By Staff Reports
(Victorville)– The City of Victorville announced that it officially opened Fire Station 315 on July 3 with the addition of six firefighter/paramedics thanks to revenue generated by Measure P, the one-cent sales tax approved by Victorville voters in November.
Activating Fire Station 315, a priority identified in the City’s 2020 Public Safety Plan, enables the City to expand medical service to the southwest corner of Victorville where there has been a coverage gap. Although the construction of Fire Station 315 on Eucalyptus Street was complete in 2009, it was never staffed due to financial issues primarily resulting from the Great Recession. According to City officials, Victorville fire calls for service have increased by 45 percent since 2011; with staffing levels remaining virtually unchanged. In the past few years, data shows nearly 80 percent of all calls for service are medical in nature.
To aid the City’s emergency response, two Type 1 fire engines are being purchased using Measure P funds. One engine will be assigned to Fire Station 315, and the other will replace aging apparatus in the department’s fleet.
“As a direct result of Measure P, the City of Victorville is financially able to open Fire Station 315 to increase fire and medical service for our growing community,” said Victorville Mayor, Debra Jones. “We’re excited to begin fulfilling our promise to invest this new revenue to increase essential services and build a stronger Victorville. These service enhancements will have a lasting, positive impact on our community.”
Measure P is expected to generate an estimated $18.94 million this fiscal year. Of this, $14.02 million was certified by the citizens oversight committee to be expended in the annual budget adopted by the Victorville City Council on June 15. In addition to the allocation to open Fire Station 315, Measure P revenue will be used to enhance police, code enforcement, homelessness, park, and recreation services for the community.
Eleven police personnel including five deputies, five Sheriff service specialists and one crime analyst will be added to help increase safety, traffic enforcement and improve response times.
To implement a more proactive code compliance effort, five code enforcement officers and one support staff member will be added. This effectively doubles the City’s code enforcement presence in order to more effectively address issues of blight, illegal dumping and other nuisance behaviors impacting quality of life for residents.
As part of the City’s broader strategy to reduce homelessness in Victorville, the City is funding the operation and maintenance of an interim homeless shelter at Westwinds Sports Center. The nonprofit Illumination Foundation began its operations there on the first of June.
Victorville library and recreation services will also receive a boost with the addition of a children’s librarian and two library aides; a new self-service library kiosk; and upgrades to various recreation centers.
The City’s budget also includes road and park improvements to be paid for using other revenue sources. The road improvements planned for this fiscal year include the widening of the Bear Valley Road Bridge including the addition of turn lanes from Bear Valley Road to Ridgecrest Road, and the rehabilitation of Arrowhead Drive from Green Tree Boulevard to Nisqualli Road and Bear Valley Road between Amethyst Road and US 395. Funds were also budgeted for the ongoing construction of the Green Tree Extension that will extend Green Tree Boulevard 1.5 miles to Ridgecrest/Yates Road connecting the communities of Victorville and Apple Valley and providing another East/West corridor to benefit the Victor Valley. Park improvements include the installation of lighting at the track in Hook Park and the addition of a new rectangular field, dog park, shade structures and walking paths at yet-to-be-determined park locations. These upgrades were identified in community workshops as part of the City’s Parks Master Plan.
The City of Victorville fiscal year 21/22 budget is available in its entirety on the City’s website at VictorvilleCA.gov.
Located in Southern California at the high-point between Los Angeles and Las Vegas, Victorville is the leading city for both industry and retail in the High Desert region. Victorville is a growing, vibrant community that is home to approximately 125,000 residents and some of the area’s largest employers. Clean air, abundant mountain vistas, family-friendly recreational activities, spectacular sunsets and breathtaking night skies entice locals and visitors alike to fall in love with this city that is within a few hours of SoCal beaches, National Parks, mountain retreats, and other major attractions. Ontario International Airport is less than an hour away. Learn more about the City of Victorville at VictorvilleCA.gov.