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John Merchant's picture
Joined: 08/30/2007
Posts: 118
CPAC updates

I am one of your two Rancho Murieta representatives to the Cosumnes Planning Advisory Council (CPAC). The CPAC advises Sacramento County on planning and other issues that relate to our area. The CPAC has members appointed by both Sue Frost and Don Nottoli. There have been a few items recently that may be of interest to you.

As you may know, the County has approved two, very large gravel mining operations on Scott Road between RM and White Rock Road.  These are Stoneridge and Teichert and one is on each side of Scott Road before you reach White Rock Road.  While these are not yet in operation, it is safe to assume that the "big dig" will commence in this area as gravel operations in other areas (like Bradshaw Road) become depleted.  These are done deals.  However, as part of the original negotiations, Teichert and Stoneridge agreed to pay a "cents per ton fee" to our area that we may use for projects" that will enhance open space and/or contribute to the general welfare" of the area our CPAC controls..  In 2010, Teichert came to CPAC and actually asked that CPAC administer this fee for our share of the money.  We (CPAC) spent a great deal of time preparing a recommendation on how this money would be administered. This was to insure that when the time came for these payments, they would actually be used to do some good in our area.  This would include money that could be allocated to Rancho Murieta.  

Last week, County Staff prepared a recommendation to the Sacramento Board of Supervisors (BOS) that ignored the recommendations and work that we had done at CPAC on this issue for nearly six years.  The County Staff had recommended to the BOS that this money be controlled by the Sacramento County Regional Parks and by the American River Parkway Association.  The County recommendation said (basically) that they would ask our advice on how to spend the money but we had lost the element of control.  The recommendation to the BOS was specific in its intent that we (CPAC) would no longer control the money directly.  Without direct control, I feel we may as well say "adios" to that money.

Several of our members raised our immediate concerns when we saw this proposal. I called Sue Frost directly and she was able to get the BOS to continue this agenda item so it could be sent back to us at CPAC. While Sue has only represented us for a short time, this is just one example of how she has injected herself into the process to insure that RM is fairly represented at the County. This is new for us.  When the BOS was realigned and we lost Don Nottoli as our representative,  we also lost a great deal of representation.  It is quite evident we have that back now. Many of you are aware of her inquiries about the condition and status of Scott Road.  I have been fighting over this road for years.  In a briefing by the County at CPAC before the last transportation bond issue, we were told that Scott Road was not on any plan for future improvement and it might be 25 years before it could be added to a project list.

Remarkably, when Sue was able to get the County to actually look at Scott Road, they were quite amazed at both the safety issues and traffic counts. As an interim step, some advisory signs were added and there is now some action to see if there can be some actual improvements done on the road and to the culverts that flood the road closed nearly every winter. I am hoping to get the issue back on the CPAC agenda for early 2018 so we can have a public discussion on the need for and potential ugrades/improvements.   One issue to think about is what we might want to attack first.  Do you want money to improve safety (shoulders, visibility issues, sharp turns ect) or would you prefer that we first try to deal with the flooding issues?  Neither will be easy to obtain and any improvements will take a long time to secure. However, the time seems right to make Scott Road a "squeeky wheel".  There are now nearly one million trips on Scott Road every year.  That will grow. It would also be beneficial to address the issue of large trucks and eventually, gravel trucks that (supposedly) will be prevented from leaving the quarrys and heading South. I am not sure we have really locked that down.

Finally, the OE3, the Union whose training program is in Rancho Murieta, came to CPAC with a request to build dormitory and cafeteria facilities in there training area on Meiss Road. This would have resulted in the shutting down of the area currently located in Rancho Murieta. Several questions arose, one of which questioned the need to move out into a rural area and bring noise, lights and traffic into a primarily range and agricultural area.  There has recently been a withdrawl of the project. It will be resubmitted in a way that will propose a classroom on the Meiss location, but will retain the dormitories and cafeteria at it's current location.

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Jim Crowder's picture
Joined: 06/25/2017
Posts: 6
CPAC and Money

Great piece of information, how ironic that County Staff changes money allocation recommendations when our County Reserve budget is shrinking. If Sue wouldn't have stepped in, then who knows how the money would of been spent. As for gravel trucks not being able to go south on Scott Road once these new gravel sites are in operation, I see that only being supervised by their company. Our County doesn't have the resources to enforce those rules and Scott Road will just deterioate quicker, especially in flood zone areas due to the weight of these loaded trucks. Let alone, now you'll have additional traffic safety issues on the sharp curves of Scott Road. I agree, as a community we must become that squeaky wheel for our own safety concerns on Scott Road.

Bunky Svendsen's picture
Joined: 08/07/2007
Posts: 141
What do we need to do?

Thank you for that informative article, John. What do we need to do, as a community, to make sure those funds are committed to Scott road improvements?

Beth Buderus's picture
Joined: 08/03/2007
Posts: 880
Which to improve

Thank you John for bringing this information to us and also for dedicating your time to CPAC.  

Your question as to which we should improve first on Scott Rd, is a hard one that's for sure.  Yes flooding is a big issue which results in the closure of Scott Rd during very wet storms.  But in comparison to the danger/hazards that drivers face daily, IMHO I'd say spending the money to add turns outs and possibly straightening any dangerous curves which would be more beneficial to the remainder of the dry/non-flooded days of the year.  

I believe Sup. Frost has implemented additional signage to let us know that Scott Rd is flooded before we even turn onto Stonehouse, so that should be a big help for those flooded days.  Plus if we could just train everyone to check SacFlood.org during the rainy season or even the quickest way check here on RM.com to see if Scott Rd is Open or Closed that would also help determine their commute to Folsom or wherever.

Betsy Guzzetta's picture
Joined: 10/09/2007
Posts: 122
Scott Road

First of all John - thanks for all you do for this community.  Your experience and understanding of "how we got here" as well as your vision in moving us forward are much appreciated.  With regard to repairs on Scott Road.  If wishes were horses it would be nice to address both issues: the roadway turns/shoulders AND the flooding but since that is unlikely, I would say to address the turns/shoulders.  The reason I say this is that we cannot control the flooding.  Increased buildout in El Dorado Hills and Folsom create more runoff as water that was previously absorbed by the soil now runs off of concrete and asphalt.  Additionally - rainfall predictions are impossible and, again, something out of our control.  The road can be re-engineered to a degree with some funding but a long term, hugely expensive (talking millions) redo is probably not anywhere in the budget.  Keeping the heavier trucks off the road would be a big help.  And though I know this won't happen, if folks would take another route in heavy rains (even if it is not "flooded") it would go a long way to preserving what we do have.

Betsy Guzzetta

Beth Buderus's picture
Joined: 08/03/2007
Posts: 880
Gravel operations

One thing I forgot to address, I seem to remember hearing when this whole Teichert & Stoneridge came up several years ago that they were going to build their own roads in and out of their property and not drive on Scott Rd.  So I'm guessing that's not the case anymore?

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