Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Protest: The Sunshine Law

Dear Mr. Diekmann,

As we near the deadline for EIR submissions, I would like to lodge a formal protest regarding the handling of this Alternate Proposal Plan for the ballpark in Warm Springs. Please add this to the ball park EIR.

1. The residents of Fremont were not made aware of the Alternate Site, much less it being considered as a serious probability. Evidence for this is clear as I for one only found out last week, and the nearly 2000 flyers we distributed last weekend were met with resounding surprise. If this is such a benefit for Fremont, why are we not letting the residents aware? I do not believe that mentioning our site as an alternative in line "q" of a proposal addressed to the council is "sufficient" notice.

2. The level of scoping on this issue as pertains the residents is also uniformly insufficient. Monday's (12/8) last minute presentation of the alternate site (one day before the council's decision to study the alternate site) was neither informative, nor did it suffice as a "forum". Questions and replies were given to individuals and unavailable for public notice, much less debate. A few maps posted on a wall with only two city representatives (speaking to individuals), for a couple of hours does not qualify as "public scoping", even if you do leave comment sheets. I cannot say how long the "event" was on the schedule, but I only found out about the meeting that day, and only from concerned neighbors.

3. The Sunshine Law and Brown Act requires that all materials and conversations (written and verbal) regarding this proposal be made public and available for review. After repeated requests, we have yet to receive copies of (or opportunities to view) all reports currently on file regarding the ballpark project. On such short notice, ten days from "scoping" to the deadline for inclusion in the EIR, you are clearly not giving the public a chance to find out about the proposal, much less object.

What provisions have been made for financial responsibility from the A's, if the projects overrun the A's budget (as projects are apt to do) with the project incomplete?
What happens if the parts they haven't paid for are the parts that remediate city concerns? Can you make them bond the necessary city improvements, and the possible future remediations?
Will the A's be held responsible for the cost of additional infrastructure (surface roads, overpasses, exit ramps, sewers, water, electric, city services (labor)) after the initial construction of the project?
Since the major attraction is being cited as the BART access, can the project be held off until the completion of BART (best time frame still after 2014)?
Without BART, the traffic issues raised by the CATELLUS independent EIR will remain whether at Pacific Commons or Warm Springs. They might be worse because it will cause gridlock through the town as well as the highways--impacting all Fremont businesses in the Warm Springs and Irvington Districts.
Please extend the deadlines for the EIR submissions and hold a PUBLIC FORUM so that the residents of Fremont can learn of the proposal, ask questions, and express their concerns over the possible impact on their lives before you impose this decision upon us.

Kind Regards,

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