Local efforts, groups allocated TOT funds

The June 24 passage of the County of San Diego’s 2014-15 budget included the allocation of Community Enhancement funds from the County of San Diego’s Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT) revenue, and several Greater Fallbrook organizations will receive grants from the Community Enhancement program.

Each county supervisor was given a $599,393 Community Enhancement budget and made recommendations on how much of his or her budget would be given to each group requesting funds. The recommendations were then ratified by the entire San Diego County Board of Supervisors during the approval of the budget.

Although the revenue is derived only from TOT money collected from lodging facilities in the unincorporated portion of the county, organizations in incorporated cities are also eligible for funding. Each county supervisor also has a $1 million discretionary Neighborhood Reinvestment Program budget, so some Community Enhancement requests can be fulfilled by that source.

The $3,000 for the American Association of University Women’s Fallbrook chapter matches its 2013-14 amount although that is less than the organization’s $7,500 request. The funding covers $1,200 for interns and educators to analyze the age appropriateness and develop a rating system for films for student audiences, $1,000 for the design and printing of educational materials in support of human trafficking awareness, and $800 for postage costs related to data dissemination.

The Bonsall Chamber of Commerce received $17,500 of its $71,500 request. The chamber will use $10,500 to expand the chamber’s service areas and $7,000 for an additional employee to double the chamber’s operating hours and add tourism center activities. The chamber was given $15,000 of 2013-14 Community Enhancement funds.

The Fallbrook Art Association received $10,000, which is less than last year’s $10,250 grant and the $11,450 sought for 2014-15. The money will fund gallery rental and marketing for two annual shows at the Fallbrook Art Center.

Fallbrook Center for the Arts, Inc., requested $61,500 and was allocated $30,000. The grant will cover $13,500 for marketing support, $10,000 for exterior signage at the art school, and $6,500 for exterior signage at the art center. Refurbishing signage at the Fallbrook Art Center was one of the allowable uses of a $20,000 Neighborhood Reinvestment Program grant allocated May 20. Last year the organization received $20,500 of TOT funding.

The Fallbrook Chamber of Commerce will be given $80,000, an increase from last year’s $60,000 although not the entirety of the desired $155,000. The chamber will spend $60,000 for the Avocado Festival and $20,000 for tourism and visitors support.

The Fallbrook chamber was also allocated $3,000 of 2013-14 TOT funding during the June 17 Board of Supervisors meeting. The money had originally been awarded to the Camp Pendleton Historical Society for an intern to catalog and archive materials and for an administrative assistant contractor, but the historical society was unable to use those funds for the approved purpose. The reallocation to the Fallbrook Chamber of Commerce will help create a new visitors center.

The Fallbrook Gem and Mineral Society obtained $4,000 of its $5,000 request. The money will be used for meeting room audio/visual equipment for public meetings, school groups including home school groups, and community groups. Last year the society received $3,200.

The Fallbrook Land Conservancy Foundation requested $11,380 and received $10,000. The funding will provide $4,000 to clear trails and fire roads in the Santa Margarita Rivershed and for a video camera to prevent vehicle break-ins at the Sandia Creek Trailhead, $3,500 for Stage Coach Sunday activities, $1,000 for Walkabout Web Trail improvements, $1,000 for Walkabout Web Trail signs, and $500 for Walkabout Web Trail print and electronic publicity material. The foundation received $7,922 last year from the Community Enhancement program.

Friends of the Fallbrook Community Center, which did not seek 2013-14 TOT funding, received $3,000 of its $8,000 request. The money will help fund the annual holiday tree lighting.

Full Access and Coordinated Transportation, Inc., seeks to provide public transit services to unserved residents. The total $48,000 requested amount included $2,000 to promote expansion of FACT services into non-urban areas in the Fifth Supervisorial District including Fallbrook, Bonsall, and Valley Center, and that part of the request was granted in full.

The Live Oak Park Coalition was allocated $12,500 of its $21,000 request to replace wood chips in the playground area with a rubberized surface. On May 21, the county supervisors authorized a contract for Live Oak Park which will include that work and utilized developer fees as well as a $45,000 Live Oak Park Coalition donation. TOT funds accounted for $10,000 of 2013-14 Live Oak Park Coalition revenue.

The Pauma Valley Community Association sought $27,800 and was allocated $12,500 which will be used for a shade cover for the existing play structure. Last year $10,000 of Community Enhancement funding was awarded to the group.

REINS (Riding Emphasizing Individual Needs and Strengths) received the entirety of this year’s $10,000 request, which also matches last year’s grant. The money will cover $5,000 for the therapy on horseback program and $5,000 for a therapist consultation program.

The San Diego Winery-Vintner Community Development Council is a first-time applicant and requested $265,000. The $5,000 awarded will fund a promotional campaign case and video, memberships in professional and networking organizations, list acquisition and mailings, prospect research, grant writer services, and a part-time assistant.

• Fallbrook Chamber – $80,000 + $3,000

• Center for the Arts – $30,000

• Bonsall Chamber – $17,500

• Live Oak Park Coalition – $12,500

• Pauma Valley Comm. Org. – $12,500

• REINS – $10,000

• Fallbrook Art Assoc. – $10,000

• Fallbrook Land Conservancy Foundation – $10,000

• S.D. Winery-Vintner Comm. Dev. Council – $5,000

• Gem & Mineral Society – $4,000

• AAUW – $3,000

• Friends of Community Center – $3,000

• FACT Inc. – $2,000

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