In the News
Letter From The President - Loving All Animals
From "The Scoop" - March 2014 Newsletter by Lindi Biggi
I want to honor someone who is truly an "animal hero" in our community, Dana Hobart. Dana supported our work at Loving All Animals from the time of its inception. Dana and his wife Vicki opened their hearts and home to foster a series of dogs for us, until they became what we lovingly refer to as "foster failures" when they adopted their last dog, a little white Terrier/Poodle named Lola. Lola is pictured here with the Hobarts and their other two rescue dogs. As Rancho Mirage mayor, Dana Hobart spearheaded the use of Whitewater Park for our Super Pet Adoption Festival the past 3 years, and arranged for financial support.
Did you know it costs California taxpayers an average of $426 for every animal that enters our public shelter system, whether or not it is adopted or euthanized? Our annual mega adoption event adopts out between 250 and 400 animals each year, already altered so they will not produce more homeless pets. Our Super Pet Adoption Festival not only saves the lives of these animals, but it saves the taxpayers a ton of money. My hat's off to you, Dana Hobart! - Lindi Biggi
Dana Hobart, Councilmember & Animal Advocate
Article by Janet McAfee - February 26, 2014, CV Weekly Magazine
Dana Hobart, Rancho Mirage City Councilmember and three-time mayor, is an avid animal lover and one of the Valley's biggest proponents for our shelter animals. After taking office 12 years ago, he elected to serve on the Coachella Valley Animal Campus Commission which oversees our Riverside County shelter in Thousand Palms. To encourage more adoptions of rescue animals, Dana created a program that reimburses the citizens of Rancho Mirage for the adoption fee when they adopt a cat or dog from the county shelter. He was also instrumental in the creation and funding of a Rescue Coordinator at the shelter through a public/private partnership when county layoffs eliminated this important life-saving position. Dana paved the way for his city to host Loving All Animals' Super Pet Adoption Festival.
Dana explains his affinity for these marvelous four legged creatures, "I've had dogs all my life. As a kid, I would walk up and down the aisles at the dog pound in Los Angeles and cry when I saw all the animals behind bars in kennels. Now, as an adult, I do the same thing when I walk through our local shelter. I always tell people that if they want a little more love in their life they should get a dog, and of course a rescue dog!"
Dana and his wife Vicki were the proud parents of two rescue dogs, Giaco and Rosie, when they embarked on a new endeavor three years ago to help homeless animals. They began fostering dogs for Loving All Animals rescue program, Mobile Mutts. The program was designed to get dogs out of the public shelters, socialize them in family foster homes, and feature them in public venues where they meet potential adopters. Fostering is usually a temporary situation, and the dog soon gets adopted by it's new family. One little Terrier/Poodle dog named Lola had other ideas.
Dana explained what happened when they fostered Lola, "When Loving All Animals contacted us about fostering another dog, Lola joined our two dogs who were living the good life in the Hobart home and yard. The next day we headed to a groomer to get her shined and polished to meet prospective owners. When the car pulled out to the street, Lola began to tremble and was scared stiff. I suppose she was thinking she was heading back to the animal shelter. Suddenly her shaking stopped, and we saw the dog was in an epileptic like seizure. We rushed her to the vet, but by the time we arrived she had pretty much revived. On the return trip home, Vicki said, 'You know that now we will never find a home for her. Nobody is going to want to adopt a dog with a seizure history'. Vicki was right of course."
The Hobart's two dogs, Giaco and Rosie seemed to know that something had shifted during Lola's trip to the vet. They were waiting for them to return and from that point on welcomed the newcomer as part of their pack and celebrating her return with a game of "chase a dog's tail". Without verbalizing it that day, both Hobarts knew that Lola was already "home".
We know how dogs work miracles in the lives of their humans. Sometimes it seems they also work miracles to orchestrate their own adoption, arranging the timing of events to secure the perfect home. Dana explains how he believed this happened with Lola, "We underestimated this dog's capacity to understand her environment and her circumstances. She has never had another seizure after that first one, and the vet could find no medical condition that caused it. We concluded the little rascal duped us with a seizure. She saw the house, playmates, and yard and simply decided this would be her forever home one way or another".
Vicki adds her thoughts about Lola's adoption, "There was no way we were going to adopt a third dog. We wanted to keep fostering and saving more lives. Then right after coming to us, Lola had a seizure, but the vet explained he did not know the cause and she did not require medication. We were worried this incident would reduce her chances of adoption, and were concerned she needed owners who could provide good vet care. So we adopted her! She earned her way into our lives, but interestingly she hasn't had a seizure since. She is a wonderful little dog, and loves the other two".
The Hobarts became part of a group we lovingly call "foster failures". About 50 percent of our foster families fall in love with their temporary residents and end up adopting them. Dana encourages other animal lovers to consider fostering, "If you already have one dog, taking in another is not difficult at all. The effort is minimal considering you are already feeding one and taking him for walks. You can make a difference and save lives by becoming a foster parent."
The Coachella Valley animals are lucky to have this elected official as their advocate, both in his professional and personal life. There is an animal waiting for you now at the local shelter who will work his way into your heart. Contact the county shelter, the Coachella Valley Animal Campus in Thousand Palms at (760) 343-3644, or view their adoptable dogs online at www.rcdas.org. If you're not quite ready to adopt, consider fostering a dog sponsored by Loving All Animals, and contact them at (760) 834-7000. The Hobarts believe that when it comes to animals, "Love will find a way!"
Question: Do You Think Rancho Mirage should have an Observatory/Planetarium?
From The Desk of Dana Hobart - February 20, 2014
Dear Rancho Mirage Residents:
Since first elected in 2002, I have tried to be creative and imaginative in the ideas I have proposed for our city. If they are not shot down immediately, I work diligently to secure staff and council approval. As I see it, my job is to do what I can to enhance our quality of life and to improve property values, all under the umbrella of a safe and secure city.
Below I am asking you to evaluate a new idea I would like to initiate. I am personally very excited about it. The City Manager and I have been working on it more than 6-months. It is time to get your input.
Six or eight months ago I served as a "question asker" at a public forum of about 8-speakers: My final question was: "If you could think of something that would be great for Rancho Mirage and nobody has already proposed it, what would it be?"
A long-time resident (Marilyn Bauer) said, somewhat under her breath, "an Observatory/Planetarium." I'm not sure that many heard her comment, but I had. It was not discussed as that was the end of the forum. I continued to reflect on her suggestion, and about two months later introduced the subject to City Manager, Randy Bynder. He liked the idea, as well.
He and I scheduled a meeting with the Director of the Palomar Observatory in the Cleveland National Forest. Our meeting with him led us to believe that the cost of an Observatory/Planetarium in Rancho Mirage was well within our budget. Our tentative review of the cost factor leads us to the same conclusion. The land that seems best suited for it is the west end of the Rancho Mirage Library property. Which we already own, thanks to Mr. and Mrs. Annenberg.
Cost will be relative to the size of the telescope, the building, whether it is a domed or sliding-roof building, and a series of other things. But we do have reserves that could easily cover the cost.
My question to you is: Do you think we should pursue further the idea of bringing an Observatory/Planetarium to our City? Do you believe the children, adults, and sky-watchers of our community would benefit from such a project assuming cost, adequate space and the other issues fall into place?
I have to admit, I am personally excited about this idea as there is no Observatory/Planetarium within many hours and miles of Rancho Mirage. I believe this could be another major achievement of our great City.
If you like the idea, one way to show it is to vote for the ExperienceUCanTrust team when you receive your ballots on or about March 11th.
I urge you to send me your comments and feedback on whether we should explore further an Observatory/Planetarium for our City.
During my past terms I initiated and pursued to success several ideas which I consider to be among the top rung of my achievements:
Eliminated the overhead electric lines throughout the Tamarisk, Magnesia Falls Cove and other communities. This increased property values while eliminating blight that kept us from enjoying our spectacular views.
Reversed and rescinded the county's plan to eventually extend our city borders by 3,000 acres into our "sphere of influence" north of I-10, adjacent to Thousand Palms. That would have added 40,000 people to our population and imposed an incredible financial burden on the south side (our side). It is my view that we are doing just fine as a small oasis in the desert.
Turning our Section 19 into the commercial engine that will assure our economic stability for decades to come. (Sec. 19 is the 260 acres south of the Casino, east side of Bob Hope.) This is a program I initiated in 2004 and is still in progress.
Persuaded the Agua Caliente Tribe to annex their Casino and Hotel into the city, currently resulting in over $400,000 per year flowing to the city. I testified in Sacramento, met with the Governor's legal consultants and rallied residents. In the end the Tribe and the City reached an amicable resolution from which everyone benefits.
Eliminated "pension spiking" for Rancho Mirage employees and other needed employment reforms.
Co-founded with Ron Meepos the Rancho Mirage City Golf Club, offering residents great courses at reasonable prices.
Co-founded with Ron Meepos the Speakers Series.
Initiated the concept of Mayor rotation, thus ending the divisive nature of electing the mayor by a council majority. I wrote the ballot measure that the voters overwhelmingly approved.
- As an attorney I work on dozens upon dozens of legal matters with our City Attorney, to help ensure that our agreements are sound and that loopholes do not exist.
Focus on Eisenhower Medical Center
From the Experience You Can Trust Team - February 14, 2014
We congratulate Eisenhower Hospital for becoming an accredited teaching hospital.
This fall we welcomed the first physician residents in internal medicine and family medicine to Eisenhower. Already these doctors are telling Supporters of Eisenhower that they love our great quality of life and hope to stay here to practice in our community.
Our pledge to you is that we will do whatever it takes to keep Eisenhower a great hospital.
Why we solidly support the Eisenhower Medical Center
There is no institution in the city more vital to our Rancho Mirage population than the Eisenhower Medical Center. It is where each of us turns in desperate times.
- There were 18,000 inpatient Admissions
- There were 14,800 surgical procedures
- There were 79,600 inpatient days
- There were 264,400 outpatient visits (including ER visits)
- There were 144,400 community education attendees
- There were 119,200 volunteer/auxiliary hours*
China. Jordan. Who knows what's next? But whoever and whenever, Rancho Mirage stands ready to provide Sunnylands' guests our wonderful desert hospitality.
Sneak Peek at the New Rancho Mirage Ritz Carlton
From the Experience You Can Trust team" - February 5, 2014
As the finishing touches are being added to what will be the only FIVE-STAR
hotel in the valley, the owners are giving us a peek at what to expect.
Despite the long wait the vision we see tells us that the wait will be well worth it. There is but one "RITZ" - and it is truly in the tradition of Ritz elegance and perfectly poised in the hills of Rancho Mirage.
Sneek Peek at the Ritz Carlton