New report says Beverly Hills developer has ‘not provided the various economic, traffic and related reports upon which its initiative is based’
ESCONDIDO - The City of Escondido has released a revealing 36-page report that says a proposed housing development would:
“We now can refer voters to an objective, credible source confirming what we suspected,” said Mike Slater, President of the Escondido Country Club Homeowners Organization (ECCHO). “This report lays blame on Schlesinger for blighting our neighborhood, and it highlights what we’ve said all along. This is a massive development that would add too much traffic to our roads and too many students to our schools. It’s also being proposed by someone who uses chicken manure to make a point.
“There’s no room in Escondido for someone like Michael Schlesinger. He has not produced a single study, including a financial analysis or traffic impact study, to support any of his claims. He can’t be trusted and this report confirms that.”
The “City of Escondido Report On The Initiative Measure to Adopt ‘The Lakes Specific Plan’” was prepared by city staff in response to the elaborate political campaign orchestrated by Schlesinger, whose Stuck in the Rough LLC (SITR) owns the 110-acre Escondido Golf Course off El Norte Parkway.
The report will be heard at this Wednesday’s City Council meeting (201 N Broadway) at 4:30PM. It notes that Schlesinger destroyed the golf course and sued dozens of homeowners in his ongoing battle with residents and the City to build 430 new homes.
“SITR paid a firm to spread chicken manure over many of the abandoned fairways situated closest to the residential home sites existing along the periphery of the golf course. SITR did that even though it no longer irrigates or maintains the golf course,” the report says.
It adds: “On April 14, 2014, the County’s Air Pollution Control District cited SITR for creating a public nuisance. The citation was issued after inspectors determined that the chicken excrement created a Level 5 odor, which represents the worst rating under the County’s ‘smell-scale.’ As explained by the inspector for the Air Pollution Control District, ‘Level 5 is bad. Level 5 will just about make you gag.’ According to the County, SITR could face fines of $10,000 a day for dumping chicken excrement on a number of abandoned fairways.”
While the city’s report acknowledges that Schlesinger’s project would generate property tax revenues, such revenues “would be offset by maintenance and operations costs for City facilities and services to serve the new residents, including police and fire service, road maintenance, library, parks and open space.”
The report pays substantial attention to the land-use issues at play and lists numerous reasons why the City refutes SITR positions as they relate to converting the property into a housing development.
“The City’s General Plan originally designated the property for golf- course/open-space use and most recently designated it as ‘urbanized,’ reflecting the fully developed condition of the area. At no time has it been designated as a ‘revitalization’ area,” the report says. “In addition to the City’s retention of full discretionary land-use authority over any proposed redevelopment of the property, any such development would be subject to full environmental review under the California Environmental Quality Act.”
The report also notes: “The initiative proponents have not provided the various economic, traffic and related reports upon which its initiative is based.”
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