2000 CPEO Military List Archive

From: Lenny Siegel <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 12:02:50 -0800 (PST)
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Hamilton Field Wetlands Restoration
The Save San Francisco Bay Association is seeking sign-ons from other
California organizations to the letter below regarding the Hamilton
Field Wetlands, in Marin County. The letter was first drafted as a
request, but it was revised to acknowledge Governor Gray Davis's January
10, 2000 budget submission, which includes $13.8 million for Hamilton
Field restoration.

SIGN ON - FINAL DEADLINE IS FRIDAY, 1/14/00, at  NOON. Indicate the name
and title of the individual signing - actual signatures will NOT be

Copies will go to key State Department of Resources officials, local
state legislators, and key committee leaders.

January 14, 2000

The Honorable Gray Davis
State Capitol
Sacramento, CA  95814

Dear Governor Davis:

Thank you very much for including $13.8 million in your latest budget
proposal to fund the State of California's share of the Hamilton Field
Wetlands Project in Novato.  We are anxious to work with you to secure
this funding and additional funds to expand the site to provide
additional critical wildlife habitat on the San Francisco Bay shoreline.

The Hamilton Field Wetlands Project in Novato would restore
approximately 1,000 acres of the closed Army base to a to a diverse mix
of wetlands and wildlife habitats.  The site would provide critical
habitat for endangered and special status species, waterfowl and
shorebirds migrating along the Pacific flyway, as well as for migratory
fish species such as salmon and steelhead.  Preparation of the site for
restoration would beneficially reuse over 10 million cubic yards of
dredged material from Bay dredging projects, including the Port of
Oakland's proposed 50-foot deepening project.  The project would also
complete the reuse of the closed military facility and end the U.S.
Army's cost of maintaining and providing security for the closed

The Hamilton Wetlands Project was authorized as a federal project in
Public Law 106-53, the Water Resources Development Act of 1999, with a
total project cost of $55.2 million.  Under cost-sharing regulations,
the federal government will provide $41.4 million toward the project. 
Twenty-five percent of the project cost, $13.8 million, is needed from
the State of California as the local sponsor.  With construction of the
project slated to start in federal fiscal year 2001, California's
matching funds must be approved by September of 2000.

Beginning construction at the site as soon as possible is imperative to
provide habitat for endangered species and restore the health of the
estuary; meet the Port of Oakland's schedule for providing 2.5 million
cubic yards of dredged material; and meet the Army's schedule to
complete closure of the base.   State and federal environmental review
is complete and final design of the project is underway by the U.S. Army
Corps of Engineers, in concert with the California Coastal Conservancy
and the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission.

Adjacent to Hamilton is a 1,600 acre site known as Bel Marin Keys Unit
5, former Bay mudflats that were diked and drained a century ago for hay
fields.  The California Coastal Conservancy is negotiating with the
owner as a willing seller to purchase the site for inclusion as part of
the Hamilton Field restoration project.  Adding Bel Marin Keys to
Hamilton Field would create one of the largest contiguous wetlands units
in the state, stretching from Marin County to Vallejo, with inestimable
habitat value.  This acquisition would also provide substantial
economies of scale through reduction in levee construction costs and
sharing of infrastructure investments on the expanded site.

Thank you again for including $13.8 million for the Hamilton project in
your budget.  Please help expand this effort to restore wetlands around
San Francisco Bay by supporting funds for state acquisition and
restoration of Bel Marin Keys Unit #5.

Thank you very much for your leadership and consideration.


David Lewis
Executive Director
Save San Francisco Bay Association

Gerald H. Meral ,Ph. D.
Executive Director
Planning and Conservation League

Zeke Grader
Executive Director
Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen's Associations

Nancy Schaefer
Director, California Office
The Conservation Fund

Lenny Siegel
Executive Director
Center for Public Environmental Oversight

Trish Mulvey
CLEAN South Bay


Lenny Siegel
Director, Center for Public Environmental Oversight
c/o PSC, 222B View St., Mountain View, CA 94041
Voice: 650/961-8918 or 650/969-1545
Fax: 650/968-1126

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