Council OKs Mills Act for area residence

ESCONDIDO — The City Council approved a homeowner’s request to list their residence on the city’s local register and enter into a Mills Act contract on Wednesday.

The Mills Act is an incentive program for the restoration and preservation of qualified historic buildings by property owners.

Escondido’s newest addition, located at 423 Ivy St., was built in 1923 and soon purchased by Bernard and Mary Carroll. Their son, Bernard G. Carroll Jr., became an army colonel and created the first eternal flame marking president John F. Kennedy’s grave at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C.

According to his obituary in the L.A. Times from 2002, Carroll had only 48 hours after Kennedy’s assassination to build the flame.

His former home, meanwhile, is about 900 square feet and the new owner submitted the application to register the home. Under the city and Historical Preservation Committee’s guidelines, the home was more than qualified to be placed on the registry.

The Mills Act runs for 10 years after the initial acceptance and is automatically renewed each year thereafter unless the owner sends written authorization to end the contract.

As part of the contract, however, property owners receive property tax relief for restoring and maintaining their buildings.

Councilman Ed Gallo applauded the move and said it’s important for individuals with historic buildings wanting to maintain their property. As for the home, he called it “a classic.”

In other council news —

  • The council approved a short-term rent increase application submitted by Greencrest Mobilehome Park.

The new rents will increase by $2.76 per month.

According to a representative from Greencrest, a meeting for residents took place on Oct. 18 with no objections to the rent increase.

  • The council also passed a new ordinance 3-1 increasing their compensation from $1,725.97 to $1,898.57 per month. Councilwoman Olga Diaz dissented, while councilman John Masson abstained since his firm was hired by Mayor Sam Abed for services unrelated to the city.
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