Primary Election Results

Good morning BIASC political junkies and professionals…

Below is a somewhat comprehensive wrap up of our recent local 2014 Primary results.  On a less local level we had met with State Board of Equalization Candidate Diane Harkey and were early supporters of her campaign whose district will encompass all or parts of Riverside, San Diego, San Bernardino, Imperial, Los Angeles and Orange Counties.  She was the second highest vote getter due to the more crowded field of Republicans but by the numbers will in all likelihood dominate in the general to serve as the next BOE representative to replace termed out member Michelle Steel.  See the list below for the results of our closer races and candidates that either out right prevailed or made the run off for competitive general election races following, you will find by a few news articles documenting the races and their results if interested.

  • CD 36 - Brian Nestande  Yes!
  • CD 41 - Steve Adams  Yes!
  • SD 28 - Jeff Stone  Yes!

Keep your eyes on the 28th Senate District race.  Initially the number two spot was in a tight run off that turned a few times.  Glenn Miller held the #2 spot, then Bonnie Garcia in #3 and Democrat Phillip Drucker #4, with Glenn and Bonnie only separated by 82 votes and Drucker down a couple hundred after an update consisting largely of late absentee ballots. The tide eventually turned with Candidate Bonnie Garcia leading her nearest opponent in the race for the #2 spot by over 400 votes and Glenn Miller has conceded.  This sets the stage for a continuation of what has already been a bitter contest...stay tuned.

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  • AD 42 - Chad Mayes  Yes!
  • Supervisor District 2 - John Tavaglione  Yes!
  • Supervisor District 4 - John J. Benoit  Yes!
  • Supervisor District 5 - Marion Ashley   Yes!
  • Riverside County Sheriff Stan Sniff  Yes!
  • Riverside County Superintendent of Schools - Kenneth Young  Yes!
  • Riverside County District Attorney - Paul Zellerbach No

Two things happened here, Firstly, hats off to Mike Hestrin for a hard fought race. His tactics were surgical and he successfully defined himself and his opponent in the eyes of the voters in what was also one of the County’s heated and closely watched contests.  Secondly, Zellerbach lost this race as much as Hestrin won and it wasn't for lack of hard work. Zellerbach has done a tremendous job as District Attorney. He's been innovative, collaborative, expected the best from his people and had nothing but a solid positive media image heading into this race polling at the start with 57% support to Mike Hestrin’s 17%. This was unfortunately perfectly analogous to George H.W. Bush’s squandered political capital in 1992, and all because of a sign and a questionable handling of the issue in its aftermath. I would have handled this one a little differently but 20/20 hindsight proves nothing. I highly respect Paul for the work he's done and it’s unfortunate that he didn't get an opportunity to continue his endeavors here and secure a legacy.

We stayed out of the race below given the nature of its toxicity and looming legal challenges facing the City.  As a background, several council members have fallen under scrutiny as a result of relationships with a particular local commercial/industrial developer.  One former Mayor, Marcelo Co has been indicted for bribery, embezzling and of all things fraudulently collecting money from the state to care for his “ailing” mother all while she was jet setting around the globe.  Now a second Mayor, Tom Owings has been recalled and there’s a possibility of a third councilmember, Victoria Baca being recalled in November.  Lastly, a fourth controversially appointed “Councilmember”, Yxstivian Gutiérrez was appointed at a council meeting where it wasn’t placed on the agenda (likely Brown Act Violation), one councilmember apparently was completely unaware of who he was and there was no transparent process of application, much less a process at all as it seems.  It is also disputed as to whether or not he lives in the appropriate district he was appointed to serve.  If I lost you somewhere don’t feel bad, you are not alone.  Mr. Gutiérrez was initially considering a run to serve with me on the Riverside Community College Board of Trustees and we thankfully dodged a bullet there.

  • Moreno Valley Recall... Pass  Yes!
    • Replacement – George Price

 

STATE ASSEMBLY: Hargrove, Mayes advance to November election

Rancho Cucamonga Councilman Marc Steinorth, a Republican, and Democratic Assemblyman Jose Medina of Riverside also make it out of Tuesday’s primary.

BY JEFF HORSEMAN / STAFF WRITER

Published: June 4, 2014 Updated: 4:52 p.m.

Voters in at least three Inland Assembly districts chose a Republican and a Democrat to square off in November, according to results from Tuesday’s primary election.

Morongo Unified School District trustee Karalee Hargrove, a Democrat, will face Republican and former Yucca Valley Councilman Chad Mayes in the 42nd Assembly District, which straddles Riverside and San Bernardino counties and represents Hemet, San Jacinto, the Pass, Yucaipa, Palm Springs and Yucca Valley...

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RIVERSIDE COUNTY: Race for second place in 28th State Senate District race a nail-biter

Jeff Stone appears to have won a place on the November ballot, but the second spot is still up for grabs.

BY DAVID OLSON / STAFF WRITER

Published: June 4, 2014 6:30 p.m.

The race to determine which two candidates will vie for the 28th state Senate district in the November election was still too close to call Wednesday.

Riverside County Supervisor Jeff Stone appeared to secure first place with all precincts counted and several thousand mail-in, provisional and damaged ballots left to be tallied.

But Indio Councilman Glenn Miller, former Assemblywoman Bonnie Garcia and lawyer Philip Drucker were in a tight contest for second.

The top two finishers, regardless of party, will advance to the general election...

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ELECTION: Stone leads in tight 28th state Senate District

Republican Riverside County Supervisor Jeff Stone held an early lead in the race for the 28th state Senate District contest on Wednesday.

Republicans Glenn Miller and Bonnie Garcia and Democrat Philip Drucker were closely bunched behind Stone, according to results released by the Riverside County registrar of voters.

By early Wednesday, 100 percent of voting precincts had been counted, but about 39,700 mail-in, provisional and damaged ballots still needed to be processed...

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ELECTION: Supervisors Tavaglione, Ashley re-elected; Benoit leads

Three seats are up for re-election on the Board of Supervisors, with incumbents leading in early returns

BY DAVID DOWNEY / STAFF WRITER

Published: June 3, 2014 Updated: June 4, 2014 7:12 a.m.

Two Riverside County supervisors held onto their seats in Tuesday’s primary election, and a third was well ahead of his challenger.

Supervisors John Tavaglione and Marion Ashley easily won new four-year terms on the county’s governing board.

And John Benoit held a comfortable lead by Wednesday morning, with the votes from 100 percents of precincts counted, but about 39,700 vote-by-mail, provisional and damaged ballots left to be processed, according to the Riverside County registrar of voters...

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ELECTION: Supervisor candidates party in the desert

June 4, 2014 by Luke Ramseth

Despite early returns that said Manuel Perez was falling behind John Benoit in the race for 4th District supervisor, partygoers clapped and chanted: “Si, se puede” (Yes, we can) when a television crew showed up at Sol Sports Restaurant in Coachella on Tuesday, June 3, 2014. (Luke Ramseth/Staff)

At a luxury home in a gated community just outside Indio, political-minded partygoers chatted by the pool, grabbed drinks from an outside bar and snacked on baked goods in the kitchen.

It was mostly an election night party for veteran politician and 4th District Supervisor incumbent John Benoit, though it also included tag-alongs Brian Nestande, R-Palm Desert, making a run in the 36th Congressional District, and Yucca Valley native Chad Mayes, gunning for a 42nd District State Assembly seat...

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Government Affairs Update | June 2014

 

On May 7, 2014 the BIA attended the City Council meeting  for Norco. Our concern going into the meeting was the proposed $14,000 Development Impact Fee (DIF) increase applied to Single Family Residential (SFR) building.  The current DIF is approximately $24,000 which includes water and drainage and reigns as the highest DIF in the County. The City is now proposing a $38,000 fee also including water and drainage. This will amount to a $14,000 increase.      

The BIA questioned the cost of the study to taxpayers and the necessity of the study applied to SFR, noting that there has been no building activity since before and after they had raised their fee the last time in 2010.  The BIA also noted flaws in the study which included using 2000 census demographic data and not 2010 census data which is out of compliance with the City’s Housing Element.  It was also noted that the study population count included Norco’s Prison’s population which accounted for 18% of the City’s population and was unjustified for inclusion.

 For these reasons and other concerns raised by the members of the Council, all five council members unanimously voted to table the study that was presented by the consultant and City Staff.  The BIA will continue to work with the City Manager who also expressed his thought that the SFR component recommended increase was unnecessary.  This item will be brought back at a later time TBD.  While there is currently no building activity in Norco we feel this is a principled victory.

Val Verde Unified School District Unjustifiable Level II Fee
Soundly Rejected by Trustees, Board President Removed and Replaced

For nearly three months, the BIA had remained vigilant in monitoring and engagement        with   the Val Verde Unified School District (VVUSD), its staff, consultant and board members.  Initially Val Verde proposed a $5.76 school fee which would have potentially crippled some projects and select future development.  The BIA made a case to the board in February for postponement as a result of the last minute communication we were getting from the district staff.  The majority of the board agreed to allow us for time to work with their staff and hopefully come to a consensus on the study’s school fee assumptions.

The VVUSD staff proved to be a challenging entity and throughout the process it became clear to the BIA that we were indeed given a seat at the table as a stakeholder, but our data and input was either flatly disregarded or given very little if any consideration.  Following a letter to the District and their consultant documenting our concerns after our last meeting, the VVUSD SFNA final draft for notice of Public Hearing was released on April 4th showing a negligible decrease of $.019 and recommended a proposed fee of $5.59 which would still make it the highest fee in the County.  It seemed to be the case that those that were driving the fee increase were determined to achieve a certain numerical threshold as opposed to considering relevant data that would promote a fee that would be fair to the industry as well as benefit the District.

The Government Affairs Team reached out to individual board members having opportunities to meet with all save for one, the President of the Board.  Our concerns, particularly the fact that the average unit size of projects under construction, approved and planned (real as opposed to theoretical data) was omitted intentionally by their consultant and staff under the pretense that they had complied with the code and that same code would not allow our builder data to be included with the study.  This response was misleading on many levels and we had ample opportunity to meet with the Board leadership and provide some context to the complexity of our issues and concerns with the study.

Last evening a Val Verde Unified School District Board Meeting convened for regular business and for public hearing on consideration of accepting or rejecting the VVUSD SFNA proposed fee increase.  A significant amount of pressure was placed on the members of the board as the district staff, their consultants, attorney, Superintendent and teachers gave testimony and a presentation for over an hour combined that was at times misleading, to a complete misunderstanding of the fundamentals of determining school fees and the procedure of their application in the district.  The BIA had three people to present on the industry’s behalf including our consultant from Jeanette Justus Associates, Olga Tsiba.  We were given a total of 9 minutes, 3 minutes apiece to present our concerns and arguments.

After all arguments had been heard, all questions asked and all board members were given an ample opportunity to weigh in a vote was finally called.  I am pleased to announce that by a vote of 3-2 the recommended excessive fee increase was soundly defeated.

I would like to make it a point to mention the three board members that chose fairness over intense district pressure; Shelly Yarbrough, Wraymond Sawyerr and Marla Kirkland.  They all three showed leadership and courage and particularly Shelly and Wraymond on many levels went to bat as friends of the BIA.  All three are good friends to our industry and recognize the mutually beneficial partnership our industry and development plays in Val Verde.

This is a victory that we all can share.  Val Verde accepted a statutory minimum Level I fee of $3.36 which will take effect in 60 days, until then the fee remains at the 2012 Level I rate of $3.20.  Val Verde’s Agenda’s will remain on our watch list but we won the war.

UPDATE: On Wednesday, May 21st, the Val Verde Unified School District Board of Trustees met for a Special Meeting for the purpose of Board leadership review.  Specifically, at the close of the previous meeting when VVUSD Trustees rejected staff’s proposed fee increase, Trustee Shellie Yarbrough requested a special meeting to discuss removal of the Board President due to consistent unprofessional conduct.  During the previous Board meeting, President Vargas was openly and relentlessly hostile towards BIA fee opposition and committed quite a few conduct and Brown Act abuses.  The staff presentation, a requirement in advance of a Public Hearing for obvious transparency reasons was moved to be heard after the public hearing.  This was also done following the Boards acceptance of the agenda and without Board consent.  In addition he disallowed any communication between the Board and BIA representatives during the agendized public hearing which defeats the purpose of an agendized public hearing.
For these and many reasons prior to this meeting the VVUSD Board of Trustees summarily met and on a 3-2 vote removed former Board President Vargas and he was summarily replaced by Marla Kirkland, now President of the VVUSD Board of Trustees.  Please Join the BIA in congratulating President Kirkland on her recent honor and an additional display of leadership and courage by the VVUSD Board of Trustees.  This wasn’t an easy meeting by any stretch of the imagination is it is understood that supportive Trustees had to be escorted out by security under perceived threat from Mr. Vargas family and the Employees Association.

For more information on the Western Riverside County School Fees, CLICK HERE

June 5th LAC | Riverside County Flood Control & Water Conservation District

 

June’s Government Affairs Committee meeting had a change of scenery and was held with the coordination of the Riverside County Flood Control & Water Conservation District at their Facilities office.  The membership and attending dignitaries were benefitted by a brief tour of the facility and many of its unique industrial innovations that could serve to benefit future building in our “green” and water-wise Southern California building environment.  Lunch followed thanks to Flood Control and Orco Block stepping up to sponsor the luncheon.

Following the tour, in a standing room only presentation, members were given an in depth glance at challenges and opportunities facing the industry by Mr. Jason Uhley.  Jason is the Chief of the Watershed Protection Division of the Riverside County Flood Control and Water Conservation District and is a registered civil engineer with over 15 years of experience in storm water management.  As Chief of the Watershed Protection Division, Jason is responsible for managing the coordination of the Santa Ana, San Diego and Colorado River Region NPDES MS4 Permit Programs for Riverside County and its 25 municipal Co-Permittees among other duties.

Riverside County’s Flood Control & Water Conservation District has created a one stop shop for developers that need to know how they may be affected by various fees and regulations depending on the area they hope to develop and build on.  We were also fortunate to receive an update from Patricia Romo, Riverside County Assistant Director of Transportation.

Please join the Riverside County Building Industry Association in thanking Riverside County Flood Control’s Government Affairs Director Darcy Kuenzi for coordination our tour and presentation, as well as our presenters. Another big thank you as well to Orco Block and Flood Control, for their generous sponsorship of our June meeting.

If you would like a copy of the Power Point Presentation from the meeting, CLICK HERE to view.         

School Fee Update | April 2014

About School Fees

 

At this time, many school districts throughout Riverside County are considering the state of their per square foot school fees.  Those that are currently at the higher rate Level II must reexamine their fee annually with what is known as a School Facilities Needs Analysis.  At least half of the school districts in Riverside County currently charge the statutory Level I fee which was recently raised mandatorily by the State of California from $3.20 to $3.36 per square foot.  These are codified in school districts when what is known as a School Fee Justification Study is passed by a Board of Trustees and is merely a mandatory statement of validation for the benefit of transparency and the Board.

SFNA’s are challenging to justify and often the cost of the study can outweigh the benefits which is one of the reasons why many districts choose to remain at a Level I fee.  Additionally and more importantly, the pace of development, market concerns, land acquisition costs and student generation all play a role in the rate of a higher Level II school fee.  The BIA staff reviews these items and conditions contained in SFNA studies to validate assumptions or challenge them based on data conflicts, assumption errors and market realities.

The Riverside BIA has supported the conclusions of many SFNA’s as well as the decision for the vast majority of school districts to stay at their current Level II fee rate or the lower statutory Level I fee rate.  Our review of these studies is ongoing and below is a selection of a recent victory and an ongoing challenge.

 

Riverside Unified School District

The Riverside Unified School District (RUSD) recently met to consider an increase of $0.23 to their $3.77 Level II School Fee bringing it up to $4.00 per square foot. With the average size of locally built Single Family Detached (SFD’s) homes being 3,300 square feet, this would mean a fee increase of roughly $760 per unit.

The BIA staff discussed its opposition with RUSD’s retained consultant as well as individual members of the Board of Trustees. At the scheduled public hearing the RUSD Trustees listened and summarily questioned their staff and consultant regarding the merits of the proposed fee. It should be stated that following recent November 2012 elections there was a significant shift of representation to the Board when longtime incumbent Chuck Beaty was defeated by a young professional realtor named Brent Lee. The RUSD Trustee’s chose to make a bold statement about its support of the business community and clearly understood the mutually beneficial partnership it shares with the building industry. Four out of five Trustees voted to defeat the proposed increase and maintain the current Level II fee rate. The BIA appreciates the decision made by the leadership of RUSD and looks forward to continuing its valuable partnership with the District. 

 

Val Verde Unified School District

Alternatively the BIA has been involved in challenging negotiations with the Val Verde Unified School District (VVUSD) Staff. The BIA has consistently engaged the district and met with staff regarding its opposition to what would be a fee increase making it the largest Level II fee in Riverside County.

VVUSD had originally proposed a school fee increase from a Level I fee to a $5.76 Level II fee potentially costing the industry $5000 or more in additional fees per unit depending on the size of a unit being built. The BIA successfully defeated the increase at the last Board meeting in March. The staff has since proposed a new fee increase of $5.57 following recent dialogue between the BIA and school district staff. The BIA still strongly disagrees with the assumptions in the current version of the study. The BIA has found codified methodology errors and has retained a consultant well versed in SFNA studies to challenge the district’s conclusions.

We urge the industry building in the VVUSD region to pay close attention to this matter as we will continue to keep the BIA membership updated. The public hearing for the proposed fee increase is scheduled for the evening of May 6th.

LAC Luncheon | March & April 2014

Annual Legislative Affairs Committee Luncheon Featuring Congressman Ken Calvert


This March we were honored to feature keynote speaker Congressman Ken Calvert who currently represents the 42nd Congressional District that encompasses parts of Riverside, Corona and stretches out towards Southwest Riverside County to the City of Temecula.

Congressman Calvert is a longtime friend to the industry with a background in real estate and development affording him keen insight into the issues builders face.  The turnout was commanding making this LAC the largest and most heavily attended to date.  Members were treated to an update on federal issues and legislation related to housing and development as well as an insider perspective of ongoing international concerns and current events.

Our members and guests questions ranged from local building topics to the recent turmoil between Russia and Ukraine.  The BIA in Riverside County is fortunate to have such an accomplished leader representing our region and looking out for our industry.  Now serving as the ranking member on the Appropriations Committee in the California Congressional Delegation, Congressman Calvert has earned a great deal of respect amongst his peers and has delivered continuously for our community.  We thank Congressman Calvert for taking some time away from the Hill and spending it at an insightful luncheon with the BIA.

April Legislative Affairs Committee Luncheon

City of Riverside Community Development Director Al Zelinka: Smart Code

This April we were fortunate to feature Mr. Al Zelinka, Community Development Director in the City of Riverside.  Last month we received a 40,000 foot view of policy effecting development.  This month we received a close up review of a plan to re-envision development in the City of Riverside.

A little about the Smart Code Specific Plan:  The Smart Code Specific Plan program is intended to be a community-guided effort to establish and implement a vision or set of visions for the entire project area. Although the existing specific plans may contain elements that are still relevant, each specific plan area will be revisited to establish visions and development standards reflective of current community desires.  Additionally, the entire project area will be analyzed holistically to ensure a consistent and cohesive document. This will most likely result in changes in land uses and policies within these areas.

Thank you Mr. Al Zelinka, for sharing the future vision for planning and building in the City of Riverside with the members and guest of the Riverside County BIA.

Government Affairs Update | Feb 2014

2014 Challenges and Opportunities

2014 unfolds as a year of promise and opportunity.  While our industry is still far from real recovery, the role we have served in the Greater Inland Empire and Coachella Valley region as an economic stimulus and major jobs provider has begun to stabilize the region financially.  It is a time where entities that seek to incentivize local development have and will continue to benefit from the partnerships that are being established here.

In the midst of this is the reality that because of the long hard recession coupled with many hard policy choices made in Sacramento, local governments have had very limited access to resources and many if not all have had to tighten their belts. This brings us a challenge as many local governments look to ANY signs hinting at recovery as an advanced opportunity to prepare for ways to improve revenue generation.  The danger here being that hasty fee increases can quickly stifle economic growth and hurt our industry as well as themselves in the process.

The BIA watch list is growing but as we utilize our relationships with local government to develop mutually beneficial policies, we have already experienced success.  Most recently the City of Menifee enacted a 30 day moratorium on hillside development that didn’t take into account approved development in the area already in place.  BIA Riverside County successfully defeated an attempt to extend the moratorium.  In the City of Wildomar when they first presented the BIA with their DIF study they initially intended to increase their DIF to roughly $11,000.  After over a year of ongoing discussions and BIA engagement we successfully negotiated a much lower fee amount of $6,946.51 saving the industry over $4000 in additional fees.

The BIA is currently engaged with the County of Riverside as they prepare to bring a revised DIF Study and Staff Report to the Board.  While we anticipate that the new DIF will be lower than the current one in place, there are several improper components in it that the BIA has addressed as discussions are ongoing.

Riverside County BIA will continue to update you on School Fees, DIFs and other matters as they pertain to our industry.  If you have any questions or wish to learn more about any particular issue, please do not hesitate to contact Nathan Miller, BIA Riverside County - Director of Government Affairs at nmiller@riversidebia.org or (951) 505-2594.

 

You Only Live Twice, Mr. Boyd…

g and honoring Dan Boyd for his past year of service as President including the Office of Congressman Ken Calvert, Assemblymembers Mike Morrell and Eric Linder, Supervisor Kevin Jeffries, Sheriff Stan Sniff and District Attorney Paul Zellerbach as well as several local elected officials and community leaders.  We thank everyone for joining us and honoring what has been a positive and productive period of growth for our industry under the helm of Dan Boyd.
However, Dan’s leadership will live once as he assumes the Preside
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2013 LAC Accomplishments

Riverside County Chapter Elections Update: 8 out of 9 candidates supported by Riverside County Chapter BIA in Nov. 5th election victorious!... Wildomar Development Impact Fee Study Update: Successfully negotiated significant Fee Reductions, Phase-In and Fee Payment Option at Certificate of Occupancy... County Development Impact Fee Update: 50% Fee Reduction now in place retroactively beginning July 1 through January 2014...
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LAC Event Wrap Up

Aqua Vitae

On Wednesday, October 2nd, the BIA’s Legislative Affairs Committee featured a presentation on the Bay Delta Conservation Plan from Western Municipal Water District’s General Manager John Rossi.

The Bay Delta Conservation Plan entails a multifaceted approach to solving Southern California’s water issues as we face an exponentially growing population.  It also seeks to restore habitat in the San Joaquin Bay Delta while ultimately protecting the farming industry within the Delta and Central and Northern California.  Most if not all resistance to the project exists squarely in Northern California as a result of misinformation campaigns and fear of unknown consequences.

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PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE | August 2013

Well, well……

I was told this newsletter is our “End of Summer” edition and as I look at my calendar I see that I have not taken a vacation and now I am noticing school corners are posting their first day of fall classes…..Ok…where did summer go???

Well, I can all but assure you at BIA we know our seasons and as summer winds down, staff and our decision makers are saddling up for fall/winter season and we too are looking ahead to see what challenges we will be facing.  Many jurisdictions are gearing up to raise fees and the days of deferrals are becoming increasingly more difficult!  I am working hand in hand with Bill Blankenship to lend my support wherever he needs it and we may be calling upon some of you too to help us reinforce the reality that our marketplace remains fragile, yet promising.

While national employment numbers seem to be on the mend, here in Riverside County we still face some of the highest unemployment rates in the state. We have all experienced some fantastic home sales this summer but BIA is not resting on a few good months as we continue to work hard with our decision makers to prevent additional regulations and fee increases as we all try and build on our robust sales.

As I bounce from city to city in my daily travels I have met with a number of elected officials, city managers and planning directors and they all seem to be singing the same tune…. “We got hammered when the market came to a standstill and now we are getting hammered again on the upswing: Low staffing levels, decreased work hours, shorter weeks, and now our plan check times are getting hammered.”

My best advice is to tell your project managers and planners that it is crucial to sit down before a submittal and walk thru the details of every application and work product.  Iron out the issues before you submit. Achieve clarity and don’t assume that what you are preparing is what the city wants to see. KNOW the process. Don’t be afraid of the question, just the answer.  Also, work out reasonable time-frames up front not after you submit!  The advice I like the most - Tell your project team, “Go visit your city staff every once in a while.”  Stop in and actually develop relationships.  It never ceases to amaze me that after 35 years of entitlements, there is one thing I have learned that never changes, getting “face time” means a whole lot more than an email.

Well, all of us here at Riverside BIA remain committed to help any of you wherever we can.  Your membership is very important to us.  Your participation at our events over this past summer has been incredible!  Overall, as a sitting member of BIASC’s Governing Board I can tell you that while we still have some catching up to do, our Membership is up, our budgets look a lot better and we are nearing the final touches under our new ‘One Membership’ organization! But there is one thing that will never, ever change.  All of us at the local chapters, our executive officers and our dedicated staff are always standing by to help.

So, I hope you all enjoyed a terrific summer, enjoy the rest of August and my favorite time September! Again, from all of us THANK YOU for helping BIA remain strong and supporting us in making our industry a little easier….

 

Dan Boyd-D.R. Horton,
President, BIA Riverside County Chapter

Welcome Our Newest BIA Staff

Nathan A. Miller, Director of Government Affairs

 

Nathan Miller comes to the BIA Riverside County Chapter having most recently served as District Director to 40th District Assemblyman Mike Morrell.  Nathan is widely recognized in the Assembly for his District Office model adopted by the Assembly Republican Caucus.  His “Best Practices” Playbook is now utilized by all District Offices of Republican Assembly members following the 2012 election cycle. 

Nathan attended California Polytechnic University, Pomona and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science with completed coursework in physics. Nathan is married to Heather, a Norco native and together they live in Corona with their three children: Max, Michelle and Alexander.  Nathan grew up in Manhattan Beach and if he has free time, you will likely find him surfing and at the beach with his family.  He and his family also enjoy camping and count Sequoia and Kings Canyon as one of their favorite places to visit.

Nathan has served on staff for local state and federal elected officials and has worked with community leaders on a number of wide ranging issues.  Most recently Nathan was elected as Trustee for the Riverside Community College District in November 2012.  He currently serves as Chair of the Riverside Community College District Facilities Committee and spearheads efforts to close the gap between graduation rates and college readiness.



 

Alyssa Pedvin, Staff Assistant

 

Alyssa Pedvin is from Upland, California where she was introduced to the business world after volunteering and teaching at a start-up martial arts school. 

Alyssa graduated from the University of California Riverside with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Economics and a minor in Philosophy. While studying at UC Riverside she became a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars in 2009 and worked at the University Recreation Center’s accounting office and front counter. She is currently working towards an accounting certification with the University of California Riverside Extension to help meet the requirements for the California CPA Exam.

Alyssa spends her spare time honing her drawing and painting abilities, which have allowed for past art competition blue ribbons, as well as enhancing her home arcade.

 

 

A Tale of Four Cities | LAC Luncheon, August 14th

On Wednesday, August 14th, the BIA’s Legislative Affairs Committee featured the four Mayors of California’s newest cities which all reside within the borders of Riverside County.  Our guests included the City of Eastvale’s Mayor Ike Bootsma, the City of Wildomar’s Mayor Timothy Walker, the City of Menifee’s Mayor Scott Mann and the City of Jurupa Valley’s Mayor Verne Lauritzen.  Mayor Lauritzen also serves as Chief of Staff to Riverside County Supervisor Jeff Stone.

The presentation uniquely focused on their individual experiences in office and collaboratively on their individual and shared experiences as Mayors of cities that incorporated immediately prior to an intense regional to global economic recession.  The Mayors shared their experience in dealing with State politics and funding struggles between Sacramento and local government, their deep appreciation of the builder and development community’s return and the sign of opportunity we represent and their individual city’s development challenges that they seek to overcome.

The event was incredibly well attended and we would like to thank our generous sponsors, Stratham Homes for making the event possible.  This occasion not only drove membership to the event looking to build relationships with the Mayors, it also served as an unexpected new membership driver with lots of new faces in our audience.  The event hosted several updates from representatives of our newly elected state and county officials as well.

Please make sure to mark your calendar for the next Legislative Affairs Committee luncheon which will take place on October 2nd at Sevilla Restaurant in the City of Riverside from 11:30 - 1:30 p.m.

Riverside County School Fees Continue to Decline

The Riverside County Chapter of the BIA government affairs team has achieved tremendous success in helping to reduce School fees assessed on new development.  During the past six years, all 22 Riverside County area School Districts have reduced their development fees.  This is an unprecedented accomplishment!  On average, over the past six years, school fees have dropped 20% in Riverside County.  This average reduction equates to about $1,500 per single family home!  Fee reductions of this magnitude are attained after scrutinizing each and every school fee analysis and working closely with school district staff members to ensure accuracy and fairness. 

The collection of school fees is mandated by the State of California.  Legislation known as S.B. 50 outlines how the school fees are to be calculated.  S.B. 50 sets a minimum requirement for schools to collect what is known as a “level 1” school fee.  The level 1 fee is currently $3.20 per square foot.  If districts can justify the need for more fee revenue to cover their local 50% of the cost of constructing new schools, the districts are allowed to adopt a “level 2” school fee.  To justify a level 2 school fee, districts must complete a School Facilities Needs Analysis (SFNA) each year.  The resulting fee should cover 50% of what is needed to mitigate the impact of new development.  A “level 3” school fee is always double the amount of level 2.  Level 3 is only triggered if the State of California exhausts school bond proceeds and cannot cover their 50% share.  Therefore, in a level 3 environment, new development would need to cover 100% of the cost of school impact mitigation.   

Because of the diligent work by the BIA government affairs staff, level 2 and level 3 school fees have seen drastic reductions in a short period of time.  School fees are just one portion of the entire fee load paid to mitigate development impact.  The Government Affairs team will continue the fight to keep development impact fees at reduced levels.  

LAC Luncheon Event Wrap Up

On Friday, April 12th, Senator Bill Emmerson addressed the BIA's Annual Legislative Luncheon. Senator Emmerson, who represents the 23rd Senate District in California, covering portions of Riverside and San Bernardino Counties, provided an update on a myriad of state issues impacting our region and the homebuilding community. This included...
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More Great News on TUMF Reductions

Your Riverside BIA Government Affairs team is always eager to share good news when it comes to housing opportunities and homebuilding.

That's why we are very pleased to report that the Riverside County Board of Supervisors, Riverside City Council, Eastvale City Council and Perris City Council have all voted unanimously to extend temporary 50% TUMF reductions in their jurisdictions through 2012. The new City of Jurupa Valley also has a 50% reduction in place.

These votes were made possible due to recent action by the Western Riverside Council of Governments (WRCOG) Executive Committee, which approved an extension of the temporary 50% TUMF reduction opportunity for 2012, allowing WRCOG jurisdictions to decide whether or not to adopt the reduction for 2012.

Keep in mind that because TUMF reduction ordinances require two public readings, some jurisdictions will have a short time period where full TUMF rates will be collected. Please contact your Government Affairs team to get these dates for your area.

The Riverside BIA Government Affairs team will continue to solicit support for the 50% reduction in other jurisdictions and look forward to reporting continued good news!

Riverside Votes to Continue TUMF Reduction

We've got some good news this week!

The Riverside City Council voted 7–0 earlier this week to continue the 50% TUMF Reduction through December 31, 2012 or until the $20 million dollar aggregate cap in uncollected TUMF Revenues has been reached.   

The Council waived further readings of this measure and will therefore allow for a seamless extension of the 50% reduction.   

If you have any questions, please contact Bill Blankenship.

BIASC Taps Riverside Chapter's CEO to Lead Principal Office

Riverside CEO Mark Knorringa takes on the role of CEO of BIASC today.The Building Industry Association of Southern California, Inc. (BIASC), which represents more than 1,000 member businesses involved in the homebuilding industry, has tapped Riverside BIA CEO Mark Knorringa as its new Chief Executive Officer.  He starts the new position today.

Mark has worked in the industry for more than 35 years as a builder, developer and association executive and has been the Riverside County Chapter's CEO since 2008.  He was named BIASC's Executive Officer of Year in 2010.

"Strong leadership and member involvement are critical as BIASC continues to fight for homeownership and the professionals that work hard every day to deliver the American Dream," said Bob Yoder, President of the Southern California Division of Shea Homes and this year's BIASC President.

"Mark has a unique perspective given his breadth of experience in Southern California. He understands the business and the impacts that legislation and regulations have on members, and he has the organizational skills we need to continue providing members with valuable programs and services." 

Mark is a longtime leader in Southern California's homebuilding and community development industry. His real estate expertise includes oversight of large-scale master-planned community infrastructure installation; entitlements; and the development of several all-suite hotel projects and residential subdivisions.

"I'm honored to have been asked to take on this new challenge, especially during these unprecedented economic times," Mark said. "For many years, the BIA has forged great alliances with local government and community leaders. Holly Schroeder has achieved great results, and I'm committed to working with our members and staff to sustain our momentum. I look forward to furthering relationships and achieving tremendous results on behalf of the men and women of the building industry and most importantly for the economic benefit of our region."

Bill Blankenship has been tapped as Riverside BIA's new CEO. The Riverside County Chapter's leadership will change, but familiar faces remain.

Bill Blankenship, Deputy Director of the Riverside County Chapter, was selected by the Riverside Board of Directors to lead the Chapter's as its new CEO. 

Bill joined the Riverside County Chapter as Director of Governmental Affairs in March of 2000. Shortly thereafter, he was promoted to Deputy Director. Bill's duties included overseeing the Riverside Chapter's governmental affairs, which consist of Chapter involvement in election issues throughout Riverside County.  He led both the targeting and recruiting efforts in various elections in Western Riverside County, monitored the governmental issues in the various municipalities of Western Riverside County, directed the Legislative Affairs Committee, which meets on a monthly basis, and played an integral role in day to day office operations.

Bill's combination of education and extensive experience in the legislative affairs area include being both the District Director and Campaign Manager for Congressman Gary Miller. Bill also served as the Chief of Staff for Assemblyman Gary Miller. Other activities include the position of Field Representative for California State Senator Cathie Wright and Assemblyman Paul Woodruff. In addition, Bill has worked in numerous political campaigns and has served as Field Director for Cathie Wright for Lieutenant Governor, Campaign Manager for Paul Woodruff for Assembly and Voter Outreach Director for the Riverside and San Bernardino County Republican Party.

Bill resides in Redlands with his wife Tonja, his daughter Caroline and their Chocolate Labrador, Libby.

Lake Elsinore Council Appoints Peter Weber to Council

Peter WeberLake Elsinore City Council members have voted to appoint former city treasurer Peter Weber to finish the term of Amy Bhutta, heading off what would have been a costly election for the city.

Weber will be sworn in at the Sept. 27 meeting for a 14-month stint on the council. The seat is up for election in November 2012.

Bhutta resigned in July to spend more time with her family in Minnesota. A special election would have cost the city up to $70,000.

For more information, contact Bill Blankenship.

Tell Congress to Extend Conforming Loan Limits!

In two short weeks, on October 1, 2011, the conforming loan limits for Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Federal Housing Administration (FHA) will be lowered. The disruption that would occur with the lowering of the current loan limits would further damage the already fragile housing market and impede the economic recovery of our nation!

The BIA needs you to call and send a letter to your member of Congress urging them to support immediate efforts to extend the current loan limits for Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the FHA!! 

The housing finance system is under a cloud of uncertainty. The federal government, through the GSEs and the FHA, is currently accounting for nearly all mortgage credit flowing to home buyers and rental properties. Lowering the loan limits will only further restrict overall mortgage liquidity in the marketplace and place further downward pressure on home prices!

A drop in these mortgage loan limits would reduce home prices in major markets all across the country. This is not the time to reduce housing demand and exacerbate the current housing downturn!

Call your member of Congress at (866) 924-NAHB (6242) and please send a letter to them here.  

If you have any questions or feedback on this issue, please email BuilderLink@nahb.org.

Riverside County Reduces DIF Starting October 13, 2011

Good News!

The Riverside County Board of Supervisors voted this morning to extend the temporary reduction of development impact fees effective October 13, 2011.  The reduction will be in force for one year, ending in October 2012.

HOWEVER, the previous temporary reduction expired on August 9.  Since the new reduction will not take effect until October 13, the DIF will be 100% between August 9 and October 13.  

If you have any questions, please call our government affairs gurus at (951) 781-7310.