Don't thank Elk Grove politicians for parks, open spaces, thank Quimby!

California Assemblymember John Quimby. | 

By D.J. Blutarsky | 

Yesterday Elk Grove Mayor Bobbie Singh-Allen appeared on Sacramento Channel 13 news discussing the opening of the city's 100th park. 

After viewing, I could not help but be pissed off when the City of Elk Grove and the Cosumnes Community Services District takes every opportunity possible to brag about all the parks in the city. The way they talk, it leaves a viewer or a resident with the impression that we are some kind of open space Mecca. 

Obviously, they are misleading and not accurately portraying park development in Elk Grove and other communities statewide.

Consider the following:

Fact: The City and CSD have not placed an emphasis on parks in the city. All of the parks were required under the Quimby Act of 1975, a state law that requires 3 acres of parkland dedication per 1,000 people in the subdivision (or equivalent fees). It would be interesting to know what ratio CSD is using for household size, because these 5 and 6 bedroom monster homes certainly have more than the usual 3.5 persons that is the typically used number.

Fact: At one time, Laguna Ridge (the "gem of the city") required MORE than the Quimby Act, but Granite Bay [developers] successfully eliminated that requirement. So, CSD and the City only require the bare minimum allowed under state law.

Fact: Granite Bay successfully got the City and CSD to lower their park fee to the bare minimum required to build a park. I shall call all of our parks, Quimby Parks!

Fact: Granite Bay successfully got the City/CSD to count drainage basins, powerline easements, etc. as acreage to count towards meeting the Quimby requirement. In other words, the parkland dedication does not have to be usable.

Fact: CSD has admitted that they do not have sufficient revenue to maintain their parks. Look for a joint City/CSD sales tax increase to appear on a ballot in the not too distant future.

Fact: The City/CSD is not requiring a supplemental fee for a future regional park. The state used to have an advisory recommendation on how many regional parks cities should have based on projected population. Development lobbyists have killed that at the state level. Hence, there will probably never be another regional park in the City unless some rich person dies and leaves something.

So, don't be misled into believing Elk Grove is some kind of Open Space Mecca. One hundred parks have been built only because the City has grown and Assemblyman John Quimby in his foresight, was looking out for us!

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Spoons and Forks said...

When you mentioned Quimby, I thought it was in reference to "Mayor Diamond Joe Quimby" in Springfield. The real Quimby sounds like a real visionary when it comes to open space in suburbia - something lacking with our current crop of elected officials in Elk Grove, especially Jim Cooper, who is a real dunce and womanizer. Just aske around.....#MeToo

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