Here is the original petition:
We, the undersigned, are in opposition to a ruling by Judge Frank Roesch of the Alameda County Superior Court on September 22, 2009 to close Carnegie State Vehicle Recreation Area near Tracy, CA based on a lawsuit filed on September 17 by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER) and California Sportfishing Protection Alliance (CSPA). The plaintiffs are charging the California Department of Parks and Recreation and its OHMVR (Off Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation) Division are violating the state’s Water Code and their own regulations by allowing off-road vehicle activities to pollute Corral Hollow Creek at Carnegie State Vehicular Recreation area. We and our families use the park to enjoy, relax and spend quality time together on land set aside for this type of use. Below are our primary objections to this ruling.
1. Carnegie SVRA is the only venue of its kind in Alameda and San Joaquin Counties used year around and its closure to protect a waterway which only runs 3 to 4 months of the year will cause undue hardship to thousands of annual visitors and area residents. To off-road enthusiasts, it’s a site rich with history dating back to the 1960s when it was frequented by Bay Area founders of the sport. Interests of the many need to be protected, in this case, despite the displeasure of the few. This reason alone, in our judgment, should be sufficient to prevent the closure of Carnegie SVRA.
2. Closure will cause local enthusiasts to have to travel to more distant OHV parks causing harm to neighboring OHV parks from overuse and to the environment at large due to longer travel distances. This consideration is lost on the plaintiffs, negating their concern and attempt at protecting the environment. This reason alone, in our judgment, should be sufficient to prevent the closure of Carnegie SVRA.
3. Closing the park will financially impact area businesses due to loss of revenues from patrons who visit Carnegie. Alameda County will see a decline in sales tax revenues, which can be devastating in these hard financial times. This reason alone, in our judgment, should be sufficient to prevent the closure of Carnegie SVRA.
4. Adjacent to Carnegie OHV is the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory Site 300, a restricted Department of Energy site used for testing nuclear weapons and chemical explosives. According to a San Francisco Chronicle article dated July 21, 2005 “the site is contaminated with toxics including trichloroethylene, tritium and depleted uranium” and it was classified as a Superfund site by the EPA in 19875, making it among the most severely contaminated areas in the nation. How can any responsible and objective third party definitively conclude the damage to Corral Hollow Creek is caused by patrons of Carnegie and not Site 300? This reason alone, in our judgment, should be sufficient to prevent the closure of Carnegie SVRA.
For these reasons we strongly oppose the closure of Carnegie SVRA and urge you to reverse this ruling.
Sign the Petition HERE
Links to References:
1. Judge Roesch’s Ruling
2. PEER News Release on Lawsuit
3. Plaintiff’s Attorney’s Petition
4. SF Chronicle Article dated Thursday, July 21, 2005