Town of Loomis FAQ Sheet

Town of Loomis FAQ's "Fact or Truth"

  

TOWN OF LOOMIS

May 10, 2019


Frequently Asked Questions about

Measures C & D and The Village at Loomis


As we approach the June 18 special election on Measures C & D regarding the Village

at Loomis project (the "Village at Loomis"), Town of Loomis staff wanted to provide

some basic facts to answer questions that have been posed to us in recent months

about the Village at Loomis. Please see the Town’s website at

https://loomis.ca.gov/home/referendum/ for background materials on the Village at

Loomis project.



Q. Why is there a special election and a vote?

A. Following the Town Council’s approval of the planned development zoning

designation and a development agreement for the Village at Loomis in January

2019, a group collected the required number of signatures to put the matter to a

vote of Loomis registered voters.


TRUTH. To me this sounds very disrespectful from the start. A “group”, how about residents of Loomis? How about details? These residents collected signatures from over10% of register voters in 12 days in poor, rainy weather. Then let’s not forget the 660 residents who felt strong enough about this poorly planned development to leave their homes in bad weather, to track down the mobile signature booth just to sign their names. My understanding is this has only been done twice in the last 15 years in Placer County.



Q. What are the two ballot measures and how do they relate to the Village at

Loomis project?

A. Measure C asks Loomis voters whether Ordinance 275, passed by the Town

Council on January 8, 2019, should be approved. Ordinance 275 rezones the

site of the Village at Loomis project from Central Commercial, General

Commercial, Single Family Residential RS-5, Office Professional and High

Density Overlay to the single designation of Planned Development and adopts a

Preliminary Development Plan and Development Standards for the Project. The

Preliminary Development Plan and Development Standards govern the design

and land uses for the Village at Loomis.


TRUTH. How about details? The Town Council rezoned 42.8 acres of Commercial to 5.7 acres of Commercial. The Town Council rezoned 23.7 acres of Residential to 60.8 acres of Residential.

The major detail omitted, these changes decreased the future of the Town General Fund Budget, while increasing the need for public services by adding ±1,100 residents, a16% increase in our population.


A. Measure “D” asks Loomis voters whether Ordinance 276, also passed by the

Town Council on January 8, 2019, should be approved. Ordinance 276

approves a Development Agreement for the Village at Loomis project.

A “yes” vote on these measures approves the ordinances adopted by the

Council. A “no” vote rejects these ordinances.

Other actions taken by the Town Council in January and related to the Village at

Loomis project would not be affected by these votes. These actions include

certification of the Village Project Environmental Impact Report, and

amendments to the Town's General Plan for the project site.


TRUTH. If “No” vote passes, a new EIR should be requested, because of the changes to lot size, population, traffic patterns and because the original rezoning being enforced.



Q. What is a planned development and what does Measure C mean?

A. A planned development zone establishes a uniform approach to development in

a particular area, in this case the Village at Loomis in the Town Center area. The

planned development includes a limit on the number of housing units,

development standards and architectural guidelines that will apply throughout the

project and prohibits the extension of Sun Knoll Drive and Day Avenue to serve

new development.

A planned development zone is used to accommodate the design of the

proposed project as compared to what could be developed using the Town’s

zoning standards in place prior to the Town Council's approval of the planned

development zone.

A “Yes” vote on Measure C adopts the Town Council’s approval of the planned

development zone. A “No” vote on Measure C rejects the Town Council’s

approval of the planned development zone.


TRUTH. Some of the negatives in Planned Development, allows the Village Developer to ignore aspects of  the General Plan and Municipal codes in order to increased residential densities, include parking and land easements on neighboring property, remove driveways in 113 units, decrease setbacks on all 4 sides of home, increase the lot coverage, add 18 alleys, include alley footage to make minimum lot sizes, ignore 2 story height requirements, modify the existing land use designations by decreasing Commercial Zones and increasing Residential Zones, etc... 



Q. What is a development agreement and what does Measure D mean?

A. A development agreement is a binding contract between the Town and a

developer to enforce the obligations between the parties and enable the orderly

development of a project. The advantage of a development agreement for the

Town is that it provides benefits that the Town would not have been able to

obtain through conditions of approval or mitigation measures alone. There are

also advantages for developers, such as providing an extended vesting period of

project entitlements and fixing the amount of development impact fees at their

current amounts.

The Village at Loomis development agreement includes provisions obligating the

developer to construct, at its expense, the Town’s Circulation Element

improvements through and adjacent to the project including:


• Extending Doc Barnes Drive from Horseshoe Bar Road to King Road,

including traffic signals at each intersection.


• The extension of Webb Street from its end at Laird Street to a new

intersection of Horseshoe Bar Road/Library Drive/Webb Street.


• A traffic signal at Taylor Road and Webb Street.


• Improvements at the Horseshoe Bar Road/Library/Drive/Webb Street

intersection.


TRUTH. All Town building developments are binding contracts. The Town negotiates benefits obtain through conditions of approval or mitigation measures. The Town Leadership failed to fully negotiate on behave of the residents. Our Town Attorney reminded the Town Mayor that he was allowed to still ask for concessions after the first vote and before the second and final vote was taken in January. The Town Mayor chose not to ask for any further concessions, so the negotiations never reached a conclusion of “No” from the Developer. By the Mayor granting The PlannedDevelopment, he allows the Village Developer to ignore aspects of the General Plan and Municipal codes.

The Town is not getting “any” additional traffic lanes to our existing 2 lane roads. What we are getting are more traffic bottlenecks.  The plan will add 3 new traffic lights and 2 roundabouts at the 5 entrances/exits to the Village Development in order to disperse the additional 4,995 vehicle trips per day generated by the development.  This is a benefit for the Developer to suffice the requirements in the EIR, it does nothing for the existing crowed traffic conditions for the current residents.


A. The development agreement also obligates the developer to construct parks and

trails and fund the maintenance of the parks, open space, and additional costs

for Sheriff’s services. 


TRUTH. The General Plan obligates the developer to supply 1 acre park space per 200 residents. The agreement the Town Council signed allowed for incomplete parks. There will be no bathrooms and not enough dedicated parking for park visitors. The expense for bathrooms will be passed on to the Town of Loomis.  Fyi: Sunrise Park has been waiting years for permanent bathrooms and the last estimate came in at $150,000. There are only 20 dedicate parking spaces for the smaller U-10 soccer field. And the other 6 small fragmented parks have no dedicated parking spaces.

The open space is wetlands/floodplains that cannot be built upon no matter what development plans are presented.

Our Town General Fund pays the Placer County Sheriff to provide services through our property taxes.  The Village Development will increase the Loomis Town population by 1,100± residents which will mandate an increase by the Sheriff Department along with the additional cost. The Placer County General Plan Policy 4H.1 requires that the County provide one Sheriff’s Department officer for every 1,000 residents.  


A. A “Yes” vote on Measure D adopts the Town Council’s approval of the

development agreement. A “No” vote on Measure D rejects the Town Council’s

approval of the development agreement.



Q. Could the improvements be obtained without a planned development or

development agreement?

A. The Town can obligate a developer to construct improvements necessary to

serve a project through project conditions and mitigation measures, but the Town

cannot require a developer to pay more than its “fair share” of the cost these

improvements. In the case of the Village at Loomis project, some of the

improvements the developer is required to build provide benefits to more than

just the eventual residents of Village at Loomis. Under the development

agreement the developer agreed to fully fund these improvements and to pay for

enhancements to some of these improvements beyond what the Town could

have required a developer to pay for more without the Town be obligated to

provide reimbursement. The Town is required to contribute Traffic Impact Fee

funds collected to date for the construction of Doc Barnes Drive, the balance of

which is approximately $194,140.


TRUTH. The Key sentence “The Town can obligate a developer to construct improvements necessary to serve a project through project conditions and mitigation measures.” As this developer did, and any new developer can do, the improvements are being paid through a Mello-Roos Taxes by the new residents.

The answer lists several times “some improvements” but gives no details. What are theses improvements? And how do they “provide benefits to more than just the eventual residents of Village at Loomis.”



Q. What happens if Measures C and D are rejected in the June vote?

A. If Measures C and D are rejected by voters in June, the Town Council would be

prohibited for one year from adopting ordinances that are essentially the same as

the ordinances rejected. The property owner could, however, propose a new

project, or separate individual projects for the separate properties. A new

project, or the separate individual projects, could have more or less than the

number of housing units proposed for the Village at Loomis. This is because the

General Plan allows for a range of uses and densities on the site. Note that if

Measure C is rejected, the Town Council would be required by law to adopt

zoning for the site that is consistent with the General Plan land use designations

approved in January.

If a new project that meets the General Plan and zoning is submitted, the Town

would have to evaluate the environmental impacts of the proposed project and

develop project conditions. The ability of the Town to secure a development

agreement for any new proposed project cannot be assessed at this time.


TRUTH. Any future projects 1) would stay within the General Plan, 2) require a new EIR report, 3) allow public input, 4) voted on and approved by the Planning Commission and finally 5) discussed then voted on and approved by the Town Council. This would mandate that the community of Loomis would have additional input. 


A very important point is: The Town would now have negotiating power, because 7.8 acres of Office Professional is returned to zoning. The developer desperately wants these 7.8 acres (14% of the buildable land) to be rezoned Residential housing. The real question is will the current Town Council fully negotiate for the Town Residents this time around or will we have to wait for a new stronger Town Council that listens to the people after the 2020 election.



Q. What does the Village at Loomis project include?

A. The Village includes single-family homes, one apartment complex, commercial

areas, one area where there could be a mix of commercial and office space, with

some apartment units above those businesses, parks, trails and open space.


TRUTH.The parks are mandated, and the open space is wetland/Floodplain. This developer is allowed to count alleyway footage in 2 of the 3 residential neighborhoods to make the minimum lot sizes allowable in our General Plan. This Development will include 117 apartments in 12 3-story buildings, 18 alleys, and 113 houses with easement on neighbor’s yard because no driveways were built.  The Village decreases the Commercial Space for Tax Revenue needed for additional Public Safety Officers and road improvements. The Village “eliminated” Professional Office space which would have given local residents the opportunity for higher paying jobs.



Q. Did the Village at Loomis application and hearing process comply with

Town standards?

A. Yes, the Village complied with the Town’s application and hearing process.

Fifteen (15) public hearings were held by the Planning Commission and Town

Council. Public input was received at each hearing.


TRUTH. At the public hearings the Planning Commission heard the public complaints and voted 4-0 against the development. The developer took a new design to the Town Council, but the Town Council decided not to return the new plan back to the Planning Commission to let them do their job and get public input. The Town Council voted 3-2 in favor of the development, despite major concerns by residents and 2 Council Members.



Q. Does the Village at Loomis include sidewalks?

A. Yes, the Village at Loomis includes sidewalks throughout the development and

fully complies with the Town’s requirements for sidewalks within the project.


TRUTH. Yes there are sidewalks on the streets, but there are no sidewalks in the 18 alleys, and all 18 alleys will have tall 2 story houses that limit sunlight and visibility. 113 houses will have nine of the eighteen alleys and these alleys will have no driveways with some alleyways reaching 9, 11, and 13 houses long on both sides of the alley. This is a huge safety concern with the parents that have kids playing and riding bikes in theses alleyways. Not to mention the drivers that use these long alleyways to get into and out of their garages, steering around children.



Q. Does the Village at Loomis provide the number of parking spaces required

by Town standards?

A. Yes. The parking required for Village at Loomis project exceeds the Town’s

requirements for parking. Earlier versions of the proposed project did not fully

satisfy the Town’s parking standards, but the final approved project does.


TRUTH. Parking standards were met by allowing easement parking on 113 neighbor’s yards. This is not part of the General Plan and not part of the Town Center Master Plan. Only one of the 7 parks has parking and that one has inadequate number of spaces for sporting events.



Q. What traffic impact will the Village have on Loomis?

A. The approved Village at Loomis project will add traffic to our community. A traffic

analysis for the project was prepared and can be found in Section 4.6 of the Final

Environmental Impact Report approved for the project. Project conditions and

mitigation measures imposed by the Town include construction of an estimated

$14 million worth of road improvement as well as contributions to improving the

Horseshoe Bar/Interstate 80 interchange. Nevertheless, the Town Council found that development of the Village at Loomis project will result in significant and unavoidable impacts. 


TRUTH. After adding 3 traffic lights and 1 roundabout to our existing roads the key sentence here is: “The Town Council found that development of the Village at Loomis project will result in significant and unavoidable impacts.” 


Their claim of $14 million in road funds will be used at all 5 exit’s/entrances to the Village development to help disperse the 800 vehicles and 4,995 daily trips created by the ±1,100 new residents. There is no widening of any of our existing roads for our current 6,800 residents. 


What is the actual breakdown in costs for the $14 million? Where is this published? Is this the Developers bloated estimate? Who on the Town Staff verified the cost breakdown?



Q. How will the Village impact Loomis schools? 

A. Representatives of the Loomis Union School District and Del Oro High School have testified at Town meetings that they can accommodate students from the Village. When necessary, they’ve said that they will reduce the number of out-of-district students who are permitted to attend Loomis schools to ensure that there is space for these new Loomis students. 

Additionally, the Village developers reached an agreement with the Loomis Union School District to make extra payments to fund new construction at Loomis Grammar School, including money for a cafeteria and new classrooms. 


TRUTH. The Loomis Union School District signed a contract to obligate the Village Developer to extra funding no matter what housing is built or which developer builds it, the School District will be paid. This Contract follows the land and if transferred obligates any new developers to make the same extra payments. The School District is also obligated to apply for grants from the State of California that will allow the developer to recover 70% of his extra payments up to $1.8 million in reimbursements.



Q. What is the Town Center Master Plan and how does it relate to the Village? 

A. The Town Center Master Plan is an important planning document that helps guide the Town’s development in the area between Taylor Road and Interstate 80. The Town Center Master Plan was developed in the 1990s as a comprehensive plan for how the Town Center should evolve. The plan anticipated extensive housing and commercial development on the land where the Village is proposed.


TRUTH. The key sentence is “The Town Center Master Plan anticipated extensive housing and commercial development on the land where the Village is proposed.” The developer planned for the extensive housing, but eliminated most of the commercial development. The developers are exploiting a 30 year old document to justify the creation of a highly dense suburban neighborhood with very little Commercial zoning. This is not the Town Center Master Plan!