The following press release came in Wednesday, but what with all my pre-Turkey Day rushing around, didn't get it posted. A caveat for some folks who comment on this blog: This lawsuit has nothing to do with the possible challenge to the 218 vote. It also has nothing to do with stopping or dereailing any project. The County is rapidly chugging along with that. But it does have everything to do with securing homeowners rights from the apallingly unfair harassament that was set in motion by the RWQCB's looney Mad Hatter Kangaroo Court Tea Party & Auto de Fe Public Hanging via the CDOs visted on the singled out Los Osos 45.
This was sent Wednesday, November 21, 2007 3:38 PM from the Citizens for Clean Water --- First Amended Petition
The Citizens for Clean Water (PZLDF)
The 1st amended Petition that was due November 20th was filed yesterday [. . . ] This consolidates the appeal of the additional enforcement orders that were issued in May, and the Notices of Violation that ALL homeowners recieved in June.
The viewpoint below was published in the Sun Bulletin today. It explains the lawsuit and the issues that led to where we are today.
Please, Support the Lawsuit.
NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH A 218 LAWSUIT--- Los Osos citizens’Legal actions to overturn water board enforcement against individual homes is NOT a SEWER LAWSUIT. In fact the petition to vacate the enforcement is NOT ABOUT THE SEWER. It is foremost and purely defensive lawsuit in behalf of individuals and the entire community.
The Los Osos homeowner’s legal appeal stops the regulatory abuses by the water board that has resulted in dangerous and unprecedented violations of individual constitutional & statutory rights.
The seriousness of the retaliatory actions by the water board against voters should concern everyone with property in Los Osos because it violates the water board mandates, and the civil rights of law abiding citizens. (and no one is asking for the right to pollute!)
It is true the water board could vacate the punitive orders at any time, but have thus far refused, making the citizen lawsuit mandatory. There will be another chance to vacate orders promised by the appointed members of the Regional Water Board, December 6-7, 2007, however staff has flatly refused, even with the recent passage of the 218 funding assessment.
In the post recall hearings against the Los Osos district, the record shows executive director Roger Briggs intended to “fine them out of existence” responding to calls from opponents to the newly elected board. The water board stated their justification for going after individuals was “the district is the same entity as the voters.” However, the same records show the water board always had the power to continue the sewer project, but instead justified punishing individuals. The ‘first 50’ were randomly selected by the water board and intended as an example to frighten and intimidate the voters.
The first Cease and Desist Orders were issued to the county in 1983, and apply to the lead agency for the project. Today that is the county. Incidentally, those with individual orders have approved, properly working, and legally permitted onsite septic systems. You guessed it, county approved systems.
Today the original 46 individual stop orders are equivalent to convictions, with a suspended sentence until 2011, or earlier if there is a 218 failure, or project delays. The Water Board can impose fines up to $5000 per day, and criminal liability with referral of individuals to the attorney general for further prosecution as they see fit. The orders do nothing to remedy water quality, and force a few to bear the burden of defending the entire community.
The reports of enforcement abeyance are false. Notices of violation have been sent to all properties in the Prohibition Zone. On May 11 two more orders were issued, and the Water Board stated all homes could be subject to fines retroactive to 1988, without the need to put Cease and Desist Orders in place.
The Superior Court Appeal filed by Sullivan and Associates is based on the unprecedented enforcement that raises constitutional issues of unequal treatment, violation of due process, violation of the 5th and 6th amendments, selective enforcement, environmental justice, and a lack of direct evidence against the individual properties. Stop orders have the long term effect of "taking" private property, restricting the ability to sell, mortgage or rent property.
The very basis of the enforcement has been a moving target, as Resolution 83-13 has been reinterpreted by prosecution staff during the hearings from what was adopted in 1983. This is also true for the arbitrarily drawn “line in the sand” called the Prohibition Zone. The records indicate this zone was never intended to be a scientifically precise discharge remediation area and is challenged in the lawsuit. (The remediation benefits are also apparently the subject of a 218 challenge as well by another group).
Prohibition Zone Legal Defense Fund (PZLDF) was founded to support Los Osos neighbors under regulatory attack who needed assistance. Some said the regulatory hearings make the IRS seem user friendly. The group has spent nearly two years of work to protect property and individual rights contained in the lawsuit. The Citizens for Clean Water-PZLDF formed as is non-profit organization that supports compliance with the water board regulations, and a sustainable project for Los Osos.
If you are a citizen of California you need to stop the regulatory abuses and help with the lawsuit. Please send a donation in any amount to PZLDF 6095 Los Osos Ca. 93412 Or to Sullivan and Associates, A Law Corporation located at 2238 Bayview Heights Drive, Suite C Los Osos, CA 93402
Now, Put Down That Turkey Leg and Grab A Toy
Yep, went into my Los Osos Rob-A-Bank and also into Ralphs and saw the Toys For Tots boxes sitting there. I'm sure they're also around town in other places. So, if you have any unwrapped toys for kids, do drop them off. Lotta kids have a tough lot in life, so the least we can all do is make sure a kid gets at least one nice toy for Christmas.
Also coming up fast, the Morro Bay Lighted Boat Parade on Saturday, the 1st, which, of course, conflicts with the Vocal Arts Christmas performance at the SLO Mission, and, I'm sure lots of other wonderful programs and performances. Ah, too much to do, so little time to do it in.
But, no matter what, be sure to pencil in as a Don't Miss, our own World Famous Los Osos Christmas Parade. Home town fun at its finest.