Rancho Santa Fe residents request Covenant Club go to CDRC before vote


Discussions around the proposed $15.8 million Covenant Club continue in the Rancho Santa Fe community now that the design subcommittee has completed its work. The club’s finance subcommittee and membership and marketing subcommittee will now meet to figure out financial modeling and membership programming before the plan comes before a town hall meeting and goes to a vote.

RSF Association President Ann Boon responded to questions regarding the process at the March 3 RSF Association board meeting. Boon said there is no current schedule of upcoming committee meetings and no exact timeline for a vote yet.

RSF resident Dave Van Den Berg spoke on behalf of the neighbors around the proposed Covenant Club. He said the group felt that the neighbors should have some involvement in the design of the club and to be able to voice their concerns. Additionally, the group requested that the plan be reviewed by the Covenant Design Review Committee (CDRC) before the community-wide vote.

Van Den Berg said the group received a letter in response to their concerns from the Association’s attorney stating that the residents have “no rights to the design or location of the Covenant Club” and that they would need to go to the county with their concerns.

“We find this response a breach of your duties as an Association board representing all of its members and a break with years of precedence,” Van Den Berg said.

He said solicitation of the neighbors’ concerns has always been part of the design process in Rancho Santa Fe.

“This project is the largest ever attempted in our community and the developer is you,” Van Den Berg said. “It seems you should be held to the same process as any developer.”

He said to propose that the Covenant Club goes to the CDRC after the vote to approve the project demonstrates a disregard for the neighbors.

The current timeline, if voters approve the Covenant Club, is that the project would go through the CDRC process, followed by the county’s approvals, which will include an Environmental Impact Report. The entire review and approval process is anticipated to take about three years.

During public comment, RSF resident Bill Hinchy wanted to know whether the community-wide vote would be advisory or if the results would bind the board.

President Boon and board members Jerry Yahr, Heather Slosar, Philip Wilkinson and Kim Eggleston said they all believe it should be a binding vote.