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Keep Toll Roads Out of Parklands

August 20, 2000

* Re "Demise of Bill Allows Disputed Toll Road Routing," Aug. 11:

The state Assembly Water, Parks and Wildlife Committee has failed the people and diversity of California by succumbing to lobbyist pressures and failing to bring SB 1277 to a full vote.

The Transportation Corridor Agencies have clearly engaged in a strategy to build toll roads through parklands. Building massive infrastructure through these wilderness areas is a betrayal of the parks' intent and purpose.

The proposed Foothill South tollway will bisect one of the last free-flowing rivers in California, where steelhead trout, thought to be extinct in the region, appeared last year. This tentacle of urban sprawl will bisect a 3,036-acre park that teems with ecological significance, which includes being home to seven endangered species. The Mediterranean shrub land that makes up this park is one of the two most endangered habitats in the world.

California has a moral and ethical imperative to preserve the remaining biological diversity found in our parklands, to establish certain areas to be left intact.

TIMOTHY F. MILLER

Laguna Beach

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