Tag Archives: Wildomar


Something as simple as a dirt trough is so indicative of the past and the future of Wildomar.

Marna O'Brien Bio-Swale on March 1, 2014

Marna O’Brien Bio-Swale on March 1, 2014

When the County of Riverside rehabilitated the 3 parks, at the insistence of a group bent on incorporating a community into a city, the county left out several important features. One of these was a bio-swale not designed until December 2008, put out to bid until July 2009 and completed September of 2010 (at a cost of $129,737) even though the parks reopened in the summer of 2007. (These dates are important because Wildomar incorporated on July 1, 2008 after several years of study by the Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO))
The reasons for the exclusion and later inclusion of this feature are many fold.
Chief among them was “devil may care” attitude first by the County of Riverside Redevelopment Agency (RDA) now the Economic Development Agency (EDA). This agency could just borrow the money and built what ever they wished wherever they wished, all on the cheap except to the taxpayers. Turns out money was spent on two parks not in the Redevelopment area (the one park within the boundaries currently receives enormous amounts of area runoff and is destined to become Open Channel A of the Lakeland Village Master Drainage Plan)
Regency Heritage Park After the bridge, water forced over due to accumulation of debris.

Regency Heritage Park After the bridge, water forced over due to accumulation of debris.

leaving the citizens inside of the RDA to foot the bill for 30+ years. The counties response – there close to the redevelopment area, no problem.
During the reconstruction of the parks, that the citizens closed when they defunded the previous parks district, the county paid no heed to any of the requirements of the California Water Code and totally ignored the California Regional Water Quality Control Board San Diego Region (Region 9) by failing to implement a Standard Urban Storm Water Mitigation Plan (SUSMP) or to even notify the Regional Board of this project when asked directly, on two occasions, if there were any projects started since 2005.
In response to a Notice of Violation issued in July of 2008, the County of Riverside after receiving a date certain by which a response was required, danced, telling the Water Quality Control Board they would install a bio-swale to cleanse run-off from the parking lot , install fossil filters and screens in the drain openings, stencil parking lot storm drains with “Only Rain in the Drain” signage and post educational materials pertaining to the Santa Margarita Watershed for public awareness on a bulletin board located at the concession stand/restroom complex.
Parking lot filter, installed by County of Riverside- maintained by City of Wildomar

Parking lot filter, installed by County of Riverside- maintained by City of Wildomar

There are several problems with this response.
1. Marna O’Brien Park is located in the Santa Ana Watershed, which some of us locals have known since 1984. This issue was maybe unknown to Riverside County and definitely unkown to the Region 9 Water Quality Board until October of 2008. I say maybe unknown to Riverside County because the drainage system is attached to the Bryant Street Storm Drain System which flows into Lake Elsinore after passing thru Regency Heritage Park. Because of this watershed issue Region 9 allowed Riverside County to not face fines from Region 9 at that time, referring the issue to Region 8 which failed to act.
2. Riverside Water Conservation District did not have a pollution criteria index for parks, instead the criteria for “Detached Residential Development” was used per the County of Riverside’s response. Riverside County has had a Parks District since 1926 and a Water Conservation District since 1945 and yet there is no criteria for parks. Really ?
3. Although a Bio-Swale was constructed it has fallen into disrepair and to date the city has failed to properly replant it rendering it total ineffective.
Not much natural filtering going on here.

Not much natural filtering going on here.

4. The County of Riverside never marked any of the drains nor did they erect any bulletin board displaying the educational materials promised.
Same blank walls exist all they way around both buildings.

Same blank walls exist all they way around both buildings.

The City of Wildomar was in the process of taking control of the parks from the county at the time all of these events were going on and either ignored these events or failed in their due-diligence to learn of this Notice of Violation. After having been made aware of it several months ago none of these issues have been properly addressed.
The filter on February 26th before the most recent rains on February 28th.

The filter on February 26th before the most recent rains on February 28th.

Parking lot flooded during rains of February 28th.

Parking lot flooded during rains of February 28th.

The City of Wildomar is unable and unwilling to address a simple item for which they have the funds to correct, yet we are to believe they can go on to manage a possible park in a retention basin, construct bikeways along Grand Ave and Clinton Keith (which will require numerous bio-swales due to the amount of impervious surfaces being added to the city) all of these with no monies for maintenance, good luck with that.


Previous good news has been deleted under protest , suffice it to say Wildomarians no longer have to look

The Wildomar Boy Scout Troop 332 had their trailer stolen over the weekend. Please keep an eye for it and call the sheriff’s department if you should happen to see it in your travels about town.




While reading over the Wildomar City Council Agenda for the upcoming meeting on Wednesday March 12, 2014 I came across Item 2.2 Appeal of Minor Changes to Tentative Tract Map 25122 CV Communities along with Item 2.3 Appeal of Minor Changes to Tentative Tract Map 32078 CV Communities.
While reading the reports submitted I got to wondering about the fill dirt (a reported 245,000 cubic yards) that is currently onsite and wether any government official knows where it came from. This is important in light of the problems associated with the Autumnwoods Estate development.
When one looks at the aerial photographs on the County of Riverside Land Information System for 2004 one notes there is no Autumnwoods Estate Development and no fill dirt on the proposed tracts located at McVicar and Palomar (formerly Rancho Fortunado). In 2007 Autumnwoods Estates is completed and a large mountain of fill dirt is forming on the tracts in question.
During previous discussions at planning commission meetings the question was asked about this imported dirt and where it came from. These questions were never really answered except to point out that a previous developer who is no longer in business brought the dirt to the site before Wildomar became a city.
This in no way should alleviate the City of Wildomar’s responsibility in identifying where this dirt came from. If no records exist then this dirt should be ordered removed in its entirety and the new developer should start from scratch to bring in new dirt with a known origin after testing the site left over after removal.
Some may say just test the fill dirt, the problem is all it takes is a very small amount of dirt to contaminate the whole lot. 245,000 cubic yards of fill dirt assuming it hauled in 20 yards at a time in a set of double trailers takes 12,250 trips and all it take is one load to contaminate the whole site.


Updated Sunday March 9, 2014
Added new link to Wildomar Little League Facebook Page on the links page. (The old Wildomar Little League Facebook site is no longer updated)

Saturday March 8, 2014
There are two games scheduled today at Welch Field starting at 12:30. Please park in the lot between the cemetery and ball fields.
More about this exciting day with pictures later.

Just returned from watching some little guys having a good time playing some baseball. Here are some pictures.

A team banner. The other team was the Padres.

A team banner. The other team was the Padres.

A fair size crowd in attendance.

A fair size crowd in attendance.

Will attempt to get the schedule for the season and put it on its own page. Games next week March 15th at Welch Field start at 9:00

Rumination For March 6, 2014

Was thinking today about all the problems with getting the parks open in Wildomar and recalled a recent project proposed by the City of Wildomar in their 5 year Community Improvement Program for what is being called Gateway Park.
This is a proposed park at the corner of Malaga Rd and Mission Trail that is a pet project of the City Manager for the City of Wildomar with a proposed budget of $100,000 assuming that the city can acquire the property from the County of Riverside for $0. The entire purpose of this park is to make the City of Lake Elsinore move their “Welcome to Lake Elsinore Sign”across the intersection into the City of Lake Elsinore rather than being located in Wildomar which seems to really bother the city manager to no end.
Rather than spending $100,000 on this ridiculous make believe park project would it not be more feasible to spend this money on getting a joint use agreement and fixing up the playground area at Jean Hayman Elementary School to utilize as a real park for the residents of North Wildomar, especially since this closed facility has access to reclaimed water which was brought there after the school was closed.
Might even make sense to spend the money cleaning up a former park located at Gafford Rd and Great Falls Rd. which is located in a retention basin former controlled by Ortega Trails. The cement pad for a basketball court is still there in this all but forgotten area of Wildomar.

Rumination for March 5, 2014

At a recent Wildomar City Council meeting staff commented that in order to bring reclaimed or recycled water to Marna O’Brien park the cost would come out to around $800,000.
This number may be correct if one were to only consider bringing water a distance of 1.1 miles to one user (Marna O’Brien Park) that would use approximately 30-40 acre feet of water annually but if one were to extend that line another one mile and add an additional two users, William Collier Elementary and Serenity Park in Lake Elsinore (possibly 3 users when Regency Heritage Parks problems are resolved) all using approximately the same amount of water each for a total of 90-120 acre feet of water annually.
With the cost divided amongst 3 entities, Wildomar, Lake Elsinore Unified School District and the City of Lake Elsinore, all seeking grants from the State California who has declared a state of drought emergency the cost could be negligible. The cost could be reduced even further if the line were carried to the back basin which would bring in the Lake Elsinore and San Jacinto Watershed Authority JPA as well as the Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority, this along with the Lakeland Village School on Grand Ave.
When is Wildomar going to look at the big picture rather try to sell its citizens the lie that we are in it alone and can’t afford to do anything.
FYI – the current capacity of the Palomar Recycled Water Booster Station owned by Eastern Municipal Water District for a cost of $6 million, which is located behind the cemetery in Wildomar, has a capacity of 24,000 Gallons per Minute which is 36 million gallons a day. The current usage by 25 users is about 700 acre feet annually (about a weeks worth of current capacity)with the balance going ?

Rumination for March 4, 2014

While attending a meet and greet on Friday February 28th at City Hall one of the Wildomar City Council members present was bragging about standing on a piece of property which will one day house a sandwich shop and strip mall commenting about how dry it was, the drainage was just fine and there was no signs of flooding.
I got a big chuckle at that statement because.
At that very moment not a block away Bundy Canyon Road was a torrential river with a flow path that varied with every car the passed due to the movement of rocks and dirt when they drove done the road.
If pressed on the issue this council person would tell you that when constructed the new business would build a retention basin.
The problem being that this retention basin would only filter pollutants and sediments from that parcel and modulate the INCREASED flow created by this development. It would not correct the existing deficiencies that already exist due to the County of Riverside and the City of Wildomar’s failure in providing for a proper drainage system.
This deficiency was originally foisted upon County Flood Control without proper Developer Impact fees being collected by the County of Riverside, a practice continued for 6 years under LOCAL CONTROL by a City Council that neglected to adjust the Impact Fees when Wildomar became a city.
To add insult to injury the Developer Impact Study which was completed almost 2 years before the City Council adopted the new fees are wholly inadequate to address the drainage issue. The Colgan Study recommended a fee of $1,749.51 per 1,000 gross square feet of development for this type of development and what finally adopted was $911.00 per 1,000 sq. ft.
This council person will sit there and complain about lawsuits which have delayed this project while totally ignoring what everyone around that project has faced for years and will continue to face in ever increasing frequency for many more years to come.


Upon city incorporation in 2008, the City of Wildomar adopted the Riverside County Municipal Code. The code includes an open space requirement of 3 acres of neighborhood and community parkland per 1,000 residents. As of 2012, according to the California Department of Finance, Wildomar’s estimated population was 32,719. As demonstrated in Table 3.10.7-1, the city’s current open space inventory includes 542.11 acres (220.92 Open Space Conservation, 306.93 acres of Open Space Recreation and 14.26 acres of Parkland), which surpasses the 98.16 acres required by the City’s Municipal Code.

This statement was included in CITY OF WI LDOMAR, OA K CR E E K CANYON DEVELOPMENT , ADMINISTRATIVE DRAFT ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT REPORT for which the City of Wildomar was the lead agency and completed in November of 2012.
(http://www.cityofwildomar.org/uploads/files/downloads/Attachment%20A%20-%20Exhibit%201%20DEIR.pdf )

These numbers were once again confirmed in the following:

Initial Study for the LENNAR RESIDENTIAL PROJECT TENTATIVE TRACT MAP 36497 (http://www.cityofwildomar.org/uploads/files/environmental/12-0364/Lennar-Residential-Project_IS_MND.pdf ) completed in May of 2013 for which the City of Wildomar was once again the lead agency along with the current author of the Update of the City of Wildomar General Plan ‘PMC World of 6020 Cornerstone Court West, Suite 260, San Diego, Ca 92121

In the current Draft General Plan the City of Wildomar, again the lead agency along with PMC, it is claimed there are 232.2 acres of Open Space Conservation Habitat Land along with 183.1 acres of Open Space Recreation Land (which includes the current 41.26 acres of Parkland).

A quick check of Western Riverside County Regional Conservation Authority website http://www.wrc-rca.org/interactive_map.asp shows that the city of Wildomar currently has 656.4 acres of Open Space Conservation Habit land.
I am still researching the Open Space Recreation Land but with out a current map of what the city claims is Open Space Recreation land one has to go by the previous map done by the County of Riverside which past research has shown includes a sewage treatment facility, maintenance facilities along with other non-recreational uses.

With such a disparity in numbers one has to wonder just how many more errors there are in this document the City of Wildomar is claiming will be our salvation.


At the most recent Wildomar City Council Meeting held on February 12, 2014 a plaque was presented to Supervisor Kevin Jeffrey’s for his efforts related to the turning over of money collected by Riverside County that rightfully belongs to the City of Wildomar.

I like Supervisor Jeffrey’s and applaud his efforts in cleaning up the books of Riverside County in a attempt to get the county financially on track.

What I despise is the attempt by the City Council in making this presentation is the mentioning of Supervisor Jeffrey’s help in turning over to the City of Wildomar the Eastside Parkland and $300,000 in Quimby Fees in the same breath as the $661,859 additional monies now being turned over, leaving one to believe there would be almost 1 MILLION DOLLARS available for the new park.

Just as when the $300,000 was turned over with the new parkland, the City of Wildomar failed to mention this money had already been earmarked for a DG Trail at the new park.

What was not mentioned with the announcement of this new money is that it is already earmarked for projects not yet completed.
1. $3,350 for maintenance of 300 feet of 60 inch storm drain line at Elizabeth Lane and Clinton Keith
2.$508,442.08 for 1500 feet of Curbs Gutters and Sidewalk on La Estrella between David Lane and Via Sarah. It will be years and many homes into future before this is done as a bridge needs to be built connecting two sections of La Estella.
3.$65,801 for Curbs Gutters Sidewalks and Paving on La Estrella from Crossroads westerly 700 feet.
4. $45,889.86 for 700 feet of half median project on Palomar at Meadow Ridge Lane.
5. $38,376.00 for 600 feet of offsite road at Starbuck Circle and Palomar St.


After reviewing the Draft Program Environmental Impact Report for Lakeland Village Master Drainage Plan available at http://www.floodcontrol.co.riverside.ca.us/, bottom of the page under Public Notices (CEQA/Section 18).
One can only wonder what is in store for the future of Regency Heritage Park.

Why is the City of Wildomar continuing to spend money on what is over time being transformed into a real flood control channel.

This park started life as a parcel of land dedicated as open space and drainage easement that was dedicated in April of 1992. The easement exist even without the dedication because this is a natural low spot in the topography of the area.

This parcel was subsequently acquired by Ortega Trails Recreation and Park District for use as a park. In the following years, 2005 and 2008, several drainage programs were completed adding to the runoff from the surrounding area that now flows through this park.

Terminus of Sedo-Bryant Street Storm Drain Stage 1 Completed 2008

Terminus of Sedo-Bryant Street Storm Drain Stage 1 Completed 2008

Sedco-Bryant Street Storm Drain which begins in the hills west of the park.

Sedco-Bryant Street Storm Drain which begins in the hills west of the park.

Unnamed Storm Drain that directs flow from Palomar Street east of the park

Unnamed Storm Drain that directs flow from Palomar Street east of the park

A portion of this drainage issue was addressed by the County of Riverside EDA when they rebuilt this park in 2007-08 as part of the rehabilitation of 4 parks in the area (Marna O’Brien, Perret Park, Regency Heritage and Windsong).

Current 10 foot wide Channel that runs complete length of the  park

Current 10 foot wide Channel that runs complete length of the park

The county added a drainage channel which collects water from three drainage facilities and guides it through the park. What the county failed to do was to continue this channel all the way to Corydon where it would tie into an existing facility that takes it under Corydon and on to the back basin of the Lake at Elsinore. This failure creates a lake at the south end of the park whenever it rains.

The terminus at the north end of the park of the current channel

The terminus at the north end of the park of the current channel


Both the County of Riverside and the City of Wildomar also have failed in maintaining their MS4 systems (Storm Drains) which allows for enormous amounts of sediment and trash to collect at the current downstream terminus of these storm drains.

From the bridge in park looking south towards terminus of 3 drains

From the bridge in park looking south towards terminus of 3 drains


That problem is about to be partially resolved by what is known as “Proposed Open Channel A” in the Lakeland Village Master Drainage Plan. The upstream origin of Channel A begins at the downstream terminus of Sedco-Bryant Street Storm Drain Stage 1. From there, the 40 ft wide by 6 ft deep trapezoidal channel extends westerly along the geographic low. At Corydon Road, the trapezoidal channel transitions into a 42 ft wide by 6 ft deep RCB. The 42 ft wide by 6 ft deep RCB would replace the existing 42 ft wide by 4 ft deep RCB. This Channel will be 1573 feet long, which takes it from the southeast end of the park to Corydon. It will have a 100 years flood capacity of 1,115 Cubic Feet a Second. (This is the same capacity as the outflow channel of the Lake at Elsinore.)

As a final note this may be the reason the City of Wildomar has never filed the Grant Deed for this property as it is still shown to be the property of Ortega Trails Recreation and Park District even though the County issued this Grant Deed on June 22, 2009.

Grant Deed issued June 22,2009 by the Riverside County Board of Supervisors

Grant Deed issued June 22,2009 by the Riverside County Board of Supervisors