Where’s The Water Going?

After reading the 8-31-02 Observer story on the Board of Supervisor’s discussion regarding revisions to the county’s grading ordnance, I was baffled. Did Denise Rockenstein watch the same meeting I had attended for nearly four hours? Ms. Rockenstein quotes Supervisor Smith and CDD director Ms. Fagalde, but completely ignored the hours of testimony coming from local residents, which was absolutely uniform in tone. The standard complaint was that people who had a reliable domestic water supply lost it after a vineyard moved in, and they either have to truck in water at great expense, or move out while still making mortgage payments on an unusable home. Ms. Rockenstein also ignored the numerous objections to the draft proposal having been crafted behind closed doors with input coming from only one special interest group, the Farm Bureau, and that even supervisor Farrington couldn’t get a copy until 24 hours before the debate took place. Ms. Fagalde defended the exclusion of other groups in the drafting of the revision proposal by saying that “”If you want to know about flying, you talk to pilots””, to which I responded that pilots don’t operate in a vacuum, they are part of an integrated system that demands cooperation between air traffic controllers, engineers, mechanics, etc.. Ms. Rockstein failed to mention that the supervisors have been foot-dragging on this issue for over a year, and that with the exception of Jeff Smith, all of them have taken huge sums of cash from the grape growers and other elements of the vineyard development industry. Also missing from Ms. Rockenstein’s story is the fact that Lake County has spent vast amounts of time and money defending itself against lawsuits filed due to the supervisors failing to properly oversee that the CDD fulfill it’s regulatory obligations regarding vineyard developments.

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