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OPINION

Letters to the Editor, Sept. 23

Mount Shasta Herald
Mt. Shasta Area residents may submit letters to the editor by emailing news@mtshastanews.com. Please include your name, address and phone number. Only your name and town will be printed.

Campfire risks

As a very concerned south county citizen I feel it is necessary to make people aware of the fire risk being taken at Lake Siskiyou Resort allowing campers to have real wood campfires at their camp facility. This is irresponsible and the fire risk to the surrounding area is dangerous. I am not sure Lake Siskiyou Resort knows you can’t just call a fire department and they will instantly arrive. CAL FIRE and the USFS is stretched thin on fighting fires in this historic fire year. The National Forests are now closed  to campers because of the fire risks. This fire season in California and the West is the worst we have seen and fire victims have died and thousands of homes have been destroyed. These unprecedented times with climate change and not enough funding For our fire protection makes it critical to protect all of us from a careless mishap.

Many campers coming from the  Bay Area and other locations  are clueless about the reality of wild fires. There are so many pine needles that can instantly light at this campground facility. The town of Mt Shasta and the valley is threatened by this irresponsibility.

I am requesting that the Lake Siskiyou Resort not allow campfires in their campgrounds as a precaution to protect the forested environment and the local communities. Pacific Power shut down power in the Weed/Hammond Ranch area on Sept. 14 for 10 hours due to concerns with gusty winds and fire danger. This is the reality of our situation. With the wave of winds that we have been having we won’t have a chance to stop a fire if it begins at this resort. Let’s hope with precaution on the part of the Lake Siskiyou Resort this will not happen ... but if this campground continue to allow campfires and a fire starts they will be inundated with so many lawsuits that they will not be able to sustain this business and could destroy everything. 

Please heed this warning from someone who has watched fire season go from a few months a year to at least six months around here. Be responsible and protect your customers, visitors, employees, our community and your facility.

People visiting the resort will be fine knowing they are doing the right thing for all of us.

Please take the time to call The Lake Siskiyou Resort at (530) 926-2610 and call (949) 415-1910 ... Reynolds Resorts, owners of the Lake Siskiyou Resort, and make your voice heard for the safety of all of us.

- Marcia Rey, Hammond Ranch

Responding to fire risk

In the interest of the wildfire prevention, Lake Siskiyou Camp Resort has implemented controlled campfire measures as of July, prior to the current conditions and USFS closures of state campgrounds. Safety has always been our first priority and this season is no exception. We are proud to be staffed with an incredible blend of local residents and traveling team members that are dedicated to creating a safe, welcoming place that promotes all that our community has to offer. No one here is willing to put the community we love at risk.

Under the current statewide Fire Prevention Order, we exceed all criteria for fire safety. We are in daily communication with county health officials and CAL FIRE and we enforce all recommended safety measures, including controlled campfire measures and burn bans when required. All sites have a steel ring with a grill grate and a greater than five foot radius that is free of debris (including pine needles). Security and maintenance personnel have fire-suppression equipment and are diligently keeping the grounds maintained.

The Slater and Devil Fires, paired with the USFS closures of state campgrounds, have made us a safe haven for many evacuees. It is not accurate or fair to accuse anyone in California of “not understanding” fire season. There is not a soul on this property that doesn't understand the risk involved in even a small, controlled campfire between active burn bans. There are guests at our campground who have lost everything to wildfires who absolutely understand the seriousness of our situation. We as a community of Californians should be understanding and supportive – not fighting to remove the unfortunate necessity of preparing food and finding warmth around a campfire.

- Julie Amsdell, General Manager of Lake Siskiyou Camp Resort

Don’t get fooled

Fool me once shame on you. Fool me twice shame on me. Try to fool us three times with tax increases for the “library,” then shame on the Dunsmuir City Council.

In 2014 and 2015 the Dunsmuir Council put tax increases on the ballot,  (Measures N and P) promising they were for the “library and community center.” We all received glossy postcards in the mail with pictures of the library and the pool, promising “yes” votes would save them. But the city attorney’s impartial analysis said the revenue was not meant for any particular purpose and could be used for anything. Citizens were assured the city would not abscond with the funds. So who are we to believe? 

It is 2020 and here they come again with another tax increase promising money for the library. Only this time it’s an increase during a global pandemic when local workers and consumers are already hurting and strapped for cash. The city council has mismanaged our money and is trying to fool us into paying higher sales tax to cover the deficit, and again promising it is for the library or sidewalks because they know we support those things. Please don’t get fooled again. 

Vote no on Measure H.

- Pamela S. Padula, Dunsmuir

Project concerns

The environmental study for this Golden Eagle Charter School project fails to address significant problems. In the case of a project bordering Interstate-5 with excellent direct views of Mt. Shasta, extra care must be taken to protect the scenic beauty and comply with the City’s Mountain Village Theme. The goals to preserve essential viewsheds in the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway have been ignored. This unattractive 34,000 square foot metal building in plain view of so many people would only be allowed in an industrial zone, but not here.

Just its significant aesthetic concerns are enough to require an EIR. There are further serious problems with energy conservation, traffic and wetlands impacts. We can all recognize the inadequacy of the IS/MND’s conclusions of less-than-significant impacts in so many areas of concern. 

Aesthetics:

1. This is a vibrant wetland area frequented daily by a variety of birds. How many times have we all stopped to allow a mother goose leading her goslings across Pine Street from the hospital gardens to the wetlands?

2. Photos in the IS/MND inadequately illustrate the scenic views of Mount Shasta visible from I-5.

3. The proposed removal of up to 50 mature trees on Cedar Street and a site plan with inadequate numbers of shade trees would create a major visual impact.

4. The Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway is unique to our area. This is one of the most highly visible views of Mount Shasta as people drive by on I-5. 

5. The building as designed belongs in industrial-zoned area, not a residential area. The metal building is not compatible with the surrounding residences and is not in conformity with the “mountain village theme” of our General Plan.

Please visit this website for further information. The Planning Commission needs to hear from the community: https://friendsofscenicbyway.weebly.com/.

- Vicki Gold, Mount Shasta

Both idealist and realist

I’m an idealist about human nature.

And the best part of being an idealist about human nature is being an American citizen.

Why? Because the Declaration of Independence, The Bill of Rights, the Constitution, and the Pledge of Allegiance are part of my heritage.

And I’m also a realist.

Particularly when I consider American history, which shows our struggles as we try to realize “liberty and justice for all.”  

We have struggled to make that philosophy a reality, right from our first days as a fledgling nation. 

As we are struggling to this very day, 244 years later.

We may not agree about what “One nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all,” looks like, but my sincere hope is that we will all take an active role in shaping that ideal.

All we have to do is stand up for what we believe in and exercise the right that we all do now have: the right to vote.

Our voices, our votes do matter. 

As I vote, I get to be both realist and idealist. I hope you’ll be both idealist and realist and vote, too.

- Eve Thompson, Mount Shasta