Cameron Park district eyes annexation

By From page B1 | March 27, 2013

The Cameron Park Community Services District (CPCSD) board of directors gave a nod to possibly annexing more properties into the district at its March 20 meeting.

Advocated by board member Shiva Frentzen, the board discussed setting up a committee to look at the district’s sphere of influence with the goal of incorporating other areas into the district to increase revenue.

Frentzen said back in 2011 a committee had looked into annexing additional properties. One member of that committee, Eric Driever, was present at Wednesday night’s board meeting. He said their intent was to clarify various boundaries, determine where the district’s boundaries were, and to decide if there was potential revenue from annexing additional areas. But he said their work didn’t go any further because, “We didn’t have the wherewithal to fight with LAFCO.”

However, Frentzen said that was no longer an issue because the areas in question were now included in CPCSD’s sphere of interest. Instead she proposed re-forming the committee to gather additional information on what areas might be open to annexation, the cost of the process, and what the potential gain would be in revenue. She also discussed hiring a consultant to help them gain public support in those areas they wanted to annex.

At one point, Board President Greg Stanton asked why communities would want to be annexed to the district. Frentzen responded that it wouldn’t cost them anything additional. Instead the taxes they were already paying would simply be reallocated from the county to a local entity, in this case CPCSD.

With little to lose, the board directed General manager Mary Cahill to research the previous membership of the committee and report her results at their next meeting.

The board also discussed approving contracts for legal services with three different legal firms to be followed by putting legal services out to bid within six months.

However, board member Vicky Neibauer wanted it done more quickly and advocated for the new contracts to be in place by September.

Stanton noted that Georgetown Divide Public Utility District (GDPUD) had recently released a RFP (request for proposal) for legal services and perhaps the district should look at their RFP and the results of their search.

However, resident Barbara Rogers said the district shouldn’t “go anywhere near GDPUD. There is way too much controversy there.” She also complained about the general manager not contracting out legal services as she was requested to do so by the board last year.

Resident David Gelber echoed Rogers, saying, “I hate to hear we’re hitching our trailer to Georgetown. That’s pretty low.”

Gelber and resident Bill Carey went on to ask if counsel even needed to attend the board meetings. Gelber suggested instead that counsel be contacted after meetings with any questions in order to save money.

Apparently agreeing with some of its critics, the board voted to have Cahill release a RFP for legal services and report back the results in September for the board’s review and approval.

In other board matters, a professional barbecue competition called “Rubstock” appears to be back on after discussions took place between Cahill, her staff and Ed Anhorn of Sierra Smokehouse BBQ. The event, as proposed, would be a partnership with the Cameron Park Foundation and the local chamber of commerce with a date set for Sept. 13 and 14 at Christa McAuliffe Park. Anhorn said he hopes to have a contract with the district hammered out by the end of the month so he can start pursuing sponsors.

Cahill said that if they also go ahead and hold their Grillin’ & Chillin’ event, it won’t be on the same date as Rubstock and it would only be an amateur competition.

“I’m very much looking forward to this,” said Stanton. “I hope it’s very successful.” Frentzen also thanked Cahill and the staff for making the event happen.

The board voted to support applying for an $86,500 grant to fund a Cameron Park Area Community Transportation Plan. The plan would be used to improved transportation and land use in Cameron Park, including proposals for more non-motorized transportation facilities and improved landscape, streetscape and transit facilities, as well as propose improvements to vehicular circulation.

Budget workshops were moved to April. The first draft of the 2013-14 budget as well as preliminary projections for 2012-13 will be presented at the Budget and Administration Committee meeting on April 10. Workshops on the budget are scheduled for April 17 and May 22 in addition to the discussions at Budget and Administration Committee meetings. A preliminary budget for 2013-14 will be adopted at the June board meeting with the final budget adopted in September after the district receives a tax disbursement forecast by El Dorado County.

Board member Vicky Neibauer recommended having multi-year budgets, saying that doing so would help in pre-funding health benefits for retirees. The board agreed to take up the idea after the coming year’s budget is completed.

Year-to-date financial information was presented by Denise Herrnberger, senior accountant. The district showed a surplus of about $92,400 at the end of February due to savings in fire and administration. But the community center and parks are still not bringing in as much revenue as projected. In comparison to what is in the budget, revenue is down by almost $65,000, with the community center being the source of the loss. Park revenue was also down by $15,000 at the end of February.

The board also decided to put off approving an agreement redesignating the state responsiblity area fee to the local responsibility area within Cameron Park till next month.

Big Brothers/Big Sisters presented the board with an award for their efforts in raising money for the agency during its bowling tournament.

Contact Dawn Hodson at 530-344-5071 or [email protected] Follow @DHodsonMtDemo on Twitter.

Dawn Hodson

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