OPEN LETTER TO THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS
ON RUSSIAN RIVER DREDGING:
Ignoring the recommendations of the Planning
Departmenl,the Board of Zoning Adjuslments, the
County Waler Agency, one hundred "d sixly Russian
River landowners, several conservalion organizations,
their own land use policy and the inter-
recently approyed Ihree gravel permilslo dredg'
the Russian River.
"0 AI an earlier public bearing the Chairman
assured opponents of the permits that they would
prior to a final decision. However, in the
Chairman'S absence"Supervisor Spomer brought the
matter before the Board. Without any indication on
the agenda and with no prior public notice, Ihe
- lIermils were apprmd. Recently the Board has
agreed to prevent any recllrrence of sllch irreglliar
procedures. This, however, does not rectify the
present situation concerning the three dredging
permits already approved.
Supervisors Nordyke of Santa Rosa and Joerger
of Petaluma joined with Spomer in endorsing the
dredging permits and the surpri se method by
which Ihey were passed. Supervisor Theiller voled
in favor of two of the three permits.
laslyear Ihe Board recognized the problems
created by dredging by denying the Jenner permit
and by approprialing \ II ,OOOlora sludy 01 gravel
operations on the river. It would haye been reasonableto
delay the issuance of any further permils
pending the completion of that study. The
Board has relusedto take that step and by the
approval 01 Ihesepermils has undermined Ihe
gravel sludy and wasled 111,000 01 public lunds.
The threat posed by these grayel operations to
fish life, recreational use of the River, and downstream
landowners is clear. .Hoise and dirt pollutianhave
already caused undue nuisance to neighboring
residents, thus already violating the weak
conditions of the permits. The threat upon the
County water system is of additional interest.
The major collection pOint lor the County water
system is adjacent to the proposed dredging sites.
iI is presenlly Ihe source 01 36,000,0110 gallons per
day. The County Water Plan projects an intake of
140,000,000 gallons per day allhalpoinlby1993.
Siltation and down grading of the riverbed asa
result of the dredging could endanger this major
water source and impose substantial expenses on
the taxpayers. We are also informed that the Water
Agency h~s planned to buy a portion of the p r~p erlyon
which one of Ihe dredging operations IS In
bf located. This purchase, to expand the water
collection facilities, was scheduled lor this year.
With the approval of these permits the County will
have greatly increased the expense of that land
purchase since they will now be required to purchase
the dredgingrightslrllm Ihe construction
• company. Thousands of dollars will be added to the
cost of our water system as a result 01 this Sll~
In lighl 01 Ihe inlormation presenled abm,
we, the undersigned citiiens and taxpayers of Sonoma
Counly, do hereby p,blicly requesllhal Ihe
Board reconsider the granting of these dredging
permits, hold additional public hearings, and give
Ihepeopleol lhisCounlya l,lI andlairopporluniIy
10 be heard on Ihisvilal issue.
Shirley A. 8l1hd
Morilyn W. JohnJon
Francu R. lopp
MaryP . A~om l on
W. H. Plnn
Mich. l. far t.y
Armand M. J(urtis
l.urenc t R. Costello
Mil'on A. Milter
Vic'orl.Ma nu bo
Th todar. Griffin
Randolph Cllrter Smith
JauphPo ...... lI
Jomu L. H. lm
Murray A. Iatmon
Chris IC. lCi l ldlln
She,idan loll . rd
Stanley f. lalh ... t
l slanllyM. Ru d
1. A. Jen ll ll
J eff lCan
Geroidin t Phillip5
Annl l. Schroeder
D"ni.1 W. Clark
)l ele"Mul li er
Jon. t Achis""
I( , nll,,;r
Click tabs to swap between content that is broken into logical sections.