Questions about General Plan and future development continue

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City Manager John Donlevy presented the fifth segment of a nine part series of presentations on the City’s General Plan at the Winters City Council meeting on Tuesday, July 2. In this segment he spoke on a range of topics including the city’s water system, sewage collection and disposal system and the fire protection service.  The General Plan included arrangements for the current police and fire building. This facility was built with the intention of serving a larger population, though at present it is only staffed to accommodate the needs of the present population.  Donlevy shared that both the Winters Police Department and the Winters Fire Department are meeting their response time goals. The police have a goal of a three minute response time, and firefighters are meeting their goal of a five minute response time to in-town calls.  Winters citizen Kate Laddish approached the council to ask about the possibility of a General Plan refresh. The current General Plan, which was adopted in 1992, is one of the oldest in the state.  Donlevy responded that a General Plan refresh will depend on the direction the state is headed in terms of housing elements. At this point it is unknown how this could affect Winters. Laddish also wanted to know how the potential annexation and the population growth it would bring would affect the current General Plan. Donlevy answered that the rate of population growth will predict the way that the plan is implemented, as without growth there will not be funding to address the guidelines of the General Plan.  Councilmember Jesse Loren proposed the formation of a Climate Action Commission after Laddish asked what effect climate change will have on plans, specifically in relation to water. “We’re more feast and famine in terms of water,” Laddish said, in reference to the recent years of drought and flooding in the region.  After the discussion was concluded, Mayor Bill Biasi requested that the City host a workshop related to the City’s plans for future development, as he says that he has seen misleading statements on the subject on social media and in the Express.  Complaints of incorrect or misleading information on the City’s proposed plans for future development have not formally been brought to the Express’ editorial staff. Mayor Protem Wade Cowan says that he has also received input from the public that was based on inaccurate information. ]]>

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