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Palomar Mountain Planning Organization Minutes, 5/27/2006 Annual General Meeting minutes

Minutes of the Palomar Mountain Planning Organization 2006 Annual Meeting

Saturday, May 27, 2006 at the Palomar Mountain Volunteer Fire Department

Board Members Present:

Robert Carlyle, Tracy Dixon, Donna Dose, Elizabeth Getzoff (alternate), Bruce Graves, Jim Hamerly, Rob Hawk, Susan Humason, Scott Kardel, Elliot Miller, Bonnie Phelps, Michael Pique, Earl Walls.

The annual general PMPO meeting was convened at the Palomar Mountain Volunteer Fire Department 11:05 A.M. Saturday May 27, 2006. The Chair, Bruce Graves, thanked the Palomar Mountain Volunteer Fire Department Board and Chief for hosting the Pancake Breakfast and Annual Meeting, Susan Humason for editing and producing the newsletter, and Donna Dose & crew for organizing the breakfast.

Secretary's Report (Michael Pique):

The minutes of the May 28, 2005, annual general meeting were distributed and, with the correction of ``Rogart'' to ``Rosiar'', approved.

Treasurer's Report (Tracy Dixon):

As reported in the PMPO spring 2006 annual newsletter, our balance carried forward from December 31, 2004, was $31,956.19. Our 2005 expenses, totaling $1,736.02, were $420.00 for annual newsletter stamps, $257.95 for breakfast food, $74.00 for PMPO announcement stamps, $21.53 for office supplies (labels), $20.00 for State of California registration, $735.00 for annual newsletter printing, $171.54 for breakfast supplies, and $36.00 for post office box rental. The total donations from our members came to $7,317.56, and we had $629.00 receipts from the 2005 breakfast, which served 186, a total income of $4,346.56, giving us an ending balance (Dec 31, 2005) of $38,166.73. The treasurer's report was approved.

Palomar Mountain Volunteer Fire Department (PMVFD):

The PMVFD Fire Chief, George Lucia, reported the Department's accomplishments during the past year. Crew training levels are way up, with 3/4 having Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) certification. A new fire engine, donated by the city of Vista, will be stationed at an off-site location for faster response. New mile markers, guard rails, and call boxes have been installed and more are on the way. The PMVFD just received a grant for 10 automatic electric defibrillator units from the San Diego Heartbeat Group. A major goal for the 2006 fire season is working on fire clearances through the Fire Safe Council.

Palomar Observatory:

Scott Kardel, Palomar Observatory Public Affairs Coordinator, says the new public outreach programs have been very successful, with last year's Open House attracting 4000 people, who toured inside the Hale Telescope dome even with hours-long lines. A new ``Friends of the Observatory'' program is also underway, with special lectures and tours open to members. Last year the 48-inch Oschin Telescope at the Observatory enabled finding of the ``10th planet'', and in about a week a new 24-inch telescope will be operational. He showed photographs of how Palomar Mountain outdoor lights harm the ability of the Observatory to make its important scientific discoveries, and urged residents to shade or turn off outdoor lights: a 100 watt light bulb on the Mountain is as bad as 10,000 watts down below.

Community Safety Center of Palomar Mountain (CCPM):

Earl Walls said the last year saw plans firming up for a combined Community Center and Volunteer Fire Department auxiliary building, with emphasis on having a place of refuge during emergencies, whether fires or, as we saw recently, severe winter weather. The Safety Center would be two stories, each about 5000 square feet, with the downstairs partly below ground providing emergency shelter and space for Fire Department training and dorm rooms. The upstairs would have an auditorium, library, kitchen, pantry, crafting room, and a meeting room able to seat 240 people at tables. Last year the committee did not get its block grant request submitted to the county but intend to do it this year; the estimated cost is $1.7 million. Rob Hawk is looking at waste disposal issues and could use copies of `perc' studies that Mountain residents have had done in the past. Also, anyone interested in donating land to the US Forest Service that could be exchanged for Forest Service land that is adjacent to the Fire Department should contact the CCPM Board.

Fire Safe Council:

Jay Ackerman, reporting for Shana Ackerman, said last year the Palomar Mountain Fire Safe Council received $158 thousand from grant funding, cleared more than 1300 acres, and cut down 340 large dead trees. This year the Council has another grant, but funding will not arrive until November. Jay says the Council can help on covering your brush piles to keep them dry until you can get burn permits this winter. Fire clearance inspections will begin in June.

Christine Meyers, San Diego County Fire Safe Council Coordinator, said that this summer the county will be doing ``timber cruises'' on Palomar Mountain, collecting data on tree species, age, and density as well as looking for evidence of threatened or endangered animal or plant species. Volunteers wanting to assist in the field work or in creating a Palomar Mountain Forest Management Plan should phone her at (619) 562-0096 or email

Palomar Christian Conference Center (PCCC):

PCCC Director Kim Rosiar said that for the first time in its 73-year history the Conference Center has a full-time program director on staff, Holly Stoffer. The two popular summer programs, Girl's Horse Camp and Boy's Adventure Camp are open to all; and a new outdoor science camp - geared to 5th and 6th grade school groups - is on the way.

Community Emergency Reponse Training and Neighborhood Watch Program

Chris Kusek asks residents interested in emergency response training (e.g., putting out small fires, beginning search & rescue training) to consider forming a Community Emergency Reponse Training (CERT) group, which would also work with the county on updating our evacuation and emergency plan.

B. J. Williams of the Sheriff's Department crime prevention unit asks residents interested in joining a neighborhood watch program to phone her at (760) 510-5254 or email betty.wil HREF="mailto:liams@sdsher CERT is separate from Neighborhood Watch so there are two new organizations for residents to consider joining.

La Jolla Indian Reservation / Yale Cedar Creek Water Project:

Bruce Graves said that Mr. Yale's sale of his 7-acre parcel to the La Jolla Indian Reservation for exporting well water was pretty much a done deal. Some Palomar residents met with people from the La Jolla Indian Reservation and the tribe agreed to share their water and well monitoring data as they collect it.

Dual Government Survey Problem:

Bruce Graves said we are working now on a land swap, whereby the PMPO would obtain, by donation, land to swap with the Forest Service for the approximately 17 acres in Section 14 that was taken over by the government in their 1985 re-survey.

County of San Diego Year 2020 General Plan Update:

Bruce Graves said the county has been moving slowly, with the 2020 General Plan update on-going for seven years now. The PMPO has been working with county staff from the beginning to restore the commercial zoning for the shopping area at the Summit, and to allow for `clustering': the variety of densities that most towns have, allowing greater landowner flexibility and varieties of use for residents.

Terri Bailey said she was opposed to the PMPO's position, believing that with the school camp, observatory, resort already on Palomar Mountain any more commmercial use would change the mountain forever. Terri was upset that when she recently drove around she saw much real estate for sale and that to expand the commercial zoning now would be a mistake. On the basis of increased noise, light, and impact to the forest, she asked the PMPO Board to reconsider its position.

Bruce Graves agreed to put the matter on the agenda of the next PMPO board meeting, in August, while pointing out that the area affected around the summit had always been zoned commercial and the PMPO had not asked for an increase in the commercial-zoned area, but a restoration to where it stood before the down-zoning temporarily imposed by the Forest Conservation Initiative.

Palomar Mountain School:

Bonnie Phelps said Tom Cunningham has led an effort to find a permanent solution to keeping our school open, instead of having to fight every time we have a temporary enrollment drop. The school, founded by the Jameson family, has a rich history and track record of quality education and is hoping for some sponsorship by, for example, Dell or Microsoft. The school is looking for a volunteer to put up a web site for them.

Palomar Mountain History Project:

Crestline resident Peter Brueggeman has so far reprinted or published three landmark books on Palomar Mountain history: ``Palomar Mountain: from Teepee to Telescope'', ``Palomar Then and Now'', and the Robert Asher manuscript, ``My Palomar.'' The books are available at the Store and will be for sale at the Labor Day PMVFD Barbecue. A fourth book is underway, tentatively entitled ``Palomar Potporris'', and Bonnie is soliciting information and pictures of people.

Election of PMPO Board Members:

The Chair announced that Elliott Miller is leaving the PMPO Board today with the expiration of his term; the four incumbents running for re-election are Tracy Dixon, Rob Hawk, Michael Pique, and Earl Walls.

A nomination was received from the floor for Rob O'Neill, who described himself as a retired former Superior Court judge, now doing mediation & arbitration, a Palomar Mountain part-timer since early 2000 now building a home on Upper Meadows, north of State Park Road.

There being no other nominations, a motion by Robert Carlyle was accepted that Mr. O'Neill and the four incumbents be elected for three year terms expiring in 2009.

The Board roster is:

(terms expiring May 2007):

Tom Burton, Donna Dose, Bruce Graves, Susan Humason, and Scott Kardel

(terms expiring May 2008):

Robert Carlyle, Jim Hamerly, Jack Norvall, Bonnie Phelps, and

John Tainer/Elizabeth Getzoff

(terms expiring May 2009):

Tracy Dixon, Rob Hawk, Rob O'Neill, Michael Pique, and Earl Walls.

The meeting was adjourned at 12:25 PM.

Michael E. Pique, Secretary.

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