Letters to the Editor

Saratoga Estates support?

By From page A5 | September 13, 2017

EDITOR:

The new development under construction along the El Dorado County/Sacramento County border, just north of U.S. 50, is concerning. The only people who I have been able to determine approve and support this development are of course the developer and the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors.

This is disturbing. Why are elected officials not listening to their constituency? I have to ask: Is it something behind closed doors that the general public is not privy to?

While hosting a town hall meeting on July 25 Elliott Homes Vice President Price Walker indicated a significant amount of disdain toward the residents and El Dorado Hills Community Services District, stating, “CSD is dumb and their rules will not apply to my development” and “There is nothing stopping me from building in that area.”

During the meeting numerous residents voiced legitimate concerns about the development, as it has to be viewed in totality with the nearly concurrent and much larger Folsom Estates development (estimated 10,000 homes). This means a huge increase in traffic, but it also means more school-age children when El Dorado Hills schools are at or very near capacity. I fail to see how Oak Ridge High School can absorb any more students beyond what it has now.

When reviewing the final environmental impact report State Clearinghouse No. 2015032058, a very discernible pattern emerges; there is no support for the Saratoga Estates development outside of the El Dorado County government.

Why is that? I asked Mr. Hidahl, District 1 supervisor, and after sifting through his standard political statements why “it’s great,” it boils down to two things.

One, because more homes generate more taxes for the county (not El Dorado Hills, those taxes go to the county, so another whole separate discussion as to where and how those tax dollars are being used).

Two, to complete the road between Saratoga and Iron Point, connecting the surface street that runs parallel to Highway 50. What’s really disturbing about that is while, yes, the developer will front the money for the completion of the road, the county has to reimburse them. So despite angering the local residents, increasing traffic, putting more strain on our school system, wiping out yet another area of open space with trees and animals, we gain nothing for it as we have to pay for the main reason of allowing it to happen anyhow.

Further, when I questioned Mr. Hidahl as to how the Planning Commission would agree to this without first ensuring the local schools can handle the increase of students, he replied that the school board is separate and that there is nothing the commission can do about that.

I ask that Mr. Hidahl, along with representatives of the school board, CSD, Elliott Homes and El Dorado County Planning hold a town hall meeting to explain how this is going to better the residents of El Dorado Hills.

BOBBY BRITTON
El Dorado Hills

Letter to the Editor

Discussion | 2 comments

  • KimSeptember 21, 2017 - 6:52 pm

    I agree!

    Reply
  • Josh ThroneSeptember 23, 2017 - 12:31 pm

    The Buckeye Union School District had a nice new school in Blackstone to help ease elementary student overcrowding but decided to move their district Montessori from Cameron Park and filling the school with kids from outside the district. Why? Of course for the money and not the good of the community or those residents who are paying for this new school. Maybe they need to rethink things and allow el dorado hills children to utilize this great building...

    Reply

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