John Hidahl, In His Own Words…

“… the 98 acre golf course is currently defined as Open Space-Recreational. This means the intended land use is as Open Space, but with recreational activities allowed… growth will continue to occur in EDH, but we should not allow our designated Open Space to be converted to any other form of Land Use without voter approval.” (NextDoor, 10-Jul-2016)

With a 41% vote turnout, and an unheard of 91% No vote to stop the rezoning of the golf course, the residents have spoken.” (NextDoor, 24-Dec-2015)

The EDHSP [El Dorado Hills Specific Plan] should be changed to make asbestos ridge open space without any density transfer encumbrance upon the CEDHSP. It’s that simple…… do the right thing! We shouldn’t have to give in to threats and ransoming of our children’s and our personal health, and thus compromise the 98 acre golf course open space.” (NextDoor, 2-May-2016)

“… with respect to the CEDHSP [Central El Dorado Hills Specific Plan], the County should not allow any density trades associated with the EDHSP [El Dorado Hills Specific Plan]. In other words, no rezoning of the 41 acre asbestos ridge for CEDHSP purposes.” (NextDoor, 2-May-2016)

To set the record straight, the 98 acre golf course has never been zoned for development. It has been, and remains to be zoned as Open Space-Recreational Use.” (NextDoor, 8-Sep-2016)

The EDHSP [El Dorado Hills Specific Plan] was approved many years ago as an integrated project, it should not be altered-period… the 98 acre golf course should be removed from the CEDHSP [Central El Dorado Hills Specific Plan] also, as from its origins it was intended to remain Open Space-Recreation for the entire community of EDH to enjoy.” (NextDoor, 2-May-2016)

I am a slow growth (infrastructure implementation concurrent with development) advocate and have been for over 25 years… I detest dishonesty, corruption and back room deals at every level of government…” (NextDoor, 31-Oct-2015)

I can only speak for myself as a candidate for District 1 Supervisor, and a sensible growth advocate… My campaign motto is ‘Defending our Quality of Life by holding Local Government accountable’.” (NextDoor, 21-Jan-2016) 

34 Replies to “John Hidahl, In His Own Words…”

  1. Dear John, Many of us campaigned for you because of your stand on sensible growth. I, Lori Lawyer along with my neighbor Ellen Terra, two sweet little old ladies, walked 8.9 miles in one day to place your election information on doorknobs. With that said, I do not believe you must always dance to our tune, but in this case, this is what you ran on. Ellen and I both moved here in 1998 and have seen the bait and switch with Parker and our low density life style leave. It’s not right. It’s not right for El Dorado HIlls and because of the asbestos on that golf course and ridge, not to mention the increased traffic in an already very high traffic area, it’s just not right for anyone period!!. Please do the right thing and vote against this. It’s the choice of the people. Thank you.

    1. I am a resident of el dorado county but not of el dorado hills. Nevertheless, I am extremely concerned about the massive over construction of houses, apartments, roads, commercial sites and parking lots. Look at the former wilderness grasslands south of hwy50 at Bidwell, Folsom. What happened to all the wildlife (flora and fauna) that lived there? Does no one care? I see more dead deer on hwy 50 in that area than ever before. Why? Because their habitat is gone and they have nowhere to go.
      I heartily commend and thank the people of el dorado hills for standing up for nature, open spaces, wilderness and wildlife. You have my total support.

  2. Dear Mr. Hidahl,
    I agree with everything Lori Lawyer has stated. We need to keep the old golf course site as open space even if a golf practice facility is not viable. It does not have to be a fully restored golf course but there are so many other ideas. If this changes, it feels like a bait and switch to those of us who moved here with the golf course in mind. We need you to continue the fight to preserve this space or the whole character of our community will suffer.

  3. All too often MONEY seems to prevail when land use is a factor in decision making. Once and for all, put a hold on the golf property to allow ONLY a recreational outcome. The only outcome should be “for the good of the community”, not for high density housing by a “local” businessman, who has been planning this for many years.

    1. Thank you Lawrence. Here are the ways that I know of to accomplish putting a hold on the golf property for recreational purposes: 1) Board of Supervisors vote NO on this request, or 1) put a referendum on the ballot to prohibit rezoning on this property or 3) the County can purchase the property and put it under the control of the property. Here are the issues around the items: 1), the Board of Supervisors may approve the rezoning despite the will of the people, 2) it may be too late to put a referendum on the ballot if the Board of Supervisors approve this in January/February 2020 and 3) the owner may not be willing to sell the property. There may be other options but these are the top 3 that I can think of at the moment. I agree with you.

  4. We absolutely do not need more development. It is not ‘rocket science’ to be able to look around and see what is already happened and what is now happening. Leave this piece of property as open space recreational. No to Parker!!!

    1. Unfortunately politicians only pay lip service to the voice of the people while serving their own selfish self promoting agendas.

  5. We said it in 2016 and we say it again. No residential and no commercial building develooment on the old the old EDH golf course!

  6. We moved here in 2008 and purchased our home in 2010. I first rented (in Serrano god forbid, but that’s another story) for two years to assess the area before we purchased. The golf course was still operating I believe. We found a house that backs to EDH blvd and had an upper level view of the hills across the way. Knowing the area was zoned open/rec space we purchased it. Right now I can look out my office/bedroom and see the hills and it makes me feel good. Now fill that area with a load of homes the quality of Parker’s past developments and I might as well be in Rancho Cordova! I mentioned we backed to EDH blvd and it is somewhat noisy but we grew up in the Air Force and learned to tune out most of it. However we have noticed the increasing truck and auto traffic over the last three years with the ever increasing development.
    Whats the good of a plan if you don’t stick to it? We loved it here but if they turn it into the Same O, Same O neighborhood congestion we didn’t want, then I’m out of here. My wife and I are in our 70’s now which makes that very difficult to do. Were researching where to go and not be the ones filling up a desirable area like EDH. That’s becoming difficult to do with all the other people fleeing this bastion of a one party system that wont be happy until nobody has anything to left to give! Now I’m preaching again, but we worked hard to get here and the plan we could live with. I’ve lived too long and have seen this before. When it comes to money the politicians and developers work hard to engorge themselves with little thought of what they are doing to peoples lives that counted on the plans they made for us to live in. So say NO TO PARKER! Power to the People! Its time to stand up to these economic bullies and thugs! We may be past the tipping point but if not, ITS TIME TO MAKE A STAND, so said Custer.

    1. Gregory, thanks for your story, I am in the same boat as you, too old to move, comfortably. We are trying to take make that stand, little by little. I am sure you are familiar with the question “How do you eat an elephant?”. Here we are taking a bite at a time. Hopefully, at some point, there will not be an elephant in the room!! Hang in there. If you find a place to move, please let me know.

  7. Years ago there was a study done about the economic sense of continuing to operate the golf course by the operators of the Serrano Golf Course and Folsom’s Empire Ranch Golf Course. The study was flawed because of the obvious conflict of interest and biased because it left out the glaring fact that it is the driving range that generates the revenue to operate the rest of the golf course as any operator of a golfing facility should know. Because of the “Fox watching the hen house” report, the El Dorado Hills CSD declined the option to purchase the, then operating, golf course. The plot thickens as the golf course is then left to become visually unattractive and now there are individuals complaining of just that. I’m sorry that I didn’t raise these points when the study became public.

    The question now becomes one of rewarding the owner of the land the golf course sits on for those questionable deeds just because the owner is engaged in land speculation as if land speculators are a protected species and entitled to guaranteed success. El Dorado Hills doesn’t need to become Folsom, Elk Grove, Roseville, Rocklin, or anywhere else where growth is treated as a right of the developers. If we wanted to live like Folsom, we would have moved there instead. We moved here 42 years ago appreciating the open space that was in the general plan and consider that part of a contract made to prospective homeowners by the county. When an agreement is unilaterally changed, there are consequences.

  8. One thing I forgot to mention is this nonsense of “In filling” and how the folks in Washington (DC) want it done. If they’re so smart then why is their house such a mess!?

    1. Right, I agree the way Parker Development is using the term “infill” to enhance their position, but “infill” applies to less than 5 acres..

  9. This really shouldn’t even be an issue. There should be a moratorium on building houses. We all are trying to use less water right now. The many homes that are proposed would use more water and is not in sync with the majority of people it affects. We need more open spaces not less.

  10. Dear Mr Hidalhl

    EDH is already quite crowded. There water problems and water bills are going through the roof. Cant support any further Expansion of communities. The land where csd golf course existed was marked as open land . Permitting construction of homes there will ruin the quality of life for the residents. We need the open areas and these areas were committed to be kept as open recreational areas. We rely on your promises to keep the land as a recreational open area for the residents which is the main attractions of EDH. Would you please use power and influence to ensure Parker bros. Do not extend housing any further.

  11. I have followed this issue closely and attended the public hearing meeting back in 2019.
    What I have not heard is what is the compelling public interest to rezone the land?
    The development company bought the land with full knowledge of how it was zoned. If they did not intend to use the property as zoned they should not have bought it. I am not allowed to buy a residential property and build a gas station, restaurant, or other commercial business no matter how much I may profit. Nor am I allowed to sell it as such to a prospective buyer.

    The rules should be the same for corporations as they are for citizens of the community.

    The community has an overcrowded high school, is undergoing water rationing, and has congested roads during commutes. Once again what is the overwhelming public interest to rezone this open land?

  12. Mr Hidahl: Open space and Parks are vitally important to establishing and maintaining the quality of life in a community. We can not promote our community as a desirable place to live and work without environmental well-being. Our community needs to a robust, active system of parks and recreation to improve the local tax base and increase property values. It is proven that private property values increase the value of privately owned land the closer such land is to parks. This increase in private property value due to the proximity to parks increases property tax revenues and improves local economies. Parks are a tangible reflection of the quality of life in a community.

    Please vote on our communities behalf as you committed to doing during your campaign.

  13. A few years ago I responded to a survey on this issue. I suggested that if building was to be done, it should be a small, over 55 development much like 4 Seasons, with a community center and a pool etc. I love living in Serrano but am frustrated that the only amenities available are those associated with the Serrano Golf Course. Though the club is beautiful , the membership is much too expensive for regular seniors and homeowners. I have considered moving to a place with the amenities. It seems a shame to dismantle what already exists at this property in question. I had hoped for a 9 hole public golf course with other amenities (park?) for homeowners of Serrano. Perhaps I can still hope for something other than high density housing.

  14. The fight goes on over the Open Space property. Solution: Come up with 35 million plus, make a solid and privately backed offer, purchase the property then go through your own battles in developing it. Don’t expect the county to fund your dreams. It will be a long time before local counter-advocates turn the 9 whole former gold course into something other than a pack of weeds.

    Serrano provides a beautiful golf course. Why not buy a membership?

  15. Parker only pays property taxes on $1.7 million assessed value for this 98 acres. $35 million is way over priced.

  16. We have had enough of Parker over the years ……………we the people of El Dorado Hills DO NOT WANT any more developing of this property, LET IT REMAIN open space.

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