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May 28
1888 - Olympian Jim Thorpe, "America's greatest athlete," born in Indian Territory (probably near Prague, Okla.); later in life, appeared in many B-Westerns shot in Placerita Canyon [story]
Jim Thorpe


The ambitious, 12,000-acre Centennial project would build nearly 20,000 homes. Environmentalists say it would lead to countless 65-mile car trips and possibly burn up in one of California's infamous wildfires.
| Monday, Jan 17, 2022
Centennial-entry-rendering
Centennial entry rendering.

 

By Hillel Aron 

LOS ANGELES (CN) — A lawsuit by two environmental groups to stop the enormous and controversial Tejon Ranch Centennial Project can continue, a Los Angeles County judge ruled Friday, despite a recent settlement in a related case.

The suit, filed by the Center for Biological Diversity and the California Native Plant Society in 2019, aims to stop a new city from being erected in what is essentially the middle of nowhere, 65 miles north of downtown Los Angeles. That would-be city sits at the nexus of two of the state’s biggest anxieties: climate change and its housing crisis.

The publicly traded Tejon Ranch Company owns the largest piece of contiguous land in California, measuring some 270,000 acres straddling the border between Los Angeles and Kern counties, in a sparsely populated area. The ranch currently has a large agriculture operation, raising cattle and growing almonds, pistachios, grapes and alfalfa.

But the ranch’s owner wants to get into the development game. It has proposed building three separate large developments — two in Kern County and one at the northern end of LA County, the 12,000-acre Centennial project, a wildly ambitious plan comprising nearly 20,000 homes and more than 10 million square feet of commercial, retail and office space.

Defenders of the project, which include not just the company behind it but also labor groups, argue the development will create tens of thousands of jobs as well as housing — both badly needed in California.

“There is a collective recognition that developing in places like this has more costs than benefits,” said Nick Jensen of the California Native Plant Society. “Yes, it’s building housing. But at what cost?”

Opponents also cite the danger of wildfire in the area as a reason to block the project.

“Centennial was first conceived of 20 years ago, when we didn’t fully understand these risks,” said J.P. Rose, a senior attorney with the Center for Biological Diversity. “Developments like this are literally built to burn.”

Despite these fears, the L.A. County Board of Supervisors approved the project in December 2018 after extracting a big concession from the developers: a promise that 18% of its housing be affordable. Environmentalists sued, with Climate Resolve filing a its own lawsuit. At a hearing in its suit this past April, L.A. County Superior Court Judge Mitchell Beckoff effectively blocked the project pending a new environmental impact report.

But in December, Climate Resolve and Tejon Ranch reached a landmark settlement, with the developers agreeing to make all 19,300 homes “zero emission.” Among other things, the Tejon Ranch agreed to build the homes without natural gas hookups, to install 30,000 vehicle chargers throughout the community, and implement various fire prevention measures. Plans already called for all the homes to have solar panels. The agreement was enough to mollify Climate Resolve, but not the other two groups.

“We don’t think these measures go far enough in mitigating the immense climate impacts of this development located 60 miles from existing job centers,” said Rose.

Friday’s ruling, also by Beckoff, means the project’s future is still very much in question. At a minimum, it appears likely that Tejon Ranch will have to prepare a new environmental impact report, a long and costly endeavor.

“Today’s ruling simply dealt with a procedural issue,” Tejon Ranch’s vice president of communications Barry Zoeller in a written statement. “We are reviewing the ruling, but given the desperate need for new housing in California, especially affordable housing, we will continue to aggressively defend Los Angeles County’s approval of Centennial, which includes nearly 3,500 designated affordable housing units. Centennial sets a new standard for environmentally sensitive development in California, and that’s worth fighting for.”

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SCV NewsBreak
LOCAL NEWS HEADLINES
Friday, May 27, 2022
Free Summer Trolley to Six Flags Returns to Santa Clarita
The city of Santa Clarita’s free Summer Trolley will make its grand return to Santa Clarita, offering rides to visitors and residents beginning Friday, May 27, through Sept. 11. The Summer Trolley will provide service to premier hotel properties and tourism destinations, including Westfield Valencia Town Center, Six Flags Magic Mountain and Hurricane Harbor.
Friday, May 27, 2022
Friday COVID Roundup: SCV Records One Additional Death, 474 Total
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed eight new deaths throughout L.A. County, which includes one new death reported in Santa Clarita, 5,800 new cases countywide and 173 new cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Friday, May 27, 2022
Sept. 24: Soroptimist Int’l of Valencia Fundraiser ‘Bras for a Cause’
Soroptimist International of Valencia’s annual breast cancer awareness fundraiser “Bras for a Cause” returns Sept. 24, 2022 to the Hyatt Valencia. Now in its 19th year, the event’s theme is “Masquerade Gala.”
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Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
1888 - Olympian Jim Thorpe, "America's greatest athlete," born in Indian Territory (probably near Prague, Okla.); later in life, appeared in many B-Westerns shot in Placerita Canyon [story]
Jim Thorpe
The city of Santa Clarita’s free Summer Trolley will make its grand return to Santa Clarita, offering rides to visitors and residents beginning Friday, May 27, through Sept. 11. The Summer Trolley will provide service to premier hotel properties and tourism destinations, including Westfield Valencia Town Center, Six Flags Magic Mountain and Hurricane Harbor.
Free Summer Trolley to Six Flags Returns to Santa Clarita
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed eight new deaths throughout L.A. County, which includes one new death reported in Santa Clarita, 5,800 new cases countywide and 173 new cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Friday COVID Roundup: SCV Records One Additional Death, 474 Total
Soroptimist International of Valencia’s annual breast cancer awareness fundraiser “Bras for a Cause” returns Sept. 24, 2022 to the Hyatt Valencia. Now in its 19th year, the event’s theme is “Masquerade Gala.”
Sept. 24: Soroptimist Int’l of Valencia Fundraiser ‘Bras for a Cause’
Los Angeles County’s unemployment rate fell to 5.5% in April from a revised 5.7% in March and employers in the county added 13,000 jobs to their payrolls according to recently released state numbers.
L.A. County Unemployment Rate Falls to 5.5%, 13,000 Jobs Added
Senator Scott Wilk (R-Santa Clarita) announced May 27 that Senate Bill 1271 has successfully passed the Senate Floor with unanimous support. The bill adds much-needed accountability to the state’s no-bid contracting process by ensuring there is ample opportunity for both oversight and review of a contract before renewal.
Wilk’s Accountability Measure Passed by State Senate
Students from two high schools in the William S. Hart Union High School District won awards for street safety video Public Service Announcements. Castaic High School and Golden Valley High School walked the red carpet for the Streets, Art, SAFE Film Competition Awards Ceremony at Raleigh Studios in Hollywood on Friday, May 20.
Castaic, Golden Valley Win Awards at Streets, Art, SAFE Film Competition
The University of California, Los Angeles said May 26 it will reinstate an indoor mask policy as coronavirus cases surge in California and Los Angeles County.
UCLA  Will Require Indoor Masking to Resume Through June 15
A ruling by the U.S. District Court on May 25, 2022, vacates both the Interior Board of Land Appeals Decision made in 2019 and the Bureau of Land Management Decision made in 2015. As a result, BLM no longer has a valid decision indicating that the mining contracts are expired or terminated.
Santa Clarita Officials Respond to Court’s CEMEX Decision
The Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health and the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced on May 26 they have entered into an agreement for Mental Health to pilot the provision of comprehensive crisis response services to individuals experiencing mental health crises while onboard Metro vehicles or at Metro stations.
L.A. County to Deploy Mental Health Crisis Response Teams Across Metro System
College of the Canyons had two Cougars compete at the 2022 California Community College Athletic Association Track & Field State Championships hosted by Mt. San Antonio College May 20-21, with Matthew Ballentine and Milca Osorio finishing among the state's best in several events.
Cougars Ballentine, Osorio Combine for Three Top-Five Finishes at State Meet
1971 - Community preview night (pre-grand opening), Magic Mountain [story]
opening night ticket to Magic Mountain
The Small Business Development Center hosted by College of the Canyons will offer a free webinar Meetings, Minutes and Motions: Preparing Corporate Documents on Wednesday, June 9, from noon to 1 p.m.
June 9: Learn How to Prepare Corporate Documents at COC SBDC Webinar
The chance to change an individual’s life for the better is something most people hope to have at least once in their lives. California State University, Northridge journalism professor David Blumenkrantz will have that opportunity this summer.
CSUN Professor Headed to Nairobi to Lead Photojournalism Program
Federal authorities arrested a United States Postal Service mail carrier and a Santa Clarita Valley man on Thursday morning for allegedly scheming to steal approximately $800,000 in unemployment insurance funds by using false claims of COVID-related job losses and stealing UI debit cards from the U.S. mail.
Feds Arrest Valencia Postal Worker, Santa Clarita Man on Fraud Charges
The third compilation album featuring original works by California Institute of the Arts students in electronic music was released on May 5 by the nonprofit United Kingdom record label Touched Music.
CalArts Students Featured on New John Tejada Album
About 150 Saugus High School students walked out of class Thursday, participants said, to protest for gun laws following the Robb Elementary School shooting Tuesday in Uvalde, Texas.
Saugus High Students Take Part in Walkout to Call for Stricter Gun Laws
SACRAMENTO – To further support California families while supplies of infant formula remain limited, the California Department of Public Health is adding a new flexibility by expanding purchasing options for the WIC (Women, Infants and Children) program.
Infant Formula Options Expanded for California’s WIC Families
The Southern California blues/hard rock band Great White first took a bite out of the rock scene in 1984 and since then has achieved worldwide success, encompassing sales of over six million records.
June 11: Jack Russell’s Great White at The Canyon
The Newhall Marketplace "Hello Summer" event will be held at the Newhall Community Center on Sunday, June 5, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
June 5: Newhall Marketplace ‘Hello Summer’ Event
Saugus High School students senior Alex McArdle and sophomore Joaquin Soto, with assistance from advisor Wade Williams, captured a $500 award for the Saugus High video program.
Saugus High Students Win Award for PSA Video
SACRAMENTO — State Sen. Scott Wilk, R-Santa Clarita, announced Thursday that Senate Bill 947 has successfully completed its journey through the Senate, as it passed unanimously off the Senate floor.
Wilk’s Whistleblower Protection Act Clears Another Hurdle
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed Thursday nine new deaths, 6,245 new cases countywide, 366 new cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Thursday COVID Roundup: 366 New SCV Cases; 6,245 New Cases Countywide
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