Judge Claster Requires Project & EIR Be Overturned

Judge Claster Requires Project & EIR Be Overturned

We have that news hot off the presses from today’s court hearing.

Judge Claster ruled in OUR favor (again) that BOTH the project approvals (entitlements) and Environmental Impact Report (EIR) must be overturned for the Esperanza Hills project. Yep. We are forcing the developer back to the drawing boards AGAIN. We expect these approvals to be rescinded by mid-July 2018.

The Esperanza Hills developer may (or may not) have a newly drafted/revised EIR available for review at that time. We will see. This would mean additional comment letters, hearings, and red shirts before the Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors.

What does this mean for our 2017 lawsuit? This lawsuit is now “stayed” and once the project approvals/EIR are overturned on the appeal win from today—we and the Cielo Vista attorneys will dismiss our respective lawsuit without prejudice. This allows us to file a new suit in the future if we need to. And, we should know about the court’s decision on the Esperanza Hills easement through Cielo Vista by early April. There are so many moving parts!! It can be hard to keep up with.

We are making history here!

We are unaware of any project at the County of Orange that has been overturned twice and will need to go before the Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors for a third consideration.

Thank you as always for your support. Remember, we have our garage sale scheduled for March 31st… we need your stuff to sell to keep winning these cases against this poorly planned project. We also gladly accept donations. Remember, the contributions are tax-deductible.

And, a big shout out to our attorney Kevin Johnson and his team for the exceptional legal work on this case!

Next Garage Sale Date:  Saturday, March 31st

The Alaux family has graciously agreed to host our rescheduled garage sale.  It will be held on Saturday, March 31st.  (Yes, we know this is Easter weekend–but no other weekends worked in March or April for a variety of reasons.)  If you are having a garage sale before then, please consider donating any left over items to ours!

Please donate items to assist with our efforts to Protect Tomorrow.

  • Donate Items – Clean Your Closets NOW!
    We are looking for items that will sell: clothes, kitchenware, baby items, etc.  No large (or bulky) furniture will be accepted.  It’s time to go through your closets!
  • Item Delivery – Starts Friday, March 23rd
    Drop off your items at the:

We also need volunteers.  Here are two opportunities:

  • Sorting – Friday, March 30th at 6 PM
    The sorting begins at 6 PM at the Alaux home (21310 Vía Del Puente) This will help us organize items (mens, womens, and childrens clothes, for example, need to be separated).
  • Working the Garage Sale – Saturday, March 31st from 5 AM – Noon
    We also need volunteers to help set stuff out starting at 5 AM and work the garage sale until about noon at the Alaux home (21310 Vía Del Puente).  We know getting up at 5 AM on a Saturday isn’t fun, but it is a necessary task with a garage sale.

To volunteer please email us: ProtectYorbaLinda@gmail.com.

We will watch the weather and if rain is in the forecast–we will decide how best to proceed.

Garage Sale Postponed

We had nearly everything lined up, but decided to postpone the February Garage Sale until March—alas it wasn’t meant to be this weekend.

But, that gives you about a month’s worth of time to keep sifting through your stuff.  As a reminder, your stuff is what we need to sell to raise money!! So the more you bring, the more we make to fund the Esperanza Hills battle.

With the extra time, please go through those drawers you haven’t had a chance to de-clutter, those closets with clothes that haven’t seen the light of day in years, and those cabinets full of goodies perfect for a garage sale.

When we have a date confirmed, we will let you know, but at the moment it is looking like the end of March.

Item Drop-off Starts TODAY!

We need your stuff… help Protect Our Homes and Hills pay legal bills by donating to our garage sale and donating your time to run it!

Please donate items to assist with our efforts to Protect Tomorrow.

  • Donate Items – Clean Your Closets NOW!
    We are looking for items that will sell: clothes, kitchenware, baby items, etc.  No large (or bulky) furniture will be accepted.  It’s time to go through your closets!
  • Item Delivery – Starts Friday, February 2nd
    Drop off your items at the Byrne residence (4320 Willow Tree Ln.) on the San Antonio side. –OR–
    Drop off your items at the Ensign residence (4805 Via Del Corral) on the Stonehaven side.

We also need volunteers.  Here are two opportunities:

  • Sorting – Friday, February 9th at 6 PM
    The sorting begins at 6 PM at the Alaux home (21310 Vía Del Puente) This will help us organize items (mens, womens, and childrens clothes, for example, need to be separated).
  • Working the Garage Sale – Saturday, February 10th from 5 AM – Noon
    We also need volunteers to help set stuff out starting at 5 AM and work the garage sale until about noon at the Alaux home (21310 Vía Del Puente).  We know getting up at 5 AM on a Saturday isn’t fun, but it is a necessary task with a garage sale.

To volunteer please email us: ProtectYorbaLinda@gmail.com.

We will watch the weather and if rain is in the forecast–we will likely change the date. Stay tuned.

Garage Sale on February 10 – Volunteers & Stuff Needed

The Alaux family has graciously agreed to host our next Garage Sale on Saturday, February 10th.

Please donate items to assist with our efforts to Protect Tomorrow.

  • Donate Items – Clean Your Closets NOW!
    We are looking for items that will sell: clothes, kitchenware, baby items, etc.  No large (or bulky) furniture will be accepted.  It’s time to go through your closets!
  • Item Delivery – Starts Friday, February 2nd
    Drop off your items at the Byrne residence (4320 Willow Tree Ln.) on the San Antonio side. –OR–
    Drop off your items at the Ensign residence (4805 Via Del Corral) on the Stonehaven side.

We also need volunteers.  Here are two opportunities:

  • Sorting – Friday, February 9th at 6 PM
    The sorting begins at 6 PM at the Alaux home (21310 Vía Del Puente) This will help us organize items (mens, womens, and childrens clothes, for example, need to be separated).
  • Working the Garage Sale – Saturday, February 10th from 5 AM – Noon
    We also need volunteers to help set stuff out starting at 5 AM and work the garage sale until about noon at the Alaux home (21310 Vía Del Puente).  We know getting up at 5 AM on a Saturday isn’t fun, but it is a necessary task with a garage sale.

To volunteer please email us: ProtectYorbaLinda@gmail.com.

We will watch the weather and if rain is in the forecast–we will likely change the date. Stay tuned.

Download the Press Release

Protect Our Homes and Hills submitted this Press Release to local papers on the most recent court victory.

Download the Press Release.

Well, the Appellate Court Decision is In…

We just learned that the 4th District Court of Appeals rendered its decision on our appeal of the original 2015 lawsuit.

We won–again!!

In this appeal stemming from the original lawsuit, we included four issues that we had lost. They were: 1) Project Description (adjacency to Chino Hills State Park), 2) Fire Evacuation and Access, 3) Biology (impacts to sensitive plant species), and 4) the Project’s Water Use.

The Friday the 13th decision means the County needs to recirculate the Esperanza Hills Environmental Impact Report because of its deficiencies and inadequate analysis on project description, fire evacuation/access, and water use.

That’s the great news.

About 10 days ago, Judge Claster sided in favor of the County on the Return of the Writ–meaning we lost– but because we just won the appeal… it may not matter.  We are gathering Intel on this currently.

And, because of this appeal win, our 2017 lawsuit may be moot. We shall see on this too!

We are going to celebrate on Saturday, October 21st at 6 PM at Wise Guys Pizzeria.  The restaurant is located at: 4957 Yorba Ranch Road.  Join us on the patio for an explanation and, better yet, celebrate a second court win. We’ve reserved the picnic tables.

Get your dinner at 6 PM and we’ll have some celebratory remarks around 6:30.  Please let us know if you plan to attend so that we can give Wise Guys a heads up on the number of guests.

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” –Margaret Mead

Expected Activity on Esperanza Hills

We have several bits of news for you:

1. CC&Rs Needed Immediately. If you live in Tracts 12850 or 12877 (see the streets this covers below), then we are on a hunt for the CC&Rs for each of those developments. The CC&Rs are the Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions for a development  Something is a brewing and we need to verify it within the CC&Rs, but the City doesn’t appear to have a copy.  We thought we’d turn to you and see if any of you happen to have them.  If you have the CC&Rs please let us know immediately.  We need a copy from both Tracts, so someone from each development will need to step forward. We’d like to borrow them, scan them, and return them to you.

The streets include:

  • Tract 12877: Stonehaven (top of the hill down the east side of the street to Aviemore), Heatherridge, and Cardiff.
  • Tract 12850: Stonehaven (top of the hill down to  Via del Agua), Stirlingbridge, and Devonport.

2. Esperanza Hills Activity. We’ve received word from the developer of Esperanza Hills that they plan to do borings on the property.  These borings will likely take place over the next few weeks. So, if you see activity up there–we know about it. And we’ve asked them to test the soil for hazardous waste while they are at it–we don’t think they will.

3. Court Hearings.  Several of you remember the comments from the Wise Guys Pizzeria night.  We had expected the judge to hear the Return of the Writ on Friday, August 11th but that has been moved to September 8th.  Stay tuned.

4. Monthly Donors.  Thank you to all the new donors that stepped forward to help us reach our goal.  We appreciate your generosity and assistance.  Every little bit helps because we are maintaining four separate legal challenges and staying on top of our legal bills is the goal!

Remember, if you have the CC&Rs AND live on any of those streets above, please email me immediately.

We Were Right, More Exits Are Needed

The team is constantly researching things and asking for public records from the City and the County.  One of the most disturbing things we just got a copy of was a letter submitted to the County from the Sheriff’s Department. It was like pulling teeth to get this. 

Here is what a Sheriff’s Department Internal Memo from January 31, 2014 states:

“The project area includes the 112 home Cielo Vista project and the 340 home Esperanza Hills project
Together, these projects present significant evacuation issues because of their proximity to and the fire dangers associated with Chino Hills State Park. There are five potential entrance and exit points and it is recommended that as many of them as possible be built and that all of the homes from both of the developments have access to all of the exits during an emergency evacuation. The EIR identifies two access points for the Esperanza Hills project which would present evacuation challenges during less than ideal conditions.” (emphasis added)

Yep — this completely validates everything we’ve been saying.  Safety first.  But no, the Board of Supervisors insists it’s safe even when the Sheriff said FIVE exits makes these two projects safer.  There is only ONE daily access for Esperanza Hills.  What gives?  Why is our public safety so easily compromised?

This tidbit is just one of things we relayed to the community on Sunday.

Donor Steps Up the Game For Us

Our previous challenge grant to raise $5,000 in July was successful.  Thank you to all those individuals that helped get us to our goal!

We have a new announcement.  Our next challenge steps things up a notch, but it all keeps up the pressure on the developer of the Esperanza Hills project.

Here it is:
For every new household that commits by August 14th to $100 or more a month for the next year, $500 will be given to the ongoing effort up to $5,000!  

That’s right!  If 10 just people commit to $100+ a month for 12 months… we get $5,000 immediately!

Hills For Everyone, our fiscal sponsor, already has a monthly donation program in place. They will process your donations on or around the 15th of the month. Enroll using this form.

Print, complete, and mail the form to:
Hills For Everyone
P.O. Box 9835
Brea, CA 92822-1835

or scan your completed form and email it to info@HillsForEveryone.org.

The entire leadership team has already been donating monthly for a long time and our time weekly!  Other friends and neighbors have been generously giving too.  We need your help to keep this effort going.