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Jack Duran, District 1 Update

District 1 Update June 2015
Jack Duran, Supervisor District 1


We all know that Placer County is a desirable place to live. Whatever setting appeals to you: the suburban west end to the foothills to the mountains, we have it all. That’s why the west end of the county – mostly my district – is seeing development.  Because people want to move here and live here, growth is going to take place. I’m a staunch believer in private property rights. Everyone’s property rights. While owners of large parcels of land have the right to develop their property, I also want to point out that they must comply with laws and ordinances concerning development.
 

The object here is not to stop growth, but to make certain that it’s smart and sensible. Those amenities that residents want and need must be included in any development. We listen to the stakeholders and make changes, whether it’s providing space for nearby retail, closing off entrances to development to reduce traffic, creating more trails, or setting aside additional open space and greenbelt. 

As more people come to Placer County, they bring more pets. In early May we broke ground on a new Animal Services Center in Auburn. This state-of-the art facility will not only afford better care for animals, but will ensure that more are adopted into loving homes. The existing facility is at the end of its functional life and needed replacement. The new animal services center will improve animal care and give employees enough room to do their jobs.  The shelter has not been without controversy as to costs over 20 million dollars, however, myself and Supervisor, Jennifer Montgomery, did everything we could do to reduce costs, unfortunately building an animal shelter in 2015 as opposed to 1950, comes with added costs for safety of the animals, employees and of course the public.  I can assure you the public will get tremendous value out of the building over the next 50 years.

The use of medicinal marijuana is a topic about which many are passionate, whether they are advocates or opponents. Next year, there very well may be a ballot measure on the state ballot that would legalize personal use of the drug. Current California law is both vague and somewhat contradictory.  The issue of regulating marijuana cultivation came before the Board of Supervisors in May. Because the issue is in flux, I, along with my colleagues, did not feel the time was right to make decisions that could very well be negated or need changing in the near future, which could result in added staff time to make changes to County codes and regulations.  The issue will likely come back to the Board in 2016, hopefully when things are more settled. 

In response to complaints and to ensure some neighborhood harmony, Placer County’s Code Enforcement division recently launched an afterhours and weekend program. A code enforcement officer is now available nights, weekends and holidays and will respond to complaints about events, beer and wine tastings and parties/public gatherings that are unpermitted gatherings. The on-call officer will work closely with the Sheriff’s Office to ensure that events held in unincorporated areas of the county stay on the correct side of county ordinances and state law. The number to report such events is 530-401-8229.   

And finally, I am pleased to say that we’re making spectacular progress on a huge public works project on the shore of Lake Tahoe in Kings Beach. The Commercial Core Improvement Project has been decades in the planning and the contractor is well ahead of schedule. This innovative project is transforming a 1.1-mile stretch of State Route 28 through the heart of this lakeside community into a walkable community for residents and visitors alike. By making Kings Beach a place where people can easily stop and walk, economic development has a much better chance of succeeding. Kings Beach has the most beautiful beach in Lake Tahoe. It’s time we made the adjoining roadway, bike lanes and sidewalks as attractive as the lake itself. 

As always, it is an honor and a privilege to serve you. I always welcome your feedback and can be reached by e-mail at jduran@placer.ca.gov or by phone at 916-787-8950. 

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