Opponents of a proposed $85 parcel tax spent an additional $2,579 in the final days of the Measure F campaign last fall, according to financial disclosure forms submitted to the Hesperia City Clerk's office this week.


The Hesperia Fire District, the government agency that pays for fire service within city limits, is primarily funded by property tax revenue, which has plummeted in recent years. In an effort to stave off cuts, the Hesperia City Council placed a $85 per parcel tax on the Nov. 8 ballot. If successful, Measure F would have more than made up for the fire district's budget shortfall.


Partisans spent nearly $30,000 advocating both for and against it in the weeks leading up to Election Day.


Hesperia Free Press Committee to Oppose Measure F Hesperia 2011 Fire Safety Tax Measure the political action committee run by Al Vogler, the husband of former mayor Rita Vogler spent a total of $8,153 in its campaign against Measure F. He spent an additional $1,126 on the effort to defeat the ballot measure between Oct. 23 and Election Day the reporting period covered in the most recent set of financial disclosure forms with most of it going to campaign signs and radio advertisements.


Mayor Russ Blewett, a fellow opponent of Measure F, spent a total of $5,717 during the campaign through his Russ Blewett for City Council 2010 campaign committee, including $1,453 in the closing days of the campaign. The money mostly went to radio ads and automated telephone calls.


Proponents of Measure F political action committee the Hesperia Citizens for Public Safety - Yes on Measure F, Sponsored by San Bernardino County Professional Firefighters closed the books on their committee on Oct. 23. During the course of their ultimately unsuccessful campaign for Measure F, they spent $14,864.


In the end, Measure F went down hard, getting only 1,376, or just under 20 percent, of the 7,145 votes cast, at a cost of $10.80 per vote. In contrast, opponents of the measure got a much better deal, spending $2.40 for each of the 5,769 votes (more than 80 percent of the total) in the election.


As a result of Measure F's failure, the city cut the equivalent of nine firefighter positions from the city's fire protection budge. The city down Fire Station 301 on 11th Avenue on Jan. 14. The closure of Hesperia's oldest fire station trimmed $752,000 off the fire district's $9.2 million budget in the current budget year and is expected to save the district $1.4 million in future years.