Thank you for covering the sand and gravel mine issues in the Salinas River and its tributaries. The SLO Planning Commission voted 5-0 to deny the Pehl project. They furthermore began a discussion of a much needed, critical Salinas River Overall Plan.
The commissioners showed their concern for the long-term cumulative effects of this and many other proposed mining projects on the health of the Salinas River, its tributaries, and the neighborhoods involved. This was an example of good government in action.
Kudos go to Commission Chair Sarah Christie for handling the proceedings with calm, reflective analysis. She guided the commissioners to hear us.
New Commissioner Bruce White showed leadership and decisiveness in making the motion to take a vote without further absurd delays. He is also to be commended for taking several hours on a Saturday afternoon to personally visit the proposed site.
We were finally heard. The staff (Mr. Oliveira) and state representatives (Mr. Custis of Fish and Game and Mr. Kukol of Water Quality) used solid science to prove the potential cumulative disastrous effects on an already over-stressed river and adjoining lands. Far too much time, taxpayers’ money, and effort has been spent on mining projects that do not fit our agricultural area and threaten our livelihoods and lifestyle.
While I will defend a landowner’s right to propose a project, I cannot back a project so foreign to the nature of the Ag Preserve and the community in which it was proposed. Thank you for your coverage of this important issue.