Props. A, B, C

    Proposition A, otherwise known as the Rural Lands Initiative, is a local measure that, if approved, will require newly subdivided parcels on approximately 694,000 acres of rural land in northern and eastern San Diego County to be developed in increments of 40, 80 or 160 acres. This measure limits growth in rural lands, shifts development to already-congested cities, and will be detrimental to San Diego if passed.

    For six years, San Diego County officials have been in the process of writing a general plan for development in unincorporated areas of the county.

    Development in rural lands has proceeded under current law, and Proposition A was proposed to enact new rules to protect the environment in such areas. Proposition A requires changes to zoning law to limit the growth in northern and eastern San Diego county, and those changes can only be made by voter approval.

    Environmental impact reports and necessary city council hearings on potential developments will continue as usual procedure regardless of Proposition A.

    Proponents of Proposition A are concerned with the environmental impact of development under existing standards. They claim it will offer protection for over 600,000 acres of land in rural areas, limit urban sprawl that has negative impacts on the environment, and protect water resources. Supporters also claim that Proposition A would save taxpayer dollars by reducing costs of pollution clean up and infrastructure. There are significant concerns, however, about San Diego’s future if Proposition A is passed.

    San Diego needs to defeat Proposition A because it needs development to shoulder rising housing prices, increased population and city congestion. If passed, Proposition A will spurn development in cities, exacerbating congestion, traffic and skyrocketing property costs (in 2003, San Diego’s median housing price was over a record $400,000). Any development in rural areas will require an EIR as part of existing procedure, and will always assess the resources, environmental needs and long term impact on the region. Water and air quality will be preserved and adequate housing will be built, saving taxpayers money on their housing and expanding their choice to live in San Diego. Furthermore, residents that already live in rural areas will be under Proposition A’s jurisdiction; the rules will suddenly change, and they will not be able to use the land as originally permitted or purchase parcels to expand their property (or farms) over 40 acres.

    Defeating Proposition A will create jobs and necessary infrastructure, and will ensure fair treatment of residents already living in rural areas. Vote no on Proposition A.

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