As a follow up to the editor’s notes in Geisel’s bear story last week …
The Town spent $10,000 with Bear-With-Us in 2008 and $28,000 total in 2008-2009.
In turn, BWU spent approx. $20,000 of that on contractual services with Steve Searles.
That does not include monies BWU spent on insurance and workmen’s compensation for Searles.
So let’s just say the “bear business” isn’t exactly a profit center – like a municipal airport, for example. Ha ha.
Marianne O’Connor would’ve probably done better with a lemonade stand.
O’Connor said she didn’t pursue the 501(c)3 status for BWU because of the expense and because she didn’t know if the organization would continue to receive Town support.
Frankly, BWU wouldn’t have even needed to be created if Council at the time – and Rob Clark – had shown a little more leadership in parsing the differences between then Police Chief Randy Schienle and Searles.
And from Fredericksen’s desk …
CHP not up for the adventure
In reference to last week’s cover story “A New California Adventure,”California Highway Patrol is actually not in support of the Bill 628 and BLM and the Forest Service are neutral on the issue.
And from Geisel’s desk …
Chalfant Valley Fire Department has happy “Dance With The Devil”
Last Sunday evening’s “Dance With The Devil” fundraiser for the Chalfant Valley Volunteer Fire Department was a devilishly good time, and a big hit. The sold-out event, a wine and beer tasting, was held outdoors at the lush Chalfant Big Trees Farm.
A diverse lineup of some half-dozen wineries (coordinated by Wine Warehouse distributor Vivian Patterson) were tucked into rows of trees and plants. Indie brewers Indian Wells and Mammoth Brewing showcased their libations as well.
Event voluneer Loryn O’Neil cooked up tray after tray of delectible noshes, professionally served to guests by local FFA students. O’Neil said she doesn’t cater, though with the raves she received, she could have a side business if she wanted one. The CVFD crew cooked up barbecued sausages and side dishes, and Simply Delish owner Gae Thomas kept things perky with pulled pork and mango tacos. Thomas was returning a kindness to the Fire Department for looking after her house when it flooded while she was out of town not too long ago.
Supporters came from Bishop, Tonopah, Lone Pine and Mammoth, and raised an estimated $6,000. “It really brought the community out and together,” Chalfant Big Trees Farm owner Debbie Blair said. A followup is planned for next year.
Crowley cell towers use permit denial appeal date set
Crowley residents on both sides of the issue will likely want to set aside time on the evening of Tuesday, July 19. The Mono Board of Supervisors this week scheduled an appeal for developer Incline Partners regarding a pair of cell towers proposed for a mixed-use residential/business site. The Mono Planning Commission previously denied a use permit application for the towers in April on a narrow 3-2 vote. The Board asked Community Development Director Scott Burns to prepare a review of the site in question and other sites that had been looked at for the towers. The evening adjourned agenda item will likely begin at 6 p.m. in the Crowley Community Center.
Olmstead avalanche dangers hold up Tioga Pass opening
According to an update from Mono County Public Works on Tuesday, Tioga Road has been cleared along its entire length, and work is now progressing on the width of the road, which is now being cleared of snow, rockslides and other debris, as well as ice.
The problem section, as of June 7, is Olmstead Point, which is still deemed unsafe, due to avalanche concerns. The culprit is all the previous and new snow, which is running at about 300% of normal. Caltrans is still saying it could be the end of June before the pass is finally opened.
The County kicked in almost $60,000 in labor and equipment, and Mammoth Mountain Ski Area contributed a pair of snowcats, which were called a “huge” help by County Acting Public Works Director Jeff Walters.
Town hit list?
Rumors of an “asset hit list” the Town of Mammoth Lakes has been drawing up to use in the Hot Creek litigation settlement appear to be just that. Council member Rick Wood said the notion probably has its roots in discussions earlier this year involving the municipal tennis courts and how or if any new work on them should or could be paid for out of Measure R revenue.
Wood clarified the so-called “list” as simply a fundamental accounting of what the Town owns and its real-world value, from the Bell Shaped Parcel all the way down to a pencil in a desk. Such an accounting, he suggested, probably should have been part of a regular accounting process in the past, but is being done now as a function of information gathering (including income, expenditures, etc.) that will be a basic part of any settlement or bankruptcy proceeding.
Formal negotiations, he added, have yet to occur. “We haven’t offered anything, and the other side hasn’t asked for anything,” Wood said. All that’s happening now, he indicated, is a standard exchange of information.