Court set January 26th as Next Decision Date

Posted by on January 15, 2010 under Legal. This post currently has 3 responses.

Finally some information. An update was posted yestarday at http://ohv.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=26096:

“On January 14th, the Court of Appeal, in San Francisco, filed an order accepting an amicus letter brief from the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB), filed on January 11, 2010. This letter argued that the Superior Court in Alameda County lacks jurisdiction to close the park because PEER and CSPA failed to exhaust their administrative remedies with the Water Board first before going to the Court.

Peer and CSPA have until January 20th to file an opposition to the SWRCB letter.

State Parks and/or the SWRCB have until January 25th to file a reply to the opposition from PEER and CSPA.

The park will remain open pending further court action. We expect the court to make a decision on the issue of park closure on or after January 26, 2010. ”

Don Amador comments:
“This has been, and continues to be, a very important test case for water quality-based lawsuits filed by agenda driven environmental groups. Many nervous land owners, farmers, family businesses are also watching this case.”

As Things Stand by Dave Duffin – CORE

Posted by on January 13, 2010 under Uncategorized. This post currently has one response.

For the last month various individuals, organizations and members of the business community that are affected by the possible closure of Carnegie have been going through a monumental change that will be remembered as an historic moment in motorcycling. We have all been exposed to the sad reality that a small group of misguided people can TYRANICALLY cause so much damage to our family recreation community. These people have one common link – they truly hate us and they believe our sport and style of family recreation is an abomination on nature.

With backing on the sidelines from the Mark Connolly/ Celeste Garamendi family, two environmental organizations, and one law firm, have managed to find a ploy to end our recreation here. In the process they also developed a way to manipulate the Staff of the OHV Division of the State Parks. Besides the immediate crisis, the real danger is that they have found a way to close other parks and riding areas using false science to hide their real motives. Their success here will be a template for CLOSING other parks and riding areas.

CORE (Carnegie Off Road Enthusiasts) was developed in the mid ‘90’s as park users’ stakeholder group. We began a series of monthly meetings with the park staff to help plan the uses for the proposed Alameda/Tesla addition to the present Carnegie. Sadly no results of any kind resulted from the work we did. There was always a mysterious roadblock that stopped us. We have soldiered on through the years never giving up belief that our good intentions and hard work would prevail.

The current lawsuit against the park is based on the assumption that OHV use has created a major disaster in Corral Hollow Creek. Here are some phrases in the suit:

“Turbid and polluted waters, massive erosion and scaring, deafening roars of myriad OHV’s, hillsides ripped and left exposed, ongoing degradation of CH Creek, shocking views as one drives past, soil and wildlife loss, loss of bird watching and wildlife viewing”, etc.

It sounds like we are really “bad” doesn’t it. I would put one 10 year old OHV boy or girl on a scale to represent the weight of what we do here, versus the claims of the lawsuit. That side of the scale with the kids would be touching the ground while the other side would be up in the air even though it was filled with kit foxes, whip snakes, red legged frogs and milk vetch plants. The growth of Carnegie through the years is a result of families being attracted to a place where their kids can explore, be challenged, make friends and be fulfilled as young members of a family. Malls, gangs, and drugs are realty for them and they don’t have any trouble making a choice that puts them in the park every weekend.
CORE is developing funding/donations, legal standing and functioning as the “boots on the ground” as this battle continues. We get and post updates directly from the OHV division headquarters. We will contact local city governments, Boards of Supervisors, Chambers of Commerce, law enforcement organizations, school districts and youth clubs for support. We will provide updates to print news and TV media. We will defend our home park and enlist the help from our other OHV organizations and Clubs.

CORE – WE ARE CARNEGIE – CARNEGIEFOREVER.ORG

Dave Duffin, CORE

Appellate Court Case Information

Posted by on January 11, 2010 under Legal. This post currently has no responses.

The plaintiff’s most recent response (State’s petition to the Appellate Court) is not there yet but this is a good source if you are trying to understand how this works. You might get a headache too … don’t blame me!

Go HERE and enter case number RG09474549.  Use the left nav bar to select what you want to read. There’s a lot there already … Actions and Rulings & Orders seems to be the most interesting if you just want to see what’s happening.

If you truly enjoy reading this and/or understand it in detail. Please contact us. We can use the help.

What Happens Now?

Posted by on January 11, 2010 under Legal. This post currently has no responses.

This morning there was still no clear information available regarding the potential closure of our park. Combining the information that we have so far it seems we are facing three potential scenarios. The park could either:

  • stay open (ruling in favor of the state)
  • stay open under certain conditions until a new court date is set.
  • close (requires a ruling in favor of the lower court)

I know this isn’t particularly helpful for your riding planning but it’s all we’ve got. Take a look at Don Amador’s latest post as well.

Carnegie Off-Road Enthusiasts Meeting

Posted by on January 11, 2010 under Events. This post currently has no responses.

January 6, 2010, CORE (Carnegie Off-Road Enthusiasts) held a meeting of parties interested in taking a stance against the closure of Carnegie SVRA. The meeting was generously sponsored and hosted at Tri-Valley Moto BMW, Triumph and KTM dealership in Livermore, CA. Some of the items discussed were:

  • legal options by presenting citizens petition to the judges presiding over the case
  • performing independent environmental testing to determine if toxins found are consistent with motor vehicle discharge
  • contacting our elected officials with outrage at this terrible decision
  • expanding carnegieforever.org and utilizing social networks to build this grass-roots effort

Members of the group attending expressed outrage at this decision and offered accounts of how this decision will affect them personally in large and small ways. Specific activities and efforts are underway to prevent or reverse the appeals court decision expected on Monday January 11, 2010.

CORE Meeting #1

Thanks once again for the overwhelming support here on carnegieforever.org from people near and far. Please check in here often for any developments.

Carnegie Freedom Day Rally

Posted by on January 11, 2010 under Events, Press. This post currently has no responses.

Don Amador’s post about the Rally can be found HERE.

Press coverage from the Carnegie Freedom Day Rally:
KCRA – 12/28/2009
CBS 13 Sacramento – 12/28/2009

Our Neighbors – Source of Lawsuits and Contamination

Posted by on January 11, 2010 under Uncategorized. This post currently has no responses.

Our park, Carnegie SVRA, has some interesting neighbors. On one side, there’s the Connolly Ranch who eagerly fights to shut us down. On the other side we have Superfund Site 300 that along with previous mining efforts seems a likely source of any questionable substances in the (occasional) creek.

There are many things to read, here are a few:

The First Petition

Posted by on January 11, 2010 under Legal, Petitions, Press. This post currently has one response.

Here is the original petition:

We, the undersigned, are in opposition to a ruling[1] 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)[2]. 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[3]. 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”[4] 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

The Ruling That Started CarnegieForever.org

Posted by on January 11, 2010 under Legal. This post currently has 3 responses.

Here are Judge Roesch’s Ruling and the Plaintiff’s Attorney’s Petition.

Also check out the related info from PEER (Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility) and CSPA (California Sportfishing Protection Alliance).

Welcome to our new site

Posted by on January 11, 2010 under Uncategorized. This post currently has 2 responses.

We recently launched an online petition at carnegieforever.org. With over 13,000 supporters and after tons of emails, tweets and facebook messages it was clear that we needed to replace the single page petition site with something else. Our first addition was a twitter account (follow @carnegieforever for important updates) and now we are happy to launch this site.  It’s a work in progress but we hope you find it a valuable resource and come back often. We are looking forward to work with all Carnegie off-road entusiasts and everybody else that supports our mission.

Check out all the pages and links and let us know what you think and what you’d like to see here.

Thank you for your support!

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