Thursday, September 10, 2009

IFPD budget meeting


The Idyllwild Fire Protection District Commission has scheduled its second special meeting of the week. Tomorrow at 1 p.m. the commission will hold review of its budget.

I assume they will review the 2009-10 budget. The commission adopted a preliminary 2009-10 budget on June 18. A final budget must be adopted before Oct. 1.

This meeting is needed. Section 13894 of the state health and Safety Code requires fire districts to hold these meetings.

For those who only want the facts, stop reading and go to the meeting. In the next few paragraphs, I plan to express some opinion on the scheduling of the meeting and how I relate this to the commission’s concern about public involvement.


On July 9, the Fire Chief Steve Kunkle published a “Public Notice of a Public Hearing”. The notice started that the hearing would be held on Sept. 8.

The district has moved their regularly scheduled monthly meetings to the second Tuesday of the month. So they should have met, two days ago. Unfortunately, the Commission didn’t post an agenda for the meeting.

IFPD President Paul Riggi canceled the regular meeting and scheduled a special meeting for tonight. The only item on the agenda for tonight is “Parcel Fees”. Now I don’t know if the commission has to ratify the current level, plans on raising them or is taking Commissioner-elect Schelly advice and lowering the fees.

But there is no mention of a budget review on tonight’s agenda.

This afternoon, I received notification that a special meeting would be held tomorrow at 1 to discuss “Budget review”. I get these notifications because I’ve requested them, requested in writing, and you can, too.

Dozens of people attended the June 18 meeting.

My opinion:
Regardless government budgets are in bad shape this year. In June, Commissioner Killingsworth indicated it was easier to over estimate revenues and cut expenditures later if necessary.

Since thin, the state has decided to borrow up to 8 percent of special district property tax revenues this year. IFPD might, no one knows yet for sure, lose $50,000 to $80,000.

Don’t you want to know how they’ll adjust for that. One Captain is retiring but he is being replaced. Word on the street is two reserves were promoted, I can’t confirm that.

Why not advertise the meeting for a week and the hold it in the evening. The final budget is supposed to be approved by Oct. 1. That’s 20 days from now.

Why are they making it hard for you or your friends to attend this meeting? Do they want to pass the budget in private, which is what they tried to do in June before they were outed? Are you the public persona non grata when comes to collecting and spending your tax dollars?

This is the meeting notice:

The Special Meeting will be held at the Idyllwild Fire Station, 54160 Maranatha Drive at 1:00 p.m.
date, Sept. 11, is in the letterhead.]

1. McWilliams – Vaught – Parker – Riggi – Killingsworth -Kunkle – Coppersmith(s)


1. None


1. None


1. Budget Review

1. None

1. None


1 comment:

  1. First a very deserved thank you for trying and succeeding in keeping us informed of these meetings and actions.

    However, please get a new editor on board promptly:

    "The notice started…"
    "Since thin…"


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