STATE OF CALIFORNIA
GRAY DAVIS, Governor
PUBLIC UTILITIES COMMISSION
505 VAN NESS AVENUE
SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94102-3298
MITIGATION MONITORING AND REPORTING
Pacific Gas and Electric Company's Application
Transfer and Donation of Certain Lands in Shasta
(Application NO.s 00-05-029 and
This document describes the mitigation monitoring program for ensuring the effective implementation of the mitigation measures required for the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) approval of the Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) applications concerning the Shasta County Land Transfers.
California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC)
The Public Utilities Code confers authority upon the CPUC to regulate the terms of service and safety, practices and equipment of utilities subject to its jurisdiction. It is the standard practice of the CPUC to require that mitigation measures stipulated as conditions of approval are implemented properly, monitored, and reported. Section 21081.6 of the Public Resources Code requires a public agency to adopt a reporting and monitoring program when it approves a Mitigated Negative Declaration.
The purpose of a reporting and monitoring program is to ensure that measures adopted to mitigate or avoid significant environmental impacts are implemented. The CPUC views the reporting and monitoring program as a working guide to facilitate not only the implementation of mitigation measures by the project proponents, but also the monitoring, compliance and reporting activities of the CPUC and any monitors it may designate.
The Proposed Project consists of two separate but related land transfer actions. In May of 2000, Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) applied to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) for approval to market value and exchange specific lands for equivalently valued lands owned by California Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR)(Application No. 00-05-030). The application also addressed PG&E’s proposal to subsequently transfer the land received from DPR to the California Waterfowl Association (CWA), which is a non-profit entity. Lands proposed by PG&E for transfer to DPR are commonly known as "Burney Falls" and "Bowman Ditch." Lands received by PG&E from DPR (subsequently transferred to CWA), are commonly referred to as the "Ahjumawi Property."
The second land transfer under evaluation, as part of this environmental documentation, is a proposal to market value and donate certain properties to CWA (Application No. 00-05-029). These land properties consist of areas in Shasta County commonly referred to as the MacArthur Swamp, the Glenburn Dredge Site, and a dredge used to maintain certain levees associated with those properties. The transaction includes a Conservation Easement and other terms designed to maintain existing land uses, enhance certain habitat types, and preserve cultural and historical resources.
In accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), the CPUC prepared an Expanded Initial Study to evaluate the potential environmental impacts related to PG&E's divestiture application. In completing the initial study process, the CPUC determined that the actions taken as a result of approving PG&E's divestiture application would have potentially significant impacts in the areas of:
- Air Quality
- Cultural Resources
In limited instances where the environment could potentially be significantly affected by divestiture, appropriate mitigation measures were recommended for adoption. Over the five year period following the transfer of McArthur Swamp to CWA, The McArthur Swamp Management Plan (MSMP) calls for CWA, and its successors, to take specified actions to improve wildlife habitat, stabilize levees, protect and create habitat for the Shasta crayfish, and improve grazing and vegetation management.
The mitigation measures identified in these areas also have been incorporated into the Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program.
Roles and Responsibilities
As the lead agency under CEQA, the CPUC is required to monitor this project to ensure that the adopted mitigation measures are implemented effectively. The CPUC will be responsible for ensuring full compliance with the provisions of this monitoring program and has primary responsibility for implementation of the monitoring program. The purpose of this monitoring program is to document that the mitigation measures adopted by the CPUC are effectively implemented.
The CPUC has the authority to halt any activity associated with the divestiture of PG&E’s Shasta County Properties if the activity is determined to be a deviation from the approved project or adopted mitigation measures. For details, refer to the Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program discussed below.
Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program
The table attached to this program presents a compilation of the Mitigation Measures in the Mitigated Negative Declaration. The purpose of the table is to provide a single comprehensive list of mitigation measures, effectiveness criteria, and timing.
Dispute Resolution Process
The Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program is expected to reduce or eliminate many potential disputes. However, in the event that a dispute occurs, the following procedure will be observed:
Step 1: Disputes and complaints (including those of the public) shall be directed first to the CPUC's designated Project Manager for resolution. The Project Manager will attempt to resolve the dispute.
Step 2: Should this informal process fail, the CPUC Project Manager may initiate enforcement or compliance action to address the deviation from the proposed project or adopted Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program.
Step 3: If a dispute or complaint regarding the implementation or evaluation of the Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program or the Mitigation Measures cannot be resolved informally or through enforcement or compliance action by the CPUC, any affected participant in the dispute or complaint may file a written "notice of dispute" with the CPUC's Executive Director. This notice shall be filed in order to resolve the dispute in a timely manner, with copies concurrently served on other affected participants. Within 10 days of receipt, the Executive Director or designee(s) shall meet or confer with the filer and other affected participants for purposes of resolving the dispute. The Executive Director shall issue an Executive Resolution describing his decision, and serve it on the filer and the other participants.
Parties may also seek review by the CPUC through existing procedures specified in the CPUC's Rules of Practice and Procedure, although a good faith effort should first be made to use the foregoing procedure.