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Roseland Review - May 2015


Roseland Review - May 2015

by Duane De Witt

If you want to have any say in the future of the Roseland Village Plaza and the entire Roseland County Island of over 6,000 people being annexed into the city you need to attend some meetings soon and speak up. It is now or never, or forever hold your peace. Both the city Santa Rosa and the Sonoma County politicians are making the opportunities available to you readers and your friends to get involved. Many times the meetings are interpreted into Spanish also so there is NO EXCUSE for not being involved, other than it may not matter enough to you.

Get involved on Thursday May 7 at the next meeting of the Roseland Village Neighborhood Center Advisory Group to be held at the Sonoma County Community Development Commission Hearing Room at 1440 Guerneville Road, Santa Rosa, CA. You can come there and speak up and speak out about the upcoming uses for the Roseland Village. Especially try to be at the Tuesday May 5, Cinco de Mayo event so you could help your thoughts to envision a better future for this community landmark. You can see more at: Roseland Village Neighborhood Center Project.

Hopefully the Cinco de Mayo event will put you in to a festive mood to ponder how best to situate a Plaza on the 7 acres of land the Sonoma County taxpayers now own at the Roseland Village Shopping Center on Sebastopol Rd. Give it some thought and get your views into those who can use your news or you will lose, because the decision making process for this project is now underway. “If you snooze you lose” is a “tried and true” statement which will definitely apply to this community treasure.

Recently Roseland got a boost from an unexpected reconciliation between city and county officials regarding a possible annexation of the Roseland County Island created by the city in 1997. At an April 9 meeting of the joint city and county Roseland Annexation Committee rather than rancor, there was a palpable feeling of conciliation between the government officials present. John Sawyer, the Mayor of Santa Rosa who officially hosted the meeting and city councilmember Julie Combs, along with recently hired city manager Sean McGlynn, appeared to be accepting of the idea annexation may occur sooner than later. County officials there to show their support for the final annexation idea included supervisors Shirlee Zane of Santa Rosa, and Efren Carrillo from the Fifth District who represents the over 6,000 people in the county island.

The defining moment of the meeting appeared to be a comment made by Veronica Ferguson, County Administrator, stating the county could work out the financial differences with the city over the expected increased costs for the completion of the annexation. Right now the costs are expected to be about $770,000 per year to be shared by the city and county regarding the change in services and coverage of things such as police services. As an outside observer this would appear to be about $400, 000 per year for each entity to take on to get this matter done. Recently the city of Santa Rosa had exceeded budget expectations and was able to spend an extra $ 6 million dollars from increased revenues. With the city now flush with money the time appears ripe for the final annexation.

Wednesday April 22 the city held a meeting of a recently formed “Steering Committee” for what the city is calling Roseland Area Projects. It was held at Sheppard School at 1777 West Ave. in the small gymnasium. Annexation of the Roseland County Island is a main activity of this committee. At this first introductory meeting there were over forty people from the community talking about how to make things better in the process over the next year and a half is able to come to some positive decisions for the Roseland Specific Plan. There was some good food there, plus some fun discussions of how to get the process rolling to better engage the community members who were not able to make it to the meeting. The city officials there for the meeting encouraged community members to each bring two more people to the next meeting to be held sometime soon. They assured the attendees there will be good food there again next time when the meeting is held in the larger Multipurpose Gymnasium on the campus. Keep watching the Roseland Review for more news you can use about this. You can also go to for the Roseland Specific Plan.