Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, January 7, 2017

MVNews this week:  Page B:1






MONROVIA, CA – At the first board meeting 
of 2017, the Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal 
Water District (Upper District) Board of Directors 
conducted its annual reorganization of officers. 
Director Ed Chavez was elected as President and 
Director Alfonso “Al” Contreras will serve as Vice 
President. Director Anthony Fellow, Ph.D., was 
elected to serve as Secretary and Director Charles 
M. Treviño as Treasurer.

 Referencing his colleagues and the year ahead, 
Director Chavez stated, “With five consecutive years 
of unprecedented drought, we face many challenges 
moving forward as we continue to provide a reliable, 
affordable, and sustainable water supply to the 
San Gabriel Valley. It is going to require a strong 
and unified leadership. I look forward to continue 
working with my fellow Directors as we tackle these 

 Upon his reelection, this past November, Director 
Chavez is serving his third term on the board and 
will also serve as the district’s representative to the 
San Gabriel Basin Water Quality Authority (WQA). 
Director Chavez, an educator, is a former Board 
Member of the Bassett Unified School District, 
Mayor and Councilmember of the City of La 
Puente, and three-term member of the California 
State Assembly representing the 57th District. 
During his tenure with Upper District, Director 
Chavez previously served as the Board’s Secretary/
Treasurer from 2009 to 2012 and Vice President in 
2013 and 2014. Director Chavez represents Division 
3 which includes all, or parts of, Avocado Heights, 
City of Industry, Hacienda Heights, La Puente, and 
South El Monte.

 Newly elected to the board, Alfonso Contreras 
was officially sworn into the Board of Directors in 
December 2016 and will represent Division 4 of 
Upper District’s service area which includes all, or 
parts of, Azusa, Covina, Glendora, Irwindale, and 
West Covina. Director Contreras was first elected 
to the Board in 2002 and served two consecutive 
4-year terms. In addition to being elected Vice 
President, Director Contreras will serve as the 
alternate representative to WQA, chair of Upper 
District’s Administration & Finance Committee, 
and vice chair of the Water Policy Committee. 

 Dr. Fellow is currently serving his seventh 
term on Upper District’s Board of Directors 
and will serve as the Board Secretary and vice 
chair of the Government & Community Affairs 
Committee. Dr. Fellow will also serve as Upper 
District’s representative to the Main San Gabriel 
Basin Watermaster, San Gabriel Valley Council 
of Governments, San Gabriel River Discovery 
Center Authority, San Gabriel Valley Economic 
Partnership, and an alternate representative to the 
San Gabriel Valley Water Association. Additionally, 
Dr. Fellow is serving his second year as an appointed 
member of the Association of California Water 
Agencies’ Federal Affairs Committee. Dr. Fellow 
represents Division 1 which includes all, or parts of, 
Arcadia, Bradbury, El Monte, Monrovia, Rosemead, 
and Temple City. 

 Director Charles M. Treviño was recently 
reelected this past November to serve a third term 
on the board. In addition to being elected as Board 
Treasurer, Director Treviño was also elected to serve 
as the Upper District representative on the Board 
of Directors for the Metropolitan Water District 
of Southern California. He will continue serving 
on ACWA’s Joint Powers Insurance Authority, 
the Main San Gabriel Basin Watermaster, the 
San Gabriel Valley Protective Association, and as 
chair of Upper District’s Water Policy Committee. 
Director Treviño represents Division 2 which 
includes all, or parts of, Arcadia, Rosemead, San 
Gabriel, South Pasadena, South San Gabriel, and 
Temple City. 

 Representing Division 5 which includes all, or 
parts of, Baldwin Park, Duarte, El Monte, and 
Irwindale, Director Urias is currently serving his 
second term on the board. He will continue as the 
board’s representative to the San Gabriel Valley 
Water Association, an alternate to the San Gabriel 
River Discovery Center Authority, and chair of 
Upper District’s Government & Community Affairs 

 Upper District’s mission is to provide a reliable, 
sustainable, diversified and affordable portfolio 
of high quality water supplies to the San Gabriel 
Valley; including water conservation, recycled 
water, storm water capture, storage, water transfers 
and imported water. Upper District services nearly 
one million people in its 144 square mile service 
territory. Governed by a five member elected board 
of directors, Upper District is a member agency 
of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern 
California. Annually, more than 78 billion gallons 
of water is used in Upper District’s service area. 
For more information about Upper District, please 
visit our website or call 

By Joan Schmidt

 On a recent Thursday morning, I attended the 
Arcadia Chamber of Commerce’s Community 
Connection and Coffee. Guest Speaker, Richard 
Hopkins, East Valley Coalition for the Homeless, was 
quite informative; the statistics were disheartening, 
but there is help available.

 Mr. Hopkins explained the annual Count of 
Homeless People done to determine the homeless 
number, where they’re distributed across the county, 
where they are staying and then report the data to 

 This “Count” is done on one evening, from 8:00 pm 
to midnight and needs 7500 volunteers. In 2016, there 
were 46,875 homeless-an increase of 5.7%. Although 
African Americans only make up 9% of the general 
population; they are 39% of the homeless. (27,188) 
Latinos are 27% (11,861), Caucasian are 26% (11,354), 
Asians (1%), American Indian (2%), and Pacific 
Islander (1%). Chronic homelessness is 31%; 30% 
suffer from mental illness and 23%, substance abuse. 
Another sad statistic is that 72% have been homeless 
for more than 20 years. And youths (ages 18-24) have 
been homeless for at least 10 years. 

 Why are so many homeless? Causes include 
automobile related (Broken down cars, behind 
in payments), lack of child support, high cost of 
housing, low wages, divorce, mental illness, Domestic 
Violence, physical disabilities, loss of Public Assistance 
Programs, family problems, drug and alcohol 
Problems, severe depression, poverty, job Loss, Post 
Traumatic Stress Disorder, lack of 
affordable housing, roommates 
who can’t supply funds and low 
paying jobs.

 However, we learned about 
the East San Gabriel Valley 
Coalition for the Homeless 
(ESGVCH), a faith-based 
501c3 non-profit organization 
incorporated in 1994. Their 
mission is to bring hope and 
restore dignity to people 
without homes by providing 
shelter, alleviating hunger, 
assisting with basic daily needs 
and assisting families to regain 
housing. ESGVCH strives to 
raise community awareness and 
works collaboratively with other 
organizations to end hunger and 
homelessness primarily in the 
East San Gabriel Valley.

 Since 1995, ESGVCH has provided night time 
shelter for persons with nowhere to go. From 
December 1st to March 1st the program operates 
with Churches who donate their facilities and provide 
volunteers who minister to the needs of their guests. 
Up to 220 guests are admitted each night. Last year 
1032 unduplicated men and women attended the 
shelter with a total of 15,200 bed-nights (occupied 
beds) during the 91 day period. Services provided 
include meals, showers, clothing, medical and 
dental care, case management and referrals to 
other agencies who can provide additional needed 
services. Transportation is provided nightly at six 
pick-up spots in the East San Gabriel Valley. The 
following morning the guests are returned to the 
six pick-up spots.

 What was sad to me was the low life expectancy: 
men, 47 years; women, 41 years. Besides the 
ESGVCH, there is an Emergency Assistance Center 
which welcomes walk-ins. Services include meals, 
showers, hygiene products, transportation, assistance 
and referral services. A designated number of motel 
vouchers are available each month, for families, elderly, 
and those who are ill or disabled. The Emergency 
Assistance Center is located at 1345 Turnbull Canyon 
Road, Hacienda Heights, CA 91745. Phone is (626) 
333-7204. Hours are Monday-Friday, 8:30 am- 1:30 

 Donations are needed! Clothing: new tube socks, 
new men’s underwear (boxers), new women’s 
undergarments (sports bras and plus sizes), men’s 
pants (especially 34-44), XL, XXL, and XXXL, men’s 
T Shirts, Men’s Tennis Shoes (Size 8 and higher), PJ’s-
tops and bottoms.

 Personal care items include nail clippers, lip balm, 
deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrushes, mouthwash, 
razors, body wash, conditioner, hair gel and grease, 
hair brushes and feminine hygiene products.

 Support the East San Gabriel Valley Coalition for 
the Homeless with your time, talent and treasure. 
PO BOX 93256, Industry, CA 91715, 1345 Turnbull 
Canyon Rd. Haciena Heights CA 91745. www.esgvch.
org Phone:626-333-7204 All 
Donations are Tax Deductable.

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