KAT BLACK: Listing of over 64 orgs, public agencies and officials on record with major concerns or opposition to Valero Crude By Rail

By Roger Straw, April 6, 2016
[Editor: BSHC Chairperson Kat Black spent her entire 5 minute public comment at Monday’s hearing listing over 64 entities (below) that have raised serious questions about the adequacy of the EIR and/or the wisdom of granting Valero a use permit.  The list is most impressive, substantiating the April 4 public hearing comment of Davis Environmental Attorney Don Mooney, who said in his 25 years of reviewing 200-300 matters such as this, he has never seen such uniform and widespread opposition.  – RS]

Organizations, Public Agencies and Public Officials on record with major concerns or opposition to Valero Crude By Rail

Comment Before the Benicia City Council
By Katherine Black
April 4, 2016

Good evening Madam Chair and Members of the Council. My name is Katherine Black and I am the Chairperson for Benicians for a Safe and Healthy Community.

I have spoken on many occasions against this project before the Planning Commission on various topics, so my comments are already in the record. I just wanted to read a list of organizations, public agencies and public officials that have either had major concerns or have spoken out directly against this project. This is a partial list and are in no particular order. They are:

1. Benicians for a Safe and Healthy Community
2. Solano County
3. The Air Pollution Control and Air Quality Management Districts, which consist of

1. The Bay Area Air Quality Management District
2. The Butte County Air Quality Management District
3. The Feather River Air Quality Management District
4. The Placer County Air Pollution Control District
5. The Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District
6. The County of Shasta
7. and the Yolo-Solano Air Quality Management District

4. University of California, Davis
5. California Office of Spill Prevention & Response, and the California Public Utilities Commission
6. Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority (Amtrak)
7. California Department of Transportation
8. San Francisco Bay Keeper
9. Safe Fuel and Energy Resources – California
10. Fischer Communications
11. Cool Davis
12. 350 Sacramento
13. 350 Bay Area
14. 350 Marin
15. Communities for a Better Environment – both legally and technically
16. Natural Resources Defense Council – both legally and technically
17. Phil Serna, Sacramento County Supervisor
18. Iron Workers 378 – who withheld support, which is significant because Valero had previously held their community forums on this at their venue
19. Stand – formerly known as ForestEthics
20. The Sierra Club
21. The Center for Biological Diversity
22. Sacramento Area Council of Governments (aka SACOG), and which is an association of local governments in the six-county Sacramento Region. Its members include the counties of El Dorado, Placer, Sacramento, Sutter, Yolo, Yuba and the 22 cities within, who are:

1. Auburn
2. Citrus Heights
3. Colfax
4. Davis
5. El Dorado County
6. Elk Grove
7. Folsom
8. Galt
9. Isleton
10. Lincoln
11. Live Oak
12. Loomis
13. Marysville
14. Placer County
15. Placerville
16. Rancho Cordova
17. Rocklin
18. Roseville
19. Sacramento
20. Sacramento County
21. Sutter County
22. West Sacramento
23. Wheatland
24. Winters
25. Woodland
26. Yolo County
27. Yuba City
28. Yuba County

To continue with the list:

23. Yolo County Board of Supervisors
24. Martinez Environmental Group
25. Richmond Progressive Alliance
26. Global Community Monitor
27. Expert Dr. Petra Pless, from Pless Environmental, Inc.
28. Bay Localize
29. The City of Albany
30. The City of Briggs
31. The City of Briggs Fire Department
32. The City of Gridley
33. The City of Gridley Fire Department
34. The County of Nevada Community Development Agency
35. The Town of Trukee
36. The City of West Sacramento
37. Shasta County Department of Resource Management
38. Community Science Institute
39. Crockett-Rodeo United to Defend the Environment (aka CRUDE)
40. The City of Davis Foundation
41. Sunflower Alliance
42. Pittsburg Defense Council
43. Greenaction for Health and Environmental Justice
44. Asian Pacific Environmental Network
45. Bay Area Refinery Corridor Collation
46. Attorney General Kamala Harris
47. Other attorneys from 5 different organizations – NRDC, CBE, SF Baykeeper, Center for Biological Diversity, Sierra Club
48. Expert Dr. Phillis Fox
49. Bay Area Air Quality Management District (aka BAAQMD) – individually
50. Feather River Air Quality Management District – individually
51. Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District – individually
52. The Placer County Air Pollution Control District – individually
53. Yolo-Solano County Air Quality Management District – individually
54. The Goodman Group
55. Yolo Climate Action

We just heard from:

56. Jessie Arreguin, Berkeley City Council member
57. Alejandro Soto-Vigil, City of Berkeley
58. A representative from State Sen. Lois Wolk’s office
59. Vice Mayor Linda Maio, Berkeley
60. Ellen Cockerin, Sacramento School District Board
61. And lastly – our own Benicia Planning Commission

To add to that, there are thousands and thousands of letters from individuals opposing the project that have been submitted as part of the record, which come from Benicians, neighboring cities, Californians, Americans and even those concerned literally around the world. Now, we also have 4,081 petition signatures of which 1,204 are Benicians.

Are all of these people, organizations, public agencies and public officials wrong? The world is watching Benicia. Think about what this city will look like to your public official colleagues and the others I have mentioned. This city is at a precipice. We can either be the city that is part of the problem by going forward the way the world has been going, which has produced global warming. Or we can be the city that says no – not now, not on my watch, and be part of the solution to it all.

Please do not grant Valero a delay and please uphold the Planning Commission’s decision to deny this project.

Note: These were received after I spoke

62. League of Conservation Voters of the East Bay
63. Expert Scott Cashen, Senior Independent Biological Resources Consultant
64. Russell Hands, M.D., Chief of Surgery, Kasier, Napa, Solano County