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Mayors Call for Halt to Bonelli Park Plans


SAN DIMAS — Mayors of four cities in the San Gabriel Valley on Wednesday called for the county to scrap plans for more development at Frank G. Bonelli Regional Park.

The plan to further develop the 1,994-acre park calls for a 150-room lodge, an 80-unit cabin complex, and a restaurant in a hillside area west of Puddingstone Reservoir. Raging Waters Inc., a private firm that leases property for its theme park, plans to add 119 acres for more attractions and a parking structure.

The plan is a scaled-down version of a development proposal offered by the county in 1988, but the surrounding cities have complained that they were not included in the planning effort.

"We're tired of fighting," San Dimas Mayor Terry Dipple said at a news conference in front of the Raging Waters entrance. "We've been fighting with (County Supervisor Pete) Schabarum since this thing started. We want them to scrap the (environmental impact) report and plans, and sit down with us." Schabarum's district includes the San Gabriel Valley.

Mayors from Glendora, Covina and Pomona joined in seeking to maintain the undeveloped part of the park in its natural setting.

"San Dimas already has three hotels," Dipple said. "We are not looking for an economical benefit for the park. The almost 2,000 acres is the last remaining natural area in Los Angeles County."

Concern about increased traffic has prompted Pomona to adopt several resolutions opposing development in the park, said Mayor Donna Smith. Smith said the county was "shoveling (the plans) down our throats, and we're tired of it. We'd like to tell Pete (Schabarum), hell no." Smith said that "each time the county needs a buck, it takes it from the cities, we're tired of being bucked to death."

A forum on the park development expansion will be held tonight at 7 p.m. in the San Dimas Community Building.

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