Friday, 21 August 2009 00:51

Plymouth Urged to Look At Agricultural Buffer Ordinance

slide3.pngPlymouth – Area ranchers last week urged the Plymouth City Council to plan for a future agricultural land buffer ordinance, to protect lands from expected city growth. Grielich Road ranch owner William Greer urged that in the future, the city get an ordinance on buffers, then, if needed, there can be a variance, and a discussion between landowners. Rancher Joseph Putnam said he has “cattle 12 months out of the year,” and said “we need some serious protection” in a buffer. Rancher Earl Williams said Caltrans has lots of buffers on highways, and “they become garbage dumps.” He said someone should be in charge of their care, “or it becomes a mess.” He said Hawk’s View, which neighbors his property, was supposed to have a 3-foot fence as a buffer, but some properties still do not have fences. City Clerk Gloria Stoddard said that was required of the original project, but after that owner went into bankruptcy, “that was all thrown out.” Consultant Richard Prima said the city should place those buffer area agreements in “land usage approval, so those things get attached to land usage.” One rancher asked about the General Plan’s “Planning Area,” which is “coming close” to his property. City Attorney Steven Rudolph said by the “inclusion of property in this planning area, it does not give the city any rights over this property whatsoever. It remains county property.” Foothill Conservancy’s Thomas Infusino said it was unclear about how they would “mitigate impacts of the city on county services.” He encouraged the city to work with the Foothill Conservancy to properly develop “standards and fees,” and said a buffer ordinance could help settle issues. Art Marinaccio, of Amador Citizens For Responsible Government, said it wasn’t the day for the discussion on the ag buffer, but “it is going to take an ordinance to deal with it.” He also noted that the term “prime” should be removed from the plan for Reeder Sutherland’s property, and “the annexation of lands for the purpose of not developing on it would not be approved by LAFCO.” He said he was representing Bob Reeder in the request. Reeder Sutherland intends to seek annexation into Plymouth of its 2 projects, totaling about 50 dwelling units of luxury housing. Story by Jim Reece This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.