Rush to Judgement on Knight’s Bridge Winery

http://www.pressdemocrat.com/opinion/7385940-181/saturdays-letters-to-the-editor

Rush to judgment

EDITOR: Congratulations to the Sonoma County supervisors for rushing to approve the Knights Bridge Winery project (“Supervisors back Knights Valley winery,” Aug. 23).

Just as our harvest begins, in a year of good rains, our last well is barely recharging. This is the first time it has ever happened so dramatically. We own the property adjacent to the project, and where county policy legally requires surrounding properties’ groundwater be protected when permitting discretionary land use. The developers’ deal in the public hearing for “no net water increase,” when they already pump more than any nearby neighbor, doesn’t hold water.

The supervisors had no qualms approving a project based on consultants working for the developer rather than granting the public the environmental impact report we requested. We met with board members to discuss the multiple new wells for the 10-bedroom, 10-bath estate, swimming pool and guest home, but granting a permit for the proposed winery took precedence.

Our 40 years of experience in the ag preserve growing grapes had no merit or influence, and now our wells have drained. Shame on the county for not representing the people who are the backbone of agriculture in favor of outside money. Is this the way democracy works?

MEREDITH and BILL BLAU

Knights Valley

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