What is the Irvine Company getting in return for their donation of Blackstar Regional Park?

Blackstar Regional Park 

Graphic courtesy of the O.C. Register

By questioning the Irvine Company’s donation are we looking a gift horse in the mouth?

Orange County Real Estate is still a pretty expensive proposition no matter that we are staggering through the Greatest  Recession, some say – in American history.

The Orange County Register’s Pat Brenan reported on the front page today that the caring and sharing Irvine Company wants “to give” the County of Orange about 20,000 acres of Prime Irvine  land dedicated for parkland and other native wilderness uses.

Webster Guillory is our beloved County Tax Assessor and we can’t wait to hear what he might be saying about this Irvine Company give-a-way program that is being suggested.  Let’s see, right now someone probably is responsible for the land taxes – even if  it is  designated as “unimproved property”!   Since it might be designated as County Parkland….does that mean that the County will be picking up the tax bill?  County taxes perhaps?

Hey, everyone loves parks, nature reserves and the great outdoors…that people can get lost in with their small children and later be found either attacked by mountain lions, bobcats or bitten by some diamond back rattler that didn’t want to be stepped on.  Hopefully, when they create these additions to current Wilderness areas and a new Black Star Regional Park….they will require all hikers and bikers to take a GPS sensor with them  and that they check in with Park Rangers –  before they run off without letting anyone know where they are going or for how long.

The areas  include 172 acres between the 73-405- and 5 which will be added to the current Laguna Coast Wilderness Park…as an expansion area.  8,471 acres up the 241 toward the 91 called the Freemont/Gypsum Canyons Wilderness.  3,408 acres added to the current Irvine Regional Park.  6,165 acres just east of 133 and north of 241 called the Limestone/Whiting Wilderness Park expansion and finally 2,096 acres designated at the Black Star Regional Park centered between the 241 and the 91 freeways.

So, what does the Irvine Company get out of this great  “giving till it hurts”  behavior?  Nobody seems to be talking right now.  Are there “trade offs” being done behind the scenes for deeper density in various development areas of the County?  Are there reduced Tax Assessments being provided to the Irvine Company for their largess?  Supervisor Bill Campbell seems to be supporting the take-over of the property, but what other Supervisors are going to step up and ask-tell-or provide the people with the complete details of this great land grab by the County.  Think about it – who would want to give up over 20,000 acres of prime California Real Estate – without getting a nice trade-off….perhaps limiting the amount of “Affordable Housing” new or old Irvine Company developments might require – for instance?

“Never look a Gift Horse in the Mouth!”  was a cowboy expression that suggested that when “someone” wanted to give you a horse…..which was generally considered a good thing – that you shouldn’t look too closely at what you were getting.  The idea being that a horse with serious problems may have some health problems, bad teeth or  could as Ross Perot once said: “Find the Devil…in the details!”  We suggest that County Supervisors educate themselves enough to explain to all the voters – all the details!

In any event, we are hoping that if the proposal goes forward that Orange County Park Rangers will demand that  GPS/Computer Check-in Programs for Hikers and Environmentalist be required to enter County Wildlife areas.  Everyone should be required to provide almost a “flight plan” of activity and estimations of when they may be returning to civilization.  Avoiding those possible “Deliverance Moments” are essential, along with keeping family and friends availed of their locations.  Rangers also need to plant “Border Thumpers”  around areas in these parks which can help locate lost or off course hikers and environmentalists.

Perhaps, the Irvine Company is just taking a little worhtless land off of it’s books….maybe not.  “The Devil is in the details!”

About Ron & Anna Winship

Independent News Producers/Writers and Directors for Parker-Longbow Productions. Independent Programming which includes a broad variety of Political, Entertainment and Professional Personalities. Cutting Edge - a talk show...is the flagship of over 30 URL websites developed or under development. The Winships have been blogging for the Orange Juice since back when nickels had buffalos on them, and men wore onions attached to their belts, because it was the fashion back then.