Also serving the communities of De Luz, Rainbow, Camp Pendleton, Pala and Pauma

Supervisors grant time extension for Twin Development subdivision

The San Diego County Board of Supervisors voted 5-0 March 3 to grant a time extension for the completion of required infrastructure improvements for a Bonsall subdivision.

The vote extends the performance completion date to September 3, 2010, for the 229.89-acre parcel at the intersection of Gopher Canyon Road and Little Gopher Canyon Road. Twin Development, LLC, plans to subdivide the property into 90 single-family residential lots.

The Environmental Impact Report for the project was certified in August 1982, and the final map for the subdivision was approved by the Board of Supervisors in November 1988. When the supervisors approved the final map, they also authorized the use of a secured agreement to ensure completion of roads and other infrastructure.

The owner at that time intended to sell the entire subdivision, but economic conditions hindered such a sale. In November 1991, the Board of Supervisors approved a five-year time extension to complete the agreements. The previous owner subsequently requested a release of the bonds which had been posted, and in November 1995 the county supervisors approved an amendment to the secured agreement authorizing the use of a lien contract. In November 1996, the Board of Supervisors approved an additional five-year extension.

Between the November 1998 approval and the next time extension in November 2001, various changes affected the improvement requirements including modification of private and public road standards, significant increases in traffic volume, changes in road levels of service, General Plan reclassification of roads serving the subdivision, and implementation of stormwater runoff best management practices. The November 2001 time extension added provisions requiring the improvements to be built in accordance with standards and requirements in effect when the lien contract was released.

After Twin Development, LLC, purchased the right title and interest in the subdivision, the county supervisors approved an amendment to the secured agreement releasing the joint lien contract and holding agreement while transferring responsibility for the construction of the improvements to Twin Development and substituting performance bonds in place of the lien contract. A joint performance bond for $7,303,134 in favor of the County of San Diego and the Rainbow Municipal Water District was placed with the Clerk of the Board of Supervisors to ensure the completion of the improvements.

Although Twin Development was ready to undertake the improvements, it was determined that a Habitat Loss Permit might be required to address the removal of Coastal Sage Scrub. Twin Oaks and the county disagree about the requirement, and the time extension allows for additional action which may resolve the issue.

“I don’t have any problem giving them a time extension,” said Supervisor Bill Horn.

The time extension does not bind Twin Development to any specific new requirements. “Without a time extension the project could not go forward,” said Chandra Waller, the county’s deputy chief administrative officer responsible for the Land Use and Environment Group which includes the Department of Planning and Land Use. “It’s not a new condition.”

It is possible that a review will determine the project’s exemption from a Habitat Loss Permit due to its approval date prior to the enactment of certain conditions. “We need to see biological studies that indicate these facts,” said deputy county counsel Claudia Anzures.

The time extension is for completing the infrastructure itself rather than the housing units, but a grading permit will be required for the roads and utility infrastructure. “We need to comply with the laws in order to issue the permit,” Anzures said.

Wallace Benward of Twin Development expressed opposition to the additional environmental work. “We would have to go back to a process that we went through,” he said. “It amounts to nothing more than a taking of our property.”

If an exemption from a Habitat Loss Permit can be justified, no additional mitigation would be required. The county will use the findings from the review to submit to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for concurrence that the project would be exempt from a Habitat Loss Permit.

“All we’ve been trying to do for five years is to get the permits,” Benward said.

To comment on this story online, visit


Reader Comments(0)

Rendered 04/08/2024 04:31