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We Won!

CARRQadmin's picture
on Fri, 08/03/2012 - 12:42

On Aug. 2, Sonoma County Superior Court Judge Elliot Daum issued a final ruling in our favor saying the Environmental Impact Report for the Roblar Road Quarry prepared by the County and quarry owner John Barella was insufficient in four major areas. 

Daum said the EIR failed to adequately test or study the closed landfill next to the quarry site for water quality contamination that could be caused by quarry operations.  The County also failed to adequately describe as part of the Project the mitigation preserve they want to put on a neighbor's conservation easement to relocate endangered species that would be killed by the quarry operations.  They failed to do an adequate analysis whether this preserve would even be capable of supporting the animals or whether it would have negative environmental impacts.  Finally, Daum ruled the County failed to adequately analyze the impacts that widening Roblar Road to handle hundreds of gravel trucks per day would have on Americano Creek that runs along Roblar Road.   CARRQ President Sue Buxton said, "I could not be more pleased with Judge Daum's decision.  He clearly read the official record carefully and agreed with our arguments about the inadequacy of the EIR.  Many local residents and county environmentalists have worked very hard for years to bring these issues to light.  We are grateful to our excellent attorney, Michael Molland of Morgan Lewis. This is a significant win for us and everyone concerned with protecting our rural and agricultural lands from incompatible development."

The judge's ruling calls into question the related action approved by the Board of Supervisors on the same day they approved the quarry project (Dec. 2010) to allow the quarry developer to use a neighboring conservation easement for the species habitat mitigation without doing any environmental impact analysis.  The Sonoma County Open Space District is currently developing a written policy concerning allowing mitigation on publicly funded land owned by the District and on conservation easements on private land.  We believe no mitigation should be allowed on publicly funded land when it benefits private developers.  The Open Space District should closely review the judge's ruling prior to recommending a final policy.