Big Bear Lake, CA — The bulk of Monday evening’s City Council meeting was directed to logistics planning for the Amgen Tour of California, which rolls into Big Bear on Friday afternoon, May 21.
Prior to this, however, Mayor Liz Harris opened the Public Hearing with regard to the proposed 54% increase in the annual fee for transient private home rental registration and inspection service, which could go from $175 to $270. At the onset of the TPHR agenda item, City Manager Jeff Mathieu said, “We did not conduct the outreach we normally do,” and suggested that any action on the fee increase be tabled for a future Council meeting. Director of Community Services Phil Mosley, who oversees the TPHR program and associated code enforcement, acknowledged that rental agencies were not notified in advance of the agenda posting for the April 26 meeting. “We’ve worked extremely hard to build a relationship with the TPHR companies,” Mosley said. “I offer my apologies to the City Council, and the TPHRs, as I failed to notice.” Mayor Harris still allowed for public comment on the issue, and Michael Perry, on behalf of Citizens Protecting the Rights of Property Owners, thanked Mosley for being open to their concerns, citing this oversight as “not even a bump—it’s a pothole. Our folks need to understand the background, the reason for the increase.” Perry also thanked the City for a great relationship between staff and CPRPro, while Council agreed that they would allow city staff more time to meet with TPHR agencies, and re-notice the public hearing regarding the fee increase for a future, as-yet-undetermined meeting.
In more fun agenda items, City Council directed staff to plan a party in celebration of the re-opening of Boulder Bay Park (scheduled for completion in July) and the 30th anniversary of the City of Big Bear Lake, which was incorporated in November 1980. With Measure Y funds (approved by Big Bear Lake voters in November 2008) already designated for such events, Mayor Harris deemed it a “fun idea,” and asked that all former mayors be invited.
City Council also amended the Municipal Code to allow for maximum bingo payouts up to, now, $500; this increase, from $250, is in line with the California Penal Code and, locally, was prompted by a request from Jennie Boyington, on behalf of those who play bingo at the Elks Lodge and the Big Bear Senior Center.
Monday’s City Council meeting also included a notice of completion for the relocation of the traffic signal in front of the fire department, which was moved at a cost of just over $28,000, to accommodate CalTrans’s new changeable message sign on the Boulevard.
Proclamations were also made in honor of April as Fair Housing Month and May as Building Safety Month*, though the Green Building Council presentation was held for a future meeting. Mayor Harris adjourned the City Council meeting in memory of Council member Rick Herrick’s mother Regina Weeger Herrick, who passed away on April 18.

*The City’s 12th annual Building and Safety Open House will be held on Thursday, May 6 from 4 to 7pm at the Big Bear Lake Civic Center. More details will follow in an upcoming story.

Rick Bates of the Event Resource Office outlined the numbers from past Amgen Tours, prompting the City Council to close the Village L to vehicles on Friday evening, May 21 to allow for the potential of thousands of visitors. Professional cyclists plan to stay at lodges in the Village, and Big Bear Climb organizers suspect that with cyclists such as Lance Armstrong and Levi Leipheimer in town, there will also be countless fans.