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The Environment

After elected, I will hire someone extremely qualified in creating Special Districts. This District will be the first of its kind in the Nation. It will be a combined Water and Open Space District.  It will be a District much like the Santa Clara Valley Water District, one a much smaller scale, (Regional Water Authority Plan).  It will wholesale water, recycles water, and manage the groundwater basin(s). It will also preserve and protect watershed lands, and allow public access in the form of hiking trails, the same way Open Space Districts act.

They will also create a highly sophisticated, computerized, model allowing for a maximum number of water services that could endure a severe 10-year drought. That's right, we can begin the discussion of a sustainable population, a finite number of people who can live here, sustainably, from now to eternity.

Next, we will restore the Coho/Steelhead fish habitat on the San Lorenzo Valley Watershed. This will take some time. My "Storm Aquarries" Plan will help insure a high ground water level, which is extremely important. If the level goes down below the river, the river will dry up in the summer, and exterminate the fish completely.

Second, there is a huge amount of silt pollution. This not only chokes the fish, but also fills up all the "nooks and crannies" that the fish need as their protection from predators and fast moving currents. Finally, a large amount of raw septic water penetrates the river. We need more improvements to recycle this water so that it does not seep into the river. It causes disease and algal blooms, which also devastate the habitat.

I pledge also to get this done.

It's not only a fantastic environmental achievement, but an economical one as well. It boosts both the tourism and fishing industry.

Lastly, air pollution is a huge problem. The Monterey Bay Air Pollution Control District wants to implement more rules that are not well thought out. First, for outdoor brush burning they will allow only large parcels. In some neighborhoods, like Lompico, most of the people live on postage stamp lots, but should be able to still do burn piles, combined with their neighboring properties. We live in a very steep canyon. Using a wood chipper is impossible in most back yards. Wet leaves, or wet anything, generates the most smoke, and this can easily be composted. Dry branches, scotch broom, and other brush will burn with little smoke. These burns are not the main source, simply because residents only do them once a year at most. And, if people did not clear their yards, we'd have a real fire hazard problem.

The main issue is wood stoves.

Again, I believe if you are willing to have an efficient wood stove and put the effort in for dry, hot, fires with little pollution- you should be free to do so without fear of fines or outright condemnation. This problem needs to be attacked by all angles, and thanks to the effort of Paul Nor we could be seeing much lower PGE rates. There are many people with lower income, renting out a place with an old wood stove, burning who knows what, and could start using electric heat which was previously way too expensive PGE bills. Bottom line, we will get there, but let's not punish the "clean burners", and the lot clearing, in the process.