Miramar Ranch North Planning Committee (MRNPC)

Administration News

We welcome our newly elected committee member, Robert Gilman. We appreciate your commitment to our community and the volunteering of your time.

Urban Forest Management Plan

San Diego Children and Nature Network representatives, Judie Lincer and Danielle Nisan, made a presentation about the San Diego’s Trees and Urban Forestry Program. With a $75,000 grant from the CA Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE), the city is developing an Urban Forest Management Plan to improve San Diego’s urban forest.

The plan will include planting trees, maintenance, program management, financing, and liability reduction. The first step is to invite citizens to provide input. If you would like to do so, please visit the survey link at [www.surveymonkey.com/s/CXS5KXC].

AT&T Wireless Facility

At our March meeting the MRNPC was asked to make an advisory recommendation to the city on the AT&T application request for a Wireless Communication Facility (WCF) at the water tank above East Bluff Cove in StoneBridge Estates. It would consist of 12 antennas on two 35-foot tall faux trees, an emergency generator, and an equipment enclosure. In March the MRNPC voted 11-0 to recommend the project application.

In late May the San Diego Planning Commission heard opposing arguments from residents who live near the water tank and agreed to continue the item until June 19. Three major issues were identified: notification, neighborhood impact, and site selection. The four WCF sites under consideration are: the new Sycamore Canyon Park; an SDG&E tower or nearby homeowners association land south of Deprise Cove and west of Almond Orchard Lane; a Poway business park near Kirkham Way and Stowe Drive; and the water tank site. All locations produce positive and negative issues for the applicant and the residents impacted.

At the June MRNPC meeting many residents impacted—who live on East Bluff Cove, Almond Orchard Lane, Deprise Cove, and in the StoneBridge area—voiced concerns regarding the project application process and the site locations.

The MRNPC made two attempted motions: to rescind the March vote concerning the WFC due to objections from residents and concern for lack of notification and review (vote: 6-2-1); and to recommend denial of the project as presented (vote: 4-2-3). As seen by the votes, a simple majority rule would have passed both motions. However, they both failed due to a lack of majority of seated members.

(The current rule—600-24 bylaws—to determine if a motion carries is a “majority of seated members” to approve or deny. In June the MRNPC had 14 seated members—a majority of seated members is eight. This has been an issue in Community Planning Groups and the 600-24 bylaws are pending an amendment to accept a “simple majority” to pass a motion.)

Hence, the project approval from the March meeting stands. The June draft minutes will document the attempted motions and, as of press time, I planned to attend the Planning Commission hearing to report on the attempted motions if needed.

It is not unusual for community residents to become engaged with land use planning when their attention is drawn by a particular issue, such as the AT&T WCF. I encourage residents to continue to be engaged and participate in future community planning issues and projects.

MRN 20th Anniversary

The Miramar Ranch North (MRN) community turned 20 years old in June. The first house closed escrow on June 24, 1994. The MRNPC recognized this milestone with a proclamation presented by Councilmember Mark Kersey and a reception before our June meeting.

Former MRNPC chairs—Wes Danskin, Claudia Tedford, Tracy Reed, Bill Bernard, and Peggy Shirey—were in attendance, as well as community leaders: Bob Ilko, SRCA president; Wally Wulfeck, SRPG chair; Tiffany Vinson, City Council representative; and Colonel Bob Dingeman, who served on the MRNPC from 2002–2003 and on the SRPG for 22 years, from 1980–2002. Thank you to all of the guests, past and present MRNPC members, and SRCA members for working together to build a strong community.

The SRCA and MRNPC plan to host a 5K Fun Run that would start at Fire Station 37 and end at Spring Canyon Park, pending a successful grant application with the county. Stay tuned for more news about this potential MRN event.

Transmission Line Project

I attended a June SDG&E open house for the transmission line project scheduled to start in June 2016. Transmission line Segment A of this project is in StoneBridge Estates. The proposed project includes the replacement or relocation of existing power lines. The current wood frames are being replaced with single taller metal poles, the same height as the current metal frames. Residents who live near the transmission lines will receive notifications from SDG&E, and project representatives plan to make presentations to both Scripps Ranch planning groups.

MRNPC Meetings

The MRNPC meets eight times during the year on the first Tuesday of each month at 7 pm. We do not meet in January, April, July, and October. Meetings are at the SRCA Community Center on Cypress Canyon Road. All meetings are open to the public. If you have questions, email me at [[email protected]]. Also visit [www.scrippsranch.org/mrnpc].

Lorayne Burley, MRNPC Chair

Scripps Ranch Planning Group (SRPG)

Fire Safety

At our meeting on Thursday, June 5, we were fortunate to hear from James Magill, chief of the fire department at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar (MCAS). Chief Magill described his agency’s involvement with the May fires and the interagency agreements that provide mutual aid and cooperation among the fire departments and agencies in the county.

On May 14 the Miramar Fire Department, San Diego Fire-Rescue Department, and Poway Fire Department all responded to a fire in a canyon between Scripps Ranch Boulevard and Canyon Lake Drive and quickly controlled it. During that week his department responded to fires in San Marcos, Carlsbad, and Camp Pendleton. We are grateful for the quick response and for the great cooperation that protected our community. Thank you, Chief Magill, and thanks to your department.

The SRPG also heard a presentation from Sandy Wetzel-Smith and me about the overgrown brush in many areas of our community but particularly on Pomerado Road. We established a subcommittee to assess the situation and options for action.

We have already had one fire scare this year and its only July. Please maintain a 100-foot perimeter around your home and avoid any activities that might spark a blaze. The fire danger is likely to be very high at least through the fall. We all remember the devastation of previous fires.

Wireless Facilities

At our June meeting the SRPG rescinded its earlier March approval of the proposed cell towers near the Sycamore Estates water tank in StoneBridge Estates and instead voted to recommend denial of the application. On May 29 the San Diego Planning Commission continued this item so that both planning groups could re-hear the proposal after neighbors’ objections to the AT&T Wireless Communication Facility proposal to install additional antennae. The Planning Commission addressed this proposal again at its June 19 meeting, but results were not available at press time.

Verizon Cell Tower Relocation

Kyle Albers, of Brian Cook and Associates representing Verizon, briefly described a plan to relocate and expand an existing cell tower on Chabad property. Several residents and the Crown Pointe homeowners association (HOA) objected to the new location, and noted the location is the subject of a prior agreement between Chabad and the HOA. Since no package from the city has been received by the SRPG, the item was continued.

Stonebridge Pkwy. Speed Limit

At our June meeting the SRPG voted to retain—rather than lower—the current 35 mph speed limit along Stonebridge Parkway between Old Creek Road and Cobble Creek Lane. It was based on input from neighbors and the homeowners association. Residents noted that there are very few speed limit signs along Stonebridge Parkway, so we have urged that speed limit signs be posted along this segment.

Carroll Canyon Project

At our subcommittee meeting on May 28, Colton Sudberry of Sudberry Properties described the plans for the proposed commercial center to new SRPG members. His presentation was substantially the same as previous descriptions. He stated there were no tenant agreements with major big-box retailers and that he could not confirm or deny if Walmart, Target, or any retailer was a prospective tenant.

Questions from the audience concerned traffic, freeway access, public safety for evacuation, and effects on local businesses. Several people who identified themselves as Ranch residents said they were strongly opposed to the change in the Community Plan with subsequent rezone to commercial retail because of: the potential loss of professional jobs; and the desire to maintain consistency with 35 years of the Scripps Ranch residential community concept.

Jenny Marshall, a Scripps Ranch resident representing Save Our Scripps Ranch (SOSRanch), gave a PowerPoint presentation describing her organization’s objections to the proposed commercial center.

There is no change in status—we still are waiting for the final Environmental Impact Report. When complete, the SRPG will vote on a recommendation to the City Council. There will be opportunities for public comment at the SRPG meeting, as well as the Planning Commission and City Council hearings. Please visit [www.scrippsranch.org] to keep up with events that affect our community.

Jerome’s Furniture Changes

Jerome’s plans to upgrade the exterior design and signage for its store on Treena Street. We thank Mark Navarra of Jerome’s and Bill Hofman of Hofman Planning for sharing their plans with us. We also greatly appreciate Jerome’s support of the SRCA Community Fair in May.

Next Meeting

The SRPG meets the first Thursday of each month at 7 pm at the Scripps Ranch Library. We will not meet in July due to the holiday. Please attend our meeting on Thursday, Aug. 7. For questions, email me at [[email protected]].

Wally Wulfeck, SRPG Chair