SAN DIEGO (CNS) - Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed a bill by Sen. Juan Vargas, D- San Diego, that would have prevented construction of the Gregory Canyon landfill off Interstate 15 in the rural North County, the governor's office announced Monday.
SB 833 would have prohibited any landfill within 1,000 feet of the San Luis Rey River, or an aquifer feeding into the river, or from a site that is considered to be sacred or is of spiritual or cultural importance to a federally recognized Indian tribe.
While growing San Diego County needs additional space for garbage refuse, the Gregory Canyon site near state Route 76 has been opposed by residents concerned about traffic congestion, environmentalists worried about the watershed and Native American groups who say the location is sacred.
The issue has twice gone before voters, who gave the project the green light both times.
Brown wrote that the environmental review process before the San Diego Regional Water Quality Control Board is sufficient.
He wrote that he was "deeply concerned" over the objections regarding the sacred site, but he did not believe that the Legislature should overturn a land use decision that was debated over two decades.
The bill was one of two major pieces of legislation authored by Vargas, who could not be reached for immediate comment, to be vetoed by the governor. The other would have required developers of big-box superstores to file costly reports on the economic impacts of their projects on surrounding neighborhoods.