by Bill Ruh
CVAR Director of Government Affairs
Physical Rehabilitation Network announced their newest physical and hand therapy clinic to open under the California Rehabilitation and Sports Therapy name. The West Covina clinic, as it will be known, is located at 1632 Puente Ave., Baldwin Park, only a half mile away from Baldwin Park Kaiser Hospital and four miles from City of Industry Kaiser Medical Center. The location will include California Hand Therapy which is dedicated to the skilled treatment of upper extremities.
The Baldwin Park located facility will feature a variety of physical therapy services including orthopedic rehabilitation, injury prevention programs, balance and vestibular training, and worker’s compensation services. The hand therapy program will include comprehensive evaluations, cutting-edge equipment, manual therapy and custom splinting by an experience, certified hand therapist.
A new approach to water rates is expected to be implemented in Chino Hills this summer to ensure financial viability of the city’s water system. This rate structure is commonly known as a budget based or allocation based rate structure. The cities of Chino Hills and Chino, as well as many other cities in California, are also implementing the new rate structures in response to a State of California order on water conservation. Under the new structure, tier one is determined as the “indoor budget” based on the state’s determination that a water-efficient household of four uses 55 gallons per person per day for a total of 220 gallons for the household. Tier two is determined as the “outdoor budget” and assumes that one-third of the property is landscaped. More water is allocated during hot months and less during cooler months. Tier three is considered high water use and residents will pay a higher cost. The current structure is a fixed monthly service charge based on meter size and water usage increasing in price over three tiers. Chino Hills residents can expect to see an 8 percent increase this July if the city council approves the rates and a majority of property owners do not submit a “no” ballot to the city under a 1996 voter-approved Prop. 218 election process. The city would have the authority to increase the rate up to 8 percent each year for the following four years. The increase is not automatic. City staff reviews conditions such as fixed costs, maintenance and replacement costs, and water purchase costs each year to determine if the increase is needed. Water rate studies are typically undertaken every five years. The last five-year plan in Chino Hills included authorization for 10 percent increases per year. Under the Prop. 218 election process, property owners receive a protest ballot in the mail. If a majority does not return protest ballots to the city, the rates would be approved A notice to proceed with a Prop. 218 election is expected to be heard by the Chino Hills city council in February. The City of Chino is also moving towards a budget-based system. Both cities hired Raftelis Financial Consultants to conduct their respective water rate studies.
Metro staff recommended that the Claremont Metrolink/Gold Line Station remain open. There had been some questions regarding the future of the station as Metro moves forward with construction on the next phase of the Foothill Gold Line. The Metro Boardmembers at the meeting unanimously expressed their support for keeping the Claremont station. Given constraints within the rail right-of-way, Foothill Gold Line phase 2B construction currently calls for the reconstruction of the Claremont station. With three Metrolink stations within a couple miles and a $279 million funding shortfall on the $1.5 billion Gold Line project, in September 2017 the Metro board requested a study looking at the costs and benefits of not rebuilding the station. In any case, Claremont would have a Gold Line light rail station – only the future of the Metrolink commuter rail station was in question.
Among its findings of the Claremont Station were:
The Claremont station’s current ridership is 406 riders on an average weekday. This is forecast to increase to 482 daily boardings by 2025.
Eliminating the Claremont station would result in essentially “no travel time saved and negligible impacts to Metrolink operations” due to single-track constraints. The only time savings anticipated would be for early morning and late night trains, which would save approximately 2-3 minutes of travel time.
For Gold Line phase 2B construction, eliminating the Claremont station would save five months and approximately $40 million.