Judge foils Bonny Doon's effort to cr...

Judge foils Bonny Doon's effort to create new fire department

There are 13 comments on the Santa Cruz Sentinel story from Oct 5, 2010, titled Judge foils Bonny Doon's effort to create new fire department. In it, Santa Cruz Sentinel reports that:

The push for locally controlled fire service in Bonny Doon may have run its course -- without success.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Santa Cruz Sentinel.

Coonerty

Santa Cruz, CA

#1 Oct 5, 2010
Bonny Doon has experienced two large, dangerous fires in recent years. Residents should be allowed to vote on upgrading fire services, which they could do if not hamstrung by the local political bureaucracy.

Neil Coonerty? Thanks for nothing.
Redic

United States

#3 Oct 5, 2010
There should be a single county wide fire department or they should be rolled into Calfire whose local district is two counties (San Mateo/Santa Cruz). Economy of scale, ease of cross area staffing, less chiefs/more indians, perfect communication channels, standardized equipment and training. Better protection at much less cost (will never happen).
livin BD

United States

#4 Oct 5, 2010
Where's dick on vick when you need em', I hope this is the end! you clowns should give up all ready.
Stymie

United States

#5 Oct 5, 2010
The headline is misleading. The judge only follows the law; he does not make the laws. The state legislature actually "foil[ed]" the effort. Again, the Sentinel writers are just too lazy or uneducated to figure this out.
Another Dooner

Alviso, CA

#6 Oct 5, 2010
Something that is lost in all this discussion of our rights is that the district proponents failed to make a convincing case for the nonbelievers ( like me) that an independent district would provide a real, measurable upgrade in service.
not so simple

Yorkville, CA

#7 Oct 5, 2010
Another Dooner wrote:
Something that is lost in all this discussion of our rights is that the district proponents failed to make a convincing case for the nonbelievers ( like me) that an independent district would provide a real, measurable upgrade in service.
Exactly. All this "OMG, isn't this a democracy??" is such nonsense, the people that want this Fire Department haven't even convinced their own small community its a good idea, much less the government entity that is designed to regulate this so that other communities don't get screwed.

So no, this has nothing to do with local control, or denying people their rights. It has to do with a small group of people that fight fires in Bonny Doon, who have personal reasons for not liking Cal Fire, wanting their own fiefdom, and trying to get everyone to come along for the ride.
Steve Homan

Santa Cruz, CA

#8 Oct 5, 2010
The headline should actually read: "Judge and Supervisor Coonerty and LAFCo and the LAFCo Executive Officer and County Fire CSA 48 and Cal Fire Administration and Chief Ferreira and the Fire Dept. Advisory Commission and CAO Susan Mauriello and GSA Director Gordon continue their efforts to try and foil the formation of a Bonny Doon Fire District."

Why? Because Bonny Doon pays a lot more money into CSA 48 than any other community, and much less is spent in Bonny Doon for fire protection than should be. Bonny Doon subsidizes CSA 48. All of the people and groups listed above have a vested interest in keeping Bonny Doon from forming a fire district. It is all about the money. Bonny Doon is supposed to pay more and get less return on its taxes and fees than elsewhere. Bonny Doon is the victim of shady county fire politics.

After all, who could be against a community voting on whether to form a district, and voting on how much to tax itself. All of this un-democracy under the guise of good government is really just selfishness and greed on the part of those people and groups I listed above.

I have the utmost respect for firefighters, especially the Bonny Doon Volunteers as well as Cal Fire rank and file. I am sorry, but I have no respect left for the folks and groups I listed above. They knock themselves out to keep their hands in our pockets. SHAME ON YOU ALL!!!
Steve Homan

Santa Cruz, CA

#9 Oct 5, 2010
By the way, over half of the registered voters in BD signed a petition asking for this VOTE to occur in 2006.

This has been an official application and request for over 4 years, not some recent hot idea. The first requests for a real fire district began in the 1970s.

The Bonny Doon Volunteers have been active since World War II, and the non-profit Bonny Doon Volunteer Fire and Rescue Corporation was formed in 1968. This community has a long proud tradition of volunteer firefighters responding to fires, downed power lines, medical emergencies, accidents, etc.

Bonny Doon has now grown to the size where it can support its own fire district. It could be done without a tax increase, if the same amount of money that flows to County Fire for use elsewhere could be kept here.

Too bad the County, County Fire CSA 48, and Cal Fire Administration want our local funds for their own uses, instead.
LeAnn

Oakley, CA

#10 Oct 5, 2010
It doesn't matter what the residents want. LAFCO and the County of Santa Cruz want to control revenue. Any attempt to change this will be shot down.

Homan is right. Mauriello is the biggest financial problem we've seen in years. She has got to go.
Soquel Local

Hollister, CA

#12 Oct 5, 2010
Simple solution is to whack fire fighter salaries and cap them at $80K which is on par with their education (none). Also revoke all defined pensions and put them on 401ks like the rest of us. Am I the only one who realizes that as a fire fighter, you never have to save for retirement because you are guaranteed your full salary and benefits for life?

FIRE FIGHTER PAY IS UNSUSTAINABLE!!
LAFCO SUPPORTER

United States

#13 Oct 5, 2010
"By the way, over half of the registered voters in BD signed a petition asking for this VOTE to occur in 2006."

BY THE WAY, YOU PRESSURED 1/2 THE VOTERS IN SIGNING IT.
Steve Homan

Santa Cruz, CA

#14 Oct 5, 2010
It is funny that you allege that I somehow pressured the voters. I was uninvolved in the movement for a fire district until well after the petitions were submitted to LAFCo in 2006. I was too busy commuting and working. I heard about it from a newspaper article.

It would be quite a job to pressure half of the voters in Bonny Doon to do anything. I guess you do not know Dooners. They are a very independent lot, well spoken, well educated, and outspoken. They are not likely to be pressured by anyone.
Another Dooner

Alviso, CA

#15 Oct 6, 2010
Steve Homan wrote:
It is funny that you allege that I somehow pressured the voters. I was uninvolved in the movement for a fire district until well after the petitions were submitted to LAFCo in 2006. I was too busy commuting and working. I heard about it from a newspaper article.
It would be quite a job to pressure half of the voters in Bonny Doon to do anything. I guess you do not know Dooners. They are a very independent lot, well spoken, well educated, and outspoken. They are not likely to be pressured by anyone.
Signing the petition to get this on the ballot, and supporting the notion of an independent district without qualms...are two different things. I did not sign because I was not convinced that I was getting the whole truth from the supporters (and I know now that I wasn't). But plenty of people signed simply as an assertion of their rights. I think that many who did would not have voted for the district if it had gotten on the ballot. now that there has been time to think it through, and the organizers have changed their financial calculations multiple times, and there has been another fire....I think that some of the support has disappeared.

And, SH, there WAS pressure to sign. I got a classic "hard sell" when I asked for more information on the idea. It didn't change my mind, but I was bombarded nevertheless.

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