Mountain View becomes sixth city to unanimously adopt resolution opposing mining at Juristac

Mountain View, CA — On Tuesday April 25, the Mountain View City Council adopted a resolution urging Santa Clara County to deny permits for the proposed open-pit mine at Juristac. “Today the City of Mountain View stands in solidarity with the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band and environmental groups in support of protecting Juristac as open space,” said Mountain View Mayor Alison Hicks. “This is about creating a more sustainable, just and equitable future for our region.”

More than 40 tribal members and members of the public gathered in the courtyard outside of Mountain View City Hall and attended the council meeting in a show of support. Public comments in support of the resolution were delivered by representatives of the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band, Green Foothills, the ACLU of Northern California, Greenbelt Alliance, Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society and Mountain View residents.

The City of Mountain View resolution comes while the Tribe and a coalition of dozens of environmental, human rights and community organizations await news of the County’s next steps. More than 7,500 letters were submitted in late 2022 during the public comment period for the draft Environmental Impact Report that assessed the potential impacts of the proposed mine. The County’s analysis found that the project would cause significant and unavoidable impacts in at least six areas including biological resources, cultural and tribal cultural resources, air quality and transportation.

The Mountain View resolution follows unanimous approval of similar resolutions opposing the planned mining operation by the cities of Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, Morgan Hill, Gilroy and Santa Cruz. These resolutions send a strong message to the County that local communities widely oppose the project. The California Democratic Party, Santa Clara County Human Rights Commission and the ACLU of Northern California have also expressed opposition to the proposed mine, as have many elected officials and community organizations.

“We are truly heartened by Mountain View’s resolution today,” said Alice Kaufman, policy and advocacy director at Green Foothills, a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting open space that opposes the proposed mine. “We hope the proponents of this open-pit mine get the message: the people of this area don’t want this sacred Indigenous landscape and critical wildlife corridor destroyed for sand and gravel. There is no version of this mining proposal that would not cause permanent damage to this landscape.”

Amah Mutsun tribal member Hannah Moreno asks the Mountain View City Council to adopt the resolution

“We want to restore our ceremonies at Juristac, we want to restore prayers, we want to restore the traditional ways of taking care of the lands there, and use it to show others how to take care of the lands elsewhere as well,” Chairman Lopez shared with the crowd of supporters gathered outside of Mountain View City Hall, following the successful vote on the resolution.

Mine Will Destroy Sacred Landscape

According to documents filed with the County of Santa Clara, the proposed open-pit sand and gravel mine would operate for 30 years, excavating three pits hundreds of feet deep in the hillsides of Juristac, and requiring hundreds of heavy truck trips per day on Highway 101 to transport the sand and gravel. County officials have the responsibility to determine if the permit should be granted.

“The County has the opportunity to respect our spirituality and deny this project. We are relying on them to do the right thing,” Chairman Lopez said.

Press coverage