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After Stinging Commentary, County Postpones Cement Hearing

A public hearing that had been scheduled for March 22 was postponed by county planners, who need more time to respond to the comments made about Lehigh Southwest's draft EIR.

 

The Santa Clara County Planning Commission has postponed a March 22 public hearing on the draft environmental impact report for Lehigh Southwest Cement plant's reclamation plan.

The County Planning Office said it and its environmental consultants needed more time to "review, analyze and prepare response" to public comments made about the Permanente Quarry Reclamation Plan Amendment.

The cement company's Permanente Quarry is located on county land just outside Cupertino, Los Altos and Los Altos Hills.

"The Santa Clara County Planning Commission public hearing tentatively scheduled for Thursday, March 22, 2012 at 1:30 p.m. on the Permanente Quarry Reclamation Plan Amendment and Environmental Impact Report is postponed," said the announcement Thursday.

The County will announce a new hearing date by 5:00 PM, Friday, March 23, 2012.

This comes just a short time after the county was chastised by two public agencies for insufficiently addressing flaws in the reclamation plan's draft EIR. Reviewers from the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District called the plan a "bold desperate move by the quarry," that had been "aided by poor county oversight."

Shin-Roei Lee, chief of the Watershed Management Division of the San Francisco Region Water Quality Control Board, wrote a detailed 29-page document that urged against quick approval of the draft EIR that she said "significantly underestimated and under-identified" the environmental impact.

Although the public comment period closed Feb. 21, the public can see the reclamation plan's draft environmental impact report and all comments received on the county Planning Office Web page.

The office said that additional material was physically available at the Planning Office, located in the East Wing, 7th Floor at 70 W Hedding St., San Jose, CA 95110.

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