Lori A. Carter, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Public-access advocates say a settlement over the long-disputed gateway to Petaluma’s Lafferty Ranch may be imminent, but adjacent property owners characterize the negotiations far differently.
Leaders of the Friends of Lafferty Park effort said Monday that two county maps from the 1860s may be the “final nail in the coffin” that will win a decades-old fight to gain public access to Lafferty Ranch, 270 acres of city-owned land northeast of Petaluma.
But an attorney for the adjacent property owners who oppose efforts to open the land as a public park countered Monday that negotiations are nowhere near a resolution.
via Two old maps present shift in Lafferty Ranch dispute | The Press Democrat.
Unique to the entire 110 miles of the Russian River, Riverkeeper Stewardship Park is the place to see and participate in riverbank restoration and upkeep.
Construction of the onsite environmental educational facility and hard surfaced wheelchair-accessible trails is underway. The efforts of volunteers are enormously valuable to us and we continue to welcome their participation. For safety reasons the Park is closed to the general public — open to volunteers on Wed. 9:30-11:30 am.
We offer training so no experience is necessary. Help construct trails, work with native plants, control erosion, eliminate noxious weeds plus many other activities. Adults and children are welcome to participate. Students can receive volunteer credit.
The Park is located on the north bank of the Russian River directly upstream of the Guerneville pedestrian bridge. Access the entrance from the driveway in front of Sonoma Nesting Co. (16132 Main Street, just east of Armstrong Woods Road. At the bottom of the driveway look for the blue and white sign that says, “Russian Riverkeeper Stewardship Park.”
Please bring drinking water and wear sturdy footwear. Light refreshments are provided. For more information contact Victoria Wikle at 865-2474 or VictoriaWikle@usa.net. See the website at http://www.russianriverkeeper.org. Receive Russian Riverkeeper news and happenings emails at “Join our mailing list”
Mark Prado, MARIN INDEPENDENT JOURNAL
The Drakes Bay Oyster Co. will take its fight to stay open to the U.S. Supreme Court after a petition to have its case reheard by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals was denied Tuesday morning.
In October, attorneys for owner Kevin Lunny filed a petition for what is known as an en banc rehearing after the court ruled against Drakes Bay in September.
The petition to rehear the case argued that the review should be granted because the panel decision conflicts with precedent set by the U.S. Supreme Court and the 9th Circuit.
But Lunny said in a statement late Tuesday he will take his fight to the Supreme Court.
via Court denies Drakes Bay Oyster Co., owner says fight will go to the U.S. Supreme Court – Marin Independent Journal.
Martin Espinoza, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
The owner of the empty lot where 13-year-old Andy Lopez died more than six weeks ago is in talks with people who want to turn it into a memorial park for the slain boy.
The property is owned by real estate agent David Poulsen, who has refused to be interviewed on the topic. However he has designated Herb Williams, a political consultant, as his spokesman. Williams said the talks regarding the property at 3399 Moorland Ave. are preliminary and no formal proposals are being considered.
via Talks begin for creating park in honor of Andy Lopez | The Press Democrat.
Vesta Copestakes, SONOMA COUNTY GAZETTE
For the past almost 40 years, Forestville has fought one development plan after another on downtown property that runs along Front Street in the heart of downtown. Now, with the support of Sonoma County’s Agricultural Preservation & Open Space District, the Forestville Planning Association, and a local investment group that includes the Bartolomei family, and a Yes vote from the Board of Supervisors, Forestville finally gets a plan everyone can live with.
Eight and one half acres of land will now be approximately 50% park and preserved wetlands with native habitat, and 50% developed land for mixed-use commerce. The land will also accommodate Sonoma County Regional Park’s trailhead to the West County Trail directly running into Forestville’s downtown. That a real boon to the parks, users of the trail, and downtown businesses.
via Forestville Open Space Grant Approved for Park.
Paul Payne, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Lafferty Ranch advocates say an easement over 905 square feet of private land standing between the public and the proposed nature preserve near Petaluma could finally be secured by newly discovered property records dating back to the Civil War era.
A surveyor’s map cited in 1866 Sonoma County Board of Supervisors meetings as well as an 1869 deed from an adjacent property owner both create a bridge to the landlocked 270-acre preserve, said Petaluma City Councilman Mike Healy, a lawyer who is providing free legal work for the cause.
via New evidence in fight for public access to Lafferty Ranch | Watch Sonoma County.
Greg Beato, THE NEW YORK TIMES
The waterfall that is the best-known feature of the Bohemia Ecological Preserve is currently nothing more than a picturesque spill of bone-dry rocks. The shaggy grasslands that carpet the preserve’s rolling terrain are a parched golden brown.
But as Craig Anderson, 51, leads a group of hikers up gravel roads toward a hilltop campground, the fact that the landscape is at something less than peak splendor after several rain-free months does little to diminish his enthusiasm. And why should it? In California’s economic climate — also fairly parched — Bohemia Ecological Preserve is that rarest of specimens: a recently opened park. In May, it celebrated its official grand opening.
via Benefactors Create and Maintain a Private Park in California – NYTimes.com.
by Sonoma Coast Surfrider
The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors (BOS) will be voting this upcoming Tuesday, August 21st, on a resolution regarding the fees collection system (the “Iron Rangers”) proposed by the California Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) to be installed at Sonoma County’s major beaches.
Your attendance at the BOS chambers this Tuesday is very valuable, demonstrating your support of a Sonoma County resolution that the DPR proposed project is flawed and ill-conceived. Attendees are encouraged to be at BOS chambers, 575 Administration Drive, Room 102A in Santa Rosa for item 12 of the agenda; the meeting will be called to order at 8:30 am. It will be important to have as many people as is possible attend; please pass this information on to fellow citizens.
A summary to the BOS can be downloaded at
A copy of the BOS resolution can be downloaded at
In addition, a link to this resolution has been posted on the Surfriders blog. Not only can it be downloaded from this site, but it provides much additional information relevant both to the issue of Iron Rangers, but to other coastal issues.
This vote marks the end of Public Comment (as required by CEQA), and the acceptance of letters of concern by the public to Sonoma County’s Permits Resources Management Department. Please submit your comments on this matter to PRMD, c/o David Hardy (Project Planner), RE File CPH12-0004, 2550 Ventura Avenue, Santa Rosa, CA 95403. You can email David at email@example.com, or you can call him for details at 707-565-1924. Comments must be submitted by August 21, 2012.
Copy of DPR’s July 31st application to Sonoma County can be downloaded from
Thank you for your active involvement in this important issue, one that involves the traditional rights of public access and use of our beaches here in Sonoma County.
Press Release: Stewards of the Coast and Redwoods
Responding to further State Parks cut-backs, Stewards of the Coast and Redwoods (Stewards) announces two public meetings. Over the past two years, campgrounds and coastal access sites have been closed and further closures may be coming. Working with local State Park staff, Stewards is considering ways to offset the closures. The public is invited to hear about plans to keep Austin Creek State Recreation Area and Sonoma Coast State Park open and share your ideas as well.
The meetings will be held in Bodega Bay and Monte Rio:
Bodega Bay Meeting
Wednesday, June 6, 2012, 6-7:30
Bodega Bay Grange
1370 Bodega Ave. Bodega Bay
Monte Rio Meeting
Monday, June 11, 2012, 6-7:30
Monte Rio Community Center
20488 Highway 116, Monte Rio
For more information: http://www.stewardsofthecoastandredwoods.org/news/2012/news20120515.htm