Hearing on Bravo/Rodiles land set for Sept. 4

August 15, 2001|By AARON CLAVERIE, Staff Writer

CALEXICO — The City Council here set a public hearing for Sept. 4 to hear from representatives of Bravo/Rodiles landowners who want to build homes, an industrial park and a mobile home/RV park on farmland east of the city limits.

The hearing will give the council another chance to decide if the project near Highway 98 and Cole Road needs to be delayed for a year so an environmental impact report can be done.

A couple months ago the council voted unanimously to require the landowners to pay $100,000 for an environmental report.

The council validated a resolution by the city Planning Commission that stated, "A full environmental impact report is required to address all environmental concerns associated with the Bravo/Rodiles development project."

Following that meeting, the landowners sued the city and the City Council in an attempt to overturn the decision.

That lawsuit is pending but hearings have been postponed, according to City Attorney Michael Rood.


At the public hearing, the representatives of the landowners said they will argue that the proposed developments would be a boon to the city and should be green-lighted immediately.

The landowners have estimated the project will create 700-1,000 new jobs, bring 32 new companies into Calexico, along with 800 new residents and "240 tourists."

Representatives of the landowners reiterated that they don't need to pay for an environmental report because all of the potential impacts of their project have been addressed in the planning.

City Planning Director Ricardo Hinojosa said he will argue at the hearing that the project will affect traffic along Cole Road — declared a "hazardous area" by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — and create a drain on public facilities and services.

The Planning Commission resolution signed by Hinojosa states, "The Bravo/Rodiles subdivision project presents the potential to overburden and exceed city's ability to provide an adequate level of municipal services."

Earlier in Tuesday's council meeting, the council voted to approve the hiring of two city employees with money from the 2001-2002 general fund.

City Manager Richard Inman said part of the cost for the new employees would be recovered by anticipated revenue from new housing developments.

The council then asked Police Chief Tommy Tunson about staffing of the department.

Tunson told the council that four department applicants will be sent to a police academy after a round of interviews and background checks.

He added the department is scouring police academies throughout Southern California to bring in recruits to Calexico but is having a hard time attracting candidates because of the comparatively low pay here.

Councilman John Renison said the council should look into raising the pay for the police and fire departments. Tunson said raising the pay would be the only way to attract more officers.

Staff Writer Aaron Claverie can be reached at 337-3419 or

Imperial Valley Press Online Articles