Stringent local ordinance proposed by the IFPD
The Idyllwild Fire Protection District (IFPD) is Idyllwild’s own local government organization. It has the authority to adopt ordinances and requirements stricter than those required by the state or county.
They are currently proposing what very well could become the most stringent local ordinance of its kind in the state of California. Proposed Appendix [Resolution] 513-01, Residential Automatic Fire Sprinkler System(s), can be found on page 16 of the August agenda for the IFPD board of commissioners (BOC) meeting (https://idyllwildfire.com/board-meeting-agenda.html).
I encourage all Idyllwild residents to read the proposed ordinance before it comes up for a vote in the Sept. 22 BOC meeting. If adopted, it will have substantial impacts on individuals and businesses in our community for the foreseeable future.
One example of a potential impact is that if you, as an owner of a 700-square-foot house decide to add a small bedroom and bathroom or an attached single car garage — where either is greater than 210 square feet — you will have to install or retrofit an antifreeze filled sprinkler system throughout your entire existing residence.
The initial costs would be tens of thousands of dollars and over a thousand dollars each year thereafter in higher water bills and certification inspections — not to mention the constant risk of a system failure flooding your house with antifreeze.
Such an ordinance could also reduce code compliance, lead to less construction projects thereby negatively impacting our local contractors or dissuade potential homebuyers or businesses from investing in our community.
If you don’t agree that such an ordinance should be adopted, email or call IFPD Chief Mark LaMont and/or members of the IFPD BOC right away and let them know your opinion. Their contact information can be found on the IFPD website.
If you do agree with the adoption of the ordinance believing it will make our community more fire resistant, do the same. Exercise your democratic right of free speech. Participate in guiding your local government institution to be responsive to the community it exists to serve. Whatever you do, don’t remain silent — unless, of course, you want the ordinance to be adopted.
September is Suicide Prevention Month — take steps to prevent suicide and be there for each other. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s theme for the month is to #KeepGoing, by taking simple actions to safeguard our mental health and save lives. From learning the warning signs for suicide and what to do if you are worried someone is struggling to bringing education programs to your community, we can all learn new ways to help each other save lives.
One action I’m taking is to urge my public officials to prioritize suicide prevention and mental health. When someone is in acute crisis, it’s hard for them to think clearly and even reaching out for help can be a struggle. For this reason, it is vital that Congress pass the National Suicide Hotline Designation Act (H.R.4194/S.2661) to make a three-digit number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline a reality. This legislation will provide the funding and resources needed by crisis centers across the country that support those struggling with their mental health and thoughts of suicide.
In this time of uncertainty, we all need to find new ways to connect and support each other.
Together, we #KeepGoing.