Stonecrest Annexation: Whose Payroll is This Anti-Annexation Guy On?
Something is Definitely FISHY Here. DO NOT SIGN any Petitions!
Today's Editorial Section of The Signal brings up a very valid point:
Who is the guy walking the Stonecrest neighborhood gathering signatures on the petition to stop the City of Santa Clarita from annexing that area, and what exactly are his motivations?
The guy who is circulating the petition to force a vote on the Stonecrest annexation is reportedly a researcher at NBC in Burbank and is NOT telling people that the signatures are not necessary for their area to be annexed to the City of Santa Clarita. Instead, the signatures are only required for the OPPOSITE purpose: to BLOCK the annexation. Is he on the Cemex payroll? Very likely so!
And of course this whole situation gets even fishier... The signatures obtained by this Mystery Man initially were submitted to LAFCO after the deadline, so LAFCO has every right to consider all of those signatures invalid and move forward with the annexation. However, Supervisor Antonovich is demanding that there be a "second chance" time period where signatures can once again be obtained and presented to LAFCO in an attempt to trigger a vote. So, whose payroll is Antonivich on then?
Residents of the Stonecrest development want the usual benefits of annexation: More protection than they get in the county, a utility tax that they’ll no longer have to pay, and preferential enrollment in City recreation programs. Residents say that this man has been telling his neighbors that their taxes will go up and their services won’t improve if they join the city — which simply isn’t true. In other words, he is collecting signatures under false pretenses by distorting the facts and by implying that a vote is also needed for the annexation to go through, which of course it's not.
A little geography lesson may explain why this situation is important... Stonecrest sits in the area between the current City of Santa Clarita boundaries and the proposed Cemex Mine project. Which of course will spew unmeasurable amounts of particulates and pollutants into the area in and around the Santa Clarita Valley. According to City officials, it would also set a dangerous precedent in that if approved it would be the first time in the entire country that a large-scale mining operation would be put in place this close to established residential communities.
The City owns the property where the county and federal governments intend for Cemex to mine. But it’s in the unincorporated county territory, which doesn’t give the City the right to block Cemex from digging under the surface. As long as the Cemex property is under "county rule", the agreement among the County, the Feds and Cemex prevails. If the City were to annex Stonecrest and then some of the land proposed for the Cemex project, then it's quite possible that they could succeed in blocking the entire project.
The news this morning announced the EPA findings that California, and particularly the Los Angeles area, is pretty much off the charts in pollution levels already, and that there is a measureable increased cancer risk from any increases in the levels of air pollution. Why in the world would anyone in their right mind want to bring that into their neighborhood, unless they're being paid big bucks to do so?
The status of Stonecrest is that the Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) has the right to annex the Stonecrest development to the City of Santa Clarita automaticaly unless there are enough protest signatures from the residents of that community to trigger a vote. The annexation just goes through without incident, and then the City of Santa Clarita will have more authority to challenge the Cemex operation since it will then have the only residential area directly adjacent to the proposed mine within its boundaries, and therefore within its control.
In other words, if you live in the Stonecrest development and are asked to sign a petition, the best thing for you to do is NOTHING!
DO NOT SIGN this petition. The annexation of the Stonecrest development to the City of Santa Clarita would assist the City in protecting your air quality in particular, as well as the air quality of the entire Santa Clarita Valley. Do you want your children to be breathing in filthy air that has a strong potential of creating cancer? What's wrong with this picture?
Here's what The Signal has to say about this, and I wholeheartedly agree:
Here’s the bottom line if you live in Stonecrest.
- If someone knocks on your door and asks you to sign a petition for the "privilege" of voting on annexation, don’t sign it.
- If you’re for annexation and against Cemex, don’t sign anything. The annexation goes through automatically.
- But if LAFCO does schedule a vote, whether by mail or in person, be sure cast your ballot.
Because if a vote is held and only the opponents show up, Cemex wins — and you lose.
Looking for Santa Clarita area homes? Click here to check out the latest listings!
Click here for our easy Automated Home Finder!
Technorati tags: Cemex, Stonecrest, LAFCO, annexation, Antonovich, Santa Clarita