Concerned about increases in traffic and car exhaust, an environmental group has appealed the Ventura County Planning Commission's approval of Ronald Reagan's request to be buried at his presidential library near Simi Valley.
In its appeal filed this week, the Environmental Coalition of Ventura County asked the County Board of Supervisors to reject the decision to allow Ronald and Nancy Reagan to be buried on library grounds and permit the library to host up to 60 nighttime meetings or catered affairs.
"The burial site will attract a different kind of visitor, beyond those attracted to the library," said Neil Moyer, president of the Environmental Coalition.
He said the county should require a transportation study to consider ways to offset an increase in traffic to the grave sites and nighttime events.
"Protecting and enhancing the environment has been a hallmark of the library's design and construction from the very beginning," said a Reagan Foundation spokesman. "We intend to proceed in a manner that addresses citizens' concerns while allowing for this addition to the library."
The $60-million library, which will include all of Reagan's White House papers and have a museum with exhibits chronicling highlights of his presidency, is scheduled to open Nov. 4.
Moyer said the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation scaled down the library project years ago to slide under the threshold of pollution that triggers the requirement for a full-blown environmental impact study.
Now, he said, the Reagan Foundation is trying to expand the scope of the library complex, which would normally require some sort of environmental review.
No date has been set for a review from the Board of Supervisors.