Opinion: When East Meets West – Not a City Divided!

By Connie Conley | May 31, 2015 | Mayor, Council and Planning Commissioners: With all due respect, I take some exception to what...

By Connie Conley | May 31, 2015 |

Mayor, Council and Planning Commissioners:

With all due respect, I take some exception to what is written in the “Active and Engaged Community,” section whereby city staff makes a differential between the needs of West Elk Grove and East Elk Grove when writing about the rural area. And I will explain.
(Staff report available here.)

What the report fails to mention is that the rural area has been in existence long before the first house was built in West Elk Grove. Of course, we will have different issues, the primary one, trying to maintain the rural lifestyle. [For those who don’t know, I have lived in rural Elk Grove for over 30 years]

Rural living may not be as lavish and independent as urban living, but the residents here are more involved with each other and in the community. Can anyone argue that Greater Sheldon Road Estates Homeowners Association (GSREHA) and Sheldon Community Association (SCA), as well as Quail Ranch Estates Association (QREA) and Fallbrook Neighborhood Association (FNA), are four of the most involved groups in most areas of city/county government? Moreover, we all know each well which is a testament to our combined involvement in shaping our city’s future.

And so I ask: Why should we have to struggle to preserve the only rural area of Elk Grove?

Example: I will give just one example using Mayor Gary Davis. The Davis family moved to rural Elk Grove to a street where horses are also ridden and commuters used as a short cut to avoid the intersection of Sheldon and Waterman Roads. The rural residents rallied to close off the street but not without a lot of resistance from those used it as a short cut. Now the Davis family returned to being urbanites whereby those issues would never occur in a designed development and every element is planned before a single buyer moves it. Not so for the rural area, and as a result, we are at the mercy of a rezone at any time.

The precursor to the Active and Engage Community statement includes the objective: “Unify the community around shared opportunities and solutions. Include voices of community members who traditionally interact with the City; those who are typically absent from public process; and key economic, environmental, and social stakeholders.”

And so I ask: Is this city government, as a whole, doing its best to include those voices, especially those who make the time to be actively involved in their local government? Unfortunately, I have seen how some of those “active” voices are treated.

I understand why this section divided Elk Grove into two areas because every county/city has both rural and urban and our city is no different. In rural Elk Grove for some of us, we have the best of both. For example, I only have to drive less than five minutes and I am in urban areas of the city.

The difference is priorities – which aspects of life are most important to you? The answer isn’t the same for everyone.

In closing, I believe that is one of the key components that must be a focus when deliberating on the General Plan as it pertains to Elk Grove as a whole.

Copyright © 2015 by Connie Conley.

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lynn said...

Connie, this is all about the soi. The initial general plan was written by developers and processed through planning commission all with the overriding consideration for traffic! Follow the money..this is about greed financing egos, puppets with strings.

Capt. Benjamin Willard said...

Oh, East is East and West is West, and never the twain shall meet,

Till Earth and Sky stand presently at God's great Judgment Seat;

But there is neither East nor West, Border, nor Breed, nor Birth,

When two strong men stand face to face, though they come from the ends of the earth!

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