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Manteca cuts builder deal that saves city millions
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The developers of Tesoro need a break to build 60 homes without putting all the amenities in first.

The City of Manteca needs to reduce the annual cost of park maintenance.

The two parties have hammered out an agreement that will end up saving Manteca taxpayers millions of dollars over the years. Tesoro will be able to start work on up to 60 homes before certain public improvements are made. All services needed for the homes, however, are already in place.

In exchange, the developers have agreed to allow the park that they are required to put in place next to a future site for the proposed Woodward School Annex to be added to the landscape maintenance district for the neighborhood they are creating.

It requires a vote of the majority of the property owners. There are already some homeowners in the neighborhood but Tesoro holds the majority of the votes that are parceled out per lot.

It means the $116,800 annual park maintenance cost will be collapsed into the fees already authorized for the Tesoro landscape maintenance district. The landscaping isn’t completed and therefore the district isn’t yet actively taking care of the costs. It is currently the developers’ responsibility. It will add to the yearly cost of homeowners within the neighborhood while sparing city taxpayers of any expense of maintaining the park.

Newer subdivisions just started or in the planning process – Union Ranch East, Sundance, and Oleander Estates – have neighborhood park maintenance included in the landscape maintenance district assessment. Rodini Estates, a 99-home neighborhood just completed at Cottage and Button, also has such a requirement of homeowners.

The new city policy is to require all new residential developments to cover the cost of park maintenance through landscape maintenance districts. Tesoro, though, was approved before that requirement was put in place.

The deal allows Manteca to include Tesoro among the park and landscape maintenance districts while giving Tesoro developers the opportunity to keep building in a weak market without having to put up additional major infrastructure costs until sales justify the expense.