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Officials deem D.C. trip a success

City representatives discussed 21-point plan, Cemex gravel quarry

Posted: June 19, 2009 8:42 p.m.
Updated: June 20, 2009 4:55 a.m.

Santa Clarita officials returned Friday from Washington, D.C., capping off a week of whirlwind meetings covering everything from the recession to the city’s fight against a sand and gravel quarry.

The delegation comprised Mayor Frank Ferry, City Councilman Bob Kellar, City Manager Ken Pulskamp, Intergovernmental Relations Officer Mike Murphy and Community Development Director Paul Brotzman, who were in the nation’s capital from Wednesday through Friday morning.

“I thought it was very productive,” Ferry said.

The group met with officials from both the White House and the office of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to review the city’s recently implemented $5 million 21-point economic recovery plan.

In both cases it was well-received, Ferry said.

“The White House hadn’t heard of anything like it,” he said. He said the governor’s office was impressed to see a city taking steps towards stimulus versus asking for money.

“It was very encouraging,” Ferry said.

Also on the junket’s agenda was meeting with Congressman Howard “Buck” McKeon for an update on his pending bill regarding Cemex Inc.’s proposed sand and gravel quarry in Soledad Canyon.

The city has spent roughly a decade and millions of dollars fighting the quarry. McKeon, R-Santa Clarita, is set to introduce his sixth bill aimed at keeping the quarry out of Santa Clarita Valley.

Kellar said they met with McKeon and the city’s lobbyist for the Cemex matter. The delegation also met with representatives from the offices of senators Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., and Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif.

“I think we’re making great progress,” he said, and added McKeon seems set on introducing his bill before Congress’ July 4 recess.

City officials make trips to Washington about once or twice a year, city spokeswoman Gail Ortiz said.



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