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Dunsmuir voters asked to approve 1.5 cent sales tax increase

Shareen Strauss

To help shore their budget, the Dunsmuir City Council hopes voters will approve a 1.5 cent sales tax increase which they voted last week to place on the on Nov. 3 ballot.

Tax revenue would go toward General Fund expenditures, such as sidewalk improvements, law enforcement, solid waste, and the library.

The tax would need a majority vote to pass.

The council also debated on adding a second special tax that would be exclusively for police and fire protection. Such a special tax, with a dedicated target, would require a two-thirds majority to pass but the council decided against it.

Councilors will select three local individuals to write supporting arguments for the measure which will appear on the Siskiyou County Clerk’s voter information guide.

Also during the June 18 council meeting, Dunsmuir citizens complained about the closure of the city pool for the season due to the coronavirus pandemic, especially since Weed opened their pool earlier this month.

Councilor Bruce Deutsch explained the closure wasn’t a council decision, but one made by the Dunsmuir Recreation and Parks District board.

Mayor Juliana Lucchesi talked about the mountain bike courses and trails around Dunsmuir and encouraged parents to look into this as an option to keep kids active over the summer months.

The council reappointed Carol Skalko, Devon Warner Don Harley and Craig Kay to serve another term on the Planning Commission. Their terms will begin in July.

Rami White, Ellen McArron and Kate O’Grady have all been reappointed to serve another term on the Recreation and Parks board.

Wendy Perkins will continue as the Deputy City Clerk.

City Manager Todd Juhasz announced that after two years since the law went into effect, Dunsmuir has received their first cannabis business license.

Juhasz also announced that it is mandatory statewide to wear a mask in public to help limit the spread of COVID-19.

Staff reports

Dunsmuir Community Center representative Steve Bryan reported that monthly food commodities are helping 150 Dunsmuir residents at this time. The next food commodities distribution will be held on June 25. To get on the list or to learn more about for CalFresh benefits call (530) 235-4400.

Siskiyou County Sheriff Sergeant Ben Whetstine reported 578 patrol hours in Dunsmuir last month. Among the month’s activities, 20 cases were made. There were 45 traffic stops, nine arrests, five thefts, one assault and battery, eight domestic violence calls and 17 disturbing the peace calls in May.

The Dunsmuir/Castella Fire department responded to 11 dispatches, nine EMS calls and two other type fires, as well as attending weekly fire department training.