Medical moves

In this week’s newsletter: Help arrives for a troubled healthcare provider, DHS loses its city manager & more.


Welcome to Wednesday, friends.

If you’re a patient at any of the dozen-plus Borrego Health clinics in the valley, there was some good news for you last week: The board of trustees that governs the federally qualified health center identified a similarly aligned provider to assume control of those clinics.

Borrego Health filed for bankruptcy protection last fall —  two years after scores of state and federal agents executed search warrants at multiple clinics and offices — and subsequently began the search for an organization to take over. Last week it was announced that Palm Springs-based DAP Health would be that organization.

The move is pending final approval of a bankruptcy court and the Health Resources & Services Administration. In the meantime, there will be no disruption of services for the roughly 120,000 Borrego Health patients in Riverside and San Diego counties.

Setting the mood: Levitating” by Dua Lipa

Indio hopes to kickstart development

The Indio City Council voted last week to begin a program it hopes will encourage the development of commercial, industrial, and multi-family projects.

  • The Development Impact Fee (DIF) Deferral Policy Program, approved at the City Council’s most recent meeting, aims to reduce financial burdens for developers by deferring payment of fees for three years.
  • City staff said construction costs have increased along with interest rates, and staff believes the program will spur economic growth while keeping tenants’ rents down.
  • Eligible projects must meet criteria such as job creation, sales tax generation, and a minimum of 14 units per acre if it is a residential project.
  • Bottom line: Councilmember Elaine Holmes praised the program as being “innovative and business-friendly.”

DHS city manager resigns

Desert Hot Springs city manager Luke Rainey abruptly resigned last week after serving the city for more than 15 years and serving as city manager since 2021. The reason for his resignation has not been made public.

  • City Council members unanimously appointed deputy city manager, Doria Wilms, to serve as interim city manager.
  • Mayor Scott Matas expressed confidence in Wilms, saying, “As a lifelong resident of Desert Hot Springs, she brings a tremendous amount of institutional knowledge and passion, which is reflected in her decision-making and interactions with the community and stakeholders.”
  • Looking ahead: Matas confirmed the city is focusing on recruiting the next city manager to fill the vacancy. 

Rail on track in Palm Desert

The Palm Desert City Council took a huge step last week toward bringing a new rail station to the city as a part of the proposed 144-mile rail service between the Coachella Valley and Los Angeles.

  • The Council approved about $500,000 for a contractor to begin a rail station feasibility study, allowing the city to participate in Riverside County Transportation Commission’s Tier 2 environmental impact report.
  • The study will assess the existing land uses, transportation network, demographics, topography, economic conditions, and current public transportation in Palm Desert.
  • Looking ahead: The top locations for the new rail station appear to be near the Monterey or Cook freeway exits, according to the contractor’s proposal.


Enjoy an unforgettable experience on a private wind farm.

You’ve arrived in Palm Springs once you see the iconic wind turbines. Whether you take a self-driving tour or a guided golf cart tour, you will be taken on a journey to learn about wind energy, how they work and the history of the first wind farm. You can get up close to a modern wind turbine up to 400 feet high.

Click here for more information

In other news

Community members were invited to repaint the rainbow crosswalks near Cathedral City Hall over the weekend in preparation for the upcoming LGBTQ Days. 

Some of the highest ranked college softball teams in the country are playing an elite tournament in the desert starting tomorrow and ending Sunday. Find details here.

The local chapter of PFLAG has disbanded, but for good reason according to its leadership.


Wildflower 5K Trail Fun Run / Walk
Saturday | 7:30 a.m. | Randall Henderson Trail, Palm Desert
This family fun event is about experiencing nature at its best, with beautiful spring wildflowers and breathtaking views of the Santa Rosa Mountains. All ages are welcome. No dogs or strollers allowed. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m. ($35)

Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival 2023
This week | Riverside County Fairgrounds, Indio
If you haven’t made it out to the date festival yet, don’t worry — you still have until Sunday to experience all that the annual event has to offer. Visit for more details. 

Coachella City Council meeting
Tonight | 6 p.m. | City Hall Council Chamber / Zoom
Closed session begins at 5 p.m., and the regular meeting starts at 6 p.m. Read the meeting agenda here

Cathedral City City Council meeting
Tonight | 5:30 p.m. | City Council Chambers
A regular City Council meeting will be held at 5:30 p.m., with a study session at 3 p.m. Check here for the meeting agenda and for more details.

CVUSD Board Meeting
Thursday | 7 p.m. | Coachella Valley High School
The school board meets in closed session at 5:30 p.m. and regular session at 7 p.m. Look for the complete agenda here.

Rancho Mirage Certified Farmers Market
Friday | 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. | Community Park

every Friday, find fresh local produce, chef prepared foods, and artisan vendors at the community park off San Jacinto Drive. 

Musical: “On Your Feet!”
All weekend | McCallum Theatre, Palm Desert
“On Your Feet!” is the inspiring true story about heart, heritage and two people who believed in their talent and each other to become an international sensation: Gloria and Emilio Estefan. 

Teacher Recruitment Fair
Saturday | 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. | 87-225 Church St., Thermal
Head out to Thermal on Saturday morning for a teacher recruitment fair. For more details, visit the Coachella Valley Unified School District website

La Quinta Car Show
Saturday | 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. | La Quinta Community Park
Start your engines and get ready for the 16th annual La Quinta Hot Rod and Custom Car Show. Entertainment, food, drinks and a beer garden will be available at this family-friendly event, which is freeto attend.

Certified Farmers Market Palm Desert
Sunday | 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. | 72559 Hwy 111, Palm Desert
Head out to Palm Desert this weekend for this weekly farmers market, where you can find fresh produce and much more. 

Cocktail mixer honoring Bruce Fessier
March 1 | 5 p.m. | Willie’s Modern Fare, Rancho Mirage
Bruce Fessier, an award-winning writer-editor and event producer, will be honored at a special Amy’s Purpose mixer. ($35)

⌛ And finally …

The city of Coachella hosted a beam signing ceremony last week to mark the completion of the framing process of Fire House #79.

  • The fire station on 5th street, built in 1978, is being renovated and rehabilitated to add about 1,700 square feet to the facility to expand the bedroom area to allow for male and female firefighters to sleep separately. 
  • Mayor Steven Hernandez said the project is a month and a half ahead of schedule and noted that the project is part of a larger revitalization of downtown.
  • “There are new apartments coming down the street, we have $4.5 million to expand the library, small businesses are coming to town, the cool little 6th street has been reconstructed, and a new transit facility is coming,” the mayor said.

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