By Deb Murphy

Mono Board of Supervisors

After Ron McMartin and Layton Peterson finished a bidding war on the Mono County-owned property at 71 Davison in Mammoth Lakes, the Mono Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to reject the market value bids, ending at $185,000, and pursue the three affordable housing proposals.

McMartin told the Board he’d intended to come in with an affordable housing bid but “the neighbors weren’t happy” with that concept. That set off both Supervisor Jennifer Halferty and Stacy Corless. Halferty reminded the Board “affordable” is considered 80-percent of the median income. “Affordable housing won’t bring down neighbors’ property values,” she said. Corless was even more direct. “People have said they ‘don’t want those people’ as neighbors. Well guess what, I’m one of those people.”

Neither got any argument from the rest of the board on the property that could end up with four new affordable housing units.

According to County Counsel Stacey Simon, staff will compare and contrast the three proposals and come back to the Board within the next month.

Inyo Board of Supervisors

Ag Commissioner Nate Reade gave Inyo Supervisors an update on the commercial cannabis licensing, including an ETA of the first licenses—possibly next month.
The issue before the Board was what Reade described as a high bar of 80-percent on the weighted scoring system.

Of the first 10 applicants, four failed, two with really low scores. The next batch of 20 applicants are still in the running, with modifications, and should go before the board sometime in February.

Reade recommended staff continue with the scoring—any change would require a change in the cannabis ordinance and suck up more time. Reade has yet to figure out the fee structure—the goal of which is cost neutrality for the County and dependent on the number of licenses issued.

Once cannabis businesses get their licenses, they still have to through the Planning Department’s Conditional Use Permit process.

Bishop City Council

Bishop City Attorney Ryan Jones will be back before the Council with a fleshed out building code enforcement ordinance. Apparently, the City’s municipal codes include requirements but no teeth for enforcement. “Our goal is to work with owners,” Jones said, as opposed to opening up an income stream of fines.

Potential fines could range from $100 for non-compliance once a notice is sent up to $500 for multiple violations. Currently, the City has a complaint-based system, Jones said, and there are no plans to hire code enforcement staff.

Jones will bring the full ordinance back to the Council at a future meeting.

Easter Side sends forces to fire zones

Bishop City Council member Chris Costello headed to the Camp Fire following Tuesday’s meeting. He will be on site with a team of chaplains to help the community of Paradise deal with their loss.

Water tenders and two volunteer fire fighters from Benton, Mammoth, White Mountain, Big Pine and Bishop are all at the Woolsey Fire in Ventura/Los Angeles Counties.
The death toll of these two fires has reached at least 51.


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