September 28, 2021- CaSonya Thomas, Assistant Executive Officer, San Bernardino County- Hybrid Meeting In-Person and via ZOOM

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Hybrid Meeting In-Person and via ZOOM


Present:  Deborah Barmack, Peter Barmack, Carole Beswick, Greg Bradbard, Mike Burrows, Mark Cloud, Jennifer Cusack, Michelle Decker, Kevin Dyerly, Louis Goodwin, Fran Inman, Lowell King, Mike Layne, Bill Lemann, Darcy McNaboe, Miguel Mendoza, John Mirau, Tomas Morales, Dan Murphy, Vikki Ostermann, Brian Nestande, Vikki Ostermann, Bansree Parikh, Catherine Pritchett, Thomas Rice, Karen Richmond, Michael Rivera, Kate Salvesen, Dan Schenkel, Sol Teh, Eric Ustation, Lupe Valdez, Pete Van Helden, Ray Wolfe and Marisa Yeager.

Guests: Mark Gibbs.

Announcements:  1) The Inland Empire Growth & Opportunity (IEGO) has requested a letter of support for an EDA Planning Grant through “Build Back Better Regional Challenge”.  The Build Back Better Regional Challenge is designed to assist communities nationwide in their efforts to build back better by accelerating the economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic and building local economies that will be resilient to future economic shocks.  The program will be conducted in two phases, the first is a planning grant.  Positioned as “the” application from the Inland Empire they are focused on sustainable freight movement, supply chain and goods movement which is at the core of the IEGO.  They currently have support from both Counties and have already received 30 letters of support.  There will be a good deal of competition for this two-part grant and applications for phase one are due October 19, 2021.

Motion by M. Rivera/Second by M. Yeager/Amended and Passed with 1 no and 2 abstentions:  Inland Action supports IEGO’s application for the EDA “Build Back Better Regional Challenge” Planning Grant with the understanding that there will be consistent engagement with industry going forward. A letter of support will be sent.

Lowell King, Chair, presiding.

Motion by M. Rivera/Second by M. Burrows/Passed: Minutes from September 21, 202.  One abstention.

The membership voted on the two proposed members:

  • The law firm of Crosbie, Gliner, Schiffman, Southard, & Swanson, LLP (CGS3) with offices in Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Bernardino. Primary representative would be Michael Rivera.
  • OneLegacy, an organ, eye and tissue organization in Redlands. Their Primary representative would be CEO Tom Mone and E’Tiffany Jones would serve as their Alternate.

A majority of the members present voted to extend an invitation of membership to both: Crosbie, Gilner, Schffman Southard & Swanson (CGS3) and OneLegacy.


Greg Bradbard introduced CaSonya Thomas, Assistant Executive Officer, San Bernardino County.

For the last 30 years CaSonya has worked with the County and focused her efforts on the social and health needs of our residents. California has almost $12B statewide to invest in reducing homelessness.   She stated that it’s a historic time in public policy as funding has never before been available to address homelessness and affordable housing issues.

Recently she was named the Assistant Executive Officer of the newly formed Community Revitalization Group.  The focus of this group will be purposeful efforts intended to lead to measurable improvements in addressing homelessness and the physical, behavioral health and economic needs of diverse community’s county wide.  This strategic vision aims to help people overcome poverty, unemployment, and housing instability.

Since March of this year the team has engaged with more than 500 community stakeholders over a variety of sectors and over 17 focus groups from which they derived their key areas of focus.  CaSonya Thomas outlined the framework draft they will use for their collaborative approach and key strategies to address homelessness.  Together these strategies will bring the necessary capacity, investment, partnership, and collective impact to achieve the goal of reducing homelessness. The four strategies she outlined were:

Policy Change-

  1. Connect eligible individuals to services for the support they need to obtain and maintain housing.
  2. Collaborate with institutions to improve discharge planning to reduce recidivism into homelessness
  3. Continue to increase supply of housing and opportunities
  4. Support residents with linkage to eviction prevention programs
  5. Ensure all residents who are able to work have access to job opportunities

Prevention and Housing

  1. Increase the capacity of supportive housing programs for individuals experiencing homelessness
  2. Expand range of support to prevent or provide early intervention to homelessness
  3. Explore innovative housing solutions through leveraging private and public partnerships

Healthy Communities

  1. Increase the number of year-round temporary housing beds and offer a variety of temporary housing options throughout the county
  2. Expand street outreach, hygiene services and transportation options to match the needs of unsheltered residents
  3. Increase access to primary care, mental health, and substance use services
  4. Collaborate with a variety of community partners to address the needs of unsheltered residents
  5. Work to create a welcoming environment and increase safety for housed & unhoused residents at community spaces

Expansion of Coordination

  1. Integrate community data to better predict & target households who are experiencing homelessness or are at risk
  2. Better utilize data to evaluate program effectiveness & identify inequities in the system
  3. Provide trauma-informed care & culturally responsive training to staff working with the homeless
  4. Improve assessment tools to better serve & reduce bias in the homelessness sector
  5. Cultivate partnerships with corporations, philanthropic institutions, and individual donors to secure funding to reduce and prevent homelessness
  6. Align and coordinate with other public and private sector efforts to address homelessness

Contact CaSonja at 909 387-4717 or send a message to her assistant at Veronica.Romero@hss.sbcounty

A Q & A period followed.
Meeting adjourned at 8:35 a.m.