On Tuesday, the County Board of Supervisors decided to put the question of whether to OK the 1,700-home Lilac Hills Ranch project ‒ minus amenities that county staff had secured, like roads and fire stations ‒ to voters this November.

Lilac Hills has long been in the works, but last year the developer, Accretive Investments, opted to bypass the normal planning process and try to get the project put on the ballot.

Before it made a decision on the project, supervisors opted to have county staff prepare a report on the differences between the project that was going through the planning process, and the one that would appear on the ballot.

The report found that the developers would be off the hook for building infrastructure to support the new homes, including a fire station, a school and roads, leaving taxpayers to foot the bill.

Supervisor Dianne Jacob characterized the decision on Lilac Hills Ranch as one between the need for housing, and need to follow the county’s recently developed general plan.

“Does the need for housing outweigh the difference between this initiative, the planning commission recommendation and the county general plan? And I say ‘no,’” she said, according to the Union-Tribune.

EUSD Supe Stretches Requirements of Financial Disclosure

In June, Coast News’ Aaron Burgin detailed the ties between Encinitas Union School District Superintendent Timothy Baird, the organization that funded yoga at the schools, and a research center at the University of San Diego.

Now, Burgin writes that Baird also failed to report paid travel expenses related to yoga conferences, which are considered gifts, on his statements of economic interest.

Baird said he wasn’t required to report the gifts under the district’s policies.

“But a review of the district’s conflict of interest code and state rules governing such codes suggests that Baird and the board for years have operated under an incorrect set of rules, and should have been disclosing more information to the public — including all gifts and travel,” Burgin writes.

Baird says he will now consider amending his filings.

Escondido’s Fragozo Cops to One Felony Count

The Escondido Union School District trustee who was the subject of a temporary restraining order last year, pleaded guilty to one count of felony voter fraud this week.

Trustee Jose Fragozo must resign his seat and sit out of the next election, and he faces up to three years in jail, the Union-Tribune reports.

The 12 other charges against Fragozo have been dropped according to the agreement, which included perjury, false voter registration and filing false election documents.

At the center of the issue was the question of Fragozo’s residency. Fragozo listed an apartment on his voter registration, but owned a four-bedroom home in a different electoral district, which was the address on his license, vehicle registration and homeowner tax filings.

EUSD Superintendent Luis Ibarra-Rankins said Fragozo’s seat will remain vacant until the November election, in accordance with state law.

Also in the News

As travelers heading south on Interstate 5 reach San Diego County and gaze out over the San Luis Rey River where it pours into the ocean, they’re greeted with … a rotting building. The owner of the property says he needs at keast two more years to demolish it and get a new tenant. (Union-Tribune)

North County Transit District is ramping up enforcement of illegal rail crossings, a popular way of getting to the beach in communities like Encinitas and Del Mar. (Seaside Courier)

A proposal to regulate murals in Oceanside appears to be drying up. (Coast News)

Oceanside is having trouble dredging the mouth of the harbor, which serves the dual purpose of making the harbor entrance safe for navigating, and replenishing the beaches. (KPBS)

 On KPBS’s Midday Edition, Alison St. John discussed a new year-round homeless shelter in North County. Meanwhile, another much-lauded Vista-based organization that requires drug testing for its residents may have to change its model if it wants to keep getting federal grants. (KPBS)

Ruarri Serpa

Ruarri Serpa is a freelance writer in Oceanside. Email him at ruarris@gmail.com and find him on Twitter at @RuarriS.

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