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Roseland Review - June 2015


Roseland Review - June 2015

by Duane De Witt

Recently long time Roseland resident Bill Haluzak was honored by the County of Sonoma as the “Volunteer of the Year for 2014” for his work helping at County Parks. This dedicated community man also helps out the city of Santa Rosa by volunteering often for the Roseland Creek cleanups such as he just did on April 22 again, as he has done many times before. One of his “pet” projects is a proposed “dog park” at the back of the Cook Middle School grounds where a city park already exists. It would be great to get the city to help him out on his idea.

Roseland is on the minds of a lot of government employees now, at both the city of Santa Rosa and Sonoma County offices, because of the ongoing negotiations for annexation of the Roseland County Island created by the city of Santa Rosa in 1997. The close to one square mile, over 6oo acres, unincorporated “Heart of Roseland” is the subject of a number of community meetings planned for the month of June. There are also other governmental agency meetings being held where community members can at least observe our governments in action if not actively participate in the decision making process.

Keep in mind if you do not speak up for yourselves about what you believe should happen in Roseland there are a number of other people willing to say they speak for you. So with that said, now is the time to try and make a Roseland Village Task Group meeting held by the County of Sonoma at the Sonoma County Community Development Commission offices at 1440 Guerneville Rd. The next meeting for their discussions about the reuse and redevelopment of the Roseland Village Shopping Center will be on Thursday, June 4, 2015 at 4pm.

Also on the same day is an important meeting with the folks who are helping with funding some of the work for the Roseland and Sebastopol Rd Specific Plan being assembled by the city of Santa Rosa. That would be the Association of Bay Area Governments in partnership with the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, out of Oakland, who have put up millions of dollars to help get development going again in Roseland and in Santa Rosa. This meeting is at 10:00 am at the City of Santa Rosa buildings at 35 Stony Point Rd. It will be discussing “information sharing” on Affordable Housing and Economic Opportunities for Lower-Income Workers in Sonoma County. Much of the discussions about more affordable housing recently have been about how to put more of the developments in Roseland so this should be a very helpful discussion for Roseland residents to attend and follow into the future. 

 Wait, there is more, because the city of Santa Rosa with its’ ongoing Roseland Annexation Committee has a series of meetings starting up for “community workshops”. The first is Weds. June 10, 2015 beginning at 5:30 pm, for food and socializing, followed by workshop to “create a shared vision” for “what is the future of Roseland”. This will be at the large gymnasium at the Sheppard School site 1777 West Ave. Less than two weeks later on Tuesday June 23, 2015 will be another meeting in the same place, at the same time, “considering planning options” for Roseland. The gym is near the back of the campus where the portable classrooms are located and both food and childcare will be available for free.

Then to top off your month of good civic engagement as a Roseland resident is the Roseland Village Neighborhood Center Community Meeting in the same place, the “big gym” at Sheppard School, but starting at 6pm. This meeting, hosted by the county, is for “discussion on preliminary proposals for the development of the Roseland Village Shopping Center” now the buildings owned by the county are being removed. The building currently occupied by the Dollar Tree store will be in use for at least two more years because the county just renewed the lease. But the Furniture 2000 store at the site is being evicted for a new use by the community taxpayers who own the building. Could be “Good Fun”? In order for your community input to be used for the planning for the use of the old Furniture 2000 store local residents should come to the meeting. There will also be food and child care available at this meeting to hopefully entice the largest number of community members to attend as possible.

As always for at least the last twenty years, there will be Spanish language interpreters and Spanish language translation available to those who need assistance with the English language.