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EBRPD funding problems

833 Views 14 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  cohenfive
Decline in property tax are hurting the district finances:
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sanjuro said:
No more helicopter rides?
I bet those heli rides are looking pretty friggin stupid right now. How much does it cost/day to operate that sucker. A lot I bet. Use it for scouting for fires, hikers/riders/equestrians in need of help, etc......but puhleeeeeeease, using it for law enforcement (i.e. tickets to bikers riding on illegal trails) is just lame. Even normal PD does not use their ghetto birds to just randomly patrol :rolleyes: They use it when needed.
The bigger story here is that EBRPD finds itself being pinched financially when they just passed that bond, securing their long term funding. Without actually seeing a budget, it sounds like either they have been spending everything as fast as it comes in, or are belatedly trying to create some reserves.
Can't remember the details, but last time I looked the district had something like $100m in the bank. At the end of the day, measure WW gives them some money, but that money is dependent on the amount of property tax coming in ($10 per $100k of assessed property value). If property value goes down, so does the funding.
In these times, they are demanding pay increases? They are declining the offer to raise their salaries 0.9%? Wow.

Cut the staff count. That leads to less administration and overhead costs. Anything from buildings, computers, trucks/atvs/radar guns/helicopters, cel phones, pensions, full benefits...
zorg said:
Can't remember the details, but last time I looked the district had something like $100m in the bank. At the end of the day, measure WW gives them some money, but that money is dependent on the amount of property tax coming in ($10 per $100k of assessed property value). If property value goes down, so does the funding.
Sure, that makes sense. So maybe they are just being prudent in looking forward. I think there's a pretty strong trend of folks who bought property in recent years asking to be re-assessed downward.

Rensho makes a good point about the salary raises. I wonder if they are serious or its a negotiating ploy. In the current economy, maintaining the status quo at least means you aren't moving backward rapidly. Pay raises would almost guarantee furloughs or lay-offs.
maybe theyll cut back on the

sanjuro said:
No more helicopter rides?
no bikes signs too.
jrm said:
no bikes signs too.
and the gates, and the cows, and the 25' wide fireroads, and the yearly destruction/widening of all good trails, and the heli patrols, and ...
On a happier note;
To the Trail Use Change Checklist e-mail list:

I want to inform you of two upcoming public meetings concerning the proposal submitted last year to Park District staff by the East Bay Area Trails Council to allow bicycle traffic on the trail adjacent to the road into the Alhambra Creek Staging Area in Briones Regional Park. Staff has evaluated the trail use change and supports the request.

On Thursday, July 16, the Board Operations Committee will consider the trail use change request and make a recommendation to the Board of Directors. This meeting will begin at 2:00 p.m. in the Peralta Oaks Board Room, 2950 Peralta Oaks Court, Oakland, 94605.

On the evening of Monday, July 27, the Park Advisory Committee will consider this item and make a recommendation to the Board of Directors. This meeting will begin at 7:00 p.m. in the Peralta Oaks Board Room.

Please visit the Park District Web site prior to these meetings to view meeting agendas and confirm times and dates:

Raphael Breines

Senior Park Planner | Planning & Stewardship

East Bay Regional Park District

2950 Peralta Oaks Court, Oakland, CA 94605

Tel: 510-544-2325 | Fax: 510-635-3478 |

[email protected] |
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With that b.... of Skinner gone from the board, the proposal might actually get accepted.
On a more typical note

The East Bay Area Trails Council (EBATC) rejected the BTCEB proposals to open two sections of the Bay Area Ridge Trail to cyclists. As part of East Bay Regional Park District's Checklist Process, BTCEB can submitted two trails a year for a proposed change in trail use. (i.e., ask that bikes be included on a specific trail.) This year we ask for two "gaps" in the multiuse Ridge Trail that are closed to bikes; Golden Spike in Redwood Regional Park (to connect Redwood and Chabot parks) and a segment of the Skyline Trail in Sibley Volcanic Regional Preserve. The ultimate goal of the Ridge Trail is to provide a continuous multi-use trail for mountain bicyclists, equestrians, and hikers/trail runners of a 550+ mile loop around the Bay Area.

EBRPD requires that BTCEB first present the Checklist trails to EBATC, which if acceptable, are then submitted to EBRPD. In the East Bay, the Ridge Trail County Advisory Committee and EBATC are one and the same. So it was rather surprising that EBATC voted against asking EBRPD to open a couple sections of the multiuse Ridge Trail to cyclists. Not ONE equestrian or hiker voted to recommend any of the trails suggested. BTCEB had also suggested opening a fire road in Tilden; Laurel Canyon Rd.
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So between a f... up process (made that way on purpose by the district years ago), greedy hikers and equestrians, the outlook is fairly grim to ever see decent trails in current parks (with maybe the exception of the ridge, although I'll believe when I see it).
A mountain biking member of EBATC sent this to that organization on learning of the vote to which oparks referred above . . . .

Greetings, everyone,

I read on a blog this evening that EBATC voted not to agree with opening Golden Spike Trail (Redwood Regional Park) and a section of the National Skyline Trail (in Sibley Regional Volcanic Preserve) to mountain bikers. Reportedly every equestrian and hiker voted "no."

I'm just curious: what's the dissenters' reasoning? That we were here first? That the cyclists' wheels will spread the seeds of invasive species from our horse poop? That my horse leaves the stables only twice a year and is terrified of being on trails? (If the latter, we ought to purge those trails of snakes and fast-moving squirrels too.)

Maybe the next Checklist proposal can be to close Golden Spike Trail and the Skyline Trail section to equestrians and hikers, since their representatives on EBATC aren't willing to share.

Alternatively, it could be proposed to limit those trails to cattle and cyclists, since the majority in both groups don't mind sharing, the cattle already predominate on many EBRPD service roads and trails, and the cattle deserve a reward for having created many miles of high-quality contour-following smooth singletrack on EBRPD property.

I rode at the city of San Jose's Alum Rock Park this afternoon. It's at the far end of east San Jose. Bikes are allowed on most singletrack, though not all, and one singletrack is labeled bikes and hikers OK, no horses allowed. The upper trails on the north side of Alum Rock Park meet up with the Santa Clara County Open Space Authority's Boccardo Trail, which climbs to about 1890 feet. Both the singletrack and the service road portions of Boccardo Trail are multiuse. You can see all the way to Mount Tamalpais from the top.

I have little doubt that many mountain bikers already ride the Golden Spike Trail and Skyline National Trail and will continue to do so safely and courteously. No doubt they do it at night or at 6:00 a.m., which is why no one complains about their presence. As a writer in Reason magazine observed recently, nothing so encourages disrespect for the law as a law not worthy of respect. Recall the national 55-mph speed limit, which finally crumbled of its own illogic, but not before it had become so widely flouted as to be a laughingstock.

I regret posting such acerbic comments, but the Alice-in-Wonderland that is bicycle access regulation in EBRPD justifies it. A happy summer solstice to all . . . .
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back to the topic...

just because the bond measure passed doesn't mean ebrpd has the borrowing ability in the current market...not much demand for california paper these days given the budget problems...probably a short term thing, but don't expect big bond issuance by the park district until things improve.
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