Two women from Santa Clarita wore homemade buttons for U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer to see: Yes S. 759
Boxer in fact did see the buttons and realized too late they could have helped her remember the name of the Cemex bill when it didn’t come instantly to mind.
“Oh, you’re wearing that duh, duh,” Boxer said, laughing.
More importantly, Boxer says she hasn’t forgotten the concern Santa Clarita residents have over the mega aggregate mine proposed near Canyon Country. She spoke to residents about the Cemex issue as they gathered at the Transit Maintenance Facility to dedicate a new solar canopy.
Boxer said she and the city worked hard to get an appraisal on San Bernardino County land that would be traded with Cemex for the land near Canyon Country.
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“If that appraisal comes in at the right number we know we can manage to get BLM to sell an equivalent number of acres elsewhere that they’ve identified as lands they don’t need. That would make this thing a zero-sum game and the taxpayers would not be out any money,” Boxer said.
Boxer has asked for a hearing before the Energy and Natural Resources Committee which was delayed by the Congressional hiatus. At that time she expects the Congressional Budget Office to present their insights into the costs of the bill.
Fran Wright, a button-wearing Canyon Country resident, was happy to see Boxer is on the case.
“I’m very supportive of Senator Boxer. I’m very optimistic. I hope we can get it through,” Wright said.
Boxer received applause for her support of Santa Clarita’s plight with Cemex.
“Twenty years ago they got the permits to for this. Now, you know you’ve grown since then and you people are breathing air that’s not as clean as it should be. And we have certain areas where we can have aggregate mining in our state. But, this doesn’t happen to be one of those areas. So, I’m very proud to carry S. 759,” Boxer said.
Boxer said she has worked with Congressman Buck McKeon on the Cemex issue and they share a bi-partisan solution. However, Boxer says other Republicans in the House of Representatives have not been helpful.
“The Republican leadership has said we’re not going to do any bills like that. And you know what? They’re just wrong. Why are we here if we can’t facilitate a solution to a problem?” said Boxer.
Wright, a former registered Republican but now an Independent, says she’s tired of the bickering between the parties.
“I’m really upset at both parties not coming to compromise on this issue,” said Wright.
This is the fifth year Cemex has worked with city to come to an agreement. They’ve told city officials that as long as there is forward progress they won’t move to make the mines operative.
If you would like to express your opinions regarding S.759 and learn more about the issue, you can click here:
Fran Wright has started a Facebook page called “Petition Against Cemex mine on Soledad Canyon“.