San Diego — By a vote of 4-0, the County Board of Supervisors instructed county staff to draw up an independent analysis of the Lilac Hills Ranch proposed development just north of Escondido along the I-15 corridor.
Supervisor Dianne Jacob made the motion to have county staff prepare the report.
The analysis will be completed by July 29 and be part of an August 2nd Board of Supervisors hearing. At that time the Supervisors will have two choices. Put the LHR Initiative on the November ballot or approve the community outright.
Supervisor Bill Horn was not allowed to vote on the project after the California Fair Practices Political Commission ruled his home, roughly three miles from the planned community, meant he had a conflict and could not vote.
Accretive Investments reacted to the vote with the following statement.
“We support the Board’s action and are confident the report will confirm what we’ve been saying about the benefits of this project. We are looking forward to giving San Diego voters a chance to support badly-needed housing in a well-planned, eco-friendly village.”
Supervisor Jacob noted that Lilac Hills Ranch will likely be the first of many developments to use the initiative process to try and have their community approved. Jacob said this is because of the state Supreme Court’s uncertainty over the Newhall case relating to Greenhouse Gas Emissions, and the fact that California is so unfriendly to developers.
Support for the project seems robust, as more than 110,000 signatures were gathered on the petition supporting Lilac Hills Ranch — far more than the 67,837 valid signatures needed to qualify the initiative for the ballot. Additionally, at the board of supervisors hearing, many more residents who live in the area of the proposed community spoke out in favor of the project. Indeed the tally of supporterts to detractors was 74-14. Opponents expressed concerns over traffic safety, fire response times and if the project fits within guidelines of the county general plan.
If approved, the project would be built over 10 years and would eventually include 903 single-family homes, 468 age-restricted senior homes, 164 condominiums, and 211 mixed-use units.
Chairman Ron Roberts noted that San Diego county is facing a critical housing shortage and the crisis is certainly impacting our business community. That was noted in a recent study released by the San Diego Chamber of Commerce. Roberts said it’s high time for all interested parties to begin to work together and fashion a sensible solution to this crisis.
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