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Candidates file for Fallbrook, Rainbow planning groups

The Fallbrook Community Planning Group (FCPG) has seven open seats in the upcoming Nov. 2 Gubernatorial Election, and eight candidates are fighting for those spots on the 15-member board. The Rainbow Planning Group has seven open seats and only seven candidates have filed. The planning groups advise the county board of supervisors on matters including land use and development proposals.

The six incumbents who are again running for a seat on FCPG’s board are Anne Burdick, Eileen Delaney, Tom Harrington, Ron Miller, Jim Russell, and Paul Schaden.

The Village News questioned candidates by email, and asked incumbents what their goal is in seeking another term.

Burdick said, “If re-elected, I will continue to work with other members of the planning group, with members of the community, and with county officials to foster policies that provide for development yet maintain the rural-residential character of our community and quality of life. Our most important goal as a community must be to preserve and enhance Fallbrook’s unique rural-residential character.”

Delaney’s response included citing her background of 10 years serving on the planning group “as a proactive and strong advocate for the citizens of Fallbrook to preserve our rural lifestyle and help improve traffic and roads.” As the chairperson of the Design Review subcommittee, her goals for the next four years include updating Fallbrook’s design guidelines, which are 20 years old, she said, and continuing to represent residents, spending hours reviewing projects, and “doing my homework.”

Harrington said, “I am interested in participating in the Fallbrook development process, with hopes of advising development on how to best blend into and add to our community. My goal is to provide the planning group with any details I see as a professional land surveyor that are pertinent to the issues the group reviews.”

Miller is a seasoned architect and also a member of the Design Review subcommittee, and said he supports the need to pursue an open space environment, together with the highest community design objectives for the village. “It is imperative that the FCPA members represent the goals of the citizens of Fallbrook as to how our community will grow and flourish in the years ahead.”

Russell, who serves as the chairman of the planning group currently, said, “My only goal in running for a seat on the planning group is to help keep Fallbrook a great place to live and raise a family. We have worked in conjunction with the citizens of Fallbrook and the staff at the county to create a community plan to ‘build what needs to be built while protecting what needs to be protected.’ We can keep Fallbrook a great place to live by ensuring that development follows that plan.”

Schaden said his main goal in serving on the Fallbrook Community Planning group is to maintain the current standards for keeping the town in keeping with its rural character and to “not go backwards” in the progress that has been made. Schaden, retired from the fire service, is a longtime resident of the area and said he is interested in remaining involved in the many decisions made by the board.

For new candidates, the question asked was what their interest in running for the position is, and if they have a goal in mind in serving in that particular capacity.

Isaac (Ike) Perez, a retired civil engineer, and Chuck Sanacore, a retired school superintendent have each filed to challenge the FCPG incumbents for a seat on the board.

Sanacore’s interest in running for a board member spot, he said, is “to contribute to the community by lending my expertise in real estate and finance and thereby helping to steer the group into making decisions that are best for the majority of Fallbrook’s residents. My goal is to maintain the charming, rural character of our village that would be destroyed by huge shopping centers and massive housing developments. I would also work for selection of the southern route for the extension of State Route 76 between Bonsall and the Interstate 15 freeway.”

Perez replied, “My first priority in running for the planning group is to preserve the rural character of Fallbrook.”

For the Rainbow Planning Group (RPG), since the number of candidates is equal to the number of seats open, the San Diego County Registrar of Voters will not place the item on the November ballot, but will send letters to the seven individuals immediately after the election informing them that they will be “seated as if elected” on the group.

Six current board members who are seeking reelection include: Mila Bonner, Curtis Nicolaisen, Craig Ohlson, Nita Pearce, Frederick L. Rasp and Dianne Rohwer-Johnson.

Nicolaisen said he is volunteering for a fifth term on the RPG based upon his desire to serve his community. “My wife Mary and I escaped Orange County 24 years ago, and working with my neighbors and the County leaders to maintain the rural character of Rainbow has continued to be very enjoyable. Should I be reelected my primary goal is to keep proposed projects such as the quarry, High Speed Rail, and SDGE power sub-station from negatively impacting our community.”

Ohlson included background in his reply by stating that he is an incumbent on both the Rainbow Planning Group and Vallecitos School District Board of Trustees. “I am running because I love serving the community of Rainbow where I have lived for 20 years. We don’t have enough candidates filing to have an election, however; and we will be reappointed.”

Pearce is also currently seated on the Rainbow Planning Group, and her response to seeking reelection on the board is, “Life in Rainbow is very special. I am interested in the community and to help preserve our way of life.”

Rasp said, “As a RPG member my goal is to help create greater awareness in the Rainbow Valley of the issues we are faced with.”

Peter R. Bacot is also a candidate for the Rainbow CPG. Bacot responded by saying, “I hope to use the knowledge gained during my career as a registered architect to assist the other group members in guiding the course of growth in Rainbow and preserving its rural nature.” He said he retired in 2007 and he and his wife moved to Rainbow because of its beauty and rural atmosphere.

Neither Bonner nor Rohwer-Johnson responded to the Village News question before the publication deadline.

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