Juan Vargas is authoring SB 833 to protect Gregory Canyon, an important regional drinking water supply, the region’s habitat and native species, and to preserve the sacred and spiritual sites of the Luiseño people. SB 833 is now headed to the State Assembly.
“Protecting local drinking water and open space for future generations, and preserving sacred Native American treasures, should be what California is all about,” stated Vargas. “Today, our Legislature showed these values are not partisan issues. I would like to thank my colleagues in the Senate for protecting Gregory Canyon from becoming a dump.”
Gregory Canyon is a pristine, undeveloped canyon at the headwaters of the San Luis Rey River that is proposed to become a landfill. The construction of the landfill would impact two blue lined streams and would cause a loss of a tributary to the San Luis Rey River placing the river at risk of landslides, leachate spills from trucks and contaminated runoff.
SB 833 would prohibit the construction or operation of a solid waste landfill disposal facility in the County of San Diego if that facility is either located on or within 1,000 feet of the San Luis Rey River or an aquifer that is hydrologically connected to that river; the disposal facility is on or within 1,000 feet of a site that is considered to be sacred or is of spiritual or cultural importance to a federally recognized Indian Tribe that is listed in the California Native American Heritage Commission Sacred Lands Inventory. The Gregory Canyon landfill site is located in northern San Diego County on State Route 76, approximately three miles east of Interstate 15, and two miles southwest of the community occupied by the Pala Band of Mission Indians.