Open Letter to the Council

Honorable Mayor and Council Members-

On Monday, Oct.1, 2012 a group of concerned citizens came to support your proposition to create a citizens’ advisory committee on hydraulic fracturing. After hearing from members of the public, all council members with the exception of Meghan Sahli-Wells, decided against forming the committee.
I understand your concerns about limiting our abilities to gather and disseminate information in a committee operating under provisions of the Brown Act; however, it does seem a bit paternalistic to tell the public what would be in our best interests, when we are clearly being met with resistance and the interests historically have not stacked up in favor of health and safety of the community (reminder: fracking exemptions from the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts).

One unexamined assumption we were met with Monday night was that all the speakers who were in favor the forming the committee would be willing to volunteer; some said they would volunteer; other would prefer to work in committee independently. So if we had a city committee, we would have folks benefiting from a regular meeting place and time with public input to the process. We would also have folks working with local organizations to gather resources and educate the pubic.

Meanwhile, the council chooses to rely on consultants and attorneys, while the information provided by citizens can simply be passed over……are you still reading this email ?

Thanks for your time in carefully considering this matter.

Michelle Weiner

The Actors' Gang

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