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Rock plant threatens quality of life, residents say

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Posted: Thursday, October 11, 2001 10:00 pm

About 60 residents from both sides of the Sacramento-San Joaquin County line expressed serious concerns Thursday night about their quality of life if a rock and topsoil processing plant is built along Dry Creek.

“You’re threatening a way of life we hold very dear,” Walter Johnson, a Clements-area resident, told the Southeast Area Community Planning Advisory Council at its meeting in the Herald Community Building.

The issue surrounds prominent Sacramento developer Angelo Tsakopoulos’ request for a conditional use permit to rezone 460 acres just north of the creek to allow surface mining on land now zoned for agriculture.

The processing plant would be built on 330 of the acres on the site, just east of Borden Road on the Sacramento County line and north of the Liberty-Mackville Road intersection in Clements. The plant would be 9.3 miles east of Galt and 5 miles south of Rancho Seco, the former nuclear power plant.

Comments on the project can be sent to:

Sacramento County Department of Environmental Review and Assessment 827 Seventh St., Room 220 Sacramento CA 95814

Residents became alarmed when civil engineer Mark Rodgers reported that an estimated 80 dump trucks and transfer trucks would arrive and depart from the plant each day between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m.

Rodgers predicted that half the trucks would go north and west on Borden Road to Twin Cities Road, which goes southwest through Galt’s increasingly populated Northeast area.

The other half, would head south on Mackville Road toward Liberty Road, a heavily used two-lane road extending from Highway 99 to Highway 88.

“You’re asking us to live with six trucks an hour, five days a week for 30 years?” Johnson asked the council.

Bill Flanigan, who lives on Mackville about a quarter-mile south of Liberty Road, said he doesn’t think the southbound trucks would take Liberty; instead, they would continue south on Mackville to Peltier Road, then head west through Acampo to Highway 99.

“The Mackville access is very dangerous. It goes up and down and up and down,” said Gary Anderson, who said he represents property owners on Mackville between Liberty and the county line.

Darryl Clare, a former Galt City Council candidate, said he is concerned about trucks from the plant endangering students at a second high school proposed for Galt in the Twin Cities-Marengo Road area.

The Galt Joint Union High School District plans to build the new high school if voters someday approve a bond measure to finance its construction. Voters have defeated such a bond measure three times.

Rodgers said the traffic issues will be covered in an upcoming environmental impact report to be prepared by Sacramento County.

“What choice to we have? We don’t want it. What do we do?” Acampo resident Jack Adams asked.

Southeast planning council chairwoman Carol Backert urged residents to write Sacramento County prior to Oct. 21 about what environmental information should be included in the EIR.

Comments may be sent to Dennis Yeast at the county Department of Environmental Review and Assessment, 827 Seventh St., Room 220, Sacramento CA 95814.

Once the EIR is completed, the Southeast Area Community Planning Advisory Council will conduct another hearing. Then it will go to the Sacramento County Policy Planning Commission before heading to the Board of Supervisors.

The planning advisory council, consisting of residents who live in unincorporated Sacramento County south of the Cosumnes River, recommends planning proposals to the county Planning Department, Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors.

In addition to traffic, residents said they were concerned about noise, dust, well water capacity and flooding.

Tsakopoulos’ land-use attorney, George Kammerer of Sacramento, said that well water used in the surface mining operation will go to a settling basin.

Ninety percent of the water will be recycled, he said. Rodgers added that the mining operation will probably use less water than agriculture.

Vincent DeDomenico, who lives on Dry Creek Ranch on Clay East Road of Twin Cities, said he was concerned that Dry Creek has flooded six times with broken levees since 1986. With the mining plant, silt would wash into the creek if it flooded, DeDomenico said.

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