School board approves policy for new Natomas community health center


Jack Fedor, Natomas Pacific Pathways Preparatory

The Natomas Unified School District school board voted 6-0 on Oct. 27 in favor of adopting the Mitigated Negative Declaration and Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program for a new community health clinic.

The Mitigated Negative Declaration and Mitigated Monitoring and Reporting Program are required steps by law that had to be passed prior to construction.

The new project would have the current community health clinic to be relocated to a new site which is to be developed on the corner of Fong Ranch Road and San Juan Road. The site which will be jointly operated by Health and Life Organization and the B. Terri Burns Health Clinic will also include a classroom, examination rooms and a medical lab.

“I’m really excited that we’re moving along with this,” said Natomas Unified School District trustee Lisa Kaplan.

The current community health clinic is housed on the site of Natomas High School as a low-income health clinic which provides physicals, vaccines, diabetic management, general and family medical care, preventative care and specialist referral services.

This important environmental step found that there was not a significant environmental factor which could cause issues with development of the site.

One of the things that the environmental report found were migratory birds, but the birds are expected to have other liveable places in nearby trees should the project be finished.

Special-status raptors such as the Swainson’s hawk and white-tailed kite were expected to live in alternate areas such as the nearby American River Parkway, so they would cause no issues with construction.

From Sept. 1 through Jan. 31 any of the 28 trees on the project site are allowed to be altered and if there is to be any construction outside of this time frame then nests of migratory birds must be checked in trees, 14 days prior to any construction on the site.

Another important procedure which was explained in the report was the necessary consultation with local Native American tribes whose cultural lands could be disturbed.

One of the groups which were consulted was the United Auburn Indian Community which indicated that there were no cultural objects at the site.

The other group which was consulted was the Wilton Rancheria which stated that they would like a Native American inspector when construction takes place.

One of the measures which will be taken during project construction is that lighting structures will be shielded or screened as well as light fixtures with high intensity or brightness will not be used. Motion controlled lighting will be used where feasible during nighttime hours.

The building will be prepared for a switch to an all-electric power supply as well as some of the parking spaces will include electric vehicle charging places