landwatch logo   Home Issues & Actions About

Archive Page
This page is available as an archive to previous versions of LandWatch websites.

KUSP Land Use News
Week of May 2, 2016 to May 8, 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 May 2, 2016 to May 8, 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


Back To The Future
Monday, May 2, 2016 / 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

I am taking a look back at the Land Use Report!

The very first edition of the Land Use Report aired on KUSP on July 28, 2001. Here's a quote:

Land use policy is important. How we use the land has a fundamental impact on our economy, on social equity, and on the health of the environment.

Native Americans believed that they belonged to the land. Our modern conception is that the land belongs to us—and belongs to us as individuals. Our "individualistic" approach to land ownership and land use is tempered somewhat by the policies we establish as a community. When we talk about "land use policy," we're talking about the rules we make for ourselves, acting as a community, that guide and govern the way we use the land.

Every week ... this land use report will focus on the choices we make—about how we use the land. 

KUSP is facing very daunting financial challenges, and may, actually go off the air. That would certainly be a shame, because KUSP has truly provided the Monterey Bay Region with an opportunity to speak out with its unique community voice. I've been proud to have covered the "Land Use beat" since 2001, and if I'm not here next week, I hope listeners will remember those words from fifteen years ago:

Land use policy is important!

If you want to have an impact on the future of your local community, you will have to get involved yourself!

This is Gary Patton.

More Information:

A Neighborhood Meeting For Eastside Santa Cruz
Wednesday, May 4, 2016 / 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Here's some news for residents who live on the Santa Cruz Eastside.

This evening, there will be a neighborhood meeting that will be of particular interest to residents of Eastside Santa Cruz. Some people call it "Midtown," now, instead of "the Eastside." Whatever you call it, if you are an "Eastside" or "Midtown" resident, you should think seriously about getting out of the house this evening, and attending a meeting that will run from 6:45 until 8:15. The meeting is going to take place in the Fellowship Hall of the Santa Cruz Community Church, which is located at 411 Roxas Street. Santa Cruz Police Community Service Officer Ken Deeg will talk with neighbors of East Morrissey and surrounding neighborhoods about crime and vandalism issues that are becoming all too common.

There is a land use angle, too, of course. Starting at about 7:45 this evening, the assembled neighbors will have a chance to talk about what the City's "Corridors Project" might mean on the Eastside. To cut to the chase, proposed changes to the City's Zoning Code will allow a great deal of increased density, and increased building heights, along Water Street and Soquel Avenue. Parking problems and traffic issues really need some discussion. It would be hard to overstate how committed the City seems to be, at this stage, to land use changes that will radically affect Eastside Santa Cruz.

That meeting is tonight. I hope you can make it!

This is Gary Patton.

More Information:

The Monterey Peninsula Water Supply Project
Friday, May 6, 2016 / 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Water, water, water in Monterey County. Get your update here!

Monterey County water issues affect literally every part of the county, which just happens to be one of the largest counties in the state, geographically. South Monterey County, which draws from the Salinas Valley groundwater basin, faces water quality issues related to oil production, and the future of fracking in South Monterey County is hot political topic right now. In addition, water supply concerns are also significant, with a major project in the wings to increase the productive capacity of the San Antonio and Nacimiento Reservoirs.

Seawater intrusion has almost reached Salinas. That's a big issue for the Salinas Valley, and North Monterey County is in a state of critical overdraft, too, with that overdraft, and saltwater intrusion, threatening both agricultural and domestic water supplies.

The Monterey Peninsula, where lots of people live, of course, and where tourism abounds, is facing an order to cut back the diversion of water from the Carmel River. Multiple efforts are underway, to try to comply with that order, but all the solutions are way behind schedule. Track down today's Land Use Report blog, at, for a link to an update on the Monterey Peninsula Water Supply Project.

Local residents need to get involved. The stakes are very, very high!

This is Gary Patton.

More Information:

Affordable Housing In Pebble Beach?
Sunday, May 8, 2016 / 7:30 a.m.

An affordable housing project is moving forward in Pebble Beach.

In 2012, the Monterey County Board of Supervisors approved the construction of about 90 to 100 new housing units in Pebble Beach. At the time this approval was granted, the Pebble Beach Company agreed to build affordable housing on lands in Pebble Beach, instead of paying a so-called "in lieu" fee to the County. An "in lieu" payment would have given the County money to go find some other place to build affordable housing. Thanks to that 2012 decision, new affordable housing is actually slated to be built in Pebble Beach itself.

LandWatch Monterey County, whose mission is to "promote and inspire sound land use policies through grassroots community action," thinks that this decision was a step in the right direction. This is not, however, what everyone thinks. Critics have highlighted, among other things, both water and traffic impacts, which are considered "significant and unavoidable," according to the Environmental Impact Report.

The Pebble Beach Inclusionary Housing project includes a 24-unit complex to be built in the Del Monte Forest. The project will leave 80% of the 13.2-acre parcel in permanent open space.

The Monterey County Planning Commission will consider this proposal on Wednesday, May 11th, at 9:00 a.m. The meeting will take place at 168 West Alisal Street, in Salinas, and you are definitely invited!

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.



306 Capitol Street #101
Salinas, CA 93901

PO Box 1876
Salinas, CA 93902-1876

Phone (831) 759-2824

Fax (831) 759-2825




Issues & Actions