The South Sacramento Habitat Conservation Plan is Here

By the Sacramento Bee Editorial Board
August 6, 2019
The Sacramento Bee

To say the South Sacramento Habitat Conservation Plan has been a long time coming is a vast understatement.

Two decades after the seeds were first planted, the plan is finally ready for Sacramento County supervisors to consider on Wednesday. They should approve it.

Developers would get a simplified and predictable process for federal and state environmental permits. And conservation groups would get large, interconnected areas of protected habitat, open space and undeveloped farmland.

Years of push and pull among groups representing developers, farmers, environmental and conservation interests, plus state and federal agencies, has produced a fair deal that most can support. While the success of this very complex framework depends on implementation and enforcement, that by itself is something of a miracle.

The co-chair of ECOS’s Habitat 2020 committee, Sean Wirth, has had an important role in bringing this plan to fruition.

Read more here.

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Welcome Sacramento Heron and Egret Rescue!

The Sacramento Heron and Egret Rescue has joined Habitat 2020 as a member organization! Habitat 2020, the Habitat committee of ECOS, voted to approve membership of the Sacramento Heron and Egret Rescue on September 3, 2019.

Sleep Train Arena Pond

In August 2019, Christy Berger of Sacramento Heron and Egret Rescue presented to Habitat 2020 on an active wildlife habitat that has been discovered the Sleep Train Arena property in Natomas. At this time, the property is owned by the owners of the Sacramento Kings professional basketball team.

Here’s a summary from Sacramento Heron and Egret Rescue’s website:

We were stunned when we first viewed the huge numbers of herons and egrets nesting at the pond, and overjoyed that they were nesting in a much better site than in a city neighborhood like many other nesting colonies, and are safe from cars and people. But they may not be safe for long if the property owners fail to preserve the pond. Below are some views of the pond and the wildlife that call it home (there are more than just herons and egrets!) You will notice some concrete structures and rebar. We found out that this site is an unfinished baseball stadium built in 1990. Because of the high water table in North Natomas, the excavated area filled in and over the years with trees and other foliage, creating nice wetland habitat.

Learn more

Click here to visit the website of Sacramento Heron and Egret Rescue. There you can learn more about the birds living at the old arena site and why the plans for this property should include preservation of this habitat chosen by the birds themselves, rather than further destruction of their habitat opportunities.

Photos by J. Roberson Photography

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SacRT to modernize light rail system, increase train frequency to Folsom

August 14, 2019
Emily Hamann
Sacramento Business Journal

“Sacramento Regional Transit District is in the beginning stages of a multiyear, multimillion-dollar project to upgrade its light rail system, which will include more frequent service to Folsom.

Most of SacRT’s current light rail cars are reaching the end of their useful life, and will start costing SacRT more money in maintenance and repair costs. So SacRT is upgrading to new low-floor cars. The doors on low-floor cars are level with the street, which eliminates the need for elevated platforms at light rail stops.

Most of the state funding for the project is directed toward upgrading the Folsom line, which is aimed at reducing traffic congested corridors. Some of the funding is also coming from the settlement of a lawsuit between Caltrans and the Environmental Council of Sacramento. The environmentalist group had sued Caltrans over a plan to add carpool lanes on Highway 50. As part of an out-of-court settlement, Caltrans agreed to pay $7 million toward improving the Gold Line, which parallels the freeway. “

Read the full article here.

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