SDG&E pole replacement project ongoing

SDG&E has begun work on its pole replacement project in Rancho Santa Fe, using the 28-acre parcel on Calzada del Bosque as a staging area. Some residents’ interests were piqued when they saw a construction trailer pop up on the site, which over the years has been proposed to be a new Rancho Santa Fe School District campus, an equestrian facility and, most recently, a step-down housing community.

According to Allison Torres, SDG&E communications manager, the pole replacement project will help SDG&E meet its goals for fire prevention as well as upgrading the system to meet increasing demands for electricity and reliability.

In this first phase of the project, SDG&E will be replacing about 100 wooden poles with fire-resistant steel poles. Crews will be taking the distribution level voltage from 4KV to 12KV.

The estimated completion date for this first phase is April 2018.

“Work activities will also include construction crews and their vehicles accessing our facilities to perform the upgrades and associated brush and tree pruning,” Torres said, noting that they will work to keep disruptions to a minimum.

In regard to the development of the Calzada del Bosque property, recently the Rancho Santa Fe Association was found not to have violated open meetings law in dealing with Rancho Librado, the step-down housing project proposed for the site. The lawsuit of Golden Eagle Land Investment v. Rancho Santa Fe Association was decided on Jan. 12 in the 4th District Court of Appeal.

Back in September 2015, Golden Eagle filed the lawsuit against the Association alleging that it violated the Common Interest Development Open Meeting Act and took action on an item not on the agenda. In the lawsuit, the Mabee trust said it believed that the Association engaged in conduct that undermined its efforts to obtain county approval for its project and with the lawsuit they were seeking a level playing field to present the development proposal to the community in a fair way.

In response, the Association filed a motion to strike the entire complaint.

In December 2015, the Superior Court of California dismissed eight of the nine causes of action in the lawsuit — however, the court did not dismiss the first cause of action that the board violated the open meeting act.

Both appealed on the claim that was not dismissed by the trial court.

On Jan. 12 this year, the appellate court found that the trial court was correct in dismissing all eight counts against the Association and decided that the trial judge made an error in not dismissing the ninth claim, so it was dismissed as well.

No plan for the property has ever been officially submitted to the RSF Association for Rancho Librado and it last came before the RSF Association board in May 2014 as an informational item.

In order to move forward with the originally proposed project, the developers would have to submit a General Plan amendment to the county, prepare a specific plan and go through the Covenant Design Review Committee and RSF Association board review process, as well as hold public hearings at the county level.

Both the Association and Golden Eagle were unable to be reached by press time for comment.

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