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Feather River Bulletin
Quincy, California
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November 26, 2014     Feather River Bulletin
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November 26, 2014
 

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14A Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014 Ann Powers Staff Writer apowers@plumasnews.com Schomac Group Inc. developers working to restore and reopen the historic Feather River Inn, located along Highway 70 in Blairsden, say they're stunned by the Graeagle Fire Protection District's demand fora "$250,000 cash, up-front" buy-in annexation fee. They're also baffled by what they called GFPD's "lack of a reasonable explanation" and "bully tactics" regarding the fee, on top of additional annual charges, for fire protection within the district's sphere of influence. "When I asked them how they came to that amount they said, 'We don't have to tell you. How would you like it to be hall a million?'" Schomac's Dan Gallagher said. "I just want to know how they came to that number " Apparently, so might the state of California. In 1987, the California Legislature approved Assembly Bill 1600 -- a bill requiring local agencies to establish a link between the fees being exacted, and the needs created by the development. The resulting process is commonly referred to as an AB 1600 fee justification study, which must be Developers working to restore and reopen the historic Feather demand for a $250,000 annexation fee. File photo River Inn are balking at the Graeagle Fire Protection District's He said the 2005 McMillanare public information, they with them," said Gallagher. Tom Forster. "I'm not going study outlines what the said the records weren't About that same time, to jeopardize our relationship different kinds of impactavailable because "we would Schomac officials said the with the Graeagle Fire costs Could be. Ward also said have to go back and look it company purchased a fire Protection District because of he only had one copy of that up." The board directed engine as a result of thethe developer's inability to study, and additional copies Feather Publishing to contact district's expressed needs come to an agreement with for members of the press or LAFCo, saying it would bestemming from those talks them. The developer just public to take with them posted on that agency's But when Schomac attempted seems to be seeking a were not available website, to deliver the vehicle, GFPD cheaper way to see it done." Board directors added that "We don't post that refused the donation, Or maybe Schomac is the engineer who originally information," said Benoit. according to Gallagher. trying to get a much-needed drafted the report had died. "Never have and never will. "We would really like to job-creating, followed by other procedures They said be,they: :-:Be should have that find a home for the fire tourism-enhancing, including public notifmation, couldn't ask the author any information and they Should engine we purchased for revenue-boosting business up public hearings, approvals questions about his mdings, provide it." GFPD several years ago and running, speculates and establishing ordinances they pulled his notes together Graeagle officials when our project was held up Plumas County Supervisor prior to the fee being exacted, and interpreted what they countered by repeating they due to High Sierra Rural Jon Kennedy, who called the "Drawing a number out of "think he meant" -- the would "have to go back and Alliance's legal challenge to fee "unprecedented." a hat probably doesn't board said that's how it look it up." But first, they the county's approval of the "It's hard enough to do comply with AB 1600 fee determined Feather River said they would have to call inn's restoration," he what (Schomac) is doing to mitigation laws," explained Inn's buy-in price years after all of the other board explained "We made the enhance our economy Local Agency Formation the McMillan study was done. members to see how they investment of buying and without these obstacles from Commission Executive Gallagher reviewed the wanted to proceed with reconditioning this engine the local fire district," said Officer John Benoit. "My decade-old report, but said he divulging those public and it's a shame to just keep Kennedy. "The district sees question is, how did they was also told by district records, schedule a meeting, it in storage, when it should some deep pockets and is arrive at that figure?" officials the $250,000 is "just a hold a vote on the matter and be put to use somewhere trying to get money they During a recent interview fee and not attached to any then schedule another protecting lives and don't deserve." with Feather Publishing, one thing." "special meeting" if theyproperty." Marketing experts concur, GFPD board members didn't "The McMillan study does decided to share the Board director Dan West saying Feather River Inn's answer that question not justify the $250,000," said information with Feather said they didn't want the fire development is a significant "I don't even know what Gallagher. "In regards to fire Publishing. engine because it was a 1979 solution to the area's (AB 1600 studies) are," said district annexation, we just Feather Publishing is in model with 75,000 miles on it. economic crisis. Board Chairman John want to pay our fair share the process of filing a public "It's just an old piece of "At an estimated 75 percent Sciborski. We're no more interested in records request to obtain that junk," he said. occupancy rate, which "I can't answer that compromising the district by information. LAFCo officials say equates to approximately question because I don't want underpaying than we are inGraeagle directors say a Feather River Inn cannot 16,000 room nights a season, to," added Bob Anderson, a paying too much." portion of the $250,000 open for business until it's Plumas County's projected district board director When asked what other initiation is derived from annexed into a district transient occupancy tax In an effort to further developers paid GFPD in earlier discussions with Facing the obstacles fromestimations will skyrocket," rationalize the initial annexation fees, Board Schomac about a possible Graeagle, Schomac officials said Patty Clawson, of Big quarter-million-dollar cost, Chairman Sciborski told annexation in 2010. Thoseapproached the Fish Creations "Quite simply, Graeagle Fire ChiefEd Ward . Feather Publishing, "We're efforts were later tabled and Plumas-Eureka Fire this means that there will be produced a nearly 10-year-old not going to do your not solidified as an official Department for annexation more dollars available for McMillan study during a homework for you." agreement, according to the They were turned away. local infrastructure, more jobs Nov. 20 board meeting as a And while Sciborski and developer "The development is not and more tourism dollars for substitute for an AB 1600 fee other board members "i've never found any within our sphere of all of our local businesses. justification report, acknowledged the records evidence that we ever agreed influence,', said PEFD Chief Everyone will prosper." Feather River Bulletin Students invifed to participate video cont s Students throughout California are invited to "direct change" by submitting 60-second films to spread awareness about suicide prevention and ending. the silence associated with mental illness. The winning teams and their associated schools will win cash prizes, receive mental health or suicide, prevention programs for their ~-~ schools, get to partmlpate m a meeting with state legislators on these topics, and attend the award ceremony at the end of the 2014-15 school year, Directing Change is part of statewide efforts to prevent suicide, reduce stigma and discrimination related to mental illness and promote the mental health and wellness of students These initiatives are funded by the voter-approved Mental Health Services Act (Proposition 63) and administered by the California ' Mental Health Services Authority NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) California , announces the expansmn of the education and training component of the Directing Change student film contest This year, Directing Change is offering an Ending the Silence: presentation and suicide : :. prevention programs tQ students who intend to SulJ! it :, ! entries There are also additional resources yailab for p icipants, p ents and school advisors. :: The Directing Change team will be offering a monthly ;, newsletter to keep participants i up to date with all developments about the contest and various : mental health and suicide ' prevention topics through articles, educational videos and current events Educational t trims that discuss various mental health and suicide < prevention topics will also be released for participants on a monthly basis <, The films can be used to provide more information to students and teachers to he! inspire the filfiimaking pr0ce . Films about the mental health continuum, mental illness and stigma can be viewed at directingchange.org/education- videos. Visit the campaign website for contest rules and information: directingchange.org. The submission deadline is Feb. 1, 2015. Questions about Directing Change may be directed to Lauren Hee at lauren@namica.org or 916-567-0163, llWin k only . Qm Set only Reclining Sofa only Ashley Recllnor only s588 88o, ,S1.09, , Laminate rom S1.49 .ardwood )4,49 A. Shem & mows 10% OFF Solid Oak Rockers )222 42" Solid Oak'lV Consoles s2191: . S144 30" Barstools SPECIAL EDmOll 1,0111 PILLOWTOP YOUR C.HOICE only- :i Home Elegance Table,: i: with4 Upholstered LY 388 Chairs saleSmNOW ON $ WITH PAYMENTS FOR 6 t I