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Thursday's Letters to the Editor
From Breeze readers
Article Launched: 07/23/2008 11:00:00 PM PDT

Put Limits on Development

Kudos to the Daily Breeze for pointing out that it would be "reckless" to continue pushing for dense developments in the midst of a water shortage. ("A planning drought," July 8). The water crisis is real. Because of climate change, California's snowmelt in the Sierras has shrunk, and the state has had one of the driest years on record. A federal court recently cut off a major source of water by restricting pumping at the San Joaquin-Sacramento Delta. Last month, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger issued an executive order certifying California is in a drought.

Dense or large-scale developments strain our region's water supply. Just because land may be zoned for residential development does not mean the developer automatically has the right to build housing, without any thought as to the impacts on traffic, schools and water supply. That is why I opposed, and continue to oppose, dense residential development at Del Amo Fashion Center in Torrance.

I also oppose Ponte Vista, a massive 1,950-unit project in San Pedro. Since water use is regional, the water needed to sustain Ponte Vista's mammoth development would affect not just San Pedro, but also other communities, such as Venice and Westchester.

As a member of the Assembly Water, Parks and Wildlife Committee, I have consistently voted for water conservation measures, such as AB 2175, which requires a 20 percent per-capita reduction in urban water use by 2020.

Land-use decisions, however, are primarily in the hands of cities and counties. Given the severe water shortage, local governments should follow the Daily Breeze's recommendation and refrain from approving any new dense or large-scale developments.

Assemblyman, 53rd District, TorranceJim Light is chairman of Building a Better Redondo.Contact Jim at

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