Letters/Online Comments

Why the secrecy?

Why the secrecy?

Re: Coastal Commission dismisses executive director (Feb. 12 issue). Take the commission to court; demand transcripts of closed door meetings. This smells very fishy. How close to developers are the commission members? How many gifts and backhanders (gratuities) have they accepted? This needs to be investigated. Far too many crooks and unethical officials.

Noel Anderson
Submitted on TheLog.com

Protection of California’s most precious resource ended yesterday

Re: Coastal Commission dismisses executive director (Feb. 12 issue). Sadly, this is yet another example of what happens when special interest groups, with deep pockets and only their own self interests in mind, are allowed to run amok. Yes, the California Coastal Commission is challenging and sometimes difficult for developers and others to work with (DPBA has long experience here) but the commission’s job is not to make profit making big coastal development project permits quick, easy or cheap. Instead the commission’s legally mandated goal is to protect and preserve coastal access, as a highly valued asset of the people of the State of California, and to be always vigilant in efforts to permit only those projects compatible with this goal. It’s also true that this is an amazingly difficult job to do, and the tools are not just the developers’ sales brochures.

Detailed coastal development and use plans are necessary, to be carefully studied and refined where appropriate, before an irrevocable permit is issued. The point here is that the terms “quick, easy and cheap” simply can not apply if the Commission mission is to be accomplished! As those of us who are familiar with our court systems can attest, civil and criminal justice is not quick, easy and cheap either. Fortunately there are laws in place to protect our court systems and until yesterday, these protections also applied to the Coastal Commission as well. Regardless of the law though, monied special interests always seem to find a way to get their way. Certainly they did that yesterday regarding the California Coastal Act. Now the critically important director’s job is just another political appointment. It follows that soon staff work may be politicized too. Is it too late to do something about this? Sadly, it appears the answer is yes in Lester’s case, though we applaud and sincerely appreciate the efforts of all those who tried. Regardless, we can still reach out to our electeds, to be loud and persistent in explaining to them that we do not wish to sell our entire coastline, and thereby access to the ocean itself, to those private parties who in turn would give us no access, or only limited access for a price. Recreational boaters in particular, I’m talking to you.

Roger Beard, president of Dana Point Boaters Association
Submitted on TheLog.com

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