County studies fire protection services in special districts


COUNTY — The County of San Luis Obispo presented a study to the Board of Supervisors on Jan. 15 that evaluated the fire protection services of certain special districts in SLO County.
The report described the challenges to sustainability, and impact to the County and County Fire Department if one, or more, special district elects to discontinue providing fire protection services.
At the Board’s direction, District 1 Supervisor John Peschong and District 2 Supervisor Bruce Gibson will work together in an ad-hoc capacity to evaluate steps moving forward and report back to the Board at a future date.
The report titled, “Special Districts Fire Protection Study,” was authored by retired Cal Fire San Luis Obispo Fire Chief Dan Turner and retired Scotts Valley Fire Protection District Fire Chief Mike McMurry.
The report included the status of fire protection services provided by five special districts in the unincorporated areas of the County.
The special districts of Cambria Community Services District, Oceano Community Services District, San Miguel Community Services District, Santa Margarita Fire Protection District, and Templeton Community Services District all participated in the study.
LAFCO provided district history, district processes and organizational dynamics. County departments that contributed to the report included the County Administrative Office, County Assessor, County Auditor-Controller-Treasurer-Tax Collector, County Clerk-Recorder, County Counsel, and County Fire Department.
While two other special districts — Avila Beach Community Services District and Los Osos Community Service District — also provide fire protection services in the unincorporated areas of SLO County, they do so through the County’s contract with Cal Fire and, therefore, were not included in this study.
The presentation, Board discussion and public comment on this topic can be seen at at www.slocounty.ca.gov.

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