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  • The Pescadero Fish Wrap

Upcoming meetings; March 10 and April 14.

The council is looking into the feasibility of getting a generator placed at the CSA-11 well site in preparation for upcoming power outages. Any way you cut it, we still need water and especially if there’s a fire threat! According to the census office we were undercounted in 2010 by 3,500 people in the area. (Maybe that’s enough to get Cindy’s rebuilt?)


We will have a speaker at the April meeting to inform us as to how Measure K funds are being spent (invested) to our benefit. Won’t want to miss this one. The CDF will start sending out reminders/notices regarding fire safety around properties. If we get no more rain than we did in February this will be a majorly big concern. There’s been a 2.5-million-dollar grant from CalFire for forest health and fire resilience work in our area, to include Pescadero County Park, Butano Girl Scout Camp and others. In other words, fuel loads will be reduced and even though it’s way overdue, we’ll take it.


MROSD & POST presented their interest in modifying the LCP to allow them to correct and accomplish sales and transfer of donated and purchased properties they own/control. It’s involved and the really big scare is the unintended consequences that always happen in spite of some great and not so great minds trying to pre-think and/or avoid them. It is not a done deal yet, but county planning staff is pretty much behind this effort.


The Farm Bureau and the Ag Council have weighed in with their concerns, but we’ll see where this goes. We’ve posted the slide show and the letter from the Farm Bureau and Ag Council on the PFW website if you’d like to read them. Primary concern is and has always been loss in property tax revenues to the LHPUSD. We’re suffering major losses as a result of non-profit and public benefit entities not having to pay taxes or choosing not to.


Back in 2004 MROSD entered into an agreement with the school district to pay token dollar amounts on property acquired by them (realize that they are funded by the taxpayers in the county. I know it’s weird!) The agreement is not based on actual market value but some odd formula. As those of us that own property in the district know, we’ve subsidized the schools by volunteering to tax ourselves an additional $100 per year per parcel and so far, it’s been $1,400 over the past 14 years. Since this will hit the streets before the election results are announced the 30% increase and another 7-year extension being asked for may or may not pass. So basically, we’re subsidizing (albeit 4 a penitence) the taxes POST and MidPen aren’t paying. Weird again I know.


Maybe there’s a token way they could show their support for the community; Charlea (see the community profile on the cover) has to replace all of the cyclone fencing at the high school baseball field and the estimate she has is $9,000 from All Fence. Can’t do it through the school district as the price would be a minimum of $14,000 so a donation is the only affordable way to do it. If we just had some residents in the top income brackets around here, perhaps they could promote their companies or themselves on the fencing around the field as an advertising opportunity. That’s what they do in the major leagues :-}


Here’s another interesting one from up the Sacramento river.

AB2363 has been enacted.*

It provides the Secretary of Transportation to prepare and submit a report of findings** Current legislation: Allows a reduction of 5 mph from the 85% speed. So if Pescadero Creek Road speeds are at 44 mph from Wurr Road to Wurr Road, the current law would make the speed 45 mph (rounded to nearest 5 mph) Then we would apply a reduction of 5 mph would bring the speed limit in Loma Mar to 40 mph in lieu of the 25 mph that the community wants and needs for its pedestrians and cyclists.


In addition, the current definition of Residential and Business district allows us to restrict speeds in residential and business districts to 25 mph provided:


a) Residential density, if any of the following conditions exist on the particular portion of highway and the property contiguous thereto, other than a business district: Upon one side of the highway, within 0.25 miles, the contiguous property fronting thereon is occupied by 13 or more separate dwelling houses or business structures.


b) Upon both sides of the highway, collectively, within a distance of 0.25 miles the contiguous property fronting thereon is occupied by 16 or more separate dwelling houses or business structures


c) The portion of highway is larger than 0.25 miles but has the ratio of separate dwelling houses or business structures to the length of the highway described in either subparagraph 1 or 2 above.”


As the lots are large and spaced far apart in Loma Mar, we could not use the residential or business district definitions to reduce the speed to 25 mph in Loma Mar and be enforced. ¼ mile = 1320 feet. In this distance, there are 10 lots on one side of the road or 19 lots on both sides of the road. But not all the lots have driveways that are contiguous with Pescadero Creek Road so the 25 mph rule cannot apply. If the rule can be adjusted to take into account the lots on the side roads also, then we can make a case for the 25 mph.


For example: re-define residential and business district as a minimum 16 separate dwelling houses or businesses within a 0.25 mile radius would be a reasonable revision to the current regulation to help communities like Loma Mar and other areas in San Mateo County to keep the speed limits low where small population centers concentrate.


In addition, if the state can allow automated speed enforcement cameras for rural districts, then you will have better enforcement also. Currently automated speed cameras are not allowed in California.


***Please write to let him know that you strongly support legislation that will modify the definition of residential and business districts that will help reduce speed in these rural communities and explain the issue that you have and how it affects your community.

The current code is negative to rural communities. AB2363 is trying to figure out if they should change the current code.


So please ask the state to re-define residential and business district as a minimum 16 separate dwelling houses or businesses within a 0.25 mile radius of the center of the speed zone.


-Fil Let, TPFW reporter at large.


Sunshine Valley and Loma Mar you may wish to organize a writing/email campaign.

Contact Davis S. Kim:

Mail:

Davis S. Kim

Secretary of the California State Transportation Agency

915 Capitol Mall, Suite 350B Sacramento, CA 95814

Phone:

(916) 323-5400

(916) 323-5440 fax

Email: the State Transportation

Agency at:

contact.us@calsta.ca.gov

Source links:

* http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201720180AB2363

**https://cal.streetsblog.org/2020/02/06/zero-fatalities-task-force-report-change-the-way-speed-limits-are-set/

***https://www.speedingticketadvisor.org/speeding-red-light-camera-california/

  • The Pescadero Fish Wrap

CHP Commander Jim Allen review of 2019: 43 Collisions on highway one between So end of HMB to SC county line. 1 fatality, 25 injuries, 17 non-injury. In the rest of the area, other than highway one there were 12 collisions; one fatality, 7 injuries and 4 non-injury. As we’re all too aware the weekend traffic is now a yearlong thing and not just in the summertime. Car break-ins have exploded over the past few years, mostly in beach parking lots. Guess the over-the-hill bad guys are expanding their territories and without charges/arrests it’s looking hopeless. Just don’t take any chances and have nothing in your car if you or a visitor parks out there.


CalFire update; our local Chief Cox has been promoted to deputy chief of the SM division. Congratulations to him as it’s much deserved. The issue of contractors taking water from our hydrants came up and it turns out that the water district may not make any water available to anyone other than ratepayers through existing hookups. Meanwhile please report anyone plugged into a hydrant if you see that happening. Pictures would be helpful and feel free to inform them that what they’re doing is illegal. And if they’re not any bigger than you run them off. The fire department also reported that there’s still no determination on the source/cause of the Mushroom farm fire on Gazos, also a big thank you to the resident crew for coming to help clean up the high school grounds recently. Next time you see one of these guys/gals give them a big thank you or hug.


On February 8, the Office of sustainability (OOS) is sponsoring a free electronics, small appliances and Styrofoam drop-off at the transfer station. Also, the OOS is proposing a disposable food service ordinance to the board of sups that requires any individual, company, organization that is preparing and serving food, must only use fiber-based disposables. This will only apply to the unincorporated areas and not to cities, etc. Hmmm? If the BOS approves the ordinance it will take effect within one month and enforcement starting in one year. Speaking of food and good times, Memorial Park will be available for day use only while upgrades are currently being made. Probably in effect through the end of the year.


Mary Wendrup, president of the LHPUSD made a big splash and an excellent appearance before the community. She related much of the progress being made at the various schools. It’s great to get some update and the good news is she still has one year remaining in her term. B.J. Burns, who lives across the street from the high school observed that it would be worthwhile for the district to investigate the availability of potable water on the property through sinking a viable well. Could be an excellent alternative to spending upwards of $6,000,000 or more on extending the CSA-11 services to the property. We have some excellent water Witcher’s in this community and it might be worth a little time to check out. Mary will send someone qualified to address the idea from the school next month. On a side note, the seventh and eighth graders managed to raise enough money to finance their trip to D.C.


DON’T miss the next PMAC meeting on February 11. There’s a major proposal to modify the LCP (local coastal program) that will greatly impact all the south-coast property owners and not just the farmers and ranchers. This will be addressed by the county, MidPen and POST. When the draft of the proposal is made available it will be posted on TPFW website and we’ll also send it out as a special mailing to current subscribers. Please mark your calendars and attend the meeting. According to those that have sat through two presentations already this is confusing, and it appears that there’s a great deal more to this proposal than meets the eye. This deals with sub-divisions, which was supposed to be under the sharp eye of the Coastal Commission, but this may not have been the case for years. Lot-line adjustments may become problematic and jeopardize existing density credits for those not a public agency.


The Farm Bureau and Ag Advisory Council have both been presented with this proposal and confusion reigns. It’s their sense that time to digest and understand what the proposal (its relative impact and long-term consequences) is needed. Don’t miss this meeting! Melisa Ross, Senior Planner with the Planning and Building department will present. Also involved with the presentation will be Mike Williams, MROSD and Ben Wright with POST.


-Fil Let; TPFW staff reporter.

  • The Pescadero Fish Wrap

On the first Wednesday of each month, a group of citizens meets at the LHPUSD offices to discuss the future of Pescadero and the surrounding area.  This meeting is known as Sustainable Pescadero and is open to anyone wishing to attend. It starts at 4pm.

For example, this month the agenda covered: RCD’s latest news is the hiring of Sheena Sidhu.  She will manage projects for the RCD’s Forest Health and Fire Resiliency programs. Speaking of this fine independent agency the marsh work is over and the mouth of the marsh is open to the ocean. Time and rainfall will tell us this winter how effective the work will be in allowing fish into the Butano to and maybe even assist in non-flooding of PCR at the bridge.

Lynn Bowman reported on the possible development teacher/low-income housing on the five acres owned by LHPUSD on North St. in cooperation with MROSD’s housing division. 

Amy Wolliver provided an update on the proposed extension of the CSA-11 water system to the High School and prospective firehouse site. The design phase is being funded through taxpayer-funded proposition 1 monies via the state water resources board.

Catherine Peery presented the Grant Proposal for a Pescadero park/plaza for the town. See the proposal PDF here. She also reported that KPDO is and has been off the air since the big windstorm.  As we all know they have shut down the power several times and one of these times when the power returned it spiked the system and blew the computer that’s used to keep the signal on the air. If anyone has some extra funds to purchase a replacement it would be appreciated. Just contact her or the Fish Wrap.

That’s pretty much a capsule report for this group and please sing out if you have observations, comments or suggestions and remember if you’d like to attend the next meeting it’s scheduled for January 2nd as the 1st is New Years Day.

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