Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Gibson Endorsement Poses Interesting Question: What's the Sierra Club's Take on Pandoraland III?

TO: Andrew Christie, Director, Santa Lucia Chapter of the Sierra Club
DATE: 5/4/10

Dear Mr. Christie,

I'm researching a story, and I noticed that your latest newsletter, in its endorsement for Supervisor, Bruce Gibson, reads, "But there are too many other pressing environmental issues in the (county) for anyone in Gibson’s district to cast their vote on (the sewer) issue alone..."

Considering your endorsement of Supervisor Gibson, I have a question about how the local Sierra Club feels about a proposed project in the 2nd District (and, no, it's not what you think it is ; -).

The project is the proposed "$20 million" expansion of the SLO Botanical Garden at El Chorro Regional Park, on Highway 1, halfway between Morro Bay and San Luis Obispo, and directly across from Cuesta College.

According to SLO Botanical Garden documents, the "expansion" is to include numerous commercial concessions, trolleys, and even a "5,000 seat amphitheater."

Additionally, as I first exposed on my blog, SewerWatch, at this link:


... Supervisor Gibson's current Parks Commissioner, Pandora Nash-Karner, also sits on the Board of Directors for the SLO Botanical Garden, and, recently, a spokesperson for the SLO Botanical Garden told me that the one firm that submitted a proposal to design the "$20 million expansion," was a landscaping firm known as the SWA Group, where, Gary Karner, Nash-Karner's husband, "was in private practice with The SWA Group, Planners and Landscape Architects, with an international practice and eight offices nationally, as a Managing Principal and Senior Project Manager of the firm. He specialized in project management and risk management with SWA for 27 years and is currently retained by SWA to consult on risk management," according to his bio.

Furthermore, according to County documents, the SLO Botanical Garden is discussed at Parks Commission meetings, and nowhere is it disclosed that Commissioner Nash-Karner is also on the BOD of the SLO Botanical Garden.

So, here's my question for the local Sierra Club:

Considering that you are endorsing Supervisor Gibson this election, and Nash-Karner is his appointment to the Parks Commission, what's your take on the SLO Botanical Garden expansion project?

Is the Santa Lucia Chapter of the Sierra Club in favor of a 5,000 seat amphitheater being constructed alongside Highway 1, with all of the other commercial and industrial activities that the expansion would bring?

Thank you for your time,

P.S. I've published this e-mail on my blog.


[18 weeks down... 34 to go.]


  • I'm wondering if people are understanding the situation: that one individual on a so-called non-profit group, Botanical club, formulates a project. The project needs approval from the Parks Commission and then the Board of Supes (and it needs funding to the tune of $20 million big ones). The same individual that formulated the project while on the Board of the Botanical deal, also votes it's approval at the Parks Commission because the person is on that board as well. And that same individual is the campaign manager for the supervisor in the upcoming election, so probably has his support for the project as well.

    In addition, the project was submitted to one not-local company; in fact, a large international landscape company, which has ties to the spouse of the individual who submitted the project.

    I think that it's complicated and I get the impression that people aren't understanding the possible conflict. Maybe it needs charts and graphs or something.

    By Blogger Commentary, at 8:29 AM, May 05, 2010  

  • C. wrote:

    "Maybe it needs charts and graphs or something."

    Commentary, you're funny.

    You know what'd really help in the "complicated" department? If every single local media member wasn't in Pandora's "tool" box.


    "I'm wondering if people are understanding the situation"

    Well, you seem to have a firm grasp of the situation, and I understand it, so that makes two.

    I cc'd The Shredder on my e-mail to Christie, so, hopefully, he/she will understand it.

    We'll see come June if the voters of District 2 understand it.

    And, as of 9:50 a.m., no reply from Christie on whether the local Sierra Club supports a 5,000 seat amphitheater, that will attract LOTS of cars and congestion and emissions, halfway between Morro Bay and SLO, in a beautiful rural park.

    And, just to clarify my "Pandoraland III" crack:

    Pandoraland I was the failed "50-70 acre" ponding system at the Tri-W site.

    Pandoraland II was the failed "5-7 acre" industrial sewer plant (with an amphitheater) at the Tri-W site.

    Pandoraland III is the SLO Botanical Garden expansion.

    Boy, I'd LOVE to know how much money the Karners have made on these scams over the past ten years.

    I bet it's millions (plural).

    By Blogger Ron, at 9:53 AM, May 05, 2010  

  • And Pandoraland the fourth is the mystery Park-without-a-Sewer at Tri W, that got pulled although she didn't know it but Gibson said she knew it and we still don't know whom is in the know.

    By Blogger Commentary, at 12:34 PM, May 05, 2010  

  • C. wrote:

    "And Pandoraland the fourth is the mystery Park-without-a-Sewer at Tri W, that got pulled although she didn't know it but Gibson said she knew it and we still don't know whom is in the know."

    Great point. (C., not only are you funny, but your reading comprehension skills are excellent. Now I understand how some people could confuse you with me... makes sense ; -)

    And, that reminds me... I did a public records request for a copy of the architectural drawing of Pandoraland IV, just to see if it contained the words "SWA Group." I still need to go and pick that up.

    Oh yeah... and I also need to call the DA's office again to see if they're still "looking into" how Commissioner Nash-Karner made that SLO Botanical Garden "proposal" disappear after I caught her trying to sneak it on to a Parks Commission agenda.

    They told me they were "looking into it" about a month (or two) ago, and I haven't heard anything since, so I'm assuming they're still "looking into it."

    And, if that's true -- that the SLO County DA's office is, indeed, "looking into" that, what they are going to find, is going to blow their minds.

    What they are going to find is my story: That the ONLY reason Los Osos was dragged through all of that "sewer" BS for a decade (and counting), was so that the Karners could make money.

    By Blogger Ron, at 9:40 AM, May 06, 2010  

  • 時間的銳齒能吃盡一切,唯獨對真理無能為力。 ..................................................

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:59 PM, May 10, 2010  

  • Ya know, this time, I think I'll leave my boi, 李0825juanherzberg's comment up.

    I mean, c'mon... as far as comments go, I've seen MUCH worse.

    By Blogger Ron, at 11:11 AM, May 14, 2010  

  • My, my. Comentary is one smart cookie. Connects the dots, he does!

    By Blogger Churadogs, at 6:08 AM, May 16, 2010  

  • She does at that.

    By Blogger Alon Perlman, at 10:39 AM, May 16, 2010  

  • Hmmmm, first I was funny, then I had great reading comp skills, then I was elevated to connecting dots and after all that, I became gender neutral. Is that like being neutered?

    Anyways, still waiting for Andrew Christie's response.......and all the other people who won't respond.

    By Blogger Commentary, at 12:13 PM, May 17, 2010  

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