Council Handwringing Over Animal Shelter….



Last Wednesday evening, Sheryl and I had completed some personal errands and stopped at Denny’s for a bite to eat and then popped into the Wildomar City Council chambers to catch some of the City Council meeting before returning to our home in Hemet.

I was curious to see if the Wildomar City Council would passively approve a $15,000,000 bond on  the behalf of the Sycamore Academy. Despite City Councilman Bob Cashman pulling item 1.11 from the Consent Calendar in order to provide an opportunity for the City Council to briefly pause and reconsider the potential economic exposure to the City if Sycamore Academy were to default, for any reason, on the repayment of the bond.

Rather than to do so, City Council relied on the meaningless reassurance by the City Manager that the City of Wildomar has no exposure whatsoever to any future obligation even as it becomes the municipal facilitator of an avenue of finance for a charter school, whose existence relies upon the ongoing approval of another local political entity, the Lake Elsinore Unified School District.

Once Nordquist went on record, assuring the Council that there would be no exposure to Wildomar and a surety bond was unnecessary,  Cashman’s concerns were dismissed with some scorn and the City Council then went ahead and voted 5-0 to approve the item.

Ironically, several minutes later, the same City Council engaged in a spectacle of municipal handwringing when Council member Cashman pulled the recommendation to approve the Animal Friends of the Valleys field and sheltering agreement under item 1.6.

 Cashman opined that it was unfair for Wildomar to be charged on a “per animal” basis, rather than a per capita basis, which leaves Wildomar paying for the Mission Trail Puppy Palace on an equal basis with nearby cities, whose populations are three times as large as that of Wildomar.


After emitting squeals of pain over the issue, it was the consensus of the City Council that:


1) “We had no choice but to use Animal Friends for animal control.”

2) “We asked them to change, but they won’t do it.”

3) “We have no choice but to continue to pay.”


What makes the irony so ironic is the fact that each of the five members of the City Council voluntarily agreed, in a 5-0 unanimous vote to join the Animal Friends Joint Power Agency on December 8, 2010 with little or no discussion of the implications of their vote.

Unfortunately, the City Council appears to be easily vote on items such as $15 million bonds without pausing to consider the adverse implications of their votes.


When three of the five current City Council members ask for your vote for their reelection in the next six months, the voters of Wildomar should ignore their appeals to conservatism.

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