SAVE THE DATE!

Friday October 23, 2015, 7 pm is our Fourth Community Dinner for Walnut Event.

We will be updating the community on developments regarding Mt. Sac’s Solar Plant on the Southwest corner of Grand and Amar, as well as their other projects that could have negative impact on our City.

By popular demand we are having the dinner at the Mandarin Seafood restaurant at 1015 S. Nogales, Rowland Heights 91748.

Please save the date and share with family, friends and neighbors!

For Tickets call (213) 663-8927, or email request to unitedwalnuttaxpayers@gmail.com

Mt SAC Board approves Solar project 6-0

The Board of Trustees approved unanimously the award of the contract for the design and build of the Solar Project.

This was not a surprise since historically this board is nothing but a rubber stamp for president Scroggin!

Almost every resolution passed by this board is unanimous! Makes you wonder if any of the Trustees take the time or effort to actually study matters before they vote.

Even though last nights meeting was an exercise of futility for us but nonetheless we established a few points for the record.

Most important Mansfield brought to their attention their violation of the Brown Act when they came to the meeting with essentially a new project (they modified the location of the Solar Panels) without giving a prior notice.

So essentially they gave a presentation with new facts that were not shared with the public. Which also meant that we were not given the opportunity to respond to their changes.

The City manager, community development director and city planners attended the meeting as well, and based on our conversation with them after the meeting, they too were irate with Mt Sac’s flagrant sidelining of the City.

Looks like Mt Sac once again has opted to litigate this project rather than sit down with the community & City and reach some kind of agreement.

After yesterday I am more confident that we have a strong case, their failure to follow CEQA guidelines, their failure to get City approvals and their misuse of Bond money are strong aspects of our case.

Now we need to work closely with our City to make sure this massive eyesore for our community and the potential that the construction project of this magnitude will basically paralyze our city for 3-6 months does not get off the ground.

Join us next Wednesday at 7 pm, September 23 at City Hall for our City Council meeting to request from our council members to do everything they can to protect our City.

Showdown on the Mega Solar Plant Continues!

Wednesday night at the Mt Sac Board of Trustees meeting we brought to their attention their failing grade in community relations. That even after a community win in court and stoppage of the parking structure they continue with the same arrogance and sidelining of the community. We asked that they meet their obligations of their mission statement which specifically states developing a caring and cooperative relationship with the community!

Finally, around 9:45 the Public Hearing on the Solar was opened. I introduced Dennis and his impressive credentials and then he made an outstanding presentation (copies were handed out). Other members of the community had excellent comments that they shared.

To make a long story short, Trustee Chyr raised concerns about being corned into making a decision (Scroggin was pushing hard) and he requested that the vote be postponed to give them some time to review Dennis’ information. Vote was 6-1 to postpone vote to next Wednesday September 16 where they will have a special meeting.

This means that we have another chance to share our concerns next Wednesday. That would have to be at the beginning of the meeting (6:30 at Founders Hall) through the Public Comment segment.

I encourage you to come and appeal to those Trustees who appear to want to understand our concerns.
I will post a reminder next week but please save the date!

Following is the link to the article in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune

http://www.sgvtribune.com/20150910/showdown-on-mega-solar-plant-at-mt-sac-continues-next-week

9/9/2015 at 6:30 PM: Very Important Mt.SAC’s Public Hearing on Solar Farm

  • Public Hearing on the 11 acre Solar Power Generating Plant at the southwest corner of Grand and Amar
    11 acres of Solar Panels that will be within 100 feet of homes on Regal Canyon!
    11 acres of Solar Panels that will be visible to a large portion of Walnut!
  • An eyesore for those coming into our City traveling South on Grand Ave!
  • Mt. SAC refuses to consider alternative sites that would have minimal impact on our City
  • Come voice your opposition to the residential location
  • Let Mt SAC know that Walnut residents are against this massive destruction of our natural hills
  • Attend the Public Hearing Wednesday, September 9 at 6:30 pm, at Founders Hall at Mt. SAC.

 

For information on the Solar Power Generating Plant, go to ‘The Threats’ at savewalnut.org

Join the conversation at nextdoor.com

Contact us at unitedwalnuttaxpayers@gmail.com

Some Thoughts about Walnut and Mt.SAC by Mansfield Collins

Walnut’s Mission Statement

Walnut is a place where small town values are respected and blended with contemporary ideals. It is a community that considers the lessons of the past, understands current and future realities, and shares a sense of cultural belonging.
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Mt Sac’s Mission Statement
The mission of Mt. San Antonio College is to support students in achieving their full educational potential in an environment of academic excellence.
Mt. SAC strives to be regarded as one of the premier community colleges in the nation. We will be viewed as a leader in community college teaching, programs, and services.
As a premier community college, we will provide access to quality educational programs and services, focusing on student success within a climate of integrity and respect. We will earn this reputation by consistently exceeding the expectations of our students, our staff, and our community.
Mt Sac Core Values

Integrity: We treat each other honestly, ethically, and respectfully in an atmosphere of trust.
Community Building: We work in responsible partnerships through open communication, caring, and a cooperative spirit.
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Court’s Reasoning behind Its Ruling on the Injunction

1. The Court finds that the parking structure is a nonclassroom facility that cannot be exempted from the City’s zoning laws under Section 53094. A parking structure is ordinarily used for parking purposes, not for student instruction.

2. As a separate basis for granting the injunction, the Court finds that Plaintiff is also likely to succeed on its first cause of action alleging that the parking structure was not sufficiently identified in Measure RR when it was presented to the voters. See
Taxpayers for Accountable School Bond Spending v. San Diego Unified School Dist., (2013) 215 Cal. App. 4th 1013.

After weighing the relative interim harm to the parties from the issuance or nonissuance of the injunction, the Court finds that an injunction should issue. As stated in the City’s zoning codes, the restrictions on land for properties zoned RPD, (“residential planned development”) which includes the Mt. San Antonio’s campus, is to encourage the “appropriate and desirable use of land which is sufficiently unique in its physical characteristics and other circumstances to warrant special methods of development.” Walnut City Code § 25-88. If the project is permitted to go forward, Plaintiff and the community will lose their interest in the enforcement of the City’s zoning codes and in the orderly development of their community. In contrast, the District’s harm is primarily financial. As for its students having to look for other parking spots pending this litigation, that harm is less severe than the harm that Plaintiff’s members will suffer.
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Personal Opinion
Mt Sac has not lived up to its core values. Mt Sac was wrong when it exempted the peaking structure from Walnut’s zoning laws. The restrictions on land for properties zoned RPD, (“residential planned development”) which includes the Mt. San Antonio’s campus, is to encourage the “appropriate and desirable use of land which is sufficiently unique in its physical characteristics and other circumstances to warrant special methods of development.” Walnut City Code § 25-88. If the project is permitted to go forward, Plaintiff and the community will lose their interest in the enforcement of the City’s zoning codes and in the orderly development of their community.
Mt Sac was wrong when it failed to identity that taxpayers dollars were going to be used for a 5 story parking structure. Mt Sac was wrong when it alleged that here was community involvement and input.

PLEASE be advised these decisions now become the preliminary law of the case. There are other projects that Mt Sac wants to exempt, Solar Generating Plant, within 125 of The Willows and Stoneybrooke Lane. A fire training station and burn tower within 150 feet of Snowcreek and a new stadium for 11,000 to 20,000, seats, for rap, rage and rock concerts, and sporting events.
To create a harmony between the mission statements of Walnut and Mt Sac, Mt Sac will have to review its past actions and bring them into conformity with the law. Otherwise, their failure to immediately address these legal violations will subject it to greater legal liability and problems in the future. These liabilities may increase on a daily basis. The taxpayers will not be surcharged for any headedness or stubbornness of Mt Sac. The extent to which the City of Walnut allows Mt Sac to violate its zoning laws may subject it to future liability too. Mt Sac can no longer threaten the City of Walnut with a lawsuit, a ruling on the issue of zoning has already been made. The City and UWT have won that fight.
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The Way Forward
Working together, the City of Walnut and United Walnut Taxpayers can start the process of restoring Walnut to its missions statement: Walnut is a place where small town values are respected and blended with contemporary ideals. It is a community that considers the lessons of the past, understands current and future realities, and shares a sense of cultural belonging.

Those who were out of touch with Walnut’s mission statement have called UWT 7 people losing a view. The judge didn’t see it that way. Well, now you have seen the other expanded Mt Sac projects that will hit The Willows, Snowcreek and on Concert nights, all of Walnut! Hundreds of homes and thousands of people. Moreover, Mt Sac’s violation and misuse of measure RR bond money affects nearly 100,000 people who voted for or against it in its 7 area districts. Now, Mt Sac wants more money for a new bond measure RRR. We I have learned a lot and I doubt an eagerness to give Mt Sac more money until they have fully corrected and apologized for their violations of Measure RR money and make commitments not to violate Walnut’s mission statement and zoning laws in the future.

MT SAC YOU CAN NO LONGER VIEW YOURSELF AS AN ISLAND SEPARATE AND APART FROM THE CITY OF WALNUT. WE HAVE NO REPRESENTATION ON YOUR BOARD. WE HAVE NO DIRECT CITIZEN INPUT FROM WALNUT SUBDIVISIONS AFFECTED BY YOUR EXPANSION. WE HAVE NO PLANS TO MITIGATE THE HEALTH, SAFETY AND TRAFFIC RISKS CREATED BY YOUR EXPANSION.