(Please excuse duplications: this important announcement is going to all my
lists. Also, please pass this information along to people on your own
On September 14th, RRWPC filed a lawsuit against the Sonoma County Water
Agency over their certification of the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) of
the Estuary Management Project. This came after RRWPC had submitted a 21
page letter appealing to the Board of Directors (Supervisors) not to take
this action the day before their decision. Also, about ten other supporters
had also submitted significant comments on this issue at that time that were
also ignored. (Please let me know if you would like a copy of that letter.
I didn’t want this message loaded with too many documents.)
Our reasons are many for taking this action. A great deal of thought and
study has gone into doing this. Lawsuits can be difficult and expensive and
we will need to raise extra funds to go through this process. We hope you
can help, either through direct contribution and/or through publicity of
this action to others who may contribute.
This message will not go through all the details of why we took this action,
because they are listed in the attached petition and brochure, which was
published this week in color in spite of great printing expense. We hope to
get more printed when funds come in and will try to distribute them broadly.
Please let us know if you can help fund and/or distribute.
Our next mailer will go out on Monday, September 19th and contain a further
explanation and a hard copy of the brochure. It should be received by later
in the week. If you are not on our regular mailing list, and would like to
be, please send your mailing address in a response to this email.
In addition to all this, RRWPC unveiled our new website this week. We will
also be putting information about the suit on the site which is at:
We would appreciate your help.
PS: Yesterday I made a presentation to Santa Rosa’s Board of Public
Utilities and told them about the lawsuit. (I also gave them our brochure
and mentioned our new website) I told them that most people concerned
about the river support programs to save the fish, but none support the
Estuary project. I told them we didn’t want to file suit, that we don’t
like lawsuits, but we had no choice. I also told them we submitted a 21
page letter right before it was approved (also ten other letters) were
submitted and Sups approved anyway.
I told them the mouth of the river is about the wildest place on the Sonoma
Coast and is moving all the time. I told them there is no endpoint to this
project, no goals, and no real definition of exactly what they are going to
do. I talked about impacts to the seals, recreation and water quality.
And I told them it would cost at least $1 million a year when government has
better things to spend their money on.
In the meantime, these agencies are doing little or nothing effectively to
stop the draw down of flow in the major fish spawning tributaries. Almost
every fish advocate I know believes that this is where fish preservation
efforts need to occur.
I had the feeling that I struck a nerve with this presentation. Next Monday
I will say similar things to the other water contractors. Later in the week
I will present this to the Russian River Watershed Association as well.
I’m hoping all of you receiving this message will also help spread the word.
And please, whatever financial support you can offer will be deeply