San Bernardino County now provides an online Short Term Rental Map for viewing permitted short-term rentals (STRs) in unincorporated areas of the County. While permitted and well-managed STRs provide income for local residents and businesses, the effects on quality of life due to the escalating number of such properties that are unpermitted and/or not well-managed have been increasing.Read more
The proposed Oberon Solar Project, to be located on undisturbed BLM land near Desert Center, has drawn a great deal of concern by numerous groups in addition to MCBA. While in a Development Focus Area (DFA) proposed under California's Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan, the proponents are asking for amendments that contradict the Plan’s underlying rationale. In short, as MBCA’s Pat Flanagan writes in the MBCA letter, “It is not the role of the DRECP to bend to accommodate a project proposal. It is the project proponent’s role to accommodate the DRECP.”Read more
In reference to the County staff's workshop presentation to the Planning Commission on September 9, MBCA has submitted a letter that outlines our concerns with the current severe problem of affordable housing in the Morongo Basin, with pointed suggestions about the state-required updating of the Housing Element of the Countywide Plan that triggered the Workshop. Thanks to Director Janet Johnston for extensive research in composing the letter. We will again report and comment on the County's Draft Housing Element which is expected later this year.
- Light Trespass Workshop by Planning Commission
- Stop the Threat to Community Solar in California
- Short Term Rentals
- MBCA Takes a Stand on Glamping Projects
- Virtual Landscape Tour
- New MBCA Website Features
Residents across the Morongo Basin have expressed concern about a proposed luxury camping development just off Old Woman Springs Road in Flamingo Heights. MBCA has sent a letter to the lead San Bernardino County contract planner emphasizing the need for a comprehensive Environmental Impact Report. A news story from local radio station KCDZ provides additional information.
The proposed Solar 66 project located in the Mojave Desert community of Daggett between I-15 and Highway 40 would provide 7 megawatts of solar power on about 134 acres. MBCA's comment letter on the County's Initial Study of this project points to concerns about flooding risks, air pollution, wildlife corridors, invasive species, and aesthetics.Read more
MBCA features prominently in an article and photo series by the Desert Sun about the Auto Camp Airsteam Resort under construction in Joshua Tree. The news article title aptly describes the concern: Glamping company brings Airstreams to Joshua Tree. Can development and nature coexist? The article includes comments from MBCA President Steve Bardwell, and he and Board member Pat Flanagan are included in the photo series accompanying the article.
On February 17 the Department of the Interior revoked the eleventh-hour amendment to California's Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan by the outgoing administration that would have greatly reduced protected lands. This Desert Sun article provides more history and details, and California Energy Commissioner Karen Douglas has released this statement of recognition and appreciation.
This recent LA times article provides a great deal of background on myriad aspects of environmental concern related to energy development in the California desert. It explores federal and state political aspects as well as commentary from environmental non-profit groups, particularly as they relate to the previous administration's last-minute draft revision to California's Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan.