Opponents of the Gold Rush Ranch 1,600-unit housing development and golf resort in Sutter Creek submitted referendum petitions with 468 signatures in early February (see CP&DR Local Watch, January 15, 2010). If as few as one-third of those signatures is valid, the referendum of the Gold Rush Ranch specific plan and general plan amendment would qualify for the ballot, possibly as soon as June.
The largest development project ever approved in Amador County might also become the first project in the county to be decided by voters in a referendum.
With 1,334 housing units, 300 time-share units, a golf course resort and a commercial area, Gold Rush Ranch would approximately double the size of the City of Sutter Creek. Project opponents say the project is simply too big, and they fear Gold Rush Ranch could mark the start of extensive suburban-style development in an area that has been relatively slow to grow.