Two growth control initiatives get green light

By From page A1 | July 28, 2014

Two of the three growth control initiatives circulated by the group called the 1-2-3 Volunteers have qualified to be on the ballot and are now headed to the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday for approval.

One initiative, better known as the “Green Petition,” is officially titled “Protect Rural Communities — Fix Community Region Line Flaws.” It was certified July 22 by the county Election Department as having enough valid signatures to qualify for the November ballot.

The initiative removes what it describes as inappropriate urban boundaries lines from established rural communities in order to prevent the Highway 50 corridor and other main connectors from becoming over-developed.

If approved by the voters, it would amend the 2004 General Plan and change the Community Region designations for the communities of Pollock Pines, Camino, Cedar Grove, Shingle Springs and the Green Valley Road corridor area of El Dorado Hills and Cameron Park.

On July 25, election officials certified a second initiative circulated by the same group of volunteers. Known as the “Yellow Initiative” it is titled “Reinstate the Original Measure Y.” According to proponents, it would restore Measure Y to its original purpose and force developers to pay for road improvements in order to prevent traffic gridlock with the Board of Supervisors prevented from overriding it on a 4 to 5 vote. The initiative would also prevent land changes that impact traffic levels based on hypothetical road improvements being built in the future.

A third initiative, the “Purple Petition,” is still being circulated and proponents say it may not appear until next year. Called “Keep Zoning As Is & Protect the County’s Resources,” the initiative directs the Board of Supervisors to look at land use changes based on compatibility rather than favoritism, in order to provide predictability and security to landowners.

Two other growth-related initiatives have already qualified for the November ballot. One is called “Control Growth to Fix Our Local Roads” and is sponsored by a commercial building association called Region Builders. If passed, it would extend Measure Y through 2025. The initiative would also require new single-family residential subdivision development projects of five or more parcels to not result in, or worsen, gridlock on Highway 50. However, certain roads and highways would be exempted. It also directs growth into existing Community Regions.

A second initiative that qualified is called “Fix Highway 50 Traffic First/Keep Us Rural.” The initiative largely holds the county to what it has already approved in the way of residential development. If passed, the initiative would require that two policies be added to the General Plan. One would prohibit the county from approving any single-family housing subdivisions of five or more parcels once traffic on Highway 50 reaches gridlock. The second would prohibit the county from changing land-use designations already in effect or from raising the density on property already designated residential.

At the meeting on Tuesday, the board will have three options: to immediately adopt the provisions of the two initiatives as code; to put the initiatives to a vote at the next election; or order report on the impact of the initiatives.

Previously the board ordered a report on all five petitions being circulated in the county. However, it is separate from any additional reports it may order at Tuesday’s meeting.

Contact Dawn Hodson at 530-344-5071 or [email protected] Follow @DHodsonMtDemo on Twitter.

Dawn Hodson

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