MACE MEADOWS COMMUNITY LEACHFIELD
REASON FOR REVIEW
The Grand Jury received a complaint from a property owner against
the Amador County Board of Supervisors, the Amador County
Planning Commission and a specific member of each body.
The complaint alleges poor and improper notice of the public
hearing for a community leachfield, conflict of interest and
possible financial gain of County officials.
- The complainant also alleges that the approval of the
community leachfield by the Amador County Board of Supervisors
has caused him and other property owners in the area of the
community leachfield a large financial loss. Determining the
possibility of economic loss to property owners is beyond the scope of the
Grand Jury and therefore this issue will not be addressed.
- In addition, the complainant names a private citizen,
employed by a private law firm that represents the developer, as
having a conflict of interest because he was formerly employed by
the California Regional Water Quality Control Board. The Grand
Jury is not empowered to investigate private citizens or agencies
that are not physically located within the County and therefore
will not address this allegation.
The developer of Fairway Pines (subdivision in the Mace
Meadows/Pioneer Area) requested approval from the County for
their proposal to provide additional off-site sewage disposal
capacity for the Fairway Pines Subdivision under development. The
area currently used for sewage disposal would continue to be used, however
the golf course management no longer wants to use treated
effluent to irrigate the course and has terminated it's agreement
with the developers.
The site in question is a 40 acre parcel approximately 900 feet
from the subdivision and will be used to provide additional
acreage for sewage disposal and will be owned and maintained by
the Amador Water Agency. This would result in an enlarged sewage
capacity for the development.
Members of the 1999-2000 Amador County Grand Jury conducted
interviews, toured the leachfield site and reviewed pertinent
- County Supervisor
- County Planning Commission member
- Amador County Service Area 1 and 2 Manager
- County Assessor
- Deputy Director of the Environmental Health Department
- Planning Department staff members
- California Regional Water Quality Control Board staff
March 19, 1998 minutes of the Land Use and Community Development
- County Notice of Public Hearing to be held April 7,
1998, County Assessor's Map Bk. 23, Pg. 07 and listing of the
persons that were mailed said notice.
- Summary minutes of the April 7, 1998 Public Hearing as
conducted by the County Board of Supervisors.
- September 13, 1999 Draft of late revisions to the
California Regional Water Quality Control Board Findings for the
Mace Meadow Community leachfield.
- Written comments from a concerned property owner (other
than the complainant) to the California Regional Water Quality
Control Board and their response to same.
- Resolution Order No. 99-132 and Waste Discharge
Requirements Order No. 99-133 adopted by the California Regional
Water Quality Control Board, Central Valley Region on September
- Phase I Improvement Plans and Slope Stability Evaluation
under cover letter dated January 3, 2000 from a private
- Wastewater Mainline Extension Agreement between the
Amador Water Agency and Fairway/Glenmoor LLC.
- Various Amador Ledger Dispatch newspaper clippings.
- Complainant's allegations and petition to the
California Regional Water Quality Control Board to withhold their
approval of the community leachfield in question.
- Amador County Supervisor's reply to the personal
allegations in "10" above.
- Planning Commission member's reply to the personal
allegations in "10" above.
Mace Meadows Property Owner's Association, Board of Directors
meeting of February 16, 2000 and minutes of same.
- Internet (California Regional Water Quality Control
The developer's request for approval of the leachfield site was
referred to the County Land Use Committee for review and
recommendation to the Board of Supervisors. On March 19, 1998,
the Land Use Committee recommended the Board of Supervisors find
The final map, when submitted, be substantially the same as the
tentative map submitted;
- The additional area for sewage disposal is an
improvement to the overall Mace Meadow area and in compliance
with California Environmental Quality Agency;
- That a public hearing on the matter be held and
neighboring property owners be so notified.
- Notice of a public hearing held on April 7, 1998 to
address the matter of the community leachfield was mailed to
neighboring property owners including the complainant. This
The location of the proposed community leachfield, "at the
southeast corner of Creekside Dr. And South View Dr. About 1/2
mile west of the Mace Meadows Golf Course (see map on back of
- "Contact the Amador County Planning Department, 500
Argonaut Lane, Jackson, California,95642, (209) 223-6380, if you
have any questions or desire further information";
- "A recent Court decision has required the County to
inform you in this notice that if you do not comment at the
public hearing or send in written comments and later decide to
challenge the nature of this
- proposed action in court, you may be limited to raising
only those issues you raised at the public hearing or have given
in written correspondence delivered to the public entity
conducting the hearing at, or prior to, the Public Hearing."
- The complainant did not appear in person at the public
hearing nor submit his comments/concerns in writing.
- The leachfield in question does not fall within the
area of responsibility of the Amador County Planning Commission
and was not addressed by that body. The Planning Commission
addresses issue of: changes to zoning ordinance and zoning maps,
changes to the general plan, land and subdivision changes, variances, etc.
- The County Supervisor in question admits to having a
financial interest in the Fairway Pines II development.
- The County Supervisor is also a member of the County
Land Use and Community Development Committee. When the subject of
the leachfield was being addressed at the County Land Use and
Community Development Committee meeting of march 19, 1998, the
supervisor left the meeting. At the public hearing of April 7, 1998, he
stepped down and handed the gavel to the Vice Chairman.
- The California Regional Water Quality Control Board's
adoption of Resolution Order No. 99-132 and Waste Discharge
Requirement Order No. 99-133 for the Mace Meadow Community
Leachfield, Mace Meadows Estate, Inc., Fairway/Glenmoor LLC,
Amador Water Agency and Amador County sets forth the minimum requirements for the
facility, the monitoring of the septic tank, pump station,
collection system, designated disposal area, ground water and
Misery Creek. In addition, it sets forth the method and procedure
for reports of violations to the orders.
- The Amador Water Agency has signed an agreement with
the developer that meets the requirements as outlined in "7"
above and will become the owner and maintenance agency for this
waste collection and discharge system.
The Grand Jury's investigation and findings did not support the
As explained in Facts 1 and 2, proper notice of public hearing
- No evidence was found to support allegations of
financial gain by public officials.
None. No response is necessary
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