OAKLAND, CA (July 17, 2013) — An East Bay Area land management agency voted to continue efforts to block OHV use at a nearby state vehicular recreation area. On July 16, the East Bay Regional Park District Board approved their new Master Plan which includes about two thousand acres at Carnegie State Vehicular Recreation Area (SVRA). Regional Park District leadership has made clear their intention to manage their future acquisition in the area for non-motorized recreation.
The vote appears to provoke a possible conflict under the California Public Resources Code, which specifically prohibits the District from “interfering “with a vehicular recreation area:
PRC SECTION 5541.1
“The Board of Directors of the East Bay Regional Park District shall not interfere with the control of any vehicular recreational area or trail that is existing, owned, or controlled by a municipality or county in the district, except with the consent of the governing body of the municipality, or of the county if the same is in unincorporated territory, and upon such terms as may be mutually agreed upon between the board of directors of the district and the governing body.”
Don Amador, Western Representative for the BlueRibbon Coalition, states, “I was stunned by the board’s vote yesterday which continues on the path to a possible showdown over whether this prime property will be put to its originally intended use for Carnegie or to create a new, non-motorized regional park.”
“The board’s action all but disenfranchised a large segment of the OHV community who took time out of their busy schedules to attend public meetings last year that were part of the Master Plan’s outreach. It appears our calls to treat OHV recreation with respect fell on deaf ears because the Master Plan also bans even the potential for any future motorized opportunities on District lands,” Amador continues.
“In this time of fiscal responsibility, it should be noteworthy that the site in question was acquired in the 1990s through the vision and funding of the State Off-Highway Vehicle Division. Regional Park District Director Ayn Wieskamp appears aloof to that history, instead doubling down on her efforts to interfere with motorized recreation at Carnegie by staying her stated course to ensure the now-called Tesla site is never used for OHV recreation,’ Amador said.
“The OHV community will have to respond accordingly to these latest efforts by the District and anti-access groups to prohibit new motorized recreational opportunity on the Tesla property at Carnegie SVRA,” Amador concludes.
Contra Costa Times Article on Board Vote: http://www.contracostatimes.com/contra-costa-times/ci_23674543/plan-16-potential-new-east-bay-parks-approved
Link to BRC’s Sept 8, 2012 Comment Letter (PRC concerns stated in that comment letter): http://www.sharetrails.org/uploads/media/eastbay713/EastBay_BRC_9.8.12_CommentsMasterPlan.pdf