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County OKs Increase in Fees, New Charges

October 19, 1994|JULIE FIELDS

Residents and owners of mobile-home parks could soon be charged $36 a year per space for the county program that regulates their rent, as part of a large package of fee increases and new charges that the County Board of Supervisors agreed to Tuesday.

The revenue that the fees bring should make up for a $517,000 reduction in the budget of the county Resource Management Agency, which includes environmental health, planning and the Air Pollution Control Department.

During a presentation to the supervisors Tuesday, Thomas Berg, the agency's director, said the fees will allow the county to charge the people actually using services, which are now subsidized by all taxpayers.

Residents and businesses will pay for consultations with county planners and for research on illegal property divisions. Also, production companies will have to pay more to film in Ventura County.

In other areas, the county will collect fines from businesses that violate laws on weights and measures, such as grocery stores using incorrectly calibrated scales. Those violations are now settled in court, with fines are paid to the state.

In addition to the new fees, the county agency will also cut three positions, Berg said.

The supervisors approved all of the increases without objection except for the charge to mobile-home park residents and owners in unincorporated areas of Ventura County. Supervisor Susan K. Lacey argued that some residents would be unable to afford the fee.

The board voted 4-1 for the fee, which must be approved in a final vote, scheduled in two weeks.

Mike Saliba, executive director of the Ventura County Taxpayers' Assn., objected to the package of increases, saying the board should first investigate the county's overhead costs.

"There is no break-out of how these fees are calculated," he said. "They've got the cart before the horse."

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