Letter: True Facts about the Field & Pond Project

The barn or covered event portion

By James G. Fredericks

I want to clear up the reporting on Field & Pond, which was covered in an article published in the Winters Express, February 10, 2017.  A number of statements made by opponents were not accurate.  We all know the family that is driving these claimsbut they have no basis.  They are simply attempting to create unfair bias in the county’s system, by wasting county resources, in order to apply financial pressure to force the owners of Field & Pond to lose their business and ranch.

Conveniently omitted from claims about hindrance of pesticide spraying is the fact that the owners of Field & Pond, have been cooperatively working with the walnut farmers across the road from them for almost three years now, without incident. Also, the 500 foot buffer being referenced is not applicable in this case.  Ground spraying, which is what is typically used for orchards, only requires 300 feet; and Field & Pond is well outside of that distance.  Howevereven the 300 foot buffer requirement is further reduced to 50 to 100 feet when the farmer is only working with NON-Class 1 pesticides, which are exactly what is being used in that orchard. As a farmer who has owned and operated a pesticide business for more than 40 years, I can confirm this.  The Ag Commissioner’s office also confirmed these facts during the Field & Pond permit hearing.

The Field & Pond ranch is also not zoned Ag-Intensive; it is zoned Ag-Extensive, and this zoning has been in place since before Field & Pond moved in.  This zoning supports the exact activities that they want to do on their property.  The property is an active ranch.  As a point of fact, they are, and have been,under my agricultural farming permit.  We already have small ag enterprises that we’ve gotten off the ground.  For a ranch that hadn’t seen any real farming activity in tens of years, I feel that this is a good thing.

As it relates to the environmental impact, one only need to visit the Field & Pond ranch to see that it is not only beautiful, but it is a sanctuary for wildlife and habitat.  I also happen to know that Dahvie has met with TuleyomeMy understanding is that he developed detailed landscape master plans by working cooperatively with them to incorporate their feedback and direction, and followed up with the county to make them aware of the changes, to make sure that all stakeholders had an opportunity to re-review it and give feedback.

It is unfortunate that anyone would have to go through this much trouble to legally do what so many others, including their neighbors, are already doing without permits.

 

About The Author

Disclaimer: the views expressed by guest writers are strictly those of the author and may not reflect the views of the Vanguard, its editor, or its editorial board.

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9 thoughts on “Letter: True Facts about the Field & Pond Project”

  1. John Hobbs

    “It is unfortunate that anyone would have to go through this much trouble to legally do what so many others, including their neighbors, are already doing without permits.”
    Unfortunate seems too insubstantial. Criminal is the term that comes to my mind. Fortunately for their persecutors, if to their own detriment, the owners of Field and Pond are law abiding, decent people.

    1. Matt Williams

      Dianne, a short Google search appears to confirm what the author says in the article.  Manta reports that he has a 3 employee Agricultural Spraying business established in 1972 located on County Road 88 in Winters.  The Farmers Directory reports that what would appear to be his other business, J G Fredericks Farms, is also located on County Road 88 in Winters.

       

    1. John Hobbs

      Spoiler alert: Some people are renting their barns and farm yards (and pleasure boats and vineyards) to host weddings and other events and running BnBs, without a permit.

       

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