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November 2014 News Update

On Oct. 9, the Fitchburg Council Chambers were packed for the CARPC's public hearing on the Northeast Neighborhood. 43 people registered in opposition (in addition to the 126 who registered in opposition on Sept. 11), and 18 people testified in opposition. By the time the public was finished testifying, it was 11:30 p.m., so they tabled the staff report and vote until the Nov. 13 meeting. Please attend the CARPC meeting on Nov. 13, 7 p.m. at Rm 351 City County Building, 210 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Madison.

September CARPC Update

On Sept. 11 over 100 people showed up to voice their opposition to Fitchburg's Northeast Neighborhood (NEN), but they didn't get a chance. The agenda of the CARPC (Capital Area Regional Planning Commission) meeting was so full that they ran out of time before the 11 p.m. adjournment.

But 90 people registered against Fitchburg's North Stoner Prairie Neighborhood amendment, and 12 signed up to speak against it, so we know that at least that many registered against the NEN. The NEN hearing was opened at 11:10 p.m., then immediately continued 'til Oct. 9.

Here's what you can do:

1. Watch our 20-min. video, "Waubesa Wetlands in Danger," starring Dr. Cal DeWitt, Dr. Joy Zedler, and Tracy Hames, and shot in the wetlands in July, at www.westwaubesa.org, and then share it via Facebook, Twitter, email or telephone. Since our last newsletter on Sept 10, we've gone from 140 views to 210 views. Help us reach 300! You can follow us on Twitter @westwaubesa.

2. If you haven't written yet, please write to the CARPC Commissioners at allcommissioners@CapitalAreaRPC.org regarding the NEN proposal.Click HERE for the latest WWPC newsletter, which has helpful hints on how to write to and testify before the CARPC

3. Put Oct. 9 on your calendar, and come to the CARPC meeting at 7 p.m., location to be announced. (This time we won't have to sit through 2 other hearings first!). Register in opposition to the Northeast Neighborhood amendment if you didn't already do so on Sept. 11.

Spencer Black publishes opinion piece in The Capital Times against developing Fitchburg's "Northeast Neighborhood"

A little known agency is soon to make a big-time decision that may determine the fate of one of Dane County's most special natural areas and one of our favorite lakes. The agency in question is the Capital Area Regional Planning Commission, often referred to by the rather uncatchy acronym CARPC. The commission, created in 2007, is responsible for regional planning and water quality management for Dane County. The special natural area is the Waubesa wetlands. Although close to Madison, the Waubesa wetlands have retained their remarkable ecological value. The area has been protected by the Nature Conservancy because of its biological importance and has been designated as a State Natural Area by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. The Wisconsin Wetlands Association names it as one of our state's “wetland gems.” Read More Here

August 2014 Newsletter and DeWitt Presentation

On July 10, Prof. Cal DeWitt gave a presentation called "Waubesa Wetlands in Scientific Context," which resulted in the hearing being pushed back to Sept. 11. You can see his presentation by clicking here HERE. Of course, it's not as good as seeing him in person (this is just the Power Point, not a video) but it still has great information and gorgeous photos. To read our August e-newsletter, CLICK HERE

Letter from Wetland Scientist Dr. Joy Zedler

To : CARPC

From: Joy B. Zedler, Ph.D., Professor of Botany and Aldo Leopold Chair of Restoration Ecology

Re: Northeast Neighborhood (NEN)

I am a wetland scientist; I reside in the Town of Dunn at the headwaters of Murphy Creek. I have personal experience with runoff from Fitchburg, because a farm across the road from me despoils my native sedge meadow with sediment, nutrients, and pesticides. The runoff is converting native vegetation to Wisconsin’s worst wetland weed (reed canary grass, Phalaris arundinacea). A graduate student of mine recently showed that the portion of my sedge meadow that is dominated by reed canary grass has only half as many plant species as the area in front of the invasion, and many of the associates of reed canary grass are weeds. Another student documented increased nitrogen content of plant leaves as we sampled plants away from and close to the culvert that imports Fitchburg runoff from the corn/soybean field. The source of the problem is nutrientrich runoff and the outcome is continued degradation and loss of substantial value (“natural capital”) due to runoff from a Fitchburg farm.

Here are my science-based concerns about urban development west of Larsen Road: (Read More)

Watch our short animated video:

Click here to see our new animated video,"Why the rush to pave over Fitchburg? (How new developments will affect taxes in Fitchburg WI)." It does a great job of laying out the issues regarding the controversial proposed developments in Fitchburg, in a 3 minute, 40 second nutshell. Then please share it via Facebook, email, Twitter, carrier pigeon, etc! Help us spread our message far and wide!

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