City and County Butt Heads Over Tower

tower.jpgCity Clarifies Position in Recent Letter as County Recommends Denial of Appeal –

The city and county will come to blows today, at least metaphorically speaking, over a one-year extension of a use permit for a 365-foot radio tower at the landfill site.

The county staff report is recommending the extension of the use permit for one year and a denial of the appeal filed by Eileen Samitz.

The recommendation comes despite a letter issued on December 7, following the council’s meeting last week in which City Manager Steve Pinkerton wrote, “The City Council reviewed the project and approved a recommendation that the Board not support an extension of the permit to construct the tower based on the potential impacts to biological resources and the creation of aesthetic impacts associated with tower lighting.”

The council also suggested interest “in discussing the general issue of tower construction at a future City/County 2×2 meeting as a way to increase communication in advance of any future proposals for towers in the Davis area.”

According to the county, “Under the Yolo County Code, the term of a Use Permit may be extended if ‘it is found that circumstances under which the permit was granted have not changed.’ Both the Zoning Administrator and the Planning Commission approved a one-year extension of the Use Permit upon determining that the circumstances under which the original Use Permit was issued had not changed.”

According to the county, appellant Ms. Samitz “argues that circumstances under which the permit was originally granted have changed, and that therefore neither the Zoning Administrator nor the Planning Commission had the authority to grant the one-year extension of the Use Permit.”

The county’s staff report, while responding in detail to Ms. Samitz’ complaints, does not address the City of Davis’ concerns – at least not directly.  The staff report did note that “the proposed tower was determined by the Davis City Council to be consistent with the Pass-Through Agreement.”

The report notes that, in 2002, the MOU signed by the City and County read: “We declare and affirm our mutual commitment to the protection and preservation of agricultural lands and open space, our desire to avoid urban sprawl, and our intent that there shall be no urban development North of County Road 29 and South of County Road 27 as between the communities of Davis and Woodland.”

They argue, “The approved radio tower would be located within the existing developed area of the County Central Landfill and would not result in the loss of any farmland or open space. In addition, the tower is not considered urban development. The radio towers currently placed in Yolo County are all located in the unincorporated area, generally on farmland, are not within any city limits. Based on these reasons, staff believes that the Use Permit is not in violation of the non-binding Memorandum of Understanding.”

Two of the main arguments are bird strikes and light pollution.

The county staff report disputes both of these claims.

With regard to bird strikes they argue, “Prior to the September 14, 2010 Board of Supervisors hearing, the applicant proposed to change the design of the tower from a guy-wired tower to a freestanding tower for the purpose of greatly reducing potential impacts to bird species.”

And in response to the light pollution issue, they respond, “The flashing of three white strobes will undoubtedly be visible from vantage points within the Cities of Davis and Woodland, as well as from rural residences and agricultural properties in the nearby vicinity. However, the intensity of light diminishes significantly with increased distance. The nearest rural residence is approximately 0.5 miles away and the nearest subdivision of homes within the Cities of Davis and Woodland are approximately 2.4 and 4.2 miles, respectively. The impact of lighting on Davis residents would be no different than similar lighting on the existing radio tower located 0.9 miles north of the city.”

However, the city disagrees on both of these points.

They argue first, “Despite improvements in the project design, the proposed project is inconsistent with the US Fish and Wildlife Services’ communication tower locational guidelines and will create a potential bird strike hazard due to the close proximity to wildlife habitat areas and bird migratory routes.”

And to the light pollution point, “The tower will decrease nighttime visual quality in a dark part of Yolo County. Towers should be located in lit corridors.”

The city argues, “The Yolo County Board of Supervisors should not support an extension of the permit to construct the tower based on (1) the potential impacts to biological resources associated with its proposed location and (2) the creation of aesthetic impacts associated with tower lighting.”

The city had previously noted, in March of 2010, several related points to the bird strike issue.

First, “Communication towers, and associated guy wires, are well documented to present a bird strike hazard. A nation-wide annual estimate of 4-50 million birds are mortally injured via collision with communication towers.”

Second, “The proposed site is located within close proximity of three water bodies that attract high concentrations of avian wildlife throughout the year.”

Third, “The proposed location of the communication tower sits in the middle of the daily migration path of thousands of gulls. During the day gulls seek food on the active face of the landfill. The landfill drainage ponds and WWTP [Wastewater Treatment Plant] oxidation ponds are used by the gulls for loafing and nighttime roosting. The gulls make frequent trips during the day to and from the landfill and ponds, thus increasing their potential for collision with the tower and/ or guy wires.”

Yesterday, KDVS General Manager Neil Ruud wrote an op-ed on the Vanguard that argued that KDVS needs the tower.

He argued, “If this tower is not built, there will be an immediate negative impact on KDVS’s coverage. Even more importantly, KDVS’s prospects of relocation will be even more limited than they already are.”

He also noted, “The Davis City Council’s offers of assistance finding alternate sites were appreciated, but KDVS has already exhausted other options in the extremely technical field of tower location which is constrained by the FCC, the FAA and local government.”

The question I have is whether or not there is some sort of a middle ground here – a way to protect KDVS, which is a community asset, while addressing the concerns of environmentalists about bird strikes, and of residents about light pollution and other nuisances.

—David M. Greenwald reporting

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About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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44 thoughts on “City and County Butt Heads Over Tower”

  1. E Roberts Musser

    We are worried about gulls? Really? Those things are more than plentiful (not an endangered species), a dratted nuisance, and I doubt would be fooled into hitting a radio tower right in front of them.

    Secondly, what is the “change” Eileen Samitz is referring to that has occurred that supposedly justifies her appeal?

  2. Observer

    What effect does the current tower have on bird mortality? Is it significant? If not, why would the new tower be any more deadly? Anon, the city council did vote to disapprove the tower, but is the tower in the City of Davis? Is it in their jurisdiction? Our council is very good at voting on issues regarding the Middle East, nuclear policy, etc, but they unfortunately do not have the authority to enforce these votes. And who is this Eileen Samitz? Isn’t she one of the ones trying to kill the water project? Who elected her? Is she representing the Sierra Club on this? Stranger and stranger.

  3. E Roberts Musser

    [quote]One obvious change in circumstance is that on 12/6/11, the Davis City Council voted unanimously 5-0 to oppose the extension of the use permit.[/quote]

    I do not believe that constitutes a “change in circumstance” necessary to make an appeal…

    [quote]What effect does the current tower have on bird mortality?[/quote]

    It is my understanding that hunters are allowed to shoot birds in the flyway where this tower is going, which pretty much debunks the claim of bird deaths as a valid reason not to locate the tower at the land fill…

  4. Don Shor

    @ Observer: I am unaware of Eileen taking any public position on the water project, but I could ask her. To my knowledge her positions on the tower project are taken as a private citizen who lives south of the proposed location.
    I don’t have a strong position on the tower project, but I do have a concern about the Yolo County Board of Supervisors approving something that has been opposed by a unanimous vote of the nearest city.

  5. rusty49

    It strikes me as funny how many on here are using the selenium toxicity’s effect on birds as a reason why we need the water project but then don’t give a hoot about the tower’s effect on fowl.

  6. Observer

    Rusty, that is my question; what is the effect of the tower on waterfowl? I know that the rotating blade of windmills take a toll on birds, as do thin wires, and windows. I am not aware that a stationary structure is of danger. After all, birds don’t crash into trees very often. If I am wrong on this assumption, I too will oppose the tower, but I don’t think that opinions should be touted as facts. Perhaps an Audubon Society member will enlighten.

  7. Matt Williams

    rusty49 said . . .

    [i]”It strikes me as funny how many on here are using the selenium toxicity’s effect on birds as a reason why we need the water project but then don’t give a hoot about the tower’s effect on fowl.”[/i]

    That’s a very good observation rusty. I could be wrong but I think the key difference is how the fowl are affected. Selenium exposure over a certain limit produces a systemic effect on all the birds that are reproducing in the area of selenium exposure. Bird strike collisions are not systemic in their effect, but rather individualized in their effect on only those birds that happen to actually collide with a tower. Further, in the latter case, each individual bird can take evasive action to avoid the risk to their life that the tower poses. In the former case, no individual bird can take any evasive action to avoid the damaging selenium exposure. To give you a sense of just how lethal selenium can be, I paste here an excerpt from Wikipedia about the Kesterson Reservoir. [i]Prior to 1981, the Kesterson Reservoir supported a wide variety of life, including several species of fish. After 1981, the reservoir only supported the most saline tolerant mosquito fish. The habitat change occurred quickly and also included algal blooms and disappearing waterfowl. In 1982, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service began a study to determine the cause for declining wildlife use at the reservoir.”[/i]

  8. Matt Williams

    Sue Greenwald said . . .

    [i]”Don, the comment “Observer 12/13/11 – 09:57 AM” should be edited as too personal, IMHO.”[/i]

    Personal to Eileen?

  9. roger bockrath

    E. Roberts Musser said,
    “It is my understanding that hunters are allowed to shoot birds in the flyway where this tower is going, which pretty much debunks the claim of bird deaths as a valid reason not to locate the tower at the land fill…”

    Elaine, Hunters are allowed to shoot certain species of birds in certain tightly controlled areas within this flyway, during certain tightly controlled seasons. Hunters are never allowed to shoot California Gulls, a protected species which is locally abundant near food sources. There are many other species that use the flyway and try to get around during our foggy winters. They run into many objects and die as a result. Power and telephone wires and poles are particularly significant in bird deaths. Flocks of Canada Geese fly in the fog at altitudes that make a tower particularly deadly.

    I can recall removing a mud covered Tundra Swan with a broken wing from a water filled ditch near the land fill. It had flown into a power pole or wires in the fog. I took it to the VMTH in the hope it could be saved. Unfortunately this magnificent bird had to be put down for lack of facility/personnel to provide proper care.

    I fail to understand why shooting of certain species of birds within the Pacific Flyway by hunters, who have done more than all conservation groups combined to secure habitat for all species, has anything to do with bird deaths caused by inadvertent collisions with man made obstacles.

  10. Mr.Toad

    “It strikes me as funny how many on here are using the selenium toxicity’s effect on birds as a reason why we need the water project but then don’t give a hoot about the tower’s effect on fowl.”

    My concern about the Se content of the water is for the kids not the birds.

  11. Mr.Toad

    The problem here is that when students go to the City Council they are not taken seriously because they are disenfranchised from voting in the city. KDVS had people at the CC but they were ignored. i couldn’t make the CC meeting and when I spoke with someone on the council they asked me why I wasn’t there as if it would have been different if long term residents had turned out. If anything this shows why students need to organize and vote in Davis if they live in the city. As long as students fail to participate both by disinterest or gerrymandering they will not be taken seriously even when they are right on the issues. Pepper spraying, noise ordinances, KDVS radio towers, standard lease agreements that favor the landlords, it all is okay with the establishment because students don’t vote.

    Oh and one other thing, the city council came too late too this. This was not the time for objections and when the tower was being negotiated the CC didn’t object so its a little late to speak up now after the plan has been worked on for years. As jim Provenza pointed out why did they do this now and not object when it would have made a difference. By the way not one Davis CC member was at the Board of Supervisors today so how firmly did they really oppose the tower.

  12. medwoman

    Elaine

    “It is my understanding that hunters are allowed to shoot birds in the flyway where this tower is going, which pretty much debunks the claim of bird deaths as a valid reason not to locate the tower at the land fill…

    I fail to see how the existence of one means of inflicting bird mortality, provides a defense for further endangering them. Some bird hunters consume the birds they shoot ( a fair amount of my family’s meat when I was growing up was quail, pheasant and venison all shot by my Dad ).
    That would never be the case for bird casualties of the towered. And even that presupposes that one believes that hunting should be allowed even if one has no unintentional of using the kill.

  13. Mr.Toad

    Sue said:”Don, the comment “Observer 12/13/11 – 09:57 AM” should be edited as too personal, IMHO.”

    Really Sue? How sanitized should society be?

    I just wonder why you and the rest of the council ignored the students and sent that stupid, after the fact, letter to the Supervisors? Why did you and the council decide to suck up to Samitz now just before an election year? If the Davis CC had concerns why were they not brought forth during the extensive planning process when they would have been taken into consideration and been addressed instead of now during a permit extension vote? Today was a complete waste of everyones time and the Davis CC should be ashamed that they gave credibility to this appeal.

  14. Adam Smith

    [i]It strikes me as funny how many on here are using the selenium toxicity’s effect on birds as a reason why we need the water project but then don’t give a hoot about the tower’s effect on fowl. [/i]

    It also strikes me as funny how many on here were against the water projects, thereby killing birds with selenium, but now do give a hoot about the tower’s effect on fowl.

  15. Sue Greenwald

    [b]@Toad[/b]:It was a tough issue. Staff recommended against it, major environmental groups recommended against it, many, many citizens wrote in against it, and I got I think maybe one letter from KDVS right before the vote. I was not familiar with the KDVS issue; they didn’t do much outreach to the council. And obviously, they didn’t have to.

  16. Mr.Toad

    It wasn’t a tough issue, it was a stupid position for the council to take. You claim you were not familiar with the issue so why take any position at all? Why not defer to the Supervisors who spent years working out a negotiated agreement. You put Jim Provenza in a bind looking like he was in conflict with the Davis CC when in reality he has put a lot of energy into mitigating the impacts of both the towers design and location for no reason other than to appease people who clearly took an extreme position. Shameful!

  17. rusty49

    “You put Jim Provenza in a bind looking like he was in conflict with the Davis CC when in reality he has put a lot of energy into mitigating the impacts of both the towers design and location for no reason other than to appease people who clearly took an extreme position. Shameful!”

    Was it an extreme position when residents of El Macero and South Davis had it move over to northeast Davis?

  18. Anon

    rusty49 is right. The extreme position was taken by the NIMBY’s in El Macero and Willowbank. Sadly, Jim Provenza sold-out to them in 2010 … and the rest is now history.

    Their position was that the tower was perfectly fine – as long as it was adjacent to North Davis (translation: screw the farmers, the birds, and their neighbors to the north that live on the fringe of the city).

    You also have to ask yourself why the NIMBY’s attorney and Matt Williams felt compelled to come by and twist the knife.

    Regardless of where you come down on this, the fact is that the County has now established that they can (1) urbanize the Davis/Woodland green zone, and (2) violate the Pass-Through Agreement if staff and the council majority are afraid or unwilling to exercise our veto power.

    I’m sure we’ll hear lots of whining from El Macero when another power line or tower or AKT development threatens their NIMBY enclave. I, for one, will turn a deaf ear.

  19. rusty49

    Anon, I went to the TANK tower hearings, as I’m sure you did too, and voiced my opinion against the towers that would’ve affected El Macero the most. I fought for them and now to have some of them advocating for this tower in northeast Davis is definitely hard to swallow.

  20. E Roberts Musser

    [quote]Elaine, Hunters are allowed to shoot certain species of birds in certain tightly controlled areas within this flyway, during certain tightly controlled seasons. Hunters are never allowed to shoot California Gulls, a protected species which is locally abundant near food sources. [/quote]

    CA Gulls are an endangered species? Are they different than other types of gulls seen at the beaches? Bc the plentiful gulls at the beaches are an absolute menace, as are the birds (I think they are crows or starlings) at University Mall (can you tell I am not a bird lover?).

  21. roger bockrath

    Elaine,
    I am constantly amazed how intelligent folks like you display their total lack of knowledge about the other species that inhabit our planet. No, gulls are not endangered. Animals do not have to be endangered to be protected. By law, animals are broken down into categories including game animals(the ones I feed my family on) and non game animals (the ones we are not allowed to harvest for food). Gulls fall into the second group.

    With regard to the crow problem at University Mall: We have plentiful crows in this area for the same reason we have plentiful gulls in and around the Yolo County Landfill, [b][i]plentiful food sources[/i][/b]. All species need food, water and cover to survive. Take away any of those three and they can not survive. Because we have plentiful agricultural food available we have lots of crows. Because we persist in placing our food waste in land fills instead of composting it (a proposal currently being considered by the County of Yolo), we have lots of crows feeding at our landfill.

    In the next few years we will most probably be composting our food waste in Yolo County and the gulls will move on to where the living is easier. It’s pretty hard to eliminate all the grains spilled in feed corn fields etc. in order the thin out the crows to a more balanced level. That leaves the cover as a possible necessity to be removed. Davis is a a urban forest, providing plenty of tall trees for crows to roost in. As my own willow and my neighbor’s mulberry trees have matured we have seen an increase in the number of crows roosting there. I have to wash my truck a lot more often these days. But I am very attached to my trees.

    The good news is that crows are a game species and are very good eating. I,d be happy to loan you a shotgun if you care to take the hunter safety course, buy a license, learn the rules of hunting and learn how to eat crow (pun intended). As for the seagulls, I suggest we all get behind the Yolo County effort to compost all food waste, not only because human food waste is feeding “menace” seagulls , but because not composting is wasting a valuable resource!

  22. Steve Hayes

    MY PRESENTATION AT THE 12-13-11 YOLO COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS MEETING

    •Introduction
    a. Sesame Street Has a Favorite Teaching Game with a Famous Title Song

    b. The Name of that song as “One of These Things Does Not Belong!”

    c. To learn their relevance here, let’s remember the Song and Play Along

    •The Game
    a.In Square 1, we have the Woodland-Davis Greenline Zone between County Roads 27 and 29 where wildlife and agricultural land are to be protected and no urban uses are to be allowed (other than the Yolo County Landfill which was Grandfathered in). This unique area is teeming with wildlife, especially migratory birds as a result of consistently abundant surface water resources such as Willow Slough, landfill settling ponds, waste treatment oxidation ponds, and other sources. The area is markedly rural with open, irrigated farm acreage. The area is also predominantly quiet, dark, and, in the late fall and winter, often foggy

    b.In Square 2, we have the Yolo Causeway immediately to the east and the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta to the south of the study area. When flooded, the Yolo Causeway is broad, shallow, organically rich, and a prime fishery breeding area. During that time, it is a major draw for predatory bird species feeding on young fish, and migratory birds feeding on flooded agricultural residues. The Delta is the winter feeding ground destination for many Pacific Flyway migratory waterfowl which pass through the area to the south in the fall and to the north in the spring. The Davis Wetlands Project and the Vic Fazio Wildlife Recreation area are local representations of these highly valued resources and should not be jeopardized.

    c.In Square 3 we have the residents of of nearby northeast Davis who live in predoninantly quiet, shaded neighborhoods. Most of these residents are aware of and support the dark sky ordinance passed by the City years ago. These residents also purchased their homes in good faith that proper environmental procedures would be followed and that proper environmental protections would be enforced so that they and their property would be protected from visual blight and excessive night sky light pollution due to the installation of a massive, pulsating radio transmission antenna system nearby. At no time were these residents notified by project proponents of the projected impacts(light pollution and decreased property values) that the project would have on the quality of their lives. Why WERN’T these issues considered in a FULL CEQA analysis for this project? A Mitigated Negative Declaration focusing on the specifics of the light source rather than the impacts of the light on people does NOT fit the bill.

    d.In Square 4, we have a proposed 365 foot transmitting tower with extensive flashing Strobe lights for Results Radio (a private company) to be placed within the Green Zone in violation of the Greenline MOU between Davis, Woodland, and Yolo County. This MOU calls for an exclusion of urban uses within the Green Zone. This proposed urban use also violates the pass-through agreement between Davis and Yolo County which gives the City of Davis the authority to exclude urban uses within the Davis sphere of influence, including within the landfill. Finally, placement of the tower within the Green Zone violates the trust that citizens of this region have placed in their representatives to represent their concerns and interest in this issue in a fair, honest, and thorough manner.

    •Recommendation

    a.Don’t stab the assets in Squares 1, 2, and 3 just described in the eye, with Square 4, the
    enormous 365 foot transmitting tower with extensive flashing strobe lights. One of these
    things does not belong, and it is Square 4!
    _________

  23. Sue Greenwald

    [quote]violate the Pass-Through Agreement if staff and the council majority are afraid or unwilling to exercise our veto power.–[b]Anon[/b] [/quote]Anon, I was wondering why you say that the council “majority” was afraid or unwilling t exercise our veto power? The vote was unanimous and no one spoke in favor of exercising the pass-through agreement.

  24. Matt Williams

    rusty49 said . . .

    [i]”Anon, I went to the TANC tower hearings, as I’m sure you did too, and voiced my opinion against the towers that would’ve affected El Macero the most. I fought for them and now to have some of them advocating for this tower in northeast Davis is definitely hard to swallow.”[/i]

    rusty, you need to check your facts. The TANC towers would have come directly south to within one mile of the houses on the east end of Carravaggio, Bellows and Rockwell in Wildhorse, one mile of Harper Junior High School, and then turned east to cross I-80 and go within 500 feet of the 60+ East Davis homes on Dresbach end of Tufts, Guthrie, Cowell and Hoag before continuing south the same distance from the 50 homes on East El Macero. Davis, with more homes and a Junior High School was impacted even more than El Macero.

    BTW, driving up Mace toward Covell today it was very interesting that the existing 500 foot tower wasn’t even visually as tall as the telephone poles out in the middle of the agricultural fields. As the Supevisors said yesterday, you could cover the tower with your tip of your thumb . . . actually the tip of your little finger.

  25. Matt Williams

    Yesterday Anon described himself/herself as a NIOBY with an explanation of NIOBY as “Not In Our Back Yards”

    I think he/she misspoke NIOBY as he/she used it means “Nothing In Our Beloved Yolo”

  26. Matt Williams

    roger bockrath said

    [i]”we have lots of [b]crows[/b] feeding at our landfill.

    Should read: we have lots of [b]gulls[/b] feeding at our landfill.”[/i]

    Actually Roger, based on my experience with birds at lots of landfills across the country, we have lots of [b]both[/b] feeding at our landfill.

  27. Anon

    @Sue Greenwald: “Anon, I was wondering why you say that the council “majority” was afraid or unwilling t exercise our veto power? The vote was unanimous and no one spoke in favor of exercising the pass-through agreement.”

    Sorry Sue. I didn’t mean to imply anything negative about the current CC. I was speaking of a hypothetical situation in the future.

    Thanks for supporting the OSHC recommendations. I really appreciate that the council sent a very clear 5-0 message to the county. And I understand that the sitting CC couldn’t blow up the Pass-Through Agreement over a single radio tower. I personally would have gone there if I was on the council because that’s my style, but I understand and respect the approach that was taken.

    I have to say I was shocked that the county was so dismissive of the wishes of the current City Council.

  28. Anon

    “Yesterday Anon described himself/herself as a NIOBY with an explanation of NIOBY as “Not In Our Back Yards”

    I think he/she misspoke NIOBY as he/she used it means “Nothing In Our Beloved Yolo””

    Matt: Aren’t you the clever one. You must be so proud of yourself.

  29. Anon

    @rusty49: “Anon, I went to the TANC tower hearings, as I’m sure you did too, and voiced my opinion against the towers that would’ve affected El Macero the most. I fought for them and now to have some of them advocating for this tower in northeast Davis is definitely hard to swallow.”

    rusty49: You are absolutely correct. No need to check your facts. The transmission lines would have run right up against El Macero, affecting those home owners much worse than any of the other areas of town mentioned by our guilt-ridden NIMBY.

    [img]http://davisvanguard.org/images/stories/authors/powerline_route.jpg[/img]

  30. Matt Williams

    Anon, once again you play fast and loose with the facts. Perhaps you should talk to all the 60+ City of Davis residents on the Dresbach end of Tufts, Guthrie, Cowell and Hoag and see if they felt less affected by the TANC corridor than the residents on East El Macero Drive felt.

    I doubt they would appreciate how dismissive you are of your fellow Davis residents.

  31. Anon

    Matt: You’re really a piece of work.

    You made a deceptive argument about relative impacts. Your deception is obvious from the picture I posted above.

    Then you tried to twist my response into an insinuation that I don’t care about other impacted residents.

    For the record, I certainly would not sell out the the residents of east Davis if I could prevent impacts in my neighborhood – even if the impacts on my neighbor were worse than the impacts on east Davis. Based on the facts, you would.

  32. Matt Williams

    Anon, the impacts on your neighborhood are figments of your imagination. You heard what David Morrison said at the hearing. The tower will visually be no larger than the tip of your tumb on the horizon and the candellas of light will be “one eightieth of one candella at 2.5 miles”

    Your arguments throughout your long harangue on this topic have been 100% emotion and 0% fact. Even when you tried to use a fact (the 93% load on the CBS tower), you didn’t even bother to find out how much additional load the KDVS equipment would add to the tower.

    Go take a lesson from Pam Nieberg and Shawn Smallwood and Alan Pryor. They at least provide legitimate facts to back up their legitimate passion for wildlife.

  33. E Roberts Musser

    [quote]I am constantly amazed how intelligent folks like you display their total lack of knowledge about the other species that inhabit our planet. No, gulls are not endangered. Animals do not have to be endangered to be protected. By law, animals are broken down into categories including game animals(the ones I feed my family on) and non game animals (the ones we are not allowed to harvest for food). Gulls fall into the second group…

    The good news is that crows are a game species and are very good eating. I,d be happy to loan you a shotgun if you care to take the hunter safety course, buy a license, learn the rules of hunting and learn how to eat crow (pun intended). As for the seagulls, I suggest we all get behind the Yolo County effort to compost all food waste, not only because human food waste is feeding “menace” seagulls , but because not composting is wasting a valuable resource![/quote]

    I am constantly amazed how intelligent folks like you display their total lack of understanding that not everyone cares that much about birds, and just may have many other interests that are of much higher priority. I’m sure I could name quite a few subjects that you would know absolutely nothing about. But then I wouldn’t necessarily expect you to. Nevertheless I am always glad to be educated by an “expert” who knows more than I do about a subject. Just don’t assume I am or ever will be as passionate as you are about a particular subject.

    So let me ask what you would probably consider a “dumb” question: If gulls are not an endangered species, and hunting takes place in the Pacific flyway anyway, why are bird kills by a single tower of much significance, assuming they are not a massive number of kills but fairly minimal (which I doubt they would be since care has been taken to minimize them)? My gosh, I see dead birds (and other dead animals) on my walk all the time, and no one seems particularly concerned.

    And no thank you, I don’t care to hunt/eat crow (yuck!). I like my food all cut up and plastic wrapped in a nice neat package so that I don’t know from whence it came, thank you very much! (I’m laughing so hard I’m having a hard time typing this! You made my day with your suggestion of me hunting and the eating crow pun!) I heartily agree we leave out too much food for animals, particularly birds, who are a darn nuisance. Believe it or not I love animals (especially fond of dogs), but don’t like them when they encroach to the point of being a pest.

  34. E Roberts Musser

    [quote]Steve Hayes: This proposed urban use also violates the pass-through agreement between Davis and Yolo County which gives the City of Davis the authority to exclude urban uses within the Davis sphere of influence, including within the landfill.[/quote]

    Actually I think this is the one point opponents of the project can hang their hat on, rather than projected bird kills and other such arguments…

  35. Matt Williams

    Elaine, one of the very interesting things that came out of the Tuesday Supervisors meeting was that not only did the Council on 3/16/2010 vote unanimously that the City/RDA [i]”determined that the proposed project for the new radio tower is ‘urban development’ under the Pass-Through Agreement, but [b][u]that the project would not interfere with the intent of the agreement and there are no objections to the proposal[/u][/b] from the Redevelopment Agency”[/i] but that the current Council reaffirmed that decision on Tuesday night 12/6/2011.

    So, two different Councils made unanimous votes that violation of the Pass-Through Agreement was not a point the opponents could hang their hat on.

    To be honest, I had missed that reaffirmation on 12/6/2011, but Mitch Sears when questioned by the Supervisors during Public Comment did confirm that that was indeed the case.

  36. Anon

    Matt: There you go again. Misstatement of fact hidden in pseudo-analytical pap.

    Are you working for Results Radio?

    The 2011 CC did not reaffirm the 2010 decision. Joe specifically removed any mention of the 2010 council’s position from the motion. Even if they had wanted to weigh in, they were not sitting as the RDA.

  37. Anon

    [quote]Actually I think this is the one point opponents of the project can hang their hat on[/quote]The staff member responsible for the 2010 position was Katherine Hess. Staff tried to slip this position into the City Manager’s letter to the County, and they were called on the carpet for doing so. The City Manager then had to send in a letter of correction, and Mitch Sears was at the hearing to make it clear that the 2011 CC was not reaffirming the prior action.

  38. Anon

    [quote]Actually I think this is the one point opponents of the project can hang their hat on[/quote]Elaine: I’m glad that we agree on this particular issue.

    As an attorney, do you think the RDA should have the authority to ignore violations of the Pass-Through Agreement if a majority is willing to make a finding that an urban development proposal does not violate the “spirit” of the Pass Through Agreement?

    In my mind, this is problematic since the “spirit” of the agreement is a matter of interpretation.

    For example, a pro-growth majority could theoretically decide that the Covell property is essentially an infill site and that the “spirit” of the Pass-Through Agreement is to prevent leapfrog development out into the county.

    My bias is that the city and county should have been required to amend the allowed uses rather than rely on this “spirit” loophole cooked up by Hess in 2010.

  39. medwoman

    Elaine

    “My gosh, I see dead birds (and other dead animals) on my walk all the time, and no one seems particularly concerned

    Whether or not birds are high on your list of priorities, surely you are not arguing that the presence of some dead animals justifies creating more hazardous conditions for those still living. Are you ?

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