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KUSP Land Use News
Week of April 11, 2016 to April 17, 2016


KUSP provided a brief Land Use Report on KUSP Radio from January 2003 to May 2016. Archives of past transcripts are available here.

Week of April 11, 2016 to April 17, 2016

The following Land Use Reports have been presented on KUSP Radio by Gary A. Patton. The Wittwer & Parkin law firm is located in Santa Cruz, California, and practices environmental and governmental law. As part of its practice, the law firm files litigation and takes other action on behalf of its clients, which are typically private individuals, governmental agencies, environmental organizations, or community groups. Whenever the Land Use Report comments on an issue with which the Wittwer & Parkin law firm is involved on behalf of a client, Mr. Patton will make this relationship clear, as part of his commentary. Mr. Patton’s comments do not represent the views of Wittwer & Parkin, LLP, KUSP Radio, nor of any of its sponsors.

Gary Patton's Land Use Links


Developers Versus The Neighborhoods - Tomorrow
Monday, April 11, 2016 / 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

The Santa Cruz City Council will weigh in tomorrow on a classic confrontation.

Those who were around the City of Santa Cruz during the 1970s will remember the Frederick Street Irregulars.This neighborhood group organized to oppose a City plan to put high-rise apartments into their Eastside, single-family residential neighborhoods. The Irregulars won that battle, and a couple of Irregulars were elected to the City Council. By running for office, Sally Digirolamo and Carole DePalma changed the future of the city. You can read a brief history by visiting

Maybe you’d like to get involved in making some history yourself? If you are an Eastside resident, or if you live or have a business on or adjacent to one of the City’s main transportation corridors (Mission Street, Ocean Street, Water Street, or Soquel Avenue), you should show up at the City Council meeting tomorrow, Tuesday, April 12th, at 7:00 p.m.

A developer is proposing a high-rise apartment on the corner of Soquel and Hagemann Avenues, in a kind of replay of the type of Eastside development proposed, and rejected, in the 1970s. The City’s current planning efforts see this kind of development happening everywhere in the City. Show up at 7:00 p.m. tomorrow, at City Hall, if you want to get engaged in the discussion and decisionmaking.

This is Gary Patton.

More Information:

Monterey Bay Community Power
Wednesday, April 13, 2016 / 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

There are moves afoot to change the way we get our electricity.

Probably, not too many listeners have been paying attention to an organization called “Monterey Bay Community Power.” It’s flying just a bit below our radar, right at the moment, but some fascinating possibilities are being discussed, and analyzed, and if you get interested, you may want to attend a meeting tomorrow from 9:00 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. on the Fifth Floor of the Santa Cruz County Governmental Center.

In short, Monterey Bay Community Power is exploring whether Community Choice Aggregation is something that would work for the Monterey Bay Region. Under this system, energy transmission, line maintenance, and customer service would remain the responsibility of PG&E. PG&E would continue to handle all customer service and support of the grid. However, the control of energy purchasing and pricing would be transferred to local hands, which would give local residents much greater control over the kind of electric power that will supply our Region’s needs. In Marin County, the first CCA to operate in California, it has been possible to double the amount of clean electricity provided to PG&E customers, while maintaining standard rates.

A link to the agenda packet for the meeting tomorrow is available at If this sounds interesting, check it out.

This is Gary Patton.

More Information:

“Earth Day” Should Be Every Day
Friday, April 15, 2016 / 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Tomorrow, April 16th, is Earth Day in the City of Santa Cruz!

Actually, the United States Environmental Protection Agency has identified April 22nd as the “official” Earth Day. Earth Day celebrations are scheduled in many places around the world on that date, but if you happen to live in the Monterey Bay Region, one place you might want to visit tomorrow is San Lorenzo Park, in the City of Santa Cruz, where an annual Earth Day celebration will be underway from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. More information can be found at

Organized by the City of Santa Cruz, the County of Santa Cruz, Ecology Action and the UCSC Sustainability Office, the event includes over 100 educational booths, an electric vehicle display, live music, food, a beer garden and valet bike parking provided by Bike Santa Cruz County.

An “Enviro Passport” will be available to kids at the information table. Young people who earn eight passport stamps at educational booths will receive a coupon good for one kid’s scoop at the Penny Ice Creamery or Mission Hill Creamery downtown locations. Ecology Action is sponsoring a zany dress-up environmental pledge photo booth.

In other words, there will be lots of fun tomorrow, but the subject is serious.

This is Gary Patton.

More Information:

Are School Transportation Cutbacks Coming?
Sunday, April 17, 2016 / 7:30 a.m.

METRO cutbacks may curtail school transportation.

School kids on the Santa Cruz County North Coast, and in Bonny Doon, use METRO bus services to get to public school. Proposed service reductions could have big impacts on Junior High and High School kids, in particular, who get to their schools in Santa Cruz on the public bus system. There just isn’t any other way to get there, right at the moment, and the METRO is facing revenue shortfalls that make it quite likely that cutbacks will be coming.

On May 11th, Cayla Hill from METRO will be the speaker at a General meeting of the Rural Bonny Doon Association. Bonny Doon and North Coast residents might want to mark their calendars and be there. The meeting starts at 7:30 p.m.

Service reductions to the current bus system will be considered by the METRO Board of Directors at both their April and May meetings, with a final decision to be made at their June 24th meeting. You can get links to more information by tracking down the Land Use Report blog, available online at

For twenty years, I represented Bonny Doon and the Santa Cruz County North Coast on the Board of Supervisors, and I served on the METRO Board of Directors, too. Transit service is vital to both our rural and urban communities. Concerned residents should get involved.

This is Gary Patton.

More Information:

Archives of past transcripts are available here

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.



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