Spring 2007 Friend to Friend Newsletter, Friends of the Foothills
friend to friend FROM TRESTLES TO SADDLEBACK—PROTECT OUR COMMUNITY—STOP ThE TOLL ROAD SOUTh A Project of Sierra Club APRIL/MAY 2007foothill-south toll road delayedmore evidence of rising costs and environmental destructiona delay for the toll road is a victory for our coast, open space Perhaps the most difficult hurdle the TCA will have to getand state park. The Foothill-South Toll Road would bisect both over is the California Coastal Commission, which regulates de-the Donna ONeill Land Conservancy and San Onofre State velopment along the state’s coastline. To try and clear that hurdleBeach - Californias 5th most popular state park and home to the the toll road board recently approved spending $1.15 million onworld famous surf beach at Trestles. coastal consultants and lawyers. On February 28, 2006, the Transportation Corridor Coastal Commission staff have already expressed a vari-Agencies (TCA) announced that the Foot- ety of concerns regarding the toll road. Markhill-South (241) Toll Road has been delayed Transportation Delaplaine, a coastal analyst for the Coastalby at least two years. Corridor Commission, said that the fact that the toll road The environmental permitting process Agencies (TCA) would slice through the middle of the park andis taking the TCA much longer than they ex- announced that loom over the San Mateo Campground is a ma-pected to get the approvals they need to build the Foothill-South jor concern.the road. Construction of the toll road was (241) Toll Road “The campground is a huge issue,”originally scheduled to begin in 2008, but that has been delayed he said. “Its almost unconscionable from ourdate has now been pushed back to 2011. Toll by at least perspective – a highway that close to a camp-road officials say that inflation will add $3 mil- two years. ground valued mostly for its pristineness. Welion to the total cost of the project – currently think it destroys (the park). It becomes unus-estimated at $875 million – for every month of delay. able. Youre not going to want to go there. Its such a breath of During the next three years, the TCA will attempt to secure fresh air in Southern California; just a priceless resource.” Thepermits from at least eight state and federal agencies, including TCA has acknowledged that one of the challenges they face isthe US Fish and Wildlife Service, California Coastal Commis- “organized opposition” at each step. This is a great complementsion, the California Department of Fish and Game, the Army to the work you’ve been doing! We will continue to keep you up-Corps of Engineers, state water quality regulators, the Office of dated and let you know how you can help as the toll road agencyHistoric Preservation, Federal Highway Administration, and the attempts to move through the approval process. This delay dem-Navy- because San Onofre State Beach is on leased land from onstrates that the toll road is still a long way from being approved.Camp Pendleton. Working together, we can ensure that it will never be built! dont forget to mark celebrate earth day your calendars for at first peoples earth day sacred site at san onofre state beach sunday, april 22nd 1 0 a .m - 2 p.m. See inside flyer for details.
the answer toorange county traffic?the aip alternative or “stay the course”BY RAEANNE MURPhYWhile the TCA proposes the Foothill-South Toll Road as resources.” EHL has conducted studies thata solution to Orange County’s traffic problems, a better, show the AIP alternative could be completedcheaper, more environmentally sensitive option might with significantly lower costs and impacts thanmake more sense – like the Arterial Improvements asserted by toll road proponents.Plus (AIP) alternative. Michael Fitts, attorney for the Since viable alternatives, like the AIP areEndangered Habitats League (EHL), outlined the AIP available, those attending the meeting wonderedalternative at the March 27th Sierra Sage Sierra Club why the TCA was not considering any optionsmeeting a few weeks ago. This was an alternative that other than the Foothill-South Toll Road. Mr. Fittsthe TCA, itself, had researched, and then discarded thinks it might be a “Stay the Course” mentality,based on purported “high displacement impacts and where sticking to a plan becomes the goal.costs.” However, these high displacement impacts So what can you do? You can support theand costs are not supported by any of the TCA’s organizations, such as the Sierra Club and the EHL,technical reports. that are fighting the Foothill-South Toll Road, and After studying the AIP alternative, Mr. Fitts and write to members of your local, state, and federalEHL have come to the conclusion that it is superior government. Ask them to pursue transportation al-to the toll road option in “meeting future traffic ternatives that improve Orange County traffic withoutdemand without sacrificing irreplaceable natural harming our parks and beaches.bill introduced to protect state parks Assembly Member Jared Huffman (D-Marin) has introduced legislation – AB 1457 – which would preserve the integrity of California’s state park system by creating a consistent policy that would protect state parks from damaging road development projects. It would prevent the state from funding or approving construction of roads through state park lands, unless the State Parks Director determines that the road would not be damaging to the park, and that no other alternatives exist. This bill – which could prevent construction of the Foothill-South Toll Road through San Onofre State Beach – would protect parks around the state from destructive road projects. If passed into law, AB 1457 would help protect San Ono- fre State Beach and state parks throughout California from roads that harm habitat and wildlife corridors, degrade water quality, increase noise pollution, and impact campgrounds, trails and other recreational opportunities. As California becomes more and more crowded, we must AB 1457 could help protect not let our parks become the right-of-way of choice for roads, San Onofre State Beach from development and other destructive projects. Many thanks to the Foothill-South Toll Road Assembly Member Huffman for introducing legislation that will ensure that our families and future generations will be able to enjoy places like San Onofre State Beach.
join us for a hike inour local back countryLet experienced Sierra Club hike leaders show you some of Southern Californias most beautiful places.Saturday, May 5 Saturday, August 4SIERRA SAGE/FRIENDS OF ThE FOOThILLS SIERRA SAGE/FRIENDS OF ThE FOOThILLSdonna o’neill land conservancy trestles beachJoin us for a beautiful morning walk through the wild flowers on Fun at the beach! Enjoy this morning walk down to the famousthis slow paced nearly level 1.5 mile hike. A FOF member will surfing beach at Trestles. Look for birds at the pond at end of Sandiscuss the damage the toll road would bring to this ecological Mateo Creek. A member of the FOF will discuss the importance ofhot spot. Meet 8:30 am at the S OC rideshare pt. Bring water, protecting California’s 5th most popular state park from the envi-sunscreen, hat. Donation of $5/adult to support the work of the ronmental damage of the Foothill-South Toll Road. Meet 8:30 amConservancy. Rain cancels. at the Trestles surfers’ parking lot (off I-5 at Cristianitos at S end of San Clemente, go L one block, L again and R into the lot). Bring water, sunscreen, and hat. Rain cancels.Saturday, June 9 Saturday, September 29SIERRA SAGE/FRIENDS OF ThE FOOThILLS SIERRA SAGE/FRIENDS OF ThE FOOThILLStrestles beach san clemente ridgelineFun at the beach! Enjoy this morning walk down to the famous Enjoy this ridgeline walk with panoramic views of the San Clem-surfing beach at Trestles. Look for birds at the pond at end of San ente back country and Dana Point on a clear day. The trail is hillyMateo Creek. A member of the FOF will discuss the importance of and mostly paved. Meet at 8:30 am at the end of Calle Cordillera inprotecting California’s 5th most popular state park from the envi- the San Clemente Business Park. From I-5, go 1 mile East on Ave.ronmental damage of the Foothill-South Toll Road. Meet 8:30 am Pico and turn R on Calle Amanecer. Go 0.3 mi and turn R on Calleat the Trestles surfers’ parking lot (off I-5 at Cristianitos at S end Cordillera to end. Bring water, hat, sunscreen. Rain cancels.of San Clemente, go L one block, L again and R into the lot). Bringwater, sunscreen, and hat. Rain cancels. South Orange County (SOC) hikes rideshare meeting point: Ortega Business Center parking lot, Southeast corner,Saturday, July 14 at the intersection of Ortega Highway and Rancho Viejo Road in San Juan Capistrano.SIERRA SAGE/FRIENDS OF ThE FOOThILLSdonna o’neill land conservancyJoin us for a beautiful morning walk through the wild flowers on For more information or directions callthis slow paced nearly level 1.5 mile hike. A FOF member will Brittany McKee at 949-361-7534discuss the damage the toll road would bring to this or email@example.com hot spot. Meet 8:30 am at the SOCrideshare pt. Bring water, sunscreen, hat.Donation of $5/adult to support thework of the Conservancy.Rain cancels.
First Peoples Earth Day Celebration at Panhe Featuring: Native American Singers, Dancers, Speakers, Storytelling, Basketry Demonstration, Native Plant Demonstration, Native Foods and Guided Walks Celebrate our Sacred SitePhoto by Wick Lobo at San onofre state beach Sunday, April 22 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The indigenous Village of Panhe was the historical home of the Juaneno/Acjachemen people and continues to be used as a ceremonial and reburial site. It is recognized as one of the major villages of the Juaneno/Acjachemen people. The Rebecca Robles (far left) and the Tushmal Singers at the San Juan Capistrano Indigenous Peoples Festival. village site of Panhe is within the San Mateo Archaeological District, which is on file with the Native American Heritage Commission as a sacred site. It is eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places and likely quali- fies as a Traditional Cultural Property under federal law. The proposed Foothill-South Toll Road would come within feet of a Juaneno/Acjachemen cemetery currently used by the Juaneno/Acjachemen people. California Native American cultural resources, habitation sites, burial sites, sacred sites, ceremonial sites, and places of worship are limited resources for Indian and non-Indian people. They are important to the culture and spiritual belief of California Native Americans and must be protected. Construction of the toll road, as approved by the TCA would cause severe and irreparable damage to Panhe. Please join us to celebrate Panhe on Earth Day! Contact Rebecca Robles for information at 949-369-0361 or firstname.lastname@example.org Directions: From CA I-5, exit at Cristianitos in San Clemente and go East towards Camp Pendleton for 1 mile to the San Mateo Campground on the right. Access to Panhe is within San Mateo Campground at San Onofre State Beach.
volunteer profile: rebecca robles Eleven days before she died, Rebecca’s mother, Lillian Robles, testified at a public hearing in support of protecting the San Mateo Watershed. “She could barely even walk,” Rebecca said. Lillian Robles was an inspiration to her family and all who knew her. She spent the last 15 years of her life fighting to protect Native American sacred sites, and when she passed away six years ago, the Robles family agreed to carry on her tradition. Rebecca is a member of the Juaneno Band of Mission Indians, Acjachemen Nation. She grew up in Long Beach, went to college inNorthern Arizona, and has lived in San Clemente for the last 10 years. She works full-time as a registered nurse and is a proud mom ofthree sons, Otis, Joaquin, and Bear. As Co-Founder and Chair of the Sierra Club’s Sacred Sites Task Force, Rebecca works to protect Native American sacred sitesthroughout Orange County. Currently, she is working to protect Panhe – the indigenous village of Panhe was the historical home ofthe Juaneno/Acjachemen people and sacred sites within San Onofre State Beach continue to be used for ceremonies and reburials. Theproposed Foothill-South Toll Road would come within feet of the Juaneno/Acjachemen cemetery near the San Mateo Campground atSan Onofre State Beach. “My mother always said that it’s not just Native American history, it’s history that belongs to all Californians.” Rebecca works to educate the public and decision-makers about the importance of protecting Panhe from the toll road. She hastestified at hearings, lobbied in Sacramento, and participated in press conferences on the capitol steps. Her group’s meeting with theNative American Heritage Commission helped motivate the Commission to work with Attorney General Lockyer to file a lawsuitagainst the toll road. When asked whether we can win against the toll road, Rebecca responds, “Anything is possible. You don’t get into this askingwhether you’ll win, you just put every fiber of yourself into it because it’s right, and you have to do everything you can do.” www.friendsofthefoothills.org San Clemente, California 92674 P.O. Box 3942 A Project of Sierra Club STOP ThE TOLL ROAD SOUTh —PROTECT OUR COMMUNITY— FROM TRESTLES TO SADDLEBACK Permit No. 814 sunday, april 22nd Mission Viejo, CA PAID Non-Profit earth day celebration U.S. Postage dont miss the first peoples