March JPA Settles Lawsuit With Friends Of Hills

Dear Friends and Neighbors,
I just want to share with you a news item.  Friends of Riverside Hills, a local environmental watch dog group, had noticed that March Joint Power Authority was working to approve the addition of two rail spurs capable of servicing 12 cars per day, each, as part of a development they were planning.
Rail spurs would mean more rail traffic through our neighborhood and MJPA did not consider the impact the added rail traffic would have on our neighborhood.
Friends filed suit under the California Environmental Act and it has just been announced that MJPA has just settled the suit.  This is a great victory on behalf of our neighborhood, as now any developer who wants to have a rail spur in the MJPA area will have to do a full EIR and mitigate the impact upon our neighborhood.
I think we owe a big thanks to Friends of Riverside Hills!  While they do get their legal costs paid for when they win these suits, they don’t usually make any money out of the settlements.  This is a group of volunteers care about open spaces, environmental habitat, Riverside’s prop R & C, and the development of hiking and bike trails.  They are a Federally recognized Non-profit organization and would appreciate any donations anyone would care to make.
They can be contacted at Watkinshill@juno.com and I encourage you to at least send them a note of thanks.  They are our neighbors too.
About the time MJPA was trying to approve its two rail spurs, the city of Perris approved two rail spurs for warehouses south of their location.  FORH was able to make timely comments for that project and has a pending suit.  Lets hope they prevail in that suit too.  Its not so much to stop economic development, but to have the developers mitigate the impacts of their development.  In this case, it would be the added rail traffic through our neighborhood.
Kevin Dawson

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