On Wednesday March 21st, the Riverside County Chapter BIA completed our first Desert Event of 2018. Palm Valley County Club generously hosted over 150 attendees BIA members and guests including over 33 elected officials, representing over 14 cities across Riverside County. We had several Board members of our Riverside Chapter BIA Board of Directors present and actively engaged throughout the entire event.
Sheriff Stan Sniff of Riverside County, led us in our Pledge of Allegiance. Bill Blankenship, CEO of the BIA Riverside County Chapter, kicked off the announcements and extended our gratitude to all our sponsors and partners.
THANK YOU TO OUR EVENT SPONSORS
Executive Director of the Coachella Valley Association of Governments (CVAG), Tom Kirk, moderated the entirety of the program and kept the audiences enthused and energized throughout the afternoon. Our panelists included Mayor of Indio and Vice Chair of the Coachella Valley Association of the Governments (CVAG)-Michael Wilson, Mayor of Desert Hot Springs-Scott Matas, Mayor of La Quinta-Linda Evans, and Mayor of Palm Desert-Sabby Jonathan.
Mayor Wilson, representing CVAG as their Executive Board’s Vice Chair, explained the purpose of CVAG, its collaborators and briefly discussed their current Transportation Unified Mitigation Fee (TUMF), which affects developers and those in the building industry. He presented an overview of the most recent CVAG projects, including the CV Link Opening Grand Ceremony in Cathedral City. We were lucky to have Mayor Wilson on our panel back in December to update our membership on the City of Indio.
Mayor Matas was proud to announce not only the new community and housing developments happening in Desert Hot Springs, but the crime rate has continued to drop significantly since we had Mayor Matas speak about the city in 2016 at our Mayor’s Luncheon. He briefly gave city finances as well as providing an in depth look at the cannabis related investors. Mayor Matas ended his presentation with a model of the new city and how the cannabis industry is attracting tourism.
Mayor Evans focused on the development growth of residential permits and briefly mentioned the decline of commercial permits. She discussed the healthy financial review of the city highlighting the HUB, an online portal to apply for permits as well as the progress of Silver Rock Resort. She covered several construction projects throughout the city, including adding illuminated street signs.
Under the presentation title: Where We are Headed, Mayor Jonathan began showing highlights of recent Palm Desert events such as Fashion Week-El Paseo and the Food and Wine Festival. He then dove into details of the strategic plans including updates of Highway 111, San Pablo and University Village. Hotel Paseo's opening was pictured along other upcoming projects including both residential and commercial projects. Cannabis was the last topic before ending his presentation with a video highlighting the City of Palm Desert through use of a drone.
Tom Kirk moderated the Q & A section while taking two audience questions to conclude the informational afternoon.
Thank you again to all who participated in our 2018 Mayor’s Luncheon Panel!