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Old 06-17-2004, 02:23 PM
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Default vernal pools & proposed UC campus at merced

From: mary ann lockhart jmal@frazmtn. com
Date: 03/20/00
Time: 02:28 PM


what position and or actions is the California Native Society considering or has taken concerning this situation? thank you
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Old 06-17-2004, 02:23 PM
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From: Carol Witham, cwitham@ncal.net
Date: 03/21/00
Time: 11:32 PM


Hi Mary Ann,

While I cannot (and never would presume to) represent CNPS on such a complex conservation issue, I would be happy to tell you what I have been able to find out...

I was amazed to discover that the project is as far along as it is. There was a site selection EIR prepared back in 1995. (How it quietly slipped through is beyond me!) The Governor has put the project on the fast track and has appointed a task force to aid implementation of the plan. The Vice President has spoken out in support of it. Even the County of Merced has appointed an advocacy group to help the project along.

The web site http://www.vernalpools.org is linked to most of the pertinent University of California and Merced County information. Addresses of some of the decision makers are also provided.

I am personally very interested in the future status of the proposed UC Merced site so please feel free to contact me at mailto:cwitham@ncal.net about vernal pool issues.

Cheers, Carol
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Old 06-17-2004, 02:24 PM
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From: Carol Witham, cwitham@ncal.net
Date: 06/13/00
Time: 09:39 AM


The following resolution was passed unanimously by the statewide CNPS board of directors on June 10, 2000:

Resolution of the California Native Plant Society concerning the siting of a University of California campus at Lake Yosemite, Merced County

1. CNPS supports expansion of the University of California system to meet increasing student enrollment needs and would support the development of a 10th campus on an environmentally suitable site in the Merced area, or elsewhere in the San Joaquin Valley.

2. CNPS opposes use of the proposed Lake Yosemite site for the campus and its ancillary community as it will have major unmitigatable impacts on endangered species, unique natural landscapes, and important wetland habitats through destruction, disturbance and fragmentation.

3. CNPS therefore favors constructing the 10th UC campus on another site that would minimize environmental consequences and limit urban sprawl, while providing long-term economic and natural heritage benefits for the local residents. CNPS believes that the endangered species and wetland impacts associated with development of the Lake Yosemite site would result in regulatory and legal burdens that will delay or prevent construction of the campus.

4. CNPS commends the University of California's intent to establish an Institute for study of the Sierra Nevada's natural history, but believes there is a fundamental contradiction in establishing it at the Lake Yosemite site. Therefore CNPS urges the University of California to acquire the Lake Yosemite site as part of its Natural Reserve System so that its vernal pools and their associated plants and animals may be studied by future University of California students.
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