Critical Board of Supervisors
Vote Will Impact
Newberry Springs Future

  Citizens organize in Lucerne Valley to prepare to promote Policy 4.10 before the Board of Supervisors and to fight the county's Fire Protection Zone-5 property tax.

Residents are urged to attend Supervisor's meeting and wear white.

Posted:  November 4, 2018

    An extremely important vote impacting the future of Newberry Springs will be coming before the county's Board of Supervisors this Tuesday, November 6, 2018.

    A special regional pre-Board of Supervisors meeting was held by citizens in Lucerne Valley in preparation of the hearing dealing with the Renewable Energy and Conservation Element (RECE) Policy 4.10.  If adopted by the Board, the Policy will limit industrial-scale solar development in the county controlled rural areas.  How it will impact projects with pending applications isn't known.

    Should the Board refuse to adopt the policy, many residential areas, including Newberry Springs, will be negatively impacted for decades.

    The Lucerne Valley meeting on November 1, 2018, was attended by 108 people.  From Newberry Springs, Ted Stimpfel with the Newberry Springs Community Alliance listened to keynote speakers Steve Mills speak on Policy 4.10 and Shawn Wade on the Fire Protection Zone-5 (FP-5) issue.

Policy 4.10

    The Board of Supervisors' Policy 4.10 public hearing (agenda item 79) on the matter will be this Tuesday, November 6, 2018, at the Covington Chambers, County Government Center, 385 North Arrowhead Avenue, First Floor, San Bernardino, California, at 10 A.M.

    Video conferencing will be available at the High Desert Government Center • 15900 Smoketree Street, Hesperia, CA 92345.

    Newberry residents who are interested in participating are highly encouraged to attend in person in San Bernardino and preferably wear a white shirt as a pro-Policy 4.10 supporter.  Those wishing to speak to the Supervisors will be allowed 3-minutes.

FP-5

    Fire Protection Zone-5 (FP-5) is a fire tax that is being extended to most county parcels.  Ted Stimpfel at the November 2018 monthly Newberry CSD board meeting attempted twice to speak on FP-5 to have the CSD either write a letter or prepare a resolution in opposition to the tax.  The tax appears to be unconstitutional.

    The tax, initially $157.26 per parcel, does not currently impact the vast majority of Newberry Springs parcels because communities that have their own fire department are currently exempt.  As a result, the matter hasn't generated much attention in Newberry Springs.

    At one point, Director Paula Deel interfered with Stimpfel's opportunity to speak at the CSD meeting and later President Robert Springer dismissed Stimpfel's concern apparently believing that the tax process was legal.

    Under constitutional law, FP-5 appears to be illegal and under state law, the tax requires passage by a 2/3 voter approval.  That legal requirement was never properly done.

    A local expert on FP-5 believes that if FP-5 is not challenged and is allowed, it could lead to the eventual county replacement of the Newberry CSD's fire department.  The county service would most likely provide a much lower level of service than the community is currently receiving.

    While the Newberry CSD sleeps blissfully ignoring the matter, the county is evolving the issue.  This information shouldn't be coming from a resident but from the CSD board that is responsible for the local fire department.

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