Pine Valley Special Service District Meeting (PVSSD)
Minutes of the Meeting held On August 2, 2006
Attending Members: Mary Esther Putnam (Chairwoman); Gerald Schiefer (VC); Dall Winn; Ron Snow; Ryon Gardner
Absent Member: N/A
Also Present: Steve Robinson (Fire Chief), George Cropper (Treasurer) and Beverly Udell (Secretary)
Guests: Jim Eardley , Alan Gardner, Jay Ence (County Commissioners); Dave Patterson (County Attorney); Kirk Smith (Sheriff); Kirk Flannigan (Forest Service); Jeff Gardner; Nate Kruger; Bob Herpel; Glenn DeMille; Monty Dunn; Gae Robinson; Guin Winn; Fred Pendleton; Dorrel Booth; Arlene Booth; Mike Small; Barry Lagan; Glen Mack; Eva Mack; Joe Hutchings; Doris Hutchings; Clark Hutchings; Kayla Hutchings; Jo Ann Lockett; Shirley Bellinger; Fermin Esparza; Violet Esparza; Helga Love; Ginger Mathis; Gary Mathis; ReNae Romney; Tony Romney; David Andrews; Sunni Morris; Layne Frei; Howard Putnam; Bob Covington; Kaelyn Smith; Brooke Smith; Morgan Empey; Matt Jacobson; David MacFarlane, Nicolette Batista; J.D. Jones; and Wes Hutchings
1. General Business:
a/b. Welcome – The meeting was called to order at 6:02 P.M. with the opening being the Pledge of Allegiance.
* Mary Esther introduced the whole Board, plus the County Commissioners, County Attorney, Sheriff and Game Warden. Mary Esther said that we have asked the Sheriff to come up and give a report on what his findings have been during his resent patrolling of Pine Valley.
c. Review/Approval of the ‘Minutes of the Meeting’ from May 3 2006 and June 7 2006. In order to save time, Beverly gave a copy of the Minutes to each Board member and asked them to revue them during the month for possible approval at the next meeting.
Mary Esther then explained that this will be the first of possibly 2-3 such meetings regarding the ATV issues in the Valley. Mary Esther said that we would like to hear comments on a survey will be sent out to the audience to fill out while we address the rest of the agenda. Those surveys will then be given back to Mary Esther to document. Once compiled, a copy will be given to the Sheriff. Based on the nature of the comments, it may or may not give way to more meetings on the subject. We all know that we want to stay together as a community on this emotional issue, so we hope that this format given to address concerns will be acceptable to everyone present. Mary Esther then passed out a letter addressing the town’s concerns, which she also read aloud. These concerns show a need for continual monitoring because of the obvious safety issues involved.
* The Chief Deputy over patrol was then introduced because it has been his presence in the Valley that is the basis for the Sheriff’s report. (Since the Sheriff and Deputy both spoke as one voice from this point forward, they shall both be named in these Minutes simply as “Sheriff”.) The Sheriff explained some of the possible helps that we could get – we could pay for a Constable to patrol during peak times. He/she would have to be a certified peace officer, which would have to be paid for through the Special Service District of Pine Valley. We are not the first community to have to go this route. The Sheriff’s department has 2,500 square miles in the county to cover and obviously they can’t spend all of their time in Pine Valley. Besides, citizens have a tendency to behave while a sheriff is patrolling the area, but as soon as he leaves, the bad behaviors go right back to occurring.
* The Sheriff told how each year $5000 dollars is given to the Sheriff’s department by the Forestry Department for police coverage in Pine Valley. Individual police have been volunteering to work overtime to help what is covered by the $5000. The Sheriff told that a deputy spent lots of time here last weekend and reported that there were many, many ATV issues – Lloyd Canyon Rd. was mentioned specifically as one of the major problem areas. ATVs are NOT allowed on paved roads, which there were tons of offenses to that. Other concerns reported by the Deputy were (to name just a few) about the 15 year olds driving without permits and when they were stopped, they were very belligerent and mouthy to the deputy. The Deputy was trying to get people to slow down as speeding was another big problem. He also spoke of no helmets, dust trails and property damage. The Deputy said that he would watch things calm down for a few minutes, but as soon as he would leave to go to another part of Pine Valley, the ATV problems would just start right back up again in the spot he had just left.
* The Sheriff said that one of the things they had been looking at was contracting services for patrol time. They recently sent 3 deputies to San Bernardino to learn about contracting services. Touqerville was one area that they are trying this contract service. The community needs to pay for time, gas, vehicles, etc. Monty Dunn asked if the revenue that is earned by tickets given out could then come back to Pine Valley to help pay for the expense of the contracted person. Dave Patterson said that the money goes to the County and because we are not an Incorporated area, the funds generated could not come back to us and would have to stay in the County as a whole.
* The Sheriff also said that one of the concerns in Pine Valley is the response time it takes one of his deputies to get here. They can’t say specifically when a deputy will be patrolling up here because then the bad guys act accordingly. The Sheriff’s Department also covers so 2500 square miles – they have 25 police patrolling that many miles 24/7. They get call outs to all of their coverage areas, not just Pine Valley. There are severe problems in Veyo with people going through their town going over 60 mph.
* Dorrel Booth said that he didn’t think it was fair that we have to pay taxes to both the County and the Special Service District, yet we are now being told that we have to pay even more money for more protection. The Sheriff responded that this is a problem everywhere. Unfortunately, finances play a huge part in what can be done and there just plain isn’t enough money in the budget for more deputy man hours. Also added to this is the fact that for officer safety, they usually try to have the deputies work in pairs for their own protection. That means that two times the man hours is used. All of this is just a painful reality of life. Pine Valley is indeed getting extra police coverage that no other areas get because of the extra $5000 from the Forestry Department.
* Mary Esther asked if the Sheriff would come back and address issues that the audience will be voicing on their surveys tonight. The Sheriff answered that he certainly would. He also welcomed dialogue comments from the audience on their surveys so that the people can get clarification.
* Mary Esther asked if there were any comments from the Commissioners on the subject. Commissioner Eardley explained that we have all just listened to the Sheriff document real concerns in our Valley. He said that laws are in place to control the problem, but to enforce all the issues we would indeed need more police and more money. Commissioner Ence said that they (the Commissioners) believe in what we are trying to achieve in Pine Valley and they support it. Commissioner Gardner relayed that this has been a problem up here for quite a while. We should also be addressing the sides of the roads and the wear/tear being caused there by the ATVs driving off the road.
* Dave Patterson suggested that maybe if we can identify which areas in the Valley, or surrounding areas, are open to ATV driving and which areas are closed, it might be helpful to people.
d. Pine Valley Building Permits Reviewed: None
e. Board Member Reports:
Gerald: The Forestry Dept. will start to do tree thinning in the fall. Currently trees are being marked for removal due to bugs and drought. Steve asked about concerns with ATV travel over Forest areas – and asked which areas are open so the ATVs don’t have to be on the paved roads. There are even ATV problems at the Heritage Center.
Ron – None
Dall – He and Guin had been reading through old copies of the “Pine Valley Voice”. It was interesting to note that 50 years ago, the biggest problem addressed in the “Voice” was dirt bikes causing problems in the valley. 50 years later, we still haven’t solved the OHV problem. Ryon – None
f. Fire Chief’s Report-
Steve: Invited the audience to go and look at the new Fire truck. He also put in a plug with the audience for them to come to fire training. Last month there were 3 fire call outs – two lightening strikes and a power pole. We were also on stand-by for any problems within the County. There were 5 EMS call outs. Steve then turned in his expenses for the last few months.
g. Treasurer’s Report – George: Passed out a form of updates with expenses and what we have taken in so far. At this point, we are still within our budget.
h. Mary Esther then asked for the surveys to be returned to her. She stated again that she would compile the comments and make a report.
2 - Public Comments – Commissioner Eardley mentioned that the Pine Valley road will be striped all the way to Central. We all stated that we certainly appreciate the work on the roads. Ron asked about more girders at Dead Man’s Curve and he also told about how many accidents there are there. Comm. Eardley said that one of the reasons that they can’t get everything done that they would like is that the state capped their resources two years ago. They are working with the state to get those caps removed. As always, it is a money battle. Ron said that the roadway is on Forestry property and Comm. Eardley answered back that the Forestry Dept. and the County are working together on it. The traffic up here is also increasing and causing problems.
* Bob Covington told how a few years ago, the state took our County money to fix roads up at the other end of the state, and they were supposed to return the money. Comm. Eardley said that was part of the Centennial project and that they ran out of money before they could return it. Comm. Gardner said that the monetary cap has really hurt us, plus the steep increase in gas prices.
* Bob Herpel said that he, as well as others in the audience are very disappointed in this meeting because they were not allowed to voice their opinions over the ATV issue. David Andrews said he was unhappy because he had wanted to verbalize his concern, not just write them in a survey. He was also upset that the meeting agenda goes up each month after the weekenders leave and he felt that was a direct slight against weekenders. Beverly shared that the agenda goes up at least 24 hours in advance of a meeting and that no offense was ever meant at all towards weekenders. Mary Esther told the audience that we ALWAYS have a meeting on the first Wed. of each month. Jeff Gardner wanted to know if the PVSSD could send out letters regarding the report being made for the Sheriff and Mary Esther said expenses would prohibit that, but she would be happy to make copies to give out at the Post Office.
At 6:55 PM, Ron moved for the meeting to adjourn. Dall seconded.
The next Board meeting will be held on Wednesday, September 6, 2006 at 6:00 P.M.