Friends of Daley Ranch Board Meeting Minutes

March 8, 2007

Present: Fred Woods, president; Rick Paul, vice-president; other board members Sally Thomas, Tracey Brown, Carol Stanford, and Rick Mercurio; from the City, Tony Smock; and guest, Mike Whalen


     Fred opened the meeting at 7 p.m. at the Train Depot in Grape Day Park. The February minutes were approved as written. Sally gave the treasurer’s report, which indicated an on-hand balance of about $7033 as of March 7.

Rick M. moved to approve expenditures of $50 for the post office box and $100 for dues to the Conservation Resource Network. Rick P. seconded and the motion passed unanimously.

Fred said the iron ranger at the ranch house is unable to be unlocked, and we discussed possible ways to remove and open it. Perhaps it can be relocated away from the sprinklers. The Board also agreed to defer the purchase of more plant guides as the current stock is sufficient. Sally moved to authorize $150 to support the Volunteer Association’s Daley Ranch photo contest. Rick M. seconded and the motion passed unanimously.

     Tony said the City has been busy trying to block illegal trails and to remove non-native plant species, though access has been hampered by recent rains. He said that maps and plant guides are not trashed along the trails, which is encouraging. Graffiti, however, is an ongoing problem.

     The Board wishes to sponsor a booth at the May 20 Escondido Street Faire. Sally agreed to inquire whether TECC or Hellhole Canyon may wish to share the booth and its cost with FODR. Tony said the City has the panoramic photos from Stanley Peak that we may use at the booth.

     Fred discussed revamping FODR’s newsletter and other official letterhead, and a logo. He shared those from other groups, and the Board agreed that we would like to consider changes. Tracey said that Janene Colby might help us with this, and she will contact her. Mike offered to help with maintaining the website.

     At the beginning of the meeting Kit Wilson addressed the Board. Kit works in real estate and has cooperated with a nurseryman who owns substantial acreage adjacent to Daley Ranch along the northwest corner. Kit has put together the sale of 67 acres of mainly undisturbed slopes stretching from just west of the Cougar Pass parking area toward the west. He did not indicate a price. The land adjoins a 16 acre parcel of permanent open space just southeast of the new houses around Hidden Meadows Golf Course. Kit pointed out that acquiring his parcel would be the only viable way to establish a wildlife corridor that bridges the North Broadway valley. He is willing to arrange a visit to the area, which he said would connect Daley Ranch to a proposed county system of trails to the west. Kit also said that the area is gnatcatcher habitat and is identified as integral to the North County Draft MSCP and the county’s pre-approved mitigation areas or PAMA. The Board is certainly interested in either acquiring this land or establishing open space easements or development restrictions in order to maintain this corridor. The Board also discussed other lands around Daley Ranch, including an old avocado grove north of Daley Ranch that could connect to the Turner Lake open space.

     The next meeting will be at 6 p.m. on April 12 at the home of Tracey Brown.


Attached to this months minutes is the report from the FODR land acquisition committee’s meeting on February 28.


Respectfully submitted,

Rick Mercurio, Secretary