To have less than 30 days to respond to a comment period, when it took over a year and five months for Caltrans to prepare this report, is not giving the public a fair time to properly study these documents in order to make an informed comment, don’t you agree?
Please extend the comment period for the Richardson Grove Supplement to the Final Environmental Assessment and Tree Decisions beyond October 21, 2013, to be fair in allowing the public enough time to prepare an educated reply. If extended to at least Nov. 15, that would be very helpful.
My documents were received on Monday, September 23, 2013 only because somebody saw a notice in Friday, Sept. 21 issue of Times-Standard who let me know late in the day. I could not access the notice online. When I went to the Caltrans office Monday afternoon, there were not enough documents printed to get copies for others to receive them in a timely manner. So documents were not ready for others to pick up in printed form until Sept. 24 from Caltrans district office on Union Street in Eureka. Mailing to people entails another two days lost in the comment period time.
Also, Tree Decisions was not in the Eureka Humboldt County Library when a friend tried to access them there to read. He said the librarian took a long time to find the Richardson Grove Final Environmental Assessment, so these documents are not placed in a place one can find it easily. He said the lady at the reference desk finally found
These two books (The Final Supplemental Environmental Assessment and Tree Decisions) both consist of over 170 pages each. There are many maps included, so they will need to be studied as well.
Many people have no computers, or they only have snail-slow dial-up, which requires getting documents in hard copy. Reading long documents on line hurts my neck and back, and it is very hard to download these documents as they take up so much computer space. In addition, I needed to buy original copies to know I have the proper maps and I needed room to make notes on a hard copy. My printer cannot handle printing out 400 pages without giving me problems, and the maps are cut in half on the electronic copy so this makes them even more difficult to understand. This is why hard copies being available and affordable is important.
Going from charging $20 for the Draft Environmental Impact Report, up to $150 for the Final EIR pumped up to a large couple of documents. Now $40 each for these EA and Tree Decision docs is double the price and about the same number of pages as the original DEIR. This is also cost prohibitive, which is also unfair to people living on a thin budget.
Mainly, it is important to be fair with costs and extend the comment period so the public has a chance to become educated on what this all means.