Sebastopol speed limit
EDITOR: Thank you for covering Tuesday’s meeting regarding traffic and pedestrian safety in Sebastopol (“Pedestrians in peril,” Wednesday).
In response to the statement by Sebastopol police Capt. James Conner (soon to be the police chief) that speed limits are set “based on the belief that generally people drive no faster than is prudent for safety,” diving habits in California have changed over the years. Witness the typical speed of traffic on Highway 101. Speeds of 75 mph and 80 mph aren’t uncommon. Twenty years ago, this would have been considered dangerously fast and definitely unsafe.
California Vehicle Code Section 22350 states, “No person shall drive a vehicle at a speed greater than is reasonable or prudent and in no event at a speed which endangers the safety of persons or property.”
The safety of Sebastopol’s citizens is of primary importance. We live in a democracy. If the majority of the community wishes the speed limit on Bodega Highway to be less than the posted 40 mph, then the speed limit should be reduced.
An informed public is critical for participation in society. Please continue your coverage of this important community issue.
DANIEL DE KAY
All carrot, no stick
EDITOR: Sonoma County’s Board of Supervisors voted to again extend the deadline for illegal marijuana farmers to get a permit or cease operations (“New deadline for marijuana grower permits,” Wednesday). This “relief” for those who are breaking the law comes at the expense of law-abiding citizens who live next door or, in the case of my neighborhood, the embattled Mark West Creek.
The supervisors have taken this step because cannabis industry representatives pressured the Cannabis Advisory Group to recommend it be implemented. The Cannabis Advisory Group didn’t exist two months ago and had its first meeting only last month. I wonder how many Sonoma County residents know that this group, which apparently has the power to direct the voting of the Board of Supervisors, even exists.
The supervisors assured us all they would use a carrot-and-stick approach to bring the growers out of the shadows, yet a meager 2 percent have registered for a permit. Where I live, marijuana cultivation is exploding exponentially. Zero illegal marijuana plants have been confiscated, and no one has been arrested.
Obviously the carrot isn’t working. It’s time to see the stick. When growers see others being busted, they will be more motivated to “get legal.”
Care for the planet
EDITOR: In 1935, the technology was a tad different (“Hurricane history,” Letters, Monday). We didn’t have today’s ability to predict catastrophic hurricanes, much less broadcast them.
I spoke with my mother the day before Irma’s notable arrival, and it was sunny and 95 degrees just north of Tampa, Florida. Were it not for science and technology, millions wouldn’t have evacuated, and the death toll would likely be higher than 423 given today’s population density.
What we also don’t know, due to the lack of published scientific data, is if the 1935 hurricane was as wide as Irma — 450 miles wide, nearly three times wider than Florida’s peninsula.
Please, people, don’t abandon science. Rather, adopt the Boy Scouts’ approach: leave the place better than you found it.