This year will be "one for the record books," according to Mayor Mike Leonard.


Leonard made the annual pilgrimage to the Hesperia Chamber of Commerce's July meeting to present the state of the city on Monday.


The mayor presented the city's video presentation -- a highlight film of the city's accomplishments in the 2010-2011 fiscal year -- to a room of about 100 chamber members and dignitaries at the Courtyard by Marriott hotel.


Despite the uncertain future of California's enterprise zone program, more than 64 businesses have submitted vouchers to take advantage of the tax credits made available by Hesperia's enterprise zone, according to the presentation.


The state's redevelopment agency program is similarly in the crosshairs of Sacramento legislators, but the program benefited a number of local businesses in the 2010-2011 fiscal year, according to Leonard. Among the businesses benefiting from the Hesperia RDA were Wood Grill Buffet, Pizza Factory and Courtyard by Marriott, he said, along with infrastructure projects like the Hesperia Branch Library and the city's new police station.


The fate of Hesperia's redevelopment agency will be decided at the Aug. 16 city council meeting, he said.


The city's economic development staff works to attract more new businesses to the city, with Jo-Ann Fabric & Craft Stores and Famous Footwear opening at the High Desert Gateway Shopping Center, the home of Hesperia's Super Target, later in 2011.


The city's graffiti abatement team cleaned up more than 7,000 cases of vandalism between July 2010 and June 2011. Crews cleaned up the graffiti, on average, two days after it first being reported. The program cost the city $300,000 for the year.


Leonard also defended the city's upcoming parcel tax proposal, which would help fund the Hesperia Fire District, which has seen its revenue shrivel with as property values have fallen since 2007.


"Emergencies don't decide to wait on good economies," said Leonard.


The council will vote on the language for the proposed sales tax at Tuesday's city council meeting.


Finally, Leonard said, the city will break ground on the long-awaited Ranchero Road Underpass project in August. The $27.2 million underpass will be completed approximately 24 months later, he said.


Beau Yarbrough can be reached at 760-956-7108 or at beau@hesperiastar.com. Follow us on Facebook at Facebook.com/Hesperia.Star.