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A call to Tesoro residents

SCV Voices

Posted: September 15, 2010 4:55 a.m.
Updated: September 15, 2010 4:55 a.m.
 

Dennis Koontz and I live in Tesoro. We both served on city of Santa Clarita's formation committee 23 years ago. I was a parks commissioner, and Dennis was a city councilman. We know firsthand the advantages of being in the city. We encourage our neighbors to help us annex into the city where we drive, shop, work and play.

There are many rumors going around. We need to know the truth. We are not in the city now. There is no city of Valencia.

We are on the outside the city of Santa Clarita in an unincorporated area of Los Angeles County. We have little say in the place where we live.

The owner of the vacant area of Tesoro wants to build an additional 714 homes above us - not the 237 large estate homes that were on the original plan, the plan that was agreed upon before we bought our homes. If we were inside the city, we would have more of a say in just how many homes should be built there. The city can be a strong ally.

City services come on a resident-first basis, and we are not residents of the city. So we are at the end of the line for swimming, dance and sports, and we pay more to join city activities, if there is room for us outsiders.

The county Sheriff's Department provides police services. The city also contracts with the Sheriff's Department, but within city limits it is stronger with more deputies and services per person.

The disadvantages of being in the city are none. Your taxes will not go up, your addresses will not change. You may put Valencia or Santa Clarita on your mail. Our HOA will still maintain our common area through our HOA fees. Taxes collected to maintain public areas will still maintain public areas.

Tesoro Adobe Historic Park: Under the binding donation agreement, the county is to operate the site as a condition of having accepted the land from the developer. Under that agreement, the Tesoro del Valle master HOA is required to pay the county annually for all costs associated with the operations of the site. This would not change as a result of annexation.

Why do "they" say we should not become part of the city? "Our home values will go down if we annex into the city." That statement is not true. I am a Realtor. Being part of this city has never caused home values to drop; just the opposite. "We will get new monument signs and more landscaping if we don't annex." Those don't sound like good reasons to give up self-government.

County Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich serves us as best he can, but he has more than 2 million constituents and he doesn't live here. The City Council members do live here. We want to be able to vote for those who make the decisions we must live with once we cross Copper Hill Drive.

We voted last November in favor of annexation, but our HOA board did not listen to our vote. It is not following our wishes but working against us.

Let us get the whole story from both sides. Please join us in attending the information meeting tonight at 6:30 pm at City Hall, located at 23920 Valencia Blvd. Let's ask all the questions we want and get the answers we need.

Please write Antonovich and ask him, once again, to champion self-government and help us annex into the economically sound, stable, proven city of Santa Clarita.

Linda Storli and Dennis Koontz are Tesoro residents. Their column reflects their own views and not necessarily those of The Signal.

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