Saturday, June 3, 2017

The fate of Fire Station 45

Station 45 started out as an
agricultural inspection station.
The article in Friday's Desert Trail is titled "Fire station gets closer to closing," but the dye is not yet cast.

San Bernardino County Local 935 President Jim Grigoli seems to be going to bat for Wonder Valley, lobbying for its importance in serving communities to the north and east of its borders.

"WONDER VALLEY — In a new budget for the San Bernardino County Fire Department, the Wonder Valley Fire Station is not included. 
"The county does not plan on continuing service out of that station." 
During a series of meetings in 2015 and 2016, the Community of Wonder Valley balked at a proposed tax increase of $347 or $489 per property per year for a 2-person or 3-person staff respectively.

Of 57 fire calls in the month of April, 44 were outside the boundaries of Wonder Valley. The County has not proposed how these "unfunded liability areas in the county" might contribute to the costs of the Fire Station in Wonder Valley.

Each property in Wonder Valley pays an assessment ($33.80, about $152,000 annually) for FP-4 (Fire Protection District 4) which may only be spent within Wonder Valley. Each property is also taxed through the ad valorem tax for fire service (about $17,000 annually). This money goes into the general fire budget. There has continued to be a shortfall of about $1.3 million per year.

If you're concerned about this situation, please educate yourself on what has already been discussed. Visit the FIRE tab. All the meetings we had with County Fire, LAFCO (Local Agency Formation Commission), the California Department of Insurance, and others are listed there in order, with agendas and notes.