With regards to Julie Reeder’s letter, I would like to clarify some inaccuracies in it.
Background: The parking lot was founded many years ago as a parking trust for the benefit of local downtown businesses. Many businesses depend on this lot for their parking spaces required by the County.
Through the years the trust ownership has changed. A few years ago these owners changed the trust to an LLC. This caused the County Tax Assessor to reassess and significantly increase the property taxes.
The parking lot is also in need of major repairs at a significant cost.
The Rezone: A rezone is very expensive and time consuming. As Fallbrook is in the process of a revitalization plan for the downtown area, the parking lot LLC owners asked county staff to explore rezoning the four parcels that make up the parking lot. This would save the LLC the time and cost that a rezone would otherwise cost them.
The parking lot rezone is just one aspect of the Revitalization Plan and the first draft is currently out for Public review.
The Planning Group did not reject the rezone: The Fallbrook Planning Group did not reject the rezone twice as was stated in Ms. Reeder’s letter. Our Planning Group simply continued the request and asked for more information so that we could have all the facts. One of the important facts we asked for was the number of businesses who have an agreement to use the parking lot for their parking & how many parking spaces they are required to have by the County. Unfortunately we never received the information we asked for.
As we do with all projects, we get as many facts as possible, do our research and educate ourselves so that we can make a recommendation that is in the best interest of everyone in Fallbrook.
The Planning Group also discussed a compromise for a partial rezone that would preserve parking in 2 parcels for the businesses that rely on the parking lot and rezone the other 2 parcels. That suggestion was rejected by the parking lot representatives at our meeting.
Finally: The Planning Group takes our responsibility very seriously to represent the best interests of all of Fallbrook.
So at our last Design Review Board Committee meeting, after getting more information from the County Planner and Manager working on the Downtown Revitalization Plan, we made a recommendation for the parking lot to be rezoned V1.
The Planning Group is planning to have the draft Revitalization Plan (which includes the parking lot rezone), on our January meeting agenda.
We welcome community input and suggestions on the Revitalization Plan. We want to hear from you! This is the future for Fallbrook and our downtown area.
Eileen Delaney, Chair
Fallbrook Planning Group