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Roseland Review - February 2016 - Duane Dewitt

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Roseland Review - February 2016 - Duane Dewitt

Amnesty for Annexation

by Duane De Witt

SCAM  ALERT in Roseland the New Year.

A Roseland resident contacted Roseland Review to pass the word about this scam, “Men in orange reflective vests with ID badges hanging from around their necks and clipboards in their hands” came knocking on his door recently. He wrote to us to say, “Thinking they looked official and intent, I went out and one guy began talking about my PG&E gas bill. If I would get it he would show me how he could get me a discount.”  The message goes on to point out the folks were not from PG&E, and they were not offering a real discount. Rather they are seeking to “dupe” people into signing up for something more expensive than what they now pay. Do not do this folks. Real utilities workers will not be coming to your homes unless you ask them to. This reader felt the scam was focused right now on Hearn Ave. and Victoria Dr. They will try to go deeper into Roseland so call the Police or Sheriff if you feel these folks are scamming you.

For a long time now some Roseland residents have told this reporter of their fear, could the city of Santa Rosa come figuratively, “knocking on their door” should Roseland be annexed. The city is also fearful people will not annex so perhaps Roseland Review could offer up this advice? “Amnesty for Annexation” is the idea. Tell all the county residents who will be brought into the city they will be able to have “existing non-conforming uses” allowed. This would alleviate much of the concerns on both sides as the city and the county residents could agree to let things be as they are while the Roseland neighborhoods were absorbed into the city for the better good of all there. There are many garages converted to housing and other uses and people still want it.

Roseland Annexation map

Roseland residents can talk about these issues with both city and county officials at various meetings this month and on into 2016. The annexation does not appear to be happening any time soon. The city of Santa Rosa has rescheduled the Steering Committee meeting for the Roseland Specific Plan and Annexation. It is now on Feb. 4, 2016 at Roseland Village Neighborhood Center, 665 Sebastopol Rd. from 5:30 p.m. social with food and the 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. meeting. But perhaps of more importance to a regular citizens is a Scoping Meeting for the Environmental Impact Report for the entire project. “It will be held to provide an opportunity for the community to hear about the preparation of the Draft EIR and provide comments on the scope of the EIR” according to the city. It will happen on Monday, February 1, 2016 from 6:00-7:00 p.m. at the Roseland Village Neighborhood Center – 665 Sebastopol Road. Please remember his is across the street from Roseland School.

Along with these meetings there is another meeting on Thursday, February 18, 2016 from 6 pm to 8 pm. This is the big Community meeting with food and childcare while folks talk of the issues. Specifically to, “Share ideas on potential policy topics (action items) of the Specific Plan.” Plus to, “Get a preview of the draft land use and circulation plan that was prepared based on community input. All this will also let you, “Learn about and provide input on the potential annexation.” This meetings will also be at the Roseland Village Neighborhood Center which is see lots of use these days. 

The city of Santa Rosa is going to reunify Courthouse Square using money from a process known as a Certificate of Participation to raise the $10 million they seek to spend on the project. A Roseland resident asked me could the city do the same thing for the annexation and get it done? Roseland Review will do more research about this process but it would appear from the outset yes the city could do this if they have the political will to reunite Roseland as well as their square.