“Many refused to vote for candidates,” read the damning headline. Refused? How about, “Didn’t vote for three candidates, only voted for two, or only voted for one?”
Well, 37.10 percent of the Idyllwild Fire Protection District registered voters at least voted, which is pretty much in line with the turnout in both 2001 and 2009. That’s far from ideal, but at least it’s better than the county-wide turnout which was only 28 percent.
As for the IFPD commissioners election, could it be some voters were just not comfortable voting for people they don’t know anything about and decided to leave it to other voters to decide? I’ve done that myself, like when there’s a contest between two people running for a judge’s seat and I don’t know anything about either one of them.
Oh, I suppose I could flip a coin or something but I take exercising my right to vote a lot more seriously than that. Or, I guess you could say, I “refused” to vote for either one of them.
The obvious intent of the Town Crier is to make it appear that there are many Idyllwild voters who, like themselves, are so dissatisfied with our fire department that they decided to demonstrate their feelings by refusing to vote for three seats on the board of commissioners, and instead only voted for one or two — but they did take the time to vote which is more than you can say for the other 62.9 percent of IFPD registered voters.
And there’s one other subject the Town Crier can’t seem to let go of — the financial struggles of IFPD. First of all, our federal government is dealing with financial problems as are just about every state, county and city in the country, not to mention almost every country in the world, so why is it such a surprise that IFPD has similar problems?
In fiscal year 2008-09 IFPD received about $936,723 in secured property tax income. In 2011-12 that figure had dropped to $812,450. That’s a difference of $124,273. That figure only represents about half of the budget, but the remaining sources of income stay about the same. It’s also the reason IFPD has to request an advance from the county in order to pay its bills that come due between July 1 and the end of December.