Coastal Commission Delayed review of Santa Cruz County LCP Amendments

The Proposed Santa Cruz County LCP Amendments for Coast Beaches & Bluffs have been filed with the Coastal Commission, who is scheduled to meet with County officials in the next few weeks to discuss identified issues and timing for changes. The CCC Hearing on the County LCP Amendments will most likely be delayed from this Fall until Early Winter 2022. For more information, contact Kevin Kahn, at CCC: kevin.kahn@coastal.ca.gov

Planning Dept. Responses to CPOA Questions regarding the approved LCP documents

At the CPOA Annual Zoom Meeting 11/12/20, David Carlson from the Santa Cruz County Planning Dept responded to questions raised by CPOA members regarding the recently approved Local Coastal Plan documents. A recording of this Zoom meeting with discussion from the 11/12/20 meeting will be posted on the CPOA website shortly.

Letter from the Coastal Commission to the County of Santa Cruz re proposed changes in the Public Safety Element/Coastal Hazards LCP

The CCC has submitted a letter to the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors regarding agenda item #7 (9507) requesting the County make substantial changes in the proposed LCP. Further limit any new development, redevelopment or replacement structures along the coastline. All structures substantially modified or replace since the Coast Act of 1977, should be considered “new”. Any further major redevelopment or replacement structures should not rely on existing coastal shoreline protection or armoring devices. The County must guarantee continued or increased public access to the beaches and shorelines, and force property owners to accept the obligation to modify or remove their shoreline armorment to allow for continued public access with sea level rise.

CPOA comment letter to the Board of Supervisors re agenda item #7 (9507), 9/15/20

CPOA urges the Board of Supervisors to delay the vote on proposed amendments to Santa Cruz County’s Local Coastal Program relating to coastal bluffs and beaches (land use plan section 6.4) and geologic hazards (implementation plan chapter 16.10. These documents are not ready to be submitted to the California coastal Commission for review and certification. There are still many flaws and inconsistencies in the documents which could lead to misunderstandings and potential law suites against the County. If the Board of Supervisors chooses not to delay the vote on proposed amendments to Santa Cruz County’s Local Coastal Program relating to coastal bluffs and beaches (land use plan section 6.4) and geologic hazards (implementation plan chapter 16.10, CPOA has asked for certain amendments. See CPOA Comment letter for more details

CPOA-SC will have a virtual conference call with Kathy Molloy & David Carlson of Santa Cruz Planning Dept to discuss proposed changes in the LCD and Code Amendments on 8/19/20

CPOA-SC and representatives from Pajaro Dunes are confirmed for a virtual conference call on Wednesday August 19, 2020 at 4 p.m. to review the proposed changes to the County LCP.  CPOA’s proposed  revisions incorporate changes necessary to clarify that the so called...

New Santa Cruz Public Health Order for Limited Beach Access

As of Friday May 1st @ 11:59 p.m., the Beaches (sand) will be closed from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m., but water sports (such as surfing, boggie-boarding, swimming, paddle boarding, kayaking, and boating) will be allowed. People will be allowed to cross the sand to go to the ocean, but can not sit or lay on the sand or rocks. No other activities will be permitted on the beaches between 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Before 11 a.m. or after 5 p.m., the beaches (sand) will be open for exercise activities such as walking, jogging, running, or walking your dog. You must be moving at all times. No sitting, lying, standing, sunbathing, sight seeing, congregating, or picnicking is permitted. The following items will be prohibited on the beach; umbrellas, shade structures, tents, BBQs and grills, coolers, beach chairs or other conveyances for sitting and lying.

This order will remain in effect until further notice or modification by the County Health Officer.

4/17/20 Derric Oliver letter, CPOA proposed changes to Section 6.4 Safety Elements – LCP, and chapter 16.10 Geologic Hazards Code Amendments

Derric Oliver, attorney from Fenton Keller, representing CPOA-SC, submitted a letter on 4/17/20 to Kathy Molloy, Director of Planning & Building Development for the County of Santa Cruz, outlining the latest proposed changes to the LUP & IP Local Coastal Plan for Coastal Beaches and Bluffs. On March 10, 2020, the County Board of Supervisors adopted a motion from Supervisor Leopold directing County planning staff to make certain revisions to the proposed LCP updates. CPOA’s proposed revisions incorporate changes necessary to clarify that the so called “one-time-only” rule is not a general development limitation, but instead applies only to the redevelopment or replacement of existing homes damaged or destroyed due to coastal processes (e.g., wave action, sea level rise/inundation, erosion) and to exceptions to the required geologic hazards setback where appropriate. These revisions also help clarify when shoreline armoring will be considered in calculating the required minimum setback. CPOA shared these proposed revisions with Supervisor Leopold and it appears they are consistent with the intent of his adopted motion. The changes are in addition to those requested by the CPOA in Derric Oliver’s letters to Kathy Molloy dated February 7, 2020 and March 6, 2020.

County Planning Dept to Hold Informational meeting on LCP on 3/2/20 @ 7 p.m.

The County Planning Department will host a Public Informational Meeting on the latest proposed LCP and Code Amendments to address Sea Level Rise on Monday, March 2nd at 7 p.m. at Live Oak Elementary School. (see official meeting announcement)

County Planning Dept holds Public Informational meeting on the LCP on 3/2/20

County Planning Department will hold a Public Informational Meeting on Monday March 2, 2020 at 7 p.m. at Live Oak Elementary School – Multipurpose Auditorium to discuss the latest proposed 6.4 Safety Element Amendments – Local Coastal Plan (LCP) for Coastal Bluffs and Beaches, and 16.10 Safety Hazard Code Amendments to the building codes for Santa Cruz County. CPOA-SC wants to urge you to attend this meeting on March 2nd to reiterate your concerns as Coastal Property Owners.

Pajaro Dunes HOA letter to the Board of Supervisors

We believe Santa Cruz County
has more leverage with the CCC than you might appreciate right now. Much of the foundation for this LCP has never
been tested either practically or legally, thus putting Santa Cruz County in a position to be subject to historic, ongoing
litigation. As the Coastal Commission says in its letter of Monday, December 9, the county’s first‐to‐go status will provide
a template “that can also serve as a model statewide for other cities and counties to emulate in addressing complicated
sea level rise adaption issues.” In other words, both the county and its coastal citizens/property owners would be the
legal guinea pigs for testing how far many of the terms of the Coastal Act can be stretched. In that regard, the
commission needs you to be a successful example as much as you are dependent upon them to approve your LCP. That
provides the opening for you to continue to push for common sense, practical, workable and environmentally
considerate solutions for guiding future response to sea level rise. We know the planning staff has been trying to thread
that needle and believe strongly that you should continue to press your opportunity.