The California Coastal Act establishes the basic land use policies that protect our coastal zone. In many ways, the Coastal Act should serve as a model for the kind of land use planning that should prevail everywhere in the State of California.
Our Wetlands: Not in Great Shape, EPA Says A recent report issued by the Environmental Protection Agency states that only 21% of the wetlands “West of the Rockies” are in good condition. A number of issues related to non-native plants, surface hardening (such as roadways), soil and water chemistry aren’t helping keep things in good condition. This report is a “first of its kind” and looking at wetlands nationwide 48% are in good condition. (05.20.16)
Coastal Commission Endorses Ban on Ex-Parte Communication There are many layers to any land use decision and one layer in Monterey County is the California Coastal Commission for lands that are within the coastal zone. The recent firing of the Commission’s Executive Director and news about ex parte communications between lobbyists and Commissioners has tainted the well. Legislation has come forward to prohibit these communications related to pending decisions (i.e., the approval of a development project). The Commission voted last week to support this ban with a vote of 6-5. (05.13.16)
LandWatch comments on the Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) for the Coastal Water Project LandWatch reviewed the MOUs between the County of Monterey, Marina Coast Water District, and the Monterey Regional Water Pollution Control Agency that went before the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, April 28th. LandWatch is concerned that these MOUs are defined as “projects” under the California Environmental Quality Act or CEQA and the language in the MOUs reflect that, yet the agencies claim they are planning documents. LandWatch encouraged the agencies to delay action on the MOUs until requirements of CEQA are addressed. (05.06.09)
The Public Interest Should Prevail Over Private Interests A property owner who wants the County to let him build a house in full view of Garrapata Park has received a “yes” recommendation from County staff. LandWatch gives the other side, and calls for full environmental review. (06.06.05)
LandWatch’s mission is to protect Monterey County’s future by addressing climate change, community health, and social inequities in housing and infrastructure. By encouraging greater public participation in planning, we connect people to government, address human needs and inspire conservation of natural resources.