If Measure T Passes, Plan to Idle More on Olivenhain’s Rancho Santa Fe RoadAnd the Grand Finale:
Traffic is heavy at and near the intersection of Encinitas Boulevard, Rancho Santa Fe Road and Manchester Avenue. The string of stop signs and traffic lights on Rancho Santa Fe Road backs up traffic in long, maddening lines every day. Packing more people and businesses in high-density developments at Olivenhain’s main intersection would only magnify an already difficult problem.
The Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA) numbers have varied wildly. If the RHNA number the city is required to upzone to meet is 1,093 units, and the 82 percent buffer to 1,987 units is only to ensure the 1,093 number is met, why does the proposed plan say the upzoning creates “an opportunity for at least 1,987 units that are allowed by-right”?
Remember that “by-right” means a voter-approved Measure T would “pre-empt local discretionary land use approvals of specified housing developments by having all such approvals be considered ‘ministerial’ actions, meaning eliminating opportunities for public review, project-level environmental review and restricting design review.”
If the city had worked with residents rather than catering to developers and other special interests, we could have found a way to comply with state housing law without further urbanizing our city, destroying its small town look and feel, overpopulating it, and producing more traffic and crowds everywhere. And there wouldn’t have been several lawsuits to drain hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars.
All this begs the question: Why did the city take the route it did? We can only speculate: The city is using the state housing law to ensure city solvency by urbanizing Encinitas to gain more building permit and property tax revenue, and by increasing the population to gain more sales tax revenue. Increasing revenues also perpetuates extremely high compensation packages and pensions for employees. Through this years-long fiasco, the city ignored resident input because it was contrary to what they had already decided to do. Sadly, that’s par for the course.
We’ll vote NO on Measure T and we hope it fails. If it does, we call upon the City Council to abandon its devotion to city staff, developers and “stakeholders” and, from November 8 forward, to represent the best interests of Encinitas residents. City Council members should remember who elected them.