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By Pat Doody
staff writer 

Council pledges support for Honor Flight

City Council Update


March 2, 2024

Vietnam veteran Steve Miles and American Legion Post 221 Commander Lynn Eckert attended the Feb. 20 City Council meeting with a request that the City of Tehachapi approve one $1,500 sponsorship for a veteran to make an Honor Flight trip.

Miles and Eckert related stories of their time in Vietnam and a reception on their return where they were afraid to let people know they had served. By the end of their presentation, the pair, as well as the council members and the audience, were in tears. City Manager Greg Garrett proposed that the City Council approve not one but five sponsorships, as well as the funds to sponsor five guardians. The Council unanimously approved the measure.

A moment of silent prayer was also observed for the passing of Will Viner, owner of the Hitching Post Theaters, who had passed away suddenly a few days prior to the meeting.

The City Council re-approved a tract map for a 5.1 acre tract of 18 single-family homes to be located on the north side of Pinon Street, just east of Fig Drive. The development was originally approved in 2006 and is one of the oldest subdivisions on the city's records. Development Services Director Jay Schlosser said that the current property owner, MTN VIEW INVESTMENTS – Tehachapi LLC will be placing a deposit in escrow with the city to be held until planned improvements are completed. The tract map had been reviewed to ensure that it was still in compliance with the Subdivision Map Act and city zoning ordinances.

Assistant City Manager Corey Costelloe reminded the Council that the new neighborhood curbside organic waste pick up service is to begin July 1. A third container will be delivered to all residents prior to that date. Costelloe presented the proposed new rate structure for residential service that includes a three cart collection system with trash and organics picked up weekly and recyclables picked up every other week. The tentative residential rate increase for the three barrel system would be $11.23 per month, bringing the monthly total to $33.91. Costelloe said that the new barrel will carry illustrations of what is to go in them. The city plans to hold workshops to answer any questions residents of the city may have prior to July 1.

Costelloe also reported to the Council that AT&T has asked the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to remove them as the "Carrier of Last Resort" (COLR) for the Greater Tehachapi Area. A COLR must provide "Plain Old Telephone Service" (POTS) to businesses and residences within its service area. This includes voice communication during power outages or just a basic form of communication when more advanced options are unavailable, unreliable or disrupted.


5.1 acre tract of 18 single-family homes to be located on the north side of Pinon Street, just east of Fig Drive.

Costelloe requested the City Council to join with the other local communities in opposing AT&T's request to the CPUC stating that, if the request is approved, AT&T could cancel service to its POTS customers in as soon as six months. It would also negatively impact rural customers and could limit reliable access to 911 dispatch service, fire alarms and security alarms in the City of Tehachapi.

Although AT&T has been trying for several years to upgrade their cellular technology within the city, there has not been a new tower built to date although, according to Costelloe, one is expected to be built at Tehachapi Municipal Airport this year. Costelloe reminded everyone that cellular service alone is less reliable for critical services and can be impacted by power outages, cyber attacks and other emergencies.

The City Council approved joining the surrounding communities in opposing AT&T's request to abandon their land lines until a new POTS service provider can be identified by the CPUC.

The Tehachapi City Council meets on the first and third Monday of the month at 6 p.m. They are currently meeting at the Police Department Community Room, 220 W. C St.


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