(Victor Valley)–– Construction of a permanent fire station for Spring Valley Lake moved closer to reality today when the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors approved design plans for the project and agreed to seek bids for construction.
“This new fire station will provide the long-term capability to better serve and protect the residents of Spring Valley Lake and Victorville, while also providing an affordable but state-of-the-art facility our firefighters deserve,” said First District Supervisor Brad Mitzelfelt.
The project will replace the “temporary” station that has served Spring Valley Lake on leased land near Victor Valley College since 1990. The new station will be located at 12398 Tamarisk Road in Victorville. The 6,300-square-foot facility will include an apparatus bay for housing two engines, sleep rooms, restrooms, an exercise room, lobby, kitchen and dining areas. There is also an additional 600-square-foot equipment storage building to be constructed adjacent to the main facility.
This will be the first fire station to be largely funded from an allocation of full federal funding from the Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) program. The PILT program is meant to cover part of the costs associated with providing public services on federal lands that generate no property tax revenue, but the formula has strict caps and Congress rarely provides full funding under the formula. More than 80 percent of San Bernardino County is under federal ownership.
As part of federal legislation in 2008, Congress agreed to fully fund PILT for five years, generating more than $5 million in additional revenue for the County. Supervisor Mitzelfelt requested, and his colleagues on the Board of Supervisors agreed, that the money be set aside for the construction of fire stations in the desert.
This will also be the first fire station to use a standardized set of design plans, which will be used on future fire stations for a significant cost savings to taxpayers. The bids are scheduled to be opened August 30th and a construction contract is scheduled to be awarded September 25th. Construction could begin in October and take approximately a year to complete. The estimated cost is $2,470,000.