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Monday, September 24, 2007

RWQCB Court Ruling?

The following press release is from PZLDF regarding the recent case of some of the Los Osos 45.

Note: Some anonymous posters have been faux-chuffing over my supposed “non-disclosure” in the PZLDF case, which tells me they haven’t been paying attention to this blog or the RWQCB proceedings. Waaaay back when, I and many other community members originally signed on as a “designated party” in the original CDO hearings several years ago in support of the Los Osos 45. The RWQCB first allowed then then denied that designation, but said we could sign on and comment as “interested” parties, said comments then became part of the “legal” administrative public record, said comments which I also posted here. [9/13/06 “Yes, It’s a Pop Quiz” & 10/98/16, “Facts-R-Not-Us,” among other references] It was the curious case of my having written only to have my words MISREPRESENTED and placed in the official public administrative record, then having written to demand the MISREPRESENTATION in the record be CORRECTED, only to have that complaint dismissed and jumbled into the incompetently, bungled mess the RWQCB was struggling to put together, which was constantly being morphed and was never really totally thrown out even when the Grand Inquisitor came to town and the case – supposedly – started over, but the record wasn’t destroyed or corrected and the case didn’t really start over and at this point, until the administrative record is officially released, nobody has a clue as to what was put in or taken out, which is one of one of the reasons why this (real) lawsuit is so important.

So, to date, the legal score on my involvement with the Los Osos 45 is mirroring the old Mastercard ad: My administrative standing before La Barbara ruled –Signed on as a Publicly posted and publicly discussed RWQCB “designated party/interested party” status. My (real) Legal standing before La Barbara ruled -- 0. My (real) legal standing after La Barbara ruled – 0. Financial contractual connection to the law firm representing some of the Los Osos 45 (besides still being signed on and listed and carried through as a RWQCB “designated/interested party” -- 0. Financial interest in the outcome of this case – 0. Personal stake in the outcome of this case – same as everyone in the PZ. PUBLICLY stated support of the Los Osos 45, PUBLICLY stated and posted support for this legal hearing going before a “real” judge to sort out the RWQCB’s bungled mess (see above), PUBLICLY stated and posted support of getting the community off their butts to help their friends and neighbors since they are ALL Notice of Violation “interested parties” -- Lots, public, numerous, repeated, no surprise there. Enjoying reading the comments of some of the anonymous posters on this site chuffing in faux-faux outrage at a phony “non-disclosure” issue? Priceless.

Herewith the PZLDF press release concerning the case. I have no idea why Roger Briggs’ description of the court ruling was written that way. He wasn’t in court but two attorneys from the Attorney General’s office were running the case. Maybe they got confused at the ruling and gave Roger the wrong information?

Well, no matter. There are so many things wrong with these RWQCB CDO/ACL Mad Hatter Kangaroo Court “Trials,” and Auto de Fe Public Hangings, it’s hard to know where to begin. This press release points up but one simple weirdness: How can anyone amend a record if the record has not even been prepared, so nobody has a clue what’s in the record in the first place? And repeated appeals to GET the record are ignored, all while the clock runs out on the appeals process itself, thereby denying basic legal rights and protections to CDO holders, and, of course – ta-DAH! – running the clock out on the 218 vote, hmmmmm?

Yes, well, fun and games in Sacramento, with the real tragedy being that I doubt that the majority of homeowners in this community either know or care about the serious regulatory/legal/constitutional/procedural issues at work here that really do need to see the light of day in a court of law.


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Gail McPherson, 805.459.4535

Appeal of Individual Enforcement

SAN LUIS OBISPO - On September 21, San Luis Obispo County Superior Court Judge Barry T. LaBarbera signed an order approving a motion for leave to amend, and providing time to file the amended petition.

Roger Briggs, Executive director for the Regional Water Board incorrectly reported to the press "Regional Water Board Gets Lawsuit Challenging Cease and Desist Orders Thrown Out stating "A San Luis Obispo Superior Court Judge threw out a lawsuit which challenged cease and desist orders that the Central Coast Regional Water Board issued to a group of Los Osos residents. The Water Board orders require the residents to cease violations of state regulations prohibiting the use of septic systems in Los Osos/Baywood Park."

The court order signed by Shaunna Sullivan and the Attorney General's office both agreed to an extension of time to file the amended complaint until at least November 20, 2007. The order also set a hearing to request that the citizens be allowed to amend their petition after the record has been produced. Getting the administrative record has been a contentious issue, and the Judge already ordered in August that it must be produced by the water board.
Court documents are posted at http://www.pzldf.org/

The spokesperson for the Citizens for Clean Water-Prohibition Zone Legal Defense Fund believes the press report by the water board sought to influence voters with misinformation on the status of the enforcement appeal. "The preemptive reaction by Briggs to mislead the community followed the water boards explicit direction on September 7th water board meeting to 'level the enforcement field in Los Osos' by rolling back the random orders".

The prosecution staff at the water Board was directed to prepare for a public hearing ASAP to vacate the 46 random orders. This vacating of the 46 individual orders is set for Dec 6, but was requested for Oct. 19 (before the 218 vote) to help assure against the perception of a coerced vote.

Gail McPherson said "Roger Briggs hostile actions further place the 218 vote at risk, and defies the very intent of the water board to constructively solve the contentious issues in Los Osos for the fair treatment of all property owners, who are struggling to resolve years of failure by the water board's flawed resolution 83-13, which the water board has fiercely protected against any challenge, an now puts a viable wastewater project at risk."

-END-

7 comments:

4crapkiller said...

Ballooooon:

You thought you had "legal standing", wanted to have "legal standing", probably were advised that you had "legal standing" and then found out you had NO "legal standing" as a signatory to the PZLDF suit! Perhaps you can weasel out of paying your share of court costs etc., because of this.

How does this have anything to do with the fact that you had your name on the case and failed to disclose your involvement to your readers? Surely the PZLDF would not have used your name WITHOUT YOUR PERMISSION. Hard to weasel yourself out of this one! YOUR NAME was on the suit!

In response to property owners voting NO or NOT voting for an assessment, they can make their choice. If they vote NO or do not Vote, and some sort of sewer proceeds without CDOs and $900 a month discharge permits, I will not be damaged. At the same time other property owners will not be damaged. THIS IS A BIG FAT "IF".

To place your hope in constitutional challenges to the water law, and the regulatory power of the CCRWQCB is "false hope".
The only sure fire solution is to vote YES, and thereby insure that their vote will not damage other law abiding property owners in the PZ who wished to stop criminally polluting the ground water through their YES on the 218 assessment vote!

Clearly this is a vote to stop pollution and insure our water supply. The county will decide where to put the system, and what type of plant and collection system, if the assessment vote passes. We will decide whether or not we want a submarine in our yards, or "flush it and forget it". There will be a survey with options.

There is a consequence to obstruction, the same way there is a consequence to speeding, losing control of a car, and smashing into another car or home.

At this point the LOCSD is insolvent, has filed for bankruptcy, and resolution is not in sight. For anyone to expect that the LOCSD will be able to do anything, IF the county leaves the scene because of a majority NO Vote, or that private financing will be available, or a "knight on a golden horse" will come to our rescue, or the FEDs will pay, is "pie in the sky" speculation.

It is about time you wrote about reality and logical consequences of NO or NON Vote if the county process fails. I have, hence your opinion, which did not address the problem, only a possible consequence of discharge permits and possible damages to law abiding property owners who wish to stop polluting and want to insure our water supply by voting YES to assess themselves and suffering FINANCIAL HARDSHIP to comply with the law.

I would be remiss if I had not brought this to your readers attention. Surely you did not think of consequences. You never have, and probably lacked the foresight. But now it comes out!

Sewertoons said...

The logic and eloquence of 4crapkiller is a hard act to follow, but I'd like to put a question out there - and feel free to comment Ann, (although I and fellow bloggers here know a request for that with a straightforward answer is seldom met).

Gail's organization was originally called the Prohibition Zone Legal Defense Fund, or PZLDF. Then it was called PZLDF - Citizens for Clean Water. Now it is Citizens for Clean Water- PZLDF. OK, fine - they are trying to make themselves sound less hostile and more in support of clean water. Pretty soon I expect the PZLDF part to be dropped off altogether.

Here's what I don't get, and maybe you Ann, can explain this - what are they DOING to support clean water, or in our case, cleaning up polluted water? Is this lawsuit supposed to result in cleaner water? If so, when? Wouldn't supporting the 218 do this a whole lot faster than traipsing through the courts (costing our CSD lots of money and ultimately US) with a case unlikely to be won? Even if won, and PZLDF puts the Water Board in a bad light, how does this put forth any positive and forward action to clean up any water? (I feel I know you so well Ann, this is where you will answer this post - the Water Board in a "bad light?" It's far beyond that…!!!! Blah, blah, blah. You will then ignore the main question posed.)

To make the MAIN QUESTION simple:
What in PZLDF's public ACTIONS would make me, an average Los Osian, think they had anything to do with cleaning up water? Or is it just that they LIKE clean water, but don't have ANY PLAN to get there???? (It sure makes them sound better though. I'll have to give them that. There was a comment in another blog about pizzles…ugh! Wonder if that is why they are changing their name?)

Churadogs said...

Sewertoons sez:"To make the MAIN QUESTION simple:
What in PZLDF's public ACTIONS would make me, an average Los Osian, think they had anything to do with cleaning up water? Or is it just that they LIKE clean water, but don't have ANY PLAN to get there???? (It sure makes them sound better though."

If you had attended any of the meetings you'd have been able to ask those questions yourself. DID you attend any of the meetings?

Shark Inlet said...

Ann,

Your answer is both a cop-out and decidedly unhelpful to folks in our community.

Not everyone has the time to attend meetings of every group that claims to be "for Los Osos". Considering this fact, I would think that anyone wanting to increase the attendance at an event that is, in part, run by a noted lightening-rod of our community would want to make sure to jump at every opportunity to explain just why the group is worth visiting.

I will note, in partial answer to 'Toons questions, that when you've focused your writing on PZLDF you've focused on the legal issues so it should not be surprising that we're all very curious about the clean water aspect of the group.

Maybe we should just call your answer "strike one" (for lack of a swing) and pitch you the exact same question again. Now is your chance to hit it out of the park.

Sewertoons said...

Please give it another go Ann. I'm sure people out in the community would like to hear what PZLDF's ideas for clean water are. All we see is the legal-fighting side. Lots of us out here might support THAT aspect of her group if not the legal one. Can you tell us what their plans are to promote clean water?

It took Congalton pulling teeth to get Gail to admit that if she lived in the PZ she would vote YES on 218.

We still have not heard from you Ann.

Yes, I have done it again - left the door open for your sideways non-answer by asking two questions! What was I thinking!!??

Sewertoons said...

Gail addressed the BOS yesterday identifying herself as representing Citizens for Clean Water. Did I somehow miss the PZLDF part? Transformation complete!?

Eyes On The Future said...

The open 218 ballot taints the process and can be closed:

Citizens for Clean Water have been harping on a clean process while not endorsing a Yes or No vote.

Cornerstone to the issue of a clean process is the propriety of a public 218 ballot released under the Public Records Request Act to anyone who asks. However, the process to close or control the ballots is again brushed off by the Bruce Gibson and the County counsel. And the reports of credible threats to voters have been completely ignored.

It is responsibility of the County for assuring a clean vote, and those who do not wish the vote to be invalidated, or a project delayed over a contested process should be in support of a closed ballot.

The County can easily close the ballots through exceptions that allow closed ballots. CCW-PZLDF provided the statute and quoted Government Code Section 6255.(a) which is an exception that applies to all public records and is particularly apt here.

6255 (a) The agency shall justify withholding any record by demonstrating that the record in question is exempt under express provisions of this chapter or that on the facts of the particular case the public interest served by not disclosing the record clearly outweighs the public interest served by disclosure of the record.

Perhaps it is the added element of voter intimidation that actually helps promote a forced YES vote that keeps otherwise decent people from supporting the closed ballot.

Regardless of a Yes or No vote,if you support the closed ballot, please let Supervisor Gibson and BOS hear from you.