Opposition to Field and Pond

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After reading the “Fight continues over Field and Pond” (Express, 8/30), and Robyn Rominger’s response (Letters 9/6), I would like to add my opinion to the issue. I am a long-time local farmer near Winters. Speaking as a farmer and a strong proponent of farmland conservation, I have serious concerns over Field and Pond’s usurpation of “Ag Tourism” regulations to promote a purely commercial, non-ag, business on 80 acres of precious Yolo County farmland. I was dismayed by the one-sided coverage of the controversy in the 8/30 article.

There are solid reasons why Farm Bureau, the Farmland Protection Alliance and the Tuleyome conservation group are opposed to this project, beyond the lawsuit concerning an EIR and three endangered species. It was disappointing that Anne Ternus-Bellamy’s article did not enumerate those reasons and present readers with a balanced view of the controversy, letting them, your readers, come to an informed conclusion.

In all fairness, I will state that I am opposed to Field and Pond. I am opposed on the grounds that I always believed that “Ag Tourism” was intended to allow farmers the opportunity to generate some ancillary income (ancillary to the primary business of production agriculture), and to provide farmers a way to communicate with the non-farming public about the importance of agriculture and the benefits to both society and the environment derived from responsible agricultural practices. Field and Pond’s ag-tourism claim is a sham. Event revenue is the primary focus of the enterprise. The precedent setting ruling allowing Field and Pond’s commercial activity is a threat to all production ag activity in the County.

Peter J. Hunter

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