Patrolling the water on Lake Elsinore won’t cost the city as much as expected this year after the Riverside County Board of Supervisors agreed Tuesday to help pay the tab.
At the request of Supervisor Bob Buster, the board agreed to give the city $50,000 in Community Improvement Designation funding for lake patrol. The funding is set aside for use by the supervisors for special projects in their districts.
According to James Riley, director of administrative services for Lake Elsinore, the amount budgeted by the city for the patrol this year was $165,360, so the county’s contribution knocks Lake Elsinore’s share down to $115,360.
Lake Elsinore Mayor Brian Tisdale said he and former City Manager Bob Brady had been meeting with Buster and his chief of staff, David Stahovich, on a regular basis to discuss concerns impacting the city and county.
“This was one of the issues that we worked on,” Tisdale said. “We will continue to meet. Supervisor Buster has been proactive and listening to the concerns of the city and (is) helping us to address the issues that impact the city and county.”
Lake Elsinore and the county share interest in the lake: Lakeland Village to the west is county area; on the water’s northern, southern and eastern shores is Lake Elsinore.
Buster said the lake is an important county asset and working with Tisdale has been a good experience.
"He has a good sense of what's important," Buster said.
Regular lake patrol begins this month and runs through mid September to coincide with boating season. This year officials hope business on the water will be busier than usual with the scheduled reopening of the city’s boat launch this summer ( to read that story).
Tisdale said lake patrol consists of sworn deputies from the sheriff’s department hired to provide law enforcement services. To keep costs down, the mayor explained that Captain Dave Fontneau of the Lake Elsinore Sheriff’s Station uses reserve deputies whenever possible. The volunteer Lake Elsinore Marine Search & Rescue is also called upon when needed.
The supervisor added that the willingness by the sheriff's department last year to drop the rate it charges for lake patrol is an example of all parties working together.
Patrol boats are scheduled Friday, Saturday and Sundays, and on major holidays, during boating season.