Guest Editorial: Havasu Lake Fire

SBCo. Fire

To whom it may concern,

I have been exchanging emails with Mr. Thomas E Marshall, Battalion Chief, San Bernardino County Fire Department, Mr. John Chamberlin, Division Chief, San Bernardino County Fire District and Mr. Robert Lovingood, Vice Chair of the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors and District One Representative.

The facts:

1. San Bernardino County Fire Protection District – Service Zone FP-6 (Havasu Lake)

The San Bernardino County Fire Protection District reorganized in July 2008 and created the South Desert Regional Service Zone. The South Desert Regional Service Zone is a component unit of the San Bernardino County Fire Protection District which is governed by the County Board of Supervisors. Within the South Desert Regional Service Zone, Service Zone FP-6 Havasu Lake special tax was originally authorized by the Board of Directors of the San Bernardino County Fire Protection District in February 2009. This was the first new service zone created after the County Fire reorganization. Service Zone FP-6 provides fire protection services to the community of Havasu Lake. These services are funded by a special tax of $113 per parcel with an annual 3% cost of living increase as approved by the voters in May 2009. The special tax is currently at $124.02 per parcel and is presently applicable to 1,334 parcels. Services are provided through Fire Station #18. Services are provided through Fire Station 45. Data for 2012 is not available as there was a change in interpretation of reporting standards which returned in 2013.

NOTE! The community of Havasu Lake, (Needles, 92363) consists of, but is not limited to the following; wild life refuge, North Havasu Estates,the Chemehuevi Airport, The Chemehuevi Agriculture center, HUD Housing, the church, the school, the landing, both sides of 17 mile road, (east to west) and both sides of CA HWY 95, (north to south).

2. http://www.sbclafco.org/Maps/FireProtectionDistricts/FireProtectionDistrictServiceZoneFP6.aspx – This map shows the boundaries of County Fire Protection District Service Zone FP-6, (Havasu Lake, (Needles) within San Bernardino County, Calif., USA

NOTE! Approximately 32 miles at its southern border, approximately 18 miles on its western border, approximately 24 miles on its eastern border, and approximately 24 miles on its Northern border.

a.) “The Landing” is within FP-6 and is approximately 1.5 miles by .5 miles. Just a very, very, very small portion of FP – 6 and doesn’t come close to representing the whole of the community of Havasu Lake.

b.) The HOA people in the landing are not property owners, (they lease their lots) thus they pay no property tax, nor do they pay the special assessment for fire services and emergency services.

3. The Havasu Lake Firebelles, (Non profit organization) works out of Havasu Lake Fire station 18 and they work with the San Bernardino county fire district.  Havasu Lake Fire belle’s mission is to support the volunteer fire department. The Havasu Lake Firebelles have a monthly distribution of their publication called “Havasu Sun”.

Why are the three points above important?

1 & 2. Mr. John Chamberlin, Division Chief, San Bernardino County Fire District, told “the Landing” HOA at their annual meeting in October that the fire and emergency personal from Havasu Lake fire station 18 would be restricted to “the Landing”.

3. The Havasu Lake Firebelles was asked by Mr. John Chamberlin, Division Chief, San Bernardino County Fire District to get him on the agenda at the “annual Landing HOA Meeting” to discuss the degrading of the fire and emergency services at Havasu Lake fire station 18. The meeting should have included everyone in Havasu Lake FP-6, but it only included the landing HOA.

NOTE! The Havasu Lake Firebelles, did not post any notice of this meeting in their monthly publication, “Havasu Sun” nor did they, (or anyone else) post any notices at the post office, grocery store, hardware store, gas station, casino, casino lounge, casino restaurant, Sail Inn restaurant, North Havasu Estates, the Chemehuevi Airport, The Chemehuevi Agriculture center, HUD Housing, the church, the school, or any other businesses in Havasu Lake, CA. They didn’t even post it at the Havasu Lake fire station 18.

It was a secrete meeting where Mr. John Chamberlin, Division Chief, San Bernardino County Fire District made a back room deal where he told the landing HOA that fire station 18 fire and emergency personal would be restricted to the landing.

Something that I keep in mind:
911
Dispatcher: What’s your emergency?
Caller: I think I’m having a heart attack
Dispatcher: Are you in the landing?
Caller: No
Dispatcher: You’re screwed!
Caller: What?
Dispatcher: Mr. Chamberlin, Division Chief, San Bernardino County Fire District has restricted the Havasu Lake fire station 18 fire and emergency personal to the Landing, so you are screwed. Have a nice day, (click).

Summary:
I’ve gotten nothing but lip service from Mr. Thomas E Marshall, Battalion Chief, San Bernardino County Fire Department, Mr. John Chamberlin, Division Chief, SanBernardino County Fire District and Mr. Robert Lovingood, Vice Chair of the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors and District One Representative.

I ask a simple question, “where is the fire and emergency services for the property owners/residents of FP 6 (with exception of “the landing”) going to come from”. It has been a couple of months, with email exchanges, but no one has come back to me with an answer, (by the way I have emails to back up what I am telling you).

The property owners/residents in Service Zone FP-6 pay property taxes and the special assessment for fire and emergency services, but do not receive these services because Mr. John Chamberlin, Division Chief, San Bernardino County Fire District has restricted these services to the landing, (I have an email from Mr. Chamberlin confirming this). When I confronted Mr. Chamberlin, (via an email) about fire and emergency services for the rest of Havasu Lake community, he basically blew me off.

In my book, this is basically fraud, Mr. Chamberlin has committed a deliberate deception to deprive the Havasu Lake community, (with the exception of the landing) of their legal right to the fire and emergency protection that they are paying for and deserve. I also believe it is discrimination against the property owners/residents of the Havasu Lake community, (needles) Service Zone FP-6 by the the San Bernardino County Fire District and  Mr. Robert Lovingood Vice Chair of the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors and District One Representative.

There are other issues that I raised such as staffing at Havasu Lake, (needles) fire station 18 that Mr. Thomas E Marshall, Battalion Chief, San Bernardino County Fire Department and Mr. Mr. John Chamberlin, Division Chief, San Bernardino County Fire District refuse to answer.
If it looks like poop, smells like poop, then it must be poop.
Sincerely,
Ed Hubler

3 thoughts on “Guest Editorial: Havasu Lake Fire

  1. Dear Sir

    iepolitics Havasu Lake files are very extensive indeed and will be made available to any concerned citizen.

    Reckless deciet is the name of Mark Hartwigs game and we are going to end this game very quickly, the entire SBFD fraud story is forthcoming here on iepolitics, we need to collaborate and nail the coffin.

    What do our friends and loved ones on the Rez have to say about this?
    Declarations from locals indicate that several volunteer Tribal Members have in fact been carrying the load at Station 18. The Tribe has a Fire Protection Contract with SBFD and now this….

  2. Clowns, Clowns and More Clowns

    I was informed late last month last month, (26 Feb.) by Melissa McClain, Deputy Chief-of-Staff San Bernardino County Supervisor Robert Lovingood that they were in receipt of several emails identifying the same concerns within the Havasu Lake community and that they understand the urgency with which this needs to be addressed. Supervisor Lovingood, County CEO Greg Devereaux and Fire Chief Hartwig will have a meeting next week to discuss this further.

    To be quite honest, I really didn’t expect much to come out of this meeting since County CEO Greg Devereaux hasn’t ever supported and has an ongoing discriminatory bias against Desert residents, in preference to the more populous urban lowlanders.

    Well, Supervisor Lovingood, County CEO Greg Devereaux and Fire Chief Hartwig supposedly had that meeting earlier this week. And the results were as expected. Just a lot of B.S. except this time it was from Fire Chief Hartwig, County CEO Greg Devereaux’s yes man.

    If you take the annual salaries of all those that I have corresponded with, (in the past few months about this issue, Havasu Lake Community and Fire Station 18) it would add up to be approximately $1 million dollars and none of them have been able to answer my simple question: “where is the fire and emergency personal going to come from if something were to happen outside of the landing, (e.g. North Havasu Estates, 6.5 miles North of the landing) that required fire and or emergency personal”? Simple enough right? But not even the top man in the county CEO Greg Devereaux or the top man in the San Bernardino County Fire Agency Fire Chief Hartwig has been able to answer that one simple question in three months.

    So, let’s get to Fire Chief Hartwig’s B.S.:

    1.) The fully burdened annual cost of a full-time two-person paramedic brush patrol staffed 24/7/365 is currently roughly $1.6 million.

    EdH – Complete B.S.
    Summary
    Quick Facts: EMTs and Paramedics
    2014 Median Pay $31,700 per year $15.24 per hour
    Typical Entry-Level Education Postsecondary non degree award

    2.) The area within FP-6 is estimated to generate $162,000 of special tax and roughly $137,000 in general property tax this budget year. In order to generate enough revenue for full-time staffing of a two-person paramedic brush patrol, it would require a significant annual increase to the FP-6 parcel tax.

    EdH – More B.S. There are other areas in San Bernardino County that have full time fire and emergency personal that are not paying for themselves, Needles, (4,969 residents in 2014) being one of them. Do you honestly believe that the estimated 4,969 residents in Needles are paying $30,000.00 plus in property tax for fire and emergency protection, especially since San Bernardino County 1st District Supervisor Robert A. Lovingood and the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors on December 16th, 2014 initiated a $1.04 million project to design and construct a new fire station in Needles?

    The groundbreaking ceremony for the new San Bernardino County Fire Department’s Fire Station 32 took place on Monday, November 9th, 2015, two to three weeks after Mr. John Chamberlin, Division Chief, San Bernardino County Fire District, told “the Landing” HOA at their annual HOA meeting in October that the fire and emergency personal from Havasu Lake fire station 18 would be restricted to “the Landing” due to cost cutting.

    Summary:
    So I asked Fire Chief Hartwig “what are the criteria, that San Bernardino County Fire Agency uses to determine who gets preferential treatment and who doesn’t”?

    Obviously the 4,969 residents in Needles get preferential treatment, (new $1.4 million dollar fire station and full time fire and emergency support, (est. $1.6 million) all of this for an estimated the 4,969 residents. I believe that someone should look into the connection between the builder of the new fire station 32 and all of the people that I have been corresponding with to see if perhaps something is going on.

    The residents living in the Landing get preferential treatment. They pay neither property tax nor do they pay the special fire and emergency supplement tax and yet they receive the fire and emergency protection from Havasu Lake fire station 18 that the property owners/residents pay for but don’t receive themselves.

    Sincerely,
    Ed Hubler

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