Tonight the Escondido Planning Commission unanimously denied a Conditional Use Permit for a controversial youth detention center that the Federal Government was intending to site in a residential neighborhood in southwest Escondido. As one of many such facilities planned nationwide, the feds have contracted with Southwest Key, a management type non-profit to run these youth camps.
In a packed house and overflow rooms full to standing room only, citizens voiced their concerns about the negative impacts of housing unaccompanied youth from foreign countries in a barricaded facility, 50 miles from the southern national border. The loss of property values, activities unrelated to a residential neighborhood, noise, traffic, etc are all issues of concern.
The failure of the federal government to enforce its laws should not have to impact local communities like this. Tonight’s vote is a win for the residents and it remains to be seen what happens next.