CITIZENS FIRE COMMITTEE MEETING
Sunday, November 22, 2015, 2:00 p.m.
Wonder Valley Community Center
80526 ½ Amboy Road, Wonder Valley, CA 92277
Wonder Valley MAC Delegate and Meeting Chair: Teresa Sitz
N O T E S
- Call to Order: Teresa Sitz called the meeting to order on Sunday November 22, 2015 at 2:00 pm.
Attendance: Jim Brakebill, Master Fire Instructor, Copper Mountain College
Jim Copeland, Former Assistant Fire Chief, Wonder Valley
Ramon Lomeli, General Manager, Morongo Basin Ambulance
Karen Meyers, Columnist, Desert Trail, former MBA employee
Bob Tellefson, Wonder Valley Resident
Ed Vallerand, Wonder Valley Resident
Teresa Sitz, MAC Delegate and Meeting Chair
- Old Business: None
- New Business:
A. All committee members present agreed both proposals presented by County Fire for (both 2-0 and 3-0 staffing) full-time fire personnel to be assigned to the Wonder Valley fire station would be cost prohibitive for the residents of Wonder Valley.
B. Jim Brakebill suggested to the committee the need to look at the call volume for the Wonder Valley station to determine if full-time personnel were justified or if paid-call firefighters or some other alternative would be more affordable. Committee agreed.
C. The committee listed the following alternatives to the County Fire proposal presented by Chief John Chamberlain:
1. No fire services
2. Contract fire services
3. Volunteer fire services
4. Paid-call firefighters
5. Solicit bid from Cal Fire
6. Assign a full-time ambulance crew from Morongo Basin Ambulance in station 45.
7. Become a Community Service District (CSD) similar to Morongo Valley
D. Jim Copeland expressed a concern that Wonder Valley residents are paying the cost for fire services outside the boundaries of Wonder Valley. This merits further discussion with County Fire.
E. Ed Vallerand explained to the committee how the Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) process works.
F. Teresa Sitz recommended the committee draft questions regarding fire services and present the questions to Chief Chamberlain for a response. Jim Brakebill recommended to the committee that the questions be submitted to Chief Chamberlain in advance to allow for ample time to prepare a response to the questions. Committee members agreed. Questions attached to the minutes.
G. The committee drafted questions to be sent to J. Rigney of Special Districts regarding the ownership of the property and building that occupies station 45. Questions attached to the minutes.
H. Jim Copeland and Ed Vallerand discussed arranging a meeting with the Office of Special Districts to determine the requirements of forming a Wonder Valley CSD.
- Dedicating the firehouse to Jack McConaha was tabled until next meeting.
- Next Meeting Date: Next meeting date will be announced after County Fire and Special Districts have responded to our written questions and request for information.
- Meeting Adjourned.