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Tuscany Hills EIR
Lake Tulloch Alliance
24 Tabletop Court
Copperopolis, CA 95228

August 1, 2005

Robert Sellman, Interim Planning Director
Calaveras County Planning Department
891 Mountain Ranch Road
San Andreas, CA 95249

RE: Copperopolis Community Plan

Dear Mr. Sellman:

As per the June 2004 Tuscany Hills Draft Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Cumulative Impacts to Recreational Uses on Lake Tulloch (Impact 4.11.6.4) states - Development of additional future marina uses and associated facilities proposed as part of the project as well as any docks constructed on lakefront single family lots may increase recreational uses of Lake Tulloch. Currently FERC has concluded that Lake Tulloch is not at or near capacity. Therefore, this impact is considered less than significant.

The Lake Tulloch Alliance would like to go on record as completely disagreeing with the above section of the June 2004 Tuscany Hills Draft EIR. The reason people buy homes here and developers develop here is because of Lake Tulloch. It is very simple to understand, more houses equal more boats which require more docks, etc.

On May 26, 2005 in a front page article of The Union Democrat, Calaveras County Sheriff Dennis Downum says “Tulloch has become increasingly congested with personal watercraft.” Additionally he states “It’s just way overcrowded”. About 120 boats can safely share Tulloch Reservoir at one time. On summer weekends and holidays, however, 150 to 200 boats may be on the water, according to a study by Tri-Dam.

As per the December 10, 2003 Lake Tulloch Safety Enforcement Proposal from the Calaveras County Sheriff’s Department to Supervisor Victoria Erickson, Captain Clay Hawkins states:

Over the past year, a task force appointed by the Calaveras County Board of Supervisors, Tri-Dam, and the Calaveras and Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Departments have evaluated recreational boat use at Lake Tulloch. These analyses found that Lake Tulloch has one of the highest boating accident rates, numbers of boating injuries and fatalities, and boat per square mile compared to other lakes in Calaveras County. Among other things, the agencies concluded that increased enforcement, boating safety education, and reducing the number of boats that use Lake Tulloch need to occur to improve safety and reduce boating accidents.

Because of limited funding, the task force has explored the implementation of a new boat user fee program. The purpose of the program is multi fold. First, permit boats to operate on the lake in order to reduce congestion. Second, fund increased public education programs to improve boating operation and safety. And third, fund increased enforcement presence on the lake to reduce injury and fatality boating accidents.

The Lake Tulloch Alliance (LTA) agrees with the task force recommendation of 2003 that a boat user fee program be established for Lake Tulloch. LTA would like the following included in the Copperopolis Community Plan:

-Establish a joint power agency between Calaveras County, Tuolumne County and the Tri-Dam Project, under the Joint Powers Act to increase enforcement presence on Lake Tulloch and provide on-gong public educational programs that would ultimately improve boating operation and safety.

-Establish a boat user fee program for Lake Tulloch to fund the additional law enforcement and lake management programs.

-Control the use of the North and South areas of the O’Brynes Ferry Bridge.

-Oversee the trash pickup in the North and South areas of the O’Brynes Ferry Bridge.

Also, the Alliance recommends the neither county approve further commercial marinas or boat storage structures on or adjacent to Lake Tulloch.

Additionally, the Lake Tulloch Alliance would like the county to support Supervisor Erickson’s proposal for the county to work with the federal and state governments and private land owners to open a new marina and boat launching facility on the western shore of New Melone’s directly accessible from Copperopolis. This would be an important move to deal with the incredible congestion on Lake Tulloch and provide more recreational opportunities for those living and moving into the Lake Tulloch Basin. The bottomline is that Lake Tulloch, by itself, cannot be the sole host for boating recreation for an eventual community of perhaps tens of thousands in future decades.

We appreciate your taking swift action regarding LTA’s request.

Sincerely,



Connie Williams Jim Hackbarth
Chair/Calaveras County Co-Chair/Tuolumne County
785-5080 881-0105
jpclwilliams@caltel.com toojamar@caltel.com

c: Supervisor Victoria Erickson, Calaveras County
Supervisor Dick Pland, Tuolumne County
Sheriff Dennis Downum, Calaveras County
Sheriff Dick Rogers, Tuolumne County
Capt. Clay Hawkins, Calaveras County
Sgt. Bob Begolea. Tuolumne County
Steve Felty, Tri-Dam
Susan Larsen, Tri-Dam
Copyright 2014 Lake Tulloch Alliance. All Rights Reserved.