us have been.”
Villanueva and the board have repeatedly clashed since his 2018 election over points starting from hiring to oversight.
The timing of the transfer comes because the sheriff reversed a call to shut gun outlets within the county by deeming them nonessential companies. The transfer drew the ire of gun-rights advocates and prompted the Nationwide Rifle Affiliation to file a lawsuit in opposition to the sheriff and California Gov. Gavin Newsom final week.
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“Municipalities who goal lawful gun shops for closure aren’t selling security — by weaponizing their politics to disarm you and your family members, these shameless partisans are recklessly selling a gun-control agenda that suffocates your self-defense rights whenever you want them most,” Jason Ouimet, the NRA-ILA’s govt director, mentioned in an announcement.