The Second District Court of Appeals has ruled that an agreement between the city and the Pasadena Roving Archers (PRA) is valid, shooting down an appeal filed by a neighborhood group opposed to having an archery range in the Lower Arroyo.
PRA and the Stewards of Public Land (SPL), which includes former Pasadena Center Operating Co. Board member Tom Seifert, former PCC Board of Trustees candidate Dianne Philibosian, author Ann Scheid, and activist Claire Bogaard, wife of former Mayor Bill Bogaard, have been battling over the PRA’s use of the Lower Arroyo for several years.
In 2015, the City Council approved an ordinance which gives the city manager control over the facility and requires archers to complete a city-approved safety and training program.
The SPL filed the lawsuit in 2015, claiming that an agreement with PRA and the city should be voided because the City Council violated parts of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) by not performing an Environmental Impact Report (EIR).
“Given the history of the development of the Pasadena area described in the [Lower Arroyo Master Plan,] in the Lower Arroyo Master Plan, and in the city’s application for listing of the Lower Arroyo in the Register of Historic Places, it is evident that the archery range predated many of the adjacent residences,” the judges wrote in their opinion issued on Thursday, Aug. 30.
Residents living around the range have made multiple claims about arrows landing in their backyards. The Pasadena Police Department has said several times that they have no reports of such incidents or complaints.
Some neighbors have claimed that 78 arrows have been found on residences close to the range in recent years, but police merely failed to document and file appropriate reports in a number of instances.
In 2014, Scheid and Seifert signed a petition that incorrectly claimed that the city was considering turning over 18 acres of land to the PRA for its exclusive use. The petition was posted at on the group’s website and signed by conservationist Tim Brick and Philibosian.
The West Pasadena Residents’ Association and the San Rafael Neighborhood Association have both announced their support for the Pasadena Roving Archers, which currently use the range.