The Morongo Basin Municipal Municipal Advisory Council, aka the Big Mac, met last Monday and despite the hard freeze warnings for the surrounding areas, there was a large turnout of citizens from Wonder Valley to Morongo Valley, Joshua Tree, Landers, Pioneertown, Yucca Mesa and Flamingo Heights. There are nine appointed members representing this vast area consisting of eight communities. (Scroll down to read agenda.)
Third District Supervisor James Ramos placed Johnson Valley in a separate MAC with Lucerne Valley. Johnson Valley is in the Homestead Valley Community meeting for many years on a monthly basis sharing many similar concerns. Although Johnson Valley and Lucerne Valley share the same school district and water hauling issues, these two low population combined areas are represented with seven members.
How can the MB MAC truly represent their community when the vetting process does not require the appointed member to actually live in the area he or she represents? One member has even set up a website and Facebook page without the collaboration of the Council which is very misleading as to what is the actual authorized website.
I was told a couple of appointments were politically motivated or inspired, which I have yet to confirm, and another appointee, using a post office address actually lives in another zip code. It is an arduous task to review campaign contributions and individual form 700′s, Statement of Economic Interests, but I will submit Requests for Public Information and Voter Registration documents to write about these concerns at a later date.
It seems I am not the only one concerned about this Big Mac. An Editorial in the Desert Trail writes:
“As neighbors working at common causes and respecting and celebrating each other’s differences and charms, the Basin’s various communities thrive. But will being thrust into “life boat diplomacy” capsize that cooperative spirit?
We think it will. Editorial>LINK
It will take some time for this Big Mac to get settled in with their official Facebook page and official website, as with any new organization, especially with such a large area with many diverse issues. Let’s hope the remaining appointees that were excused for 3 previous meetings will make it back to the dais and the Big Mac will receive some sort of funding to help move things along into the new year.
The major discussion item was the draft letter to the Board of Supervisors against solar commercial field being placed next to residential development and water usage concerns. Field Representative Donna Munoz stated she has been working long hours over the past 6 months with a committed group that contributed 80% of the current BOS ordinance with their research. The local radio station reports:
“…representatives approved a recommendation urging the County Board of Supervisors to keep in place the moratorium on new industrial-scale solar projects only in areas zoned for rural residential development. At its December 17 meeting, the Board of Supervisors will consider a planning commission ordinance that would lift the moratorium altogether. And while it has been widely believed the Board will go with the planner’s recommendation, hopes are that the MAC’s compromise plan may protect local homeowners from seeing solar fields popping up all around at least until the full impact of such development on property values, water consumption and overall quality of life can be better studied.”For the rest of the report, www.kcdzfm.com>LINK
PREVIOUS POST: MB MUNICIPAL COUNCIL MEET DEC. 9th, @ 6:30pm
POST DATED: December 7, 2013,-The Morongo Basin Municipal Advisory Council, also know as the “Big Mac,” will meet this Monday evening. The local Sheriff and California Highway Patrol will be the featured speakers to update the community and address any concerns from the citizens.
Morongo Basin Municipal Advisory Council
Joshua Tree Community Center
6171 Sunburst Ave., Joshua Tree, CA 92252
Regular Meeting Agenda
6:30 PM, Monday, Dec. 9, 2013
A. Call to Order
B. Pledge of Allegiance
C. Roll Call
D. Approval of the Agenda
E. Approval of Prior Minutes
F. Morongo Basin Sheriff Station Report
G. California Highway Patrol Report (Items A- F: 20 minutes)
H. MAC Reports & Announcements (20 minutes)
Each representative to report on issues/events relevant to their community
I. Call for Public Comment (20 minutes)
At this time, any person who wishes to comment on items not listed on the agenda that are of interest to the public at large and within the jurisdiction of the MAC. The Council is prohibited by law from taking action on matters discussed that are not on the agenda. Please limit comments to 3 minutes per speaker.
Public input may be offered on an agenda item when the item comes up for discussion and/or action. Members of the public who wish to speak shall proceed to the podium when recognized by the Chair. State your name and community of residence for the record if you so desire.
J. Information Item(s) (10 minutes)
1. Report out on Johnson Valley and the Base Expansion
2. Committee Reports (if any)
K. Action Item(s) (10 minutes)
1. Report from Ad Hoc Committee on Siting of Renewable Energy Projects
Review/adopt language of recommendation letter to County Supervisors
L. Items for January Agenda
1. Land Use Services; County Council
Next meeting: 6:30 PM, Mon, Jan. 13, 2014
Joshua Tree Community Center, 6171 Sunburst Ave, Joshua Tree, 92252
San Bernardino County is committed to ensuring that persons with disabilities are provided the resources to participate fully in its public meetings. If you require disability-related modifications or accommodations, including auxiliary aid or services, please contact the BOS’ office at least three (3) business days prior to the meeting.
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