President’s Report

Unsightly Mega Pole

Where did the StoneBridge “mega pole” come from? SDG&E installed a 160-foot-tall electric transmission tower on the northwest corner of Stonecroft Terrace and Stonebridge Parkway as part of the Sycamore Transmission Line project. In the plans SDG&E showed there would be a 100-foot-tall pole, but, at the last minute, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) changed the entire project to underground the transmission line. So a larger pole was needed to transition from overhead to underground at that location.

StoneBridge residents are reasonably upset about the change and the sight of a 160-foot-tall tower perched on top of a hill. A group of residents asked for a meeting with SDG&E, which I attended.

As SRCA president I offered our organization’s assistance and guidance to evaluate how to change the situation. It is our understanding that residents in Chino Hills, CA, were successful in getting eight miles of overhead transmission lines placed underground. Residents are looking into how that was accomplished and other mitigation measures such as planting trees to reduce the visual impacts.

More “Mega Poles”?

A second SDG&E/CPUC issue that is being resolved is how to cross the Interstate 15 bridge at Miramar/Pomerado roads with the transmission line. Throughout the environmental process and during construction, Caltrans was agreeable to placing the transmission line through the bridge as opposed to overhead.

To go overhead there would have to be two 200-foot-tall “mega poles”—one on each side of the bridge—just to span I-15. We believe that it will be a flight operations risk for aircraft and helicopters, not to mention hugely out of place.

The SRCA is in communication with SDG&E and Caltrans. SDG&E submitted a permit to Caltrans to run the transmission line through the bridge supports. In speaking with Caltrans, they are evaluating the permit and may recommend the transmission line go underneath I-15 via tunneling. Caltrans is not in favor of overhead lines at this time.

The SRCA established an email address specifically for traffic concerns in Scripps Ranch. If you see something wrong or have a question or a solution, please email us at [email protected] To get emails from the SRCA regarding this type of community news, subscribe at

Turning Over a New Tree

The SRCA has made changes to its Tree Lighting Ceremony (see article at right for details). We replaced the misshaped tree with a 48” box Afghan pine that can be formed. The branches on our old tree were broken by kids climbing on it.

The replacement will be a legacy tree for the next 50+ years. Children will remember when the tree was planted and will return over the years to see it mature. The SRCA also installed a long, concrete bench that has double-sided seats.

As we approach the end of 2017 the SRCA Membership Drive 2018 is almost here. We have worked hard all year—every day and every night—trying to improve the quality of life for you. Our theme is “Our Priority is Scripps Ranch.”

The SRCA has provided community leadership, guidance, and support. We hosted many diverse presentations, programs, and events in 2017 and that will continue in 2018. Our Neighborhood Watch program is the largest and most effective one in the county. We offer assistance to those 50 plus and residents interested in sustainable living.

The SRCA Schools Committee is one that the school district used to create similar organizations in school cluster areas. The SRCA purchased bleed control kits for every public school, the library, and the SRCA Community Center.

Only the SRCA took on single-handedly both SDG&E and the city over the transmission line project. We have been working actively almost daily on SDG&E construction issues since last December. SDG&E made changes due to our advocacy. Please join the SRCA as an annual member and support your community. It’s as little as $30 per year and easy to do. Just go to Happy holidays!

Bob Ilko, SRCA President

Tree Lighting Ceremony

This year my Girl Scout Troop 2865 and I are working on our Bronze Award by helping at the 35th Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony. The Girl Scouts co-host this event with the SRCA every year. Please join us on Sunday, Dec. 10, from 3 to 5 pm at Jerabek Park. There will be hot cocoa and baked goods being sold to earn money for the Girl Scout Share Program, which helps all girls participate in Girl Scouts.

Girl scouts will sing holiday songs and there will be crafts. And don’t forget the Marine Corps Toys for Tots program that collects new unwrapped toys for children in need. If you are a girl scout and you donate a toy, you will get a special patch for your vest. Our special guest—Santa—will arrive in style! Don’t miss this community tradition.

Sydney Taber, Junior GS Troop 2865

[Editor’s note: The Symphony in the Park Holiday Concert follows this event at 5 pm. Please see page 17 for details.]