The Napa Planning Commissio n raises the stakes

The Planning Commission vote tomorrow raises the stakes.

Important Planning Commission meeting to approve the Watershed Protection Ordinance tomorrow –
9am Wednesday, February 20

Dear friends and supporters of Measure C,

As many of you know, the County has drafted a watershed protection ordinance.  This is a direct result of our efforts, and the prospect of a new initiative in 2020 if the proposal fails to greatly curtail the crude and primitive practice of clear-cutting forests.
Read more detail here: http://bit.ly/2tupzOP

The Planning Commission vote raises the stakes.  Tomorrow, it decides whether to approve the weak draft ordinance as is or send it back to the Board of Supervisors with a strong ordinance that makes a difference.
Read more detail here: http://bit.ly/2trwIPY

What can we do?  Make your voice heard.
Come to the Planning Commission meeting scheduled TOMORROW – 9am Wednesday, February 20.


Several key areas that need strengthening:

Tree retention requirement  

The county’s proposed 70% retention of tree canopy cover, minimum, is utterly unacceptable.  Our position is 90%, achieved in combination with further important protections that need strengthening, below:

3:1 tree removal mitigation  

The county’s proposed mitigation on slopes >30% is unacceptable.  This practice has been described as “double-dipping.”  Allowing preservation on steeper slopes that are already protected might help facilitate mitigation, but it frustrates the primary goal – limiting the clear cutting of Napa’s forests.  Preservation needs to take place on developable land, outside of already protected steeper slopes, and outside of already protected stream and wetland setbacks.

Definition of “vegetation canopy cover”  

The proposed definition considers canopy cover as the continuous, collective cover of a grouping of trees.  But it does not consider single trees as part of the canopy cover.  This is unacceptable, as it does not address oak woodlands where there is not a closed canopy.  State law (AB 242, Thomson, 2001) addresses oak ecosystems whereby an “oak woodland” is defined as an oak stand with >10% canopy cover or that may have historically supported >10% canopy cover.  By using this definition, single oaks would be counted as part of the canopy cover.


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