February Update on West Coyote Hills
In December 2015, the Friends of Coyote Hills announced our intent to take legal action as a result of the October 2015 West Coyote Hills Vesting Tentative Tract Map (VTTM) approval by the Fullerton Planning Commission, and the subsequent November 2015 City Council denial of our appeal. As part of this VTTM approval, the City ignored Measure W, the people’s 2012 referendum that should have overturned the development approvals for West Coyote Hills. The council’s decision set in motion a re-appraisal for the property as if it were entitled for development. That and the acquisition timeline of basically one year made it clear the acquisition plan we thought we were collaborating with the City and Chevron since 2013 was not being offered to the public in October 2015.
Our request was simple – allow the public a realistic opportunity to acquire the entire West Coyote Hills site for a public nature park. That means: 1) a fair price considering Measure W, 2) a reasonable timeframe of at least 3-5 years during which time funds can be raised to purchase individual parcels in an order that results in the highest park and habitat value for the money.
By December 2015, the Friends were ready to take legal action to defend the people’s referendum. The City asked us to delay taking legal action until 2/15/16 because they had not completed appraisals by 11/30/15 per the VTTM. The Friends agreed.
As 2/15/16 approached, appraisals and “reconciliations” were still not complete. The latter should have been completed by 1/15/16 per the City’s VTTM. The City is yet again asking the Friends to withhold their legal action. We will be having a dialog with the City on the purpose of an additional delay especially in consideration of our appeal for a realistic acquisition plan which was denied in November.