Offices Closed Thursday and Friday for Thanksgiving Holiday

November 27, 2013

San Mateo County offices are closed Thursday and Friday, November 28 and 29, for the Thanksgiving holiday. Emergency services remain available.

Offices will open at normal hours on Monday.

Follow San Mateo County on Facebook at

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Food for Fines at San Mateo County Library

November 25, 2013

Have an overdue book or DVD from the library? Now’s your chance to clear your fines and help others by donating food to those in need during the month of December in the San Mateo County Library’s “Food For Fines”

In 2012 San Mateo County Library was the recipient of the Second Harvest Food Bank’s Outside the Barrel award, which honors organizations for outstanding innovation and creativity in food drive efforts. Due to the success of SMCL’s “Food For Fines” program, other Peninsula libraries are joining in the effort this year to increase food donations countywide. Libraries in Daly City, Redwood City and San Mateo are participating.

Customers can take any amount of nonperishable boxed or canned food to any of the San Mateo County Library’s 12 branches. Also, donations can be made to any Daly City Library, Redwood City Library and San Mateo Public Library during business hours, and library fines and fees will be waived. All collected food is donated to the Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties.GIDES©-Aug2013 -Libraries-313

“There is a growing need for feeding the hungry in San Mateo County,” said San Mateo County Supervisor Carole Groom. “This is a wonderful opportunity to provide food for those in need in our community, while clearing up fines and resuming greater use of our outstanding library system.”

She also encourages everyone in the community – whether or not they owe fines—to donate food at the library to help people in need this holiday season.

Each year, Second Harvest Food Bank distributes more than 45.5 million pounds of nutritious food to low-income people in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties. Most recipients are children and seniors.

The millions of pounds of food are provided free to 326 local nonprofit agencies at more than 700 sites, including pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, and after-school programs. Combined efforts last year with San Mateo County Library and Redwood City Public Library resulted in the collection of 25,331 pounds of food, feeding 1053 families for a week.

Food for Fines is a collaboration among the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors, Daly City Public Library, Redwood City Public Library, San Mateo County Library, San Mateo Public Library, and Second Harvest Food Bank.

This community food drive presents a great opportunity for residents to give back to the community and take advantage of the great collections and programs that libraries offer, such as best sellers, downloadable audiobooks and ebooks, computers classes, music, movies, storytimes, and much, much more.

Season of Giving Has Launched for San Mateo County’s Neediest Children

November 21, 2013

As San Mateo County residents go about their errands and shopping this season, they might notice shiny red barrels placed in storefronts, banks, and office buildings. These toy donation barrels are part of San Mateo County Human Services Agency’s Children’s Fund drive. DSC_0058

They have placed 67 toy donation barrels throughout the region, thus making it easier for residents to donate toys and items in the barrels while doing their own errands.

The toy barrel campaign is in place November through early December. In addition, there is a gift tag campaign which allows individuals, or groups, to provide a child with their most wished-for item this season.

County volunteers sort the donations of new, unwrapped gifts and deliver to children, ranging in age from newborn to 18 years. Recipients are identified through the pool of families currently in County programs such as foster youth, and those receiving food and shelter assistance.

“We all have a responsibility to make sure that the least fortunate among us can really share in the joy of this holiday season,” said County Supervisor and Children’s Fund Advisory Board Member Adrienne Tissier.


Last year, the Children’s Fund provided gifts to over 3,822 children. “Every year, it makes me proud to see the generosity of the employees of San Mateo County, private businesses and our residents who come together to collect toys and deliver them to families in need,” stated Tissier.

The County of San Mateo Children’s Fund has been helping the County’s underprivileged children since 1973. Current programs include the annual holiday toy drive, orthodontia and specialized dental assistance, a school supply drive, and re-programmed computers.

The County of San Mateo Human Services Agency assists individuals and families to achieve economic self-sufficiency, promote community and family strength, and works to ensure child safety and well-being. More information can be found at


Memorial Service for Former Supervisor William Schumacher

November 19, 2013

A memorial service for William J. “Bill” Schumacher will take place this Friday, November 22, at 3 p.m. at City Hall in Daly City.

Mr. Schumacher served as a San Mateo County Supervisor and Mayor of Daly City and served his community as a volunteer in many organizations and as an attorney. He died November 3, 2013, in Palm Desert. He is survived by his wife Elizabeth Terra, his four children, two step-children and numerous grandchildren.

Read remembrances offered by several of Mr. Schumacher’s former colleagues.

City Hall is located at 333 90th St., Daly City. Additional details can be found at

This photo of the Board of Supervisors in 1983 hangs in the Hall of Justice.

This photo of the Board of Supervisors in 1983 hangs in the Hall of Justice.

New Director for Human Services Agency

November 18, 2013

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. – San Mateo County Manager John L. Maltbie today announced he has appointed Iliana Rodriguez as the director of the Human Services Agency.

Rodriguez will lead an agency with an annual budget of $180 million and 750 employees. The agency assists foster youth, administers programs that promote economic self-sufficiency, provides services to the homeless and helps to prevent child abuse, among other actions.

Iliana Rodriguez

Iliana Rodriguez

Rodriguez will succeed Beverly Beasley Johnson, who is retiring after a 37-year career helping those in need.

“Iliana understands the needs of people in our community, that the current economic recovery is leaving many people behind,” Maltbie said. “She began as a case worker and has that passion to help others.”

Rodriguez, a Redwood City resident, has served as director of the San Mateo County Department of Child Support Services since January 2007. She has worked for the County since 1989 and holds a master’s degree in public administration.

“Right now we are seeing historic changes in the way government at all levels delivers services and copes with diminishing resources,” Rodriguez said.  “For instance the State is shifting responsibility for low-level offenders to counties to save money. If those offenders are going to succeed – and we are going to make our communities safer – it’s up to us on the local level to develop the types of programs that will help them land jobs and strengthen families,” she said.

Johnson said, “The appointment of Iliana Rodriguez to lead the Human Services Agency is an excellent choice. Iliana’s experience, track record of innovation and collaboration, and passion for public service, are the perfect formula to lead the Agency.”

Away from the office, Rodriguez, who once managed a caseload of 1,400 families, enjoys playing tennis and spending time with her two nephews, ages 10 and 5. When not reading management books, she “loves reading mystery novels. Last read: Alex Cross, Run by James Patterson.”

When asked what quotes she has found inspiring, she named two: for business, “I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.” — Wayne Gretzky.

On managing people: “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” ― Maya Angelou.

Rodriguez will start Jan. 2, 2014.

At its core, the Human Services Agency provides assistance and programs to the most vulnerable residents of San Mateo County. Johnson became director in November 2006. She led the agency during the recession when the need for basic services such as emergency food and shelter rose sharply as resources fell. She led the implementation of the “Service Connect” model of parole re-entry of formerly incarcerated residents, which won an award from the California State Association of Counties.

Most recently, Johnson describes the capstone of her career in supporting the Agency and community during the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, giving access to life-saving health coverage to the County’s uninsured residents.

Beverly Beasley Johnson

Beverly Beasley Johnson

She focused the agency to address the significant issue of disproportionate representation of African American children in the child protective services system and has worked to streamline the agency while preserving the highest level of professional service and accountability.

Under her leadership, the Human Services Agency became the first public agency in California to receive accreditation by the nationally-recognized Council on Accreditation.

“I’ve been privileged to lead one of the County’s largest and most dedicated departments. As I conclude my thirty-seventh year of public service, my seventh as Director of the Human Services Agency, I could not be more proud of the team that I will transition to Iliana. She will inherit a department that is energized, has a commitment to customer service, and fully embraces the County’s values in outcomes and accountability.”

What should be the topic of San Mateo County’s first Google Hangout?

November 15, 2013

San Mateo County is exploring using technology to better engage with residents. We want to know: what would you like to learn more about?

Please take the next few weeks to brainstorm ideas and share them at

Vote and comment on other submissions as well. Once the topic is closed, we will review all of your suggestions and pick one of the most popular topics for San Mateo County’s first Google Hangout. Hangouts are a free videoconferencing tool.


County Offices Closed to Observe Veterans Day

November 9, 2013

Most San Mateo County offices will be closed on Monday, November 11, to observe Veterans DayColors.

Emergency services are available.

Most offices will open for normal business hours on Tuesday, November 12.


Combating Drug Abuse One Medicine Cabinet at a Time

November 8, 2013

Results from National Prescription Drug Take Back Day
How many pounds of drugs did San Mateo County residents turn in during National Prescription Drug Take Back Day?

A chief’s worth. Make that Chief John Keene of the Probation Department.

Residents on October 26 turned in 191 pounds of drugs at two Probation Department offices. That’s within a healthy lunch (or a burger and fries) of Keene’s weight and an easy way to visualize the volume of unwanted or expired medications that might have otherwise ended up in the wrong hands or polluted the environment if disposed of improperly.

“We know that drug use often begins with a raid on the family medicine cabinet,” Keene said. “By providing a safe, convenient, and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs, we believe we can make a significant contribution toward decreasing drug abuse and use in our community.”

Chief John Keene

Chief John Keene

This is the first year the Probation Department has gathered drugs as part of a nationwide effort led by the Drug Enforcement Agency.

Keene got a laugh out of the coincidence between the amount of drugs turned in and his weight.

“For next year my goal for Take Back Day is that the needle on the scale goes way up,” Keene said, “while the needle on my own scale drops a pound or two.”

Keene said the Drug Take Back Day builds on the County’s award-winning pharmaceutical disposal program. Launched by Supervisor Adrienne Tissier, the program provides drop-off boxes for unwanted pharmaceuticals in numerous locations across San Mateo County.

For more information on how to safely dispose of unwanted medications and a list of locations, visit

After the Take Back drive at offices in San Mateo and East Palo Alto, the Probation Department turned medications over to the Drug Enforcement Agency for disposal.

Statement on the Passing of Former Supervisor William Schumacher

November 6, 2013

William J. Schumacher, a charismatic San Mateo County leader who championed causes that helped children and the disadvantaged while serving on the Board of Supervisors and City Council in Daly City, died Sunday at his home in Palm Springs.

Ebullient and passionate, Mr. Schumacher served his community not only as an elected official but as a police officer, Boy Scout volunteer, attorney and, long after he left elected office, an astute observer.

Supervisor Adrienne Tissier recalls visiting the U.S. Open at the Olympic Club in 1998 when Mr. Schumacher noticed the mall-like merchandise tent was located in Daly City, not San Francisco. That keen knowledge resulted in San Mateo County receiving roughly $1 million in sales tax that would have otherwise been funneled to San Francisco.

“Only Bill would have known that it was just over the county line,” Tissier said. “Not only was he quite the character, he was extremely bright.”

Congresswoman Anna Eshoo, who served with Mr. Schumacher on the Board of Supervisors, called him an “astute and joyful politician who took pride in doing his best for people.”

“Bill Schumacher loved people and serving them through his public service as a Police Officer, a Daly City Councilman and Mayor, and Member of the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors. It was an honor to serve with him, be his friend, and laugh with him.

“His wife Liz, and his immediate family have the support of his extended family of thousands who loved Bill so much.”

Congresswoman Jackie Speier also served with Mr. Schumacher on the Board. She said, “Bill Schumacher never forgot from whence he came–he was passionate about protecting the working stiff, Daly City and North County and the powerless.

“He was one of my best friends in politics who always had a joke and a warm smile to greet you. “Lookin’ good” was how he started almost every conversation. He was a leader always looking to make peace and make a deal.

“I was happy to have been a small part in the matchmaking of his marriage to Liz Terra Schumacher, the love of his life who brought him much happiness in his years of retirement. We have lost a great one in Bill Schumacher.”

Mr. Schumacher began his career in public service when he joined the Daly City Police Department in 1959. He resigned as a sergeant in 1966 and become an attorney.

His career in office began in 1968 when he was elected to the Jefferson Elementary School Board. In 1974 he was elected to the City Council in Daly City by the highest vote total in the city’s history. He served as mayor in 1978-79.

Mr. Schumacher was elected to the five-member Board of Supervisors in 1980, becoming the first resident of Daly City to serve on the Board in 40 years. He served through 1992. “Bill was a great public servant and one of a kind,” Supervisor Carole Groom said.

Services are pending.  Additional information will be posted when available on this news blog.

Win a Deluxe Emergency Preparedness Kit

November 6, 2013

To encourage people to be prepared for the next emergency or health related disaster, now through November 16th, the San Mateo County Health System will give away one Eton FRX2 emergency radio with smartphone charger each week and a grand prize winner will receive an American Red Cross Deluxe Emergency Preparedness Kit. People that live and work in San Mateo County may enter.

Visit the Emergency Preparedness Giveaway at

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