Acton Town Council Meeting Minutes, June 26, 2023, Approved

  1. Call to Order, Flag Salute, & Roll Call –  The meeting was called to order at 6:32 pm by President Jeremiah Owen.  Present at the meeting – June Perkins, Jeremiah Owen, Jacki Ayer, Tom Costan, Kelly Teno, Pam Wolter via zoom
  2. Community Comments – None
  3. Correspondence –
  4. Library Report – None
  5. Local Representatives – Brandon Roque from State Senator Scott Wilks office announced that there were lots of proposed state bills that made it out of committee.  There were a lot of wins on the Senators side along with a lot to be concerned about.  Jacki asked about AB205.  Brandon commented that they were kind of blindsided by the bill.  It was hidden in a budget bill.  Jacki spoke about the concerns that the BESS developers being able to get around the local permit process by giving donations to local groups.
  6. Sheriff’s Report – None
  7. Draft Wildfire Ordinance – The ATC wrote a letter with all our concerns with this ordinance.  The Planning Commission approved it without addressing any of our concerns,    One of our concerns was the road paving,  The ATC has reached out to Supervisor Kathryn Barger’s office.  A Resident spoke about the local Fire Departments buying all terrain fire trucks to maneuver Acton’s dirt roads.
  8. Residential Development Standards Ordinance –  This ordinance passed the Planning Commission on April 15, 2023.  Jacki spoke about the crazy standards in the ordinance and that the ATC had written a comment letter,  Regional Planning stated that they had addressed all our concerns.  They still included prohibiting chain link fencing which is allowed in the Acton Community Standards.
  9. BESS Update – ATA/ATC – County Report Due Back July 21 –  Local business owners have been gathering petition signatures.  One owner reported that a person came in and stated that the BESS projects had been approved.  This is false.  One resident said she could give us the contact for an EPA lawyer in Santa Monica and suggested the ATC contact them.  Jacki spoke about the June 6th Board of Supervisors motion and that Regional Planning has until July 22nd to give their findings.   Jacki Ayer made a motion….. June Perkins 2nd the motion.  The motion carried.  A resident whose property is located near the proposed Angeleno project spoke about surveyors being on her property.  The surveyors told her that the developers had told them they had permission to go on neighboring properties.  This home owner had never given her permission and they went through a No Trespassing sign.  Jacki spoke about AB205 and how developers can side step local review and go straight to the CEC.  They will still have to go through the CEQA process and have to do a robust review and look at alternatives.  If an alternative has less of an impact they will have to use it.  #2 The County is making money on all this development.  #3 There is a problem in the fact that to meet CEC criteria that they are an asset to the community all they have to do is make donations to organizations.  If the organization puts the check in their bank account, the endorsement on the back of the check means they approve of the project.  So far the organizations that the developers have reached out to they have not revealed what they are working for.    The CEC has emergency rulemaking in AB205.  All concerned residents are urged to sign up to get notifications.  Look for the information to sign up  on the Acton Takes Action website.   Jacki spoke about all the developer lies, where the projects actually are, and the giving of donations.  Jacki Ayer made a motion…….June Perkins 2nd the motion.  The motion carried.  Jeremiah asked if the ATC letter will be too early to send.  Jacki stated no, because they need to be aware.  There was discussion about the emails between the school and developers.  Jacki Ayer made a motion……  Tom Costan 2nd the motion.  The motion carried.  If this is put on a school board agenda we should send someone from the ATC to make a comment.  Ruthie Brock from Acton Takes Action spoke about the Nightshade Project.  They have a number but it has been denied.  Jacki stated that she will look into the denial.
  10. CPUC OIR GO-131 Revisions – The OIR is changing General Order 13, that regulates the utilities.  This is what needs to be done to build a transmission line or battery storage.  There was a question about eminent domain.  Nobody has eminent domain over if they are a state agency.  It cannot be a private or an investor owned utility.  The ATC is now a party to the proceedings.  Tom Costan made a motion…….. Kelly Teno 2nd the motion.  The motion carried.  Jacki Ayer abstained from the vote.
  11. Rural Lighting District Ordinance –  The ATC received an email from the County stating that this ordinance is up for revision in 2024-2025.  It will probably prohibit arena lights even if they are shielded.  Should the ATC write a comment letter now since after the revision the comment time period will be short.  Jeremiah thought we should give some time for resident feedback before writing a comment letter.
  12. Traffic Issues –  The County has asked for support of the Rural Safety Plan.  We found that Acton was left out and brought it to their attention and they have decided to add Acton.  The Crown Valley speed limit is going down to 40 miles per hour.  The ATC is going to ask them to look at Sierra Highway and Red Rover Mine Road again for a possible 4 way stop.
  13. Historical Context Statement by DRP – After the ATC gave a tour to representatives from Regional Planning, and Public Works, they have reached out they are going to do a Historical Context Statement and bring in all of Acton’s historical properties.
  14. Bylaws – table
  15. Minutes – table
  16. Councilmember Comments –  Tom Costan stated he went to represent the ATC  at the Troop 145 Eagle Court.  The ATC appreciates everyone who attended the meeting.  The ATC appreciates the School Superintendent and how he put forth the comment to BESS developers
  17. Unfinished/New Business –  No meeting July 3rd
  18. Items for Next Agenda – VHFHZ, Palgrave
  19. Adjournment – 9:21pm
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