EHL responded to the media on sprawl development in San Diego.
The San Diego Union-Tribune covered the proposed Warner Ranch development in the Sand Diego backcountry (“Proposed housing project near Pala casino faces stiff opposition from tribe,” June 27, 2018). EHL has joined the Pala tribe in opposing this project.
Dan Silver, executive director of the Endangered Habitat’s League, says Warner Ranch is the worst of the big developments planned for the rural and semi-rural parts of the county, including Lilac Hills Ranch and Newland Sierra.
“The project would be the death knell of that part of the backcountry in my view over the long term,” Silver said. “It has no merit from a planning perspective.”
Silver said Warner Ranch is the “most remote in a series of remote general plan amendment” applications and “would sooner or later necessitate improvements on Highway 76 to widen that road. That would be hugely growth-inducing and would open up the whole Pauma Valley to sprawl.”
The Union-Tribune also wrote about the "bundling" of General Plan amendments by San Diego County in order to rush 10,000 sprawl housing units to approval before a citizens initiative might require votes of the people ("Provision allowing county to expedite housing projects draws ire," May 12, 2018).
Dan Silver, the executive director of the Endangered Habitats League, which has come out strongly against several of the North County developments, called the bundling strategy “shameless.”
He said each project is complicated and needs to undergo detailed and time-consuming review, first by the planning commission, which makes recommendations to the supervisors, and then by the supervisors themselves.
He called batching projects “unseemly but legal” and said it will limit public testimony and input.
“They will have to rush through these things,” Silver said. “The public process is going to get short shrift.”
The Union-Tribune again wrote about the effect of a growth management initiative on a host of General Plan amendments on August 5, 2018 ("Growth limiting initiative boosts projects"). Silver was quoted:
Dan Silver, chief executive officer of the Endangered Habitats League, which was a major financial backer of the Safeguard initiative, agreed.
“Clearly, the circulation precipitated this batching and bundling and all of the problems that creates,” Silver said.
All of the projects being considered this year would have come before the board sometime in the next couple years either way, he added.
“The developers are asking the county to rush these things forward before the public has a chance to speak,” he said. “The county could have said they would keep with their usual schedule and take its time.
“Instead of doing their job and serving the public interest, they listened to their developer clients.”