Two measures to re-invigorate Livermore Valley wine country headed to November ballot | Tim Talk | Tim Hunt | |

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About this blog: I am a native of Alameda County, grew up in Pleasanton and currently live in the house I grew up in that is more than 100 years old. I spent 39 years in the daily newspaper business and wrote a column for more than 25 years in add...  (More)

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Two measures to re-invigorate Livermore Valley wine country headed to November ballot

Uploaded: Aug 4, 2022
For decades people opposed to residential growth in the Tri-Valley tried to restrict development by limiting and controlling basic infrastructure.
That’s why there’s no water or sewer lines extending into the Las Positas Valley in North Livermore or to rural areas outside the urban limit boundary in the South Livermore Valley Plan. Now, more than 25 years after the plan took effect, a consensus is building that the wine industry in the Livermore Valley needs more options.
That includes potentially extending sewer pipes outside the city limits to allow larger facilities to function on other than septic systems. Livermore voters will decide in November whether to extend sewer lines outside of the urban growth boundaries to enhance wine country.
Staff reports leading up to the council approval have pointed out that growth is stagnant with about 50 wineries and few news ones in recent years. The proposal is being driven by the Tri-Valley Conservancy, which commissioned an independent study released in 2020 to examine the wine industry in the Livermore Valley. It found that the goal of 5,000 acres of irrigated grapes set in the county plan had fallen well short at about 2,800 acres. It recommended steps to attract mid-sized wineries that have tasting rooms and related activities. The conservancy was established after the South Valley Plan was approved to oversee land dedicated to open space or agriculture in perpetuity.
In pushing the measure forward, the conservancy was joined by Friends of Livermore, Visit Tri-Valley, the Livermore Chamber of Commerce and the Livermore Valley Winegrowers Association. It’s rare to find the Friends of Livermore and chamber aligned on an issue. That speaks to the consensus that something must be done to revitalize the area for the broader wine and tourism industry.
Should the initiative pass, costs will be split with the county picking up 80% and the rest covered by property owners and commercial operators that decide to connect to the sewer line.
Meanwhile the county Board of Supervisors is set to put a measure on the November ballot to amend Measure D. The first reading passed the board 4-1 with Supervisor Keith Carson opposed. The county measure also is related to amending the urban limit boundary Measure D, but not connected to the city’s measure.
The county’s Local Agency Formation Commission analyzed Measure D 20 years after its passage in 2000. It found that the wine industry was “stagnant” and changes were recommended to improve vitality. Those findings mirrored those of the Tri-Valley Conservancy-commissioned report. These include more flexibility for size and location of buildings and expanding visitor-serving uses. These could include hot air balloon operations, day spas, artisan furniture workshops, boutique cannabis dispensaries and a 140-room resort hotel. For upscale visitors, the resort hotel would fill a huge gap. There’s the small Purple Orchid Inn, but little else other than short term rental homes in the wine country.
Given that this is a county-wide measure, the Sierra Club is neutral, which will help in the progressive enclaves of Oakland and Berkeley. Also, Dick Schneider, a Sierra Club member until 2020 who co-authored Measure D, is on board with the changes.

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Posted by Rich Buckley, a resident of Livermore,
on Aug 4, 2022 at 1:45 pm

Rich Buckley is a registered user.


Measure D is a fraud foisted upon Alameda County Voters by The Wine Group, the Big Gorilla globally that bought Concannon, the rest of the supports are tag-alongs.

Nitrates measured in wells all over the urbanized areas of Earth from auto, truck, diesel and industrial combustion exhaust are cumulative since the beginning of the Age of Industrialization? This is what's being measured in our drinking water, not migration from septic tanks.


We may first need to flush out all preconceived notions that shape our collective ignorance. Web Link Our weather is manufactured. Lockheed Martin and Raytheon Corp control our weather. They tell the Armed Forces and 3-letter agencies what the weather will be. Will Congress do anything about it? No - Congress is captured by global corporations.

We need to encourage the growing of vegetables and fruits. Don't ask me to subsidize the richest land owners in Alameda Country unless we include recycled water lines brought to the ag areas along with sewers. Give the recycled water to the farmers free for a decade to encourage the development of intensive fruit (grapes are fruit) and vegetable production industry.

Either we put in both Sewer and Recycled Water, or we do nothing and let these wealthy land owners pay for their own sewers, which the agencies will approve in a heart beat.


So just plow ahead and plan our own alternative solutions.


We are going to start feeling foot shortages starting late August to September this year. A new 9-County Bay Area master plan is needed.

(1) Atomic Power recycling
(2) Earth and wetlands contributions
(3) Turning deserts into green zones
(4) Full disclosure.

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