Rossmoorgate: RCSD seeks unnecessary powers

Joyce Bloom

The Rossmoor Community Services District Board under the management of Henry Taboada is asking LAFCO for an expansion of their powers.  To this end they are using tactics that are designed to make you believe that what they are asking for is necessary. They use scare tactics like supposed annexation by Los Alamitos (not going to happen), insufficient police presence (we have the O.C. Sheriff and the Highway Patrol in here).

They tried this before with their expensive cityhood drive ($100,000), which failed. Now they have hired an attorney at $275 per hour to shepherd their petition to LAFCO to obtain police powers and animal control. Not necessary! And more to the point, I think Rossmoor people should be skeptical of anything this board wants to do.

If you lived in Rossmoor before 1986 you will remember that first impression of the glorious trees that we had. Silver Maples on Montecito, Sycamores on Martha Ann (still the most beautiful display of greenery in Rossmoor) Mulberries on Inverness, plus other varieties planted in an orderly fashion.

By orderly I mean the same variety on the same street, like in Beverly Hills or Westwood and other upscale neighborhoods.

The residents of Rossmoor were concerned about their trees and put pressure on the county to not remove them, to care for them and to aesthetically trim them. When the Rossmoor Community Services District was formed on Nov. 4, 1986 one of the powers that the citizens of Rossmoor voted to give the new RCSD was the aesthetic trimming of parkway trees. Well guess what?

On June 6, 1988, the RCSD asked the residents of Rossmoor to vote on an expansion of their powers” to include maintenance of Parkway Trees which includes, but is not limited to, aesthetic trimming.” Now I ask you: When was the last time any tree was aesthetically trimmed in Rossmoor?

Since the RCSD took over the care of trees, there has been no aesthetic tree trimming in Rossmoor. A walk in Rossmoor reveals that the trimming now is of the kind that requires no skill.  Branches are lopped off so that some trees have only two branches remaining and the natural shape of the trees is ignored. Also there is a kind of mongrelization of the kind of trees being planted.

Whereas, prior to the June 6, 1988 expansion of their tree care, the trees were tall, and majestic, some close to 40 feet. Now the RCSD is planting trees that are more like bushes.

What is the moral of this story? Simply put, if you give the RCSD an expansion of their powers you might not get what you think you voted for.

Joyce Bloom is a longtime Rossmoor resident.