Regional Housing News-4/10/2014
Elk Grove withdrawal delays conservation plan
Elk Grove’s pending withdrawal from a habitat conservation plan has further delayed a decades-old proposal to protect sensitive plants and wildlife in the county when developers build new projects, officials said this week.
The Elk Grove City Council is scheduled to vote tonight on a resolution that would remove the city from the South Sacramento Habitat Conservation Plan. Elk Grove officials say they plan to withdraw because the city no longer needs additional preservation land after a local planning agency rejected its bid to expand its boundaries to the south.
County officials are concerned that the delay may jeopardize a $750,000 federal grant. Read more...
Grand jury: El Dorado County improperly waived building fees
A mid-year El Dorado County grand jury report suggests the county’s Board of Supervisors has improperly waived fees for building permits on more than one occasion in recent years.
In studying the fees waived between 2009 and Oct. 3, 2013, the grand jury found three examples of permit fees waived with no justification in the county’s policy for doing so.
They included one for grading and asbestos dust mitigation when fees already paid were reimbursed, one for building a wheelchair access ramp for a homeowner whose teenage son was severely injured, and large-scale waivers of fees for property owners who lost structures in the 2007 Angora fire. Read more...
Complaint alleges American River flows too slow, warm in Sacramento area
The federal government’s operation of Folsom and Nimbus dams is harming fall-run Chinook salmon and steelhead in the American River, several environmental and fishing groups allege in a complaint filed this week with the state.
The groups are urging the State Water Resources Control Board to amend the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation’s permits to require colder and faster river flows from the two dams. The board has authority over water rights issued to the Bureau of Reclamation, as well as responsibility for protecting public trust resources, including fisheries and water quality. Read more...
Sacramento City Council OKs residential project to replace Sutter Memorial Hospital
A plan to replace Sutter Memorial Hospital in east Sacramento with a development of up to 120 homes was met with glowing reviews night by the Sacramento City Council, which unanimously approved the project after just 20 minutes of debate. Read more...
Campaign cost seen as deterrent to Sacramento County supervisor races
Sacramento County supervisors are paid about $100,000 a year, almost twice the salary of a Sacramento City Council member, and manage a $2 billion annual budget that is more than double the city’s budget.
Yet most years, City Council elections are considerably more competitive – and this year is no different. While 13 candidates are vying for four City Council seats, only four candidates are running for three seats on the Board of Supervisors.
Political consultants cite two factors for the low interest in Sacramento County supervisor races: the high cost of running a campaign and low public awareness of what county government does. Read more...