Electronically Serving Monterey Park, Alhambra, San Gabriel, & Rosemead


Put Down the Phone and Just Drive: April Is Distracted Driving Awareness Month

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month and the Monterey Park Police Department will be actively looking for drivers throughout the month who are in violation of the state’s hands-free cell phone law.

“Holding your phone and using it while driving is not only dangerous, but also illegal,” Monterey Park Chief of Police Kelly Gordon said. “For the safety of your family and others on the road, put the phone away and focus on driving.”

According to the 2021 California Statewide Public Opinion Survey, nearly three out of every four drivers surveyed said that distracted driving because of texting was their biggest safety concern. In 2019, the California Highway Patrol (CHP) issued nearly 20,000 citations during the month of April to drivers for hands-free cell phone law violations.

Under current law, drivers are not allowed to hold a phone or electronic communications device while operating a vehicle. This includes talking, texting, or using an app. Using a handheld cell phone while driving is punishable by a fine. Violating the hands-free law for a second time within 36 months of a prior conviction for the same offense will result in a point being added to a driver’s record.

If you have an important phone call, text, email, or need to program directions, pull over to a safe parking spot. Before starting the car, either silence your phone or put it somewhere you can’t reach.

Funding for distracted driving enforcement is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

MPK Bruggemeyer Library Patrons Can Now Check Out a California State Parks Pass at the Library

Monterey Park Bruggemeyer Library cardholders can now borrow a California State Library Parks Pass from the Library. In partnership with the First Partner’s Office, the California State Library and State Parks, library patrons can now visit most California State Parks with this free pass program. The Parks Pass Program provides free vehicle day-use entry for one passenger vehicle at over 200 participating State Parks. For a list of ineligible parks, visit the CA Parks website.

Research shows that spending time in the outdoors is associated with better mental and physical health, and that many Californians face barriers to accessing their parks. By reducing barriers to park access, the library can help more residents explore the outdoors and generate positive impacts in the areas of health, natural resource stewardship, and historical and cultural connections.

To check out a Parks Pass at the Library, patrons must present a valid library card at the time of checkout. The pass can be checked out for seven days and is not renewable. Patrons can place holds on passes and only one pass can be checked out at a time.

For more information about the Parks Pass Program, visit the library’s website at www.montereypark.ca.gov/parkspass or call 626-307-1368.

Monterey Park Restaurants Encouraged to Apply for Restaurants Care Relief Fund Grants

Grants will support equipment upgrades, employee retention, and deferred maintenance for local-owned restaurants

Qualifying restaurants in Monterey Park and throughout SoCalGas’ service area are encouraged to apply for a $3,000 grant starting April 15, 2022. These grants aim to support equipment upgrades, employee retention, and deferred maintenance, allowing small restaurants to recover after nearly two years of incurring debt, losses, and rising costs. The application period closes on April 30, 2022.

SoCalGas announced a second $525,000 donation to the California Restaurant Foundation’s (CRF) Restaurants Care Resilience Fund. Last year, SoCalGas co-founded the Fund to help small businesses recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and was a leading donor, committing $525,000 in 2021.

“Restaurants and the families and employees that run them showed incredible resilience and strength as they adapted their businesses to serve all of us during the pandemic,” said David Barrett, Vice President and General Counsel at SoCalGas and California Restaurant Foundation board member. “Last year’s grants provided essential support to local restaurants as they struggled to keep their doors open. This year, grant funds will support kitchens or crews while overall supporting restaurant resiliency.”

This year, the Restaurants Care Resilience Fund will award nearly $1.5 million in grants to small businesses in 2022. Last year, 318 restaurants statewide received grants.

Grants will be available to all California-based restaurant owners with less than three units and less than $3 million in revenue. Priority will be given to restaurants owned by women and people of color. Last year, the Resilience Fund awarded 318 grants to independent restaurant owners, 65 percent of which were women-owned and 83 percent person of color-owned.

Restaurants Care Resilience Fund applications will be open from April 15 to 30, 2022, and can be found at www.restaurantscare.org/resilience. They know you have a lot on your plate, so the application should only take 30 minutes to complete. You may submit your application and upload documents using your cell phone.

For more information, contact the City of Monterey Park Economic Development Division at 626-307-1385 or econdev@montereypark.ca.gov.

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