Claiming that a City of San Jose-Silver Creek agreement is an
apt precedent, Eagle Ridge residents are again lobbying Gilroy City
Council to pay for police patrols in their private, gated
Claiming that a City of San Jose-Silver Creek agreement is an apt precedent, Eagle Ridge residents are again lobbying Gilroy City Council to pay for police patrols in their private, gated community.
Eagle Ridge residents have been given renewed hope by a recent San Jose City Council split vote to approve a one-year trial run of police patrols in Silver Creek, a gated community. Silver Creek homeowners paid for a traffic assessment study and the installation of traffic signs but are not paying for the cost of the patrols.
It may sound like Eagle Ridge residents’ dream come true, but it has the earmarks of a nightmare for Gilroy taxpayers.
Some Eagle Ridge residents have been using their homeowners association’s upcoming vote on a land-swap deal that might save Bonfante Gardens from foreclosure as leverage to try to get publicly financed police patrols on their private streets.
Although Eagle Ridge residents, when they’re arguing for publicly financed police patrols on their private streets, like to point out that they pay taxes like everyone else in Gilroy, they overlook two key facts.
First, unlike Silver Creek, the streets that line Eagle Ridge were not built to city standards. When Eagle Ridge was developed, the city allowed the developer to save a bundle on street construction costs in exchange for no police patrols.
Second, Eagle Ridge residents have something that the rest of Gilroy’s taxpayers don’t have: a fence and a guardhouse making their streets private. It’s just not right to ask all Gilroyans to pay for police patrols on streets all Gilroyans can’t travel.
No matter what misguided scheme San Jose’s City Council has approved for Silver Creek’s private streets, it doesn’t apply here in Gilroy. We urge our city leaders to keep the good of Gilroy in mind – not the good of Bonfante Gardens – as they are lobbied by Eagle Ridge residents for publicly financed police patrols on their private streets.
We think a key component of this debate – cost – needs to be clearly understood by Eagle Ridge residents, City Council, the Gilroy Police Department and the citizens of Gilroy.
We’d like to see cost estimates for police patrols in Eagle Ridge for one-year and five-year increments, and we’d like to see what those costs will be if the land-swap deal is sealed and Eagle Ridge expands.
That way, all Gilroy citizens can understand the financial impact of what Eagle Ridge residents are asking of them: That they subsidize police patrols of streets that are closed to the vast majority of Gilroyans.