Zoe Kersteen-Tucker
Moss Beach, CA 94038
Dear Editor:

The opposition to Measure T has finally gone public. Their identities are no surprise--they are the founding fathers of Coastside Committee for the Bypass. What is remarkable is that they lack the courage to reveal their true purpose--to get the bypass built. Their disingenuous claim that they are for a tunnel but against Measure T is a thinly veiled ploy to trick and confuse the voters into selecting the bypass, an alternative they seem to think will increase their profit margin. A NO vote on the tunnel initiative is a YES vote on the bypass -- plain and simple. Lest we forget, the bypass would be a road graded for six-lanes and paved for four lanes. The opposition's motives are painfully clear-build the bypass.

Citizens for Solutions, Not Roadblocks (CSNRB) have one purpose and that is to defeat Measure T. They contend that the initiative is deceptive and if enacted could limit repair alternatives. However, the language of the initiative is easy to understand and the purpose is clearly stated "For Route 1, allow the construction of a tunnel behind Devil's Slide, through San Pedro Mountain. The tunnel should be given high priority Federal and State highway funds." Quite simply, Measure T amends the Local Coastal Plan (LCP) by replacing the Martini Creek bypass with the tunnel. With the existing LCP, nothing but a bypass can be built. It is ironic that Measure T opponents call themselves Citizens for Solutions, since Measure T is the first acceptable solution to the Devil's Slide Dilemma in decades.

CSNRB contends that if Measure T passes, we could end up with no permanent repair at Devil's Slide because no federal funding has been guaranteed for a tunnel. This argument is pure sensationalism. First, the bypass is NOT fully funded. Only 53 million dollars in federal emergency funds have been set aside for this project. The most recent estimate of bypass cost was $82,836,000, presented in the June 1995 Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS). This cost estimate will skyrocket when Caltrans is forced to update bypass designs to accommodate new seismic standards and to include new bridges and other environmental mitigation costs. There is NO guarantee these additional funds will be made available for the bypass, an unpopular project that has been rife with conflict and deception for decades. In contrast, FHWA has already spent 2.6 million dollars on the tunnel, in the form of the tunnel study. This is a clear indication that FHWA knows a tunnel is not only feasible, but fundable too. Would they waste 2.6 million tax dollars if the tunnel could not be funded? The tunnel has the backing of 35,000 San Mateo County voters who see it as the BEST solution for Devil's Slide. This message is heard loud and clear on the local, state and federal levels and if Measure T is enacted the funding will surely follow the will of the people. Should it be any other way?

Let 's call a spade a spade: Yes on Measure T is a vote for a solution that will preserve the pristine beauty of our coast and provide a safe, reliable road. No on Measure T is a vote to build the bypass and line the pockets of a few profiteers. Now is the time to take back our coast -- VOTE YES ON MEASURE T!

Sincerely, Zoe Kersteen-Tucker
Spokeswoman, Citizen's Alliance for a Tunnel Solution

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