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By Miriam Raftery

January 4, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) –Many hot agenda items are coming up before boards, commissions and councils across East County during this first week of the new year.

Lakeside Planning: Lakeside’s Community Planning Group meets  on Wednesday, January 7th at 6:30 p.m. at the Lakeside Community Center (9841 Vine Street in Lakeside).    Planners will hear input on the proposed OCI Lakeside Solar project on El Monte Road.  The County’s sanitation department will present a presentation on upcoming sewer rate changes.

On December 14th at 6:30, Lakeside planners have scheduled a scoping meeting  in the same location on the Lake Jennings Marketplace environmental impact report.  The owner proposes to condominiums to a commercial center on the south side of OIde Highway 80 from Lake Mennings Park Road to Rios Canyon Road, requiring a rezoning.

Helix Water District:  The Helix Water District Board will meet on Wednesday, January 7th at 2 p.m. at the District Headquarters (7811 University Avenue, La Mesa).  The meeting includes a public hearing on fees and charges proposed for 2015.  The agenda includes a $50,000 appropriations request to fund the district’s share of the East County Regional Water Reuse Program Feasibility Study.

Boulevard Planning Group:  Boulevard’s Planning Group has a busy agenda slated for its meeting on Thursday, January 8th at 7 p.m. in the Boulevard Fire Station equipment bay (39919 Ribbon Road, Boulevard).  County staff will present Soitec Solar’s Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for its four industrial-scale projects on around 3,000 acres.  The County’s groundwater geologist will make the presentations and discuss alternatives, also answer questions.  A lively discussion is expected given Soitec’s serious financial problems. 

Boulevard Planners will also hear a presentation from the Border Patrol on construction of  a new checkpoint on I-8 and how that will impact traffic.  In addition, planners will discuss the Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan proposed to impact over 2 million acres of public and private lands; public comments on the environmental documents are open until February 23rd

Boulevard residents will also hear an update on a $100 million lawsuit filed against Boulevard’s planning group, the County, and others by entities related to developer Greg Lansing. 

Other agenda items include Nextera’s proposed Jacumba Solar project on historic Route 80, the Chapman Ranch solar project,SDG&E’s  ECO substation,  updates on Tule Wind, a proposed Rough Acres Ranch campground and conference center and major grading permit, an appeal of the county’s wind energy ordinance, and litigation related to Sempra’s cross-border high voltage transmission line.

County Board of Supervisors:  The County Board of Supervisors will meet on Tuesday and Wednesday, January 6th and 7th.  On Tuesday, block grants, refugee services and funding for the Sheriff to combat gangs are among the items on the agenda.  On Wednesday Supervisors will consider an open space acquisition in Flinn Springs for trails and gnatcatcher habitat.

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Yes, another checkpoint. As long as your friends and neighbors are using Mexican Meth and illegal felons are breaking into our country we need checkpoints. You city people don't like them? STAY HOME!

Another checkpoint?

So, the Militarization of the East County continues. Where will the chokepoint be located? I like to drive Old Highway 80 where it still exists and State Route 94. My dad was the Field Trip Chairman for the El Cajon Valley Gem and Mineral Society, we drove to the desert in Imperial County and beyond searching for rocks on the old road. There were sections of the Plank Road crossing the sand dunes!