Proposed Reservoir, End of Road

A view of Del Puerto Canyon Road looking west, toward Frank Raines Park, approximately where it would dead-end, about 1.2 miles from Diablo Grande Parkway. Photo taken Dec. 16.

Buried deep within a recent statement to “Community Members” and in reference to their Draft Environmental Impact Report, The Del Puerto Water District states:

 “Lengthy preliminary investigations did not reveal any fatal flaws”.

Where does the City of Patterson stand on exposing its citizens to a brand-new Man-Made Natural Hazard? The California Natural Hazard Disclosure Act: Section 1103 California Civil Code states: “real estate sellers and brokers are legally required to disclose if the property being sold lies within one or more state or locally mapped hazard areas”. If the proposed Del Puerto Canyon Reservoir is built, the entire City of Patterson will be downstream of a brand-new natural hazard. A Dam Inundation Zone.

What do Patterson City Leaders think about the proposal? We don’t know since the City of Patterson is not listed as a responsible or trustee agency in the Draft Environmental Impact Report.

Yes, most of the proposed reservoir area is outside, but contiguous to the western city limits of Patterson, however the reservoir water conveyance system, electrical substation and pumping station are identified as within the city limits, therefore integral to its operation. As such, a nexus is created requiring input from the City of Patterson in issuing discretionary approvals. Permits.

In addition, the reservoir includes 650 acres of Mixed-Use land outside the city limits, but within the City of Patterson General Plan Study Area. This land has been pre-zoned with development standards and is included in the City of Patterson’s 2010 General Plan Final Environmental Impact Report. The loss of this land represents an evaporation of a potentially valuable sales and property tax base for the City of Patterson or Stanislaus County. It also puts the Del Puerto Water District Draft EIR in direct conflict with the City of Patterson’s 2010 General Plan Final EIR.

 Shades of San Francis Dam

The sound of a crack in the middle of the night or perhaps an earthquake rumble, seconds before a black nothing. Four hundred twenty-two lives were lost in an instant in 1928 when the St. Francis Dam failed near Los Angeles, creating the second worst natural disaster in California’s history.

Oroville 2017

In February 2017, 188,000 people were evacuated from the Oroville Dam Inundation Zone as it teetered on the brink of collapse. Residents of Oroville and cities below, barely dodged the bullet of a complete dam failure. Warnings by state engineers of weaknesses in the dam system infrastructure were ignored by the state. Only by the grace of Thor, did the rain stop and allow state legislators to scramble for a fix.

No fatal flaws indeed        

David Keller, Former Mayor of Patterson

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