Sheriff's Letter - Fulgent Concerns
November 29: Monday, during a scheduled quarterly meeting with Sheriff Villanueva, PPOA President Tab Rhodes and Executive Director Wayne Quint Jr. were notified of security concerns regarding the COVID-19 vaccine mandate registration using the Fulgent platform. PPOA was advised that on Friday, November 26, the Sheriff and other County representatives were briefed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) that “Fulgent’s business model and a Chinese law of 2017” would allow for the data of County employees, specifically DNA information, to be sent to the Chinese government.
President Rhodes and Executive Director Quint inquired with numerous questions including:
  • What type of data is being referenced, digital (name, address, etc.,) or scientific (DNA coding)?
  • Has there been a breach of the Fulgent database resulting in our members’ information being compromised?
  • Has there been any member information transmitted out of the secure database by Fulgent?
  • What does the Department plan to do about the information provided to Fulgent under duress by members required to follow the order of the Sheriff?
  • Can the information within Fulgent be redacted?
  • Can the information within Fulgent be transferred from Fulgent to the newly created LASD registration process? 
The Sheriff could not provide any more answers, specifics or citable references, but stated that a letter to the Board of Supervisors (click here to read) would outline his concerns and answer our questions.
As of the time of this update, no answers to our specific questions from our conversation with the Sheriff, nor the FBI briefing, have been provided. The Sheriff’s letter seems to renew previous concerns already identified or being addressed by PPOA and the County Coalition of Unions (CCU) through negotiations/mediation process, and a variety of news articles. PPOA also has not received any specific information from the Federal Government.
On Tuesday, a response from Fulgent (click here to read) addressing the Sheriff’s allegations was provided to PPOA for review. The Board of Supervisors also issued a response (click here to read) to Sheriff Villanueva’s letter, providing further information for discussion.

PPOA representatives have been in contact since Monday with our legal advisors, representatives of the County, and our labor partners of the CCU, including ALADS. At this time, there are more questions than answers. Our inquiry into the Sheriff’s concerns continues with an information request and demands being submitted following a special meeting of the County and CCU on Wednesday.
PPOA awaits our opportunity to Meet and Confer with the Department regarding these concerns and the receipt of answers to our questions. Until then, PPOA has been assured in writing and through the Sheriff’s public comments that our members WILL NOT be disciplined under the County’s COVID-19 vaccination mandate. Should PPOA receive any verifiable information of any of our members being improperly served with discipline from the County or Sheriff’s Department, PPOA stands ready to immediately file a legal challenge.

Dual Track Meeting
November 29: PPOA President Rhodes, Board Member Nancy Escobedo, and Executive Director Quint met with a representative group of the remaining Dual Track sergeants. The purpose of the meeting was to gather input regarding a Department proposal which potentially affects their career path. 
COVID-19 Legal Meeting
November 30: On Tuesday, PPOA hosted its weekly meeting in order for President Rhodes, Executive Director Quint, Senior Labor Rep. Venise Wallace, Labor Rep. Teresa O'Neil, Intake Rep. Kevin Thompson and PPOA attorneys to address COVID-19 issues impacting PPOA members. These meetings help PPOA representatives stay current on all aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic and related negotiations with the County. This dedication of PPOA resources supplements the efforts of the Coalition of County Unions (CCU) to negotiate reasonable terms as well as mitigate impacts on PPOA membership.
Long Beach PD Chief Enters Race for LA County Sheriff
December 1: Long Beach Police Chief Robert Luna announced he is running for Los Angeles County Sheriff in 2022.

Chief Luna is a 37-year law enforcement veteran and has served as LBPD Chief since 2014. He is the latest in a growing list of candidates who will challenge Sheriff Villanueva, including LASD Commander Eli Vera, LASD Lieutenant Eric Strong, LASD Captain Britta Steinbrenner, retired LASD Captain Matthew Rodriguez, LAX Police Chief Cecil Rhambo and others.
Coalition of County Unions
December 1: PPOA joined fellow representatives of the Coalition of County Unions (CCU) on Wednesday to discuss COVID-19 and other issues affecting PPOA members and fellow County employees. For details, see the story above "Sheriff's Letter - Fulgent Concerns." 
Sheriff Discusses Current Issues
December 1: Sheriff Villanueva hosted a Facebook live stream on Wednesday to discuss current issues, including
his claim that the Department will shrink by 200-300 deputies by March 2022 due to hiring restrictions and budget cuts imposed by the Board of Supervisors.
Law Enforcement Technician Classification Study
December 2:  PPOA board and staff members met with representatives from the Sheriff's Department, Personnel, Technology Support Division and Communications and Fleet Management Bureau on Thursday to discuss the ongoing Law Enforcement Technician (LET) classification study. The teleconference was led by PPOA Vice President/LET Jim Blankenship and joined by President Rhodes.
MTA Board Approves $75 Million Law Enforcement Contract
December 2: The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) approved a $75.2 million contract with LASD, LAPD and and Long Beach PD to continue policing subways, busses, trollies and each agency's respective Metro areas. The MTA board also committed another $40 million for next year's budget, recommending that Metro look at alternatives to law enforcement to improve public safety in the future. One alternative includes the use of civilian public safety ambassadors.
PPOA Launches Annual Steer Clear Safe Ride Program for Members
PPOA wants to ensure all members make it home safely while celebrating and socializing during the holidays. Our annual “Steer Clear” program offers reimbursements to members of this association who use UBER or LYFT between November 25, 2021 and January 1, 2022. The reimbursement offer is limited to one round-trip or two one-way trips not exceeding 30 miles total. Valid for UberX and Lyft Standard rides only. Tips not included. Offer limited to active, full-dues paying PPOA members. 

If you plan to enjoy adult beverages this season, please do so responsibly. And if you’re not in condition to drive safely, make sure to use Uber or Lyft and email your receipt to (using your personal non-County email address) for reimbursement. 

We sincerely hope that all PPOA members enjoy a safe and happy holiday season!
Reminder: Increase in CHOICES Monthly Benefits Allowance
Attention active PPOA members: Please be advised this chart reflects the 2.5% increase in the County's contribution to the Choices health plans in order to help offset health insurance premium increases. This increased financial contribution from the County was negotiated by the Coalition of County Unions, including PPOA and 13 other member organizations.

If you have questions, please call the LA County Benefits hotline at (213) 388-9982.
Fraternal Order of Police
PPOA is a longtime member of the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), the world's largest organization of law enforcement officers, with more than 364,000 members in more than 2,100 lodges nationwide. All active PPOA members are part of California FOP Lodge 1 (click here to read the latest CAFOP weekly news update), which represents public safety organizations throughout LA County and operates under the capable leadership of former PPOA President Roger Mayberry

Please make it a point to check out the Washington Watch — a weekly update provided by the National FOP. We encourage PPOA members to stay up to date on the legislative news and activity impacting public safety personnel nationwide.