Jan. 24--VICTORVILLE -- With the growth of communities around the Southern California Logistics Airport, the city has now established its sphere of influence to make sure that, in the event of a growth spurt of jobs, the land is protected.
The plan also goes hand-in-hand with Stirling International plans to develop 64 million square feet of industrial space in the next 30 months. Stirling is the private development partner at Southern California Logistics Airport.
On Monday, Stirling principal Dougall Agan said plans for the expansion at SCLA are progressing with a recent federal environmental clearance that would give way to construction.
"We have just now completed a huge milestone for SCLA and as a result we are putting together a specific site plan," he said. "We are going to start speculative construction just as we are going to enlist possible tenants."
To protect the airport boundaries, the City Council recently opposed Helendale's plan for boundaries for the development of a Community Services District.
A CSD, is considered by many the first step for cityhood, and it would give residents control over issues such as water, sewer, trash collection, parks, graffiti abatement, public recreation and parks.
According to City Manager Jon Roberts, Helendale's proposed boundary line was within with SCLA's noise contour line, posing a conflict for future expansion at the airport.
"We were very concerned about how far south the proposed boundaries went," Roberts said. "We did express some concern about the boundary line and its proximity to SCLA."
Helendale's task force Chairman Milo Stormo said he did not understand why Victorville would oppose their plan.
"We are certainly not planning to do anything that will hurt Victorville," Stormo said. "We certainly don't need any big giant next door making it more difficult for us to get a Community Services District established."
Had Helendale's CSD task force conformed to the same boundaries as the Helendale School District, the city would have never been involved, Roberts said.
"If it did not impact us, we would just not participate in the process. But the current plan is just too close to SCLA."
Stormo said Roberts had promised him that Victorville would not interfere with their plan.
"He told me in meetings that he would not oppose our plan. That's why I was surprised when the City Council decided to oppose our plan," he said.
Roberts denied making any promise to Stormo and said it is now up to the Local Agency Formation Commission officials to approve or deny the plan for a CSD.
LAFCO executive Kathleen Rollings-McDonald said the plan needs to be reviewed by June in order to be put in the November ballot,
"Victorville's decision will be taken into consideration," she said.
Agan said that protecting the business vision for the airport is the most important focus the city could have to develop local jobs.
"It is critical," he said. "How terrible would it be if we lined up all these jobs and at the last minute we were not able to develop the jobs because of lack of land?"
Miguel Gonzalez may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 951-6232.
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