“My position on Runkle Canyon is everything comes to a complete halt, period, until we know exactly through the studies what type of contaminants are in Runkle Canyon, or what type of dangers we have there and then making sure that that’s cleaned up before there’s anything that would take place there.
“However, I have another issue with that one – not am I only against it because of the contaminants, which I am, and the things that have gone on with the leakage from Rocketdyne, but I also don’t think we should develop Runkle Canyon.
“I happen to be for smart growth, and you know what, I say let’s leave some the beautiful hillsides and canyons alone for God sakes. Let’s do some projects – I’m not saying we’re not going to do anything — let’s do some infill projects on the floor of the City of Simi where we need some redevelopment projects going on. Let’s not go into the hillsides. Let’s not go into the canyons and Runkle Canyon does not need to be developed, period. That’s my honest opinion from a development side.
“The other part of it, and more importantly is that the possibility of health problems to those people who would live in those homes in Runkle Canyon with the contaminants that are already known to be there. So my position is that I’m opposed the Runkle Canyon project as it is. I want to see a cleanup – I want to see an immediate cleanup the same ways I called for some time ago that there be a criminal investigation into Boeing and Rocketdyne as to what they knew and when they knew it.
“People have been doing studies now, and doing hearings, for 15 years while people living in that area are coming down with cancer — a good friend of mine with lymphoma cancer, some with thyroid cancer — all the cancers up there in that area are all based upon Rocketdyne. Who are we kidding to believe that, somehow, Rocketdyne may or may not be the culprit? They are the culprit. They were the ones who contaminated that area. When I was a young man, my mother used to say ‘you made the mess, you clean it up’ so I say to Boeing and Rocketdyne, you made the mess, you clean it up and you clean it up now!
“Let’s preserve life. Life is so important. We cannot go into places like Runkle Canyon and just build in there without even knowing what the consequences are or what kind of contaminants we have so I want to see that cleaned up. After we clean it up, then I want to look at exactly what they want to build there because I’m not for building on the hillsides. I’m not for building in the canyons because I really believe that we’ve overbuilt as it is right now.”
24 Years of Award-Winning SSFL/Rocketdyne Reporting
June 1998 – June 2022