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Bill from Stockton reoprts on the Nichols-Steinberg appearance in Stockton

I don't have time to do this stuff- but I made time to go to the meeting and heard the consultants and experts talk about transit , moving jobs to where people live, increasing housing density to 7.7 per acre...Mary Nichols talked about how the pollution around the Socal ports was so bad that people nearby were fighting expansion. And without a
trace of irony she talked about using natural gas  to accomplish it...
...and they let people speak...

'another blamed Sacramento for the state's slumping economy and high unemployment rate."  (see article below)

That would be ME. I think it's the 1st time I've spoken in public. The gist of what I said:
Having a forum on "Smart Growth" was a little odd - Stockton's problem is trying to have smart contraction.
The thing that was impacting housing density was ... teardowns.
Told Stienberg I was a mostly Dem voter ... but I'd come to regard Sacramento as an economic wrecking ball.
And CARB was a Mt. Everest of bad and fraudulent science. That if we judged by CARB's past initiatives
we should be wary of "smart growth".
Launched into the laundry list :
AB32 didn't make sense when we're downwind of China, and they're building 3 coal-fired power plants a week.
Quoted  Prof. Ramanathan(?) of UC San Diego / Scripps Institute that 7x % of soot in our air came from Asia.
So the DPF law didn't make a lot of sense.
Enhanced vapor recovery (3%) put people(i know one) out of business for no good reason, and the deadline
came during a credit crunch.

Well I rambled on... and they took the mic before I got to the big finish - Hien Tran.
That ethanol was boosting feed prices and killing our #1 product in San Joaquin County : dairy.

There was another speaker talking about natural gas.

After the meeting several people came up and said I had made a lot of sense. I handed out my
"call your congressman about HR1380" biz cards.

Steinberg of course was unaffected, he spoke and sort of acknowledged the factors external to CA. The key thing
he said that was important was "if you want change you have to show up". Our side needs to do more/show up more,
i.e. to get HR1380 passed.

As Stienberg was leaving I ran after him and said we should get rid of ethanol in favor of natural gas. His reply: "That''s
a federal matter". I was left wondering why we can tell Washington to take a hike on the subject of smoking dope, but on
on ethanol we need to be in lock-step?
Then I began to wonder if the Capitol Building in Sacramento is downwind of too
many medical marijuana places. It would explain a lot... like why so many legislators seem to forget to represent their citizens.

Officials make pitch for reduced emissions

Kevin Parrish
Record Staff Writer
September 24, 2011 12:00 AM

STOCKTON - Two of California's highest-ranking public officials - Mary Nichols, head of the state Air Resources Board, and Darrell Steinberg, president pro tem of the state Senate - made their way Friday to downtown Stockton.

They were the cornerstone speakers in a forum on legislation that encourages sustainable communities. More than 100 people, many of them stakeholders in environmental issues and many of them ordinary residents, listened while Nichols, Steinberg and others explained Senate Bill 375 and its goals.

The law attempts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by changing transportation patterns. Here's how that thinking goes: By creating local jobs, higher-density housing and more transportation options, people will stay closer to where they live and spend less time commuting - thus, their communities will be more sustainable.

The message from Sacramento was received respectfully - even at times of disagreement - in a lively discussion of California's continuing drive toward greener, more sustainable communities.

"Having Nichols and Steinberg, today was a success," said Andrew Chesley, executive director of the San Joaquin Coun- cil of Governments and host of the event. "Government works best when all the interests work together."

SB375, written by Steinberg, became California law in 2008. It is designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (primarily carbon dioxide) through a set of incentives.

"The carrots are increased transportation funding, an expedited process through the environmental hoops and redevelopment incentives," Nichols said. "The sticks? Nada. There are none."

She and Steinberg emphasized repeatedly that implementation of the legislation is voluntary and does not carry penalties for those communities, or metropolitan planning organizations, that do not utilize it.

That said, SB375 sets standards for reducing greenhouse gas emissions that vary region by region in California. The eight-county San Joaquin Valley has two reduction targets: 5 percent per capita by 2025 and 10 percent by 2035.

"Three seventy-five does not make anybody do anything," Nichols said. "If you choose (a strategy for a sustainable community), there are benefits. The answer to how 375 is implemented is sitting in this room. It's a local decision."

Some of those in attendance weren't interested. One audience member read from the "Communist Manifesto" and another blamed Sacramento for the state's slumping economy and high unemployment rate.

Steinberg said he welcomed the exchange of ideas with local residents and said he was gratified by the interest.

After explaining the history of the legislation, Steinberg said, "Here is an opportunity - and we don't get them very often - to actually change the paradigm in California."

Chesley used the forum to present the San Joaquin County of Governments' approach to the sustainability legislation.

"For generations, we have equated mobility (the automobile) with personal well being and wealth," Chesley said. "Three seventy-five challenges that."

Each speaker emphasized the value of walking, biking, exercising and moving within a smaller, sustained sphere.

Contact Assistant Managing Editor Kevin Parrish at (209) 546-8264 or