A Sound Investment

   The Barona Noise & Pollution Action Committee is disappointed that the feds have not done something about “increased noise and dust pollution” coming from the Barona Oaks MX track. Word from the Southern California agency of the Bureau of Indian Affairs says it has no jurisdiction over the maintenance and operation of the track—it’s up to the Barona Band of Indians and the U.S. attorney cannot do anything without the Bureau of Indian Affairs. The operators of the track have made several modifications to help minimize the noise and dust and appear to be within the EPA guidelines. Bottom line—all that will be done, has been done. The fact that the track was established at the same time as the Country Estates, and that homeowners are given a general discloser regarding the existence of the track will make it virtually impossible to have any additional action taken. The same would apply if you bought a house in close proximity to an airport and then the airport expands or increases traffic. There isn’t a lot of recourse unless you have documents stating that the airport will never expand or offer service to larger and noisier aircraft; and there is no documentation in this regard to the Barona Oaks MX track.

   The affected homeowners have complained that they won’t be able to sell their homes because of the noise, etc., and that overall property values have been reduced, not to mention the effect on their peace and quiet. Since moving the track does not appear to be an option, another suggestion to combat the noise is to create (build) a sound barrier, but the homeowners want the track operators to pay for it. Logic says this will not happen, as the track was there before the homes were built. A sound barrier does nothing to improve the track, so, if the homeowners want to reduce the noise and enhance the resale value of their homes, then building a barrier (providing it would work) is the only solution.

Jeff Mitchell

   
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