Big Sur Multi-Agency Advisory Council

Here is the agenda for Friday’s meeting. Note: while the agenda states it is to end at 1 pm, it rarely ends before 2 pm. This is a quiet meeting, so maybe we will be lucky.

Congressman Sam Farr and Supervisor Dave Potter, Co-Chairs

FRIDAY, February 11, 2011 10:00 A.M.
Pfeiffer Big Sur Lodge Conference Center
Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, Big Sur

10:00 a.m.
I. CALL TO ORDER Congressman Sam Farr


III. APPROVE MINUTES OF October 22, 2010


1. PG&E Big Sur Condor Retrofit Project,PG&E and Sherry Tune, USFS
1. Public Health Planning Ray Bullick, Dir. of Health
2. Update on Coastal Trail Project Assemblymember Bill Monning
(please bring written report)
Big Sur Resident Member
Big Sur Chamber of Commerce
Coast Property Owners’ Association
Monterey County Planning Department
Monterey County Board of Supervisors
Monterey Peninsula Regional Park District
California Coastal Commission
State Parks and Recreation
Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary
United States Forest Service
27th District, State Assembly
15th District, State Senate
United States Congress

12:30 p.m.

1:00 p.m.
IX. NEXT MEETING ON : April 15, 2011

Dates for 2011: July 15, 2011, October 21, 2011
(10:00 a.m. Pfeiffer Conference Room, Big Sur Lodge)


Minutes from October Meeting:

The meeting was called to order by Supervisor Dave Potter (Monterey County, 5th District) at 10:20 am. Role call and introductions were made. Attendees are: Congressman Sam Farr, Noelle White for Assembly Member Bill Monning, David Meyerson for Representative Sam Blakeslee, Supervisor Dave Potter, Mat Fuzie (State Parks), Sherry A. Tune, (USFS), Laura Lawrence (County Planning), Joe Donofrio (Monterey Peninsula Regional Parks), Rick Aldinger (Chamber of Commerce), Ned Callahan (CPOA), Richard Ravich (Resident of Big Sur).

I. Minutes:
• Minutes of July 30, 2010 trailed for approval until next meeting as not all pages copied for everyone.
II. Public Comment on Non-Agenda Items:
• Bill Nye – A golf tournament fundraiser for the proposed Veteran’s Cemetery will be held at Blackhorse Golf Course on November 12, 2010.
• Ray Bullick – Director of the Monterey County Health Department) – Introduced himself to the council and members present and said he looks forward to working in the Big Sur community.
• Scott Miller – introduced himself as a candidate for Sheriff.
• Kat Steele – Esalen Institute will be hosting “Ecoliteracy in Action.” Cost is $75 (food included).

I. Route One Bilingual Interpretation Study Report / Jeff Kline:
• Jeff Kline gave an update on the report.
• Proposal to establish a low-power transmitter to provide Big Sur information to tourists.
• Information could also be downloaded onto cell phones as an audio tour.
• Signage could be provided at turn-outs along the highway, although this may be discouraged by the Coast Highway Management Plan and the Big Sur Coast Land Use Plan.
• Content would be developed by the Monterey County Scenic Byways Committee; content could be bilingual too.
• Federal funds are available to implement the project.
• Congressman Sam Farr was in favor of the proposal; new technology could allow for greater dissemination of information.
• Alan Perlmutter expressed that he feels there are generally negative feelings toward the proposal in the Big Sur Community and that the LUP and CHMP discourage additional signage. He commented that if there was a real desire to help the Hispanic community in Big Sur that efforts could be made to fund a pediatric dental clinic. Alan then read a letter from Mary Trotter who commented on the spotty radio frequency, that signs are not wanted are discouraged in the scenic viewshed. Discussion followed between Mr. Kline and members of the community about a wi-fi hotspot being one solution to how to get information out.

I. Doud Appeal Options: Land Swap or Takings / Aengus Jeffers:
• Aengus provided a handout that summarized the history of the Douds parcel.
• In order to resolve the issues with the parcel left over from the conveyance of a portion of their land to Garrapata State Beach, the Douds are proposing a land swap with the Coastal Conservancy’s holdings at the Victorine Ranch.
• The Douds propose to relocate their equity to a portion of the Victorine Ranch.
• The Coastal Conservancy is not interested in the land swap; Noelle White, representative for Assembly Member Bill Monning stated that the Coastal Conservancy cannot be forced to do what the Douds want.
• Honey Williams stated that she thinks it is unfair how the Douds have been treated and encouraged both Senator Blakeslee and Assembly Member Monning to encourage the Coastal Conservancy to work with the Douds. Congressman Sam Farr indicated that he would be happy to make phone calls on behalf of the Douds.
• Mike Caplin suggested that there might be a legislative solution; Aengus stated that would take too long.

II. Discussion of Bicycle Events on Highway One / Martha Karstens:
• Bike events on Highway 1 are impacting the communities along the coast.
• The support wagons are slowing traffic on Highway 1; people are concerned about accidents and the impact that will have on local resources.
• There have been issues with some events: one support wagon took over the post office parking lot for a rest stop. This impeded regular traffic. No porta potties were provided for the riders. They need to find better, more appropriate places for rest stops and the rides need to provide sanitary facilities for their riders.
• She wondered why permits from Caltrans were not required.
• Congressman Sam Farr said that a permit process was needed to regulate these events.
• Some events get a permit from the CHP when the CHP is involved in traffic control (i.e. the Best Buddies and the Amgen rides)
• Ray Faulk from the CHP reported that bicycles are allowed on public highways as they are considered vehicles under the Vehicle Code; however, the riders are not allowed to impede traffic. CHP will cite riders if they violate that, and emphasized that the main focus of the CHP is public safety.
• Bill Nye encouraged the agencies to think of public notification and standards on what types of bikes are allowed, noting that recumbent bikes are hard to see in cars. Ray Faulk responded that there is no restrictions in the vehicle code that deal with recumbent bikes. Dick Ravitch echoed the request to have the state agencies develop a permit and notification process.
• Mat Fuzie stated that the State Parks can notify other public safety agencies once they see a ride setting up at Monastery Beach heading south.

III. Presentation on HR 4040 – Big Sur Management Unit Act / Congressman Sam Farr
• Need for more local control; the Los Padres National Forest is a huge tract of land spanning down to LA County, and is managed in Santa Barbara County.
• The Act would create the Monterey Ranger District to provide more local control and interface with the community. Understand that the community does not want a national forest, and that is too expensive to provide as a new entity. There is language in the bill that states that National Park Service is not warranted here.
• Cong. Farr stated that in the future, we won’t know what the Congressional district will look like, or who will have that seat, this is an effort to provide local control and one that Cong. Farr believes addresses many of the issues raised through the years by the Big Sur community.
• Arden Handshy wondered if there was a bigger map to see more detail.
• Alec Arago, aide to Congressman Sam Farr, stated that there was a link ton the website to Google Earth to see more detail.
• Mike Caplin thanked Sam for amending the Act; he still thinks it needs work with regard to maintaining the fire breaks and more input from the broader community.
• Sam will consider the comments and agreed to host a community meeting to have the public review and comment on the maps.
• Alan Perlmutter cautioned the community to not forget about fire issues, and Cong. Farr noted that the goal is to make Big Sur and USFS more active partners.
• Local public meetings should be held to get input on the minor boundary changes to the wilderness areas.
• Nikki Nedeff noted that she strongly supports the bill and all that is does to support management. The proposed Jeff Norman Botanical Area features species that live no where else in the world.

Dick Ravich (Resident of Big Sur):
• It has been a quiet fire season.
• NOAA predicts a drier winter, but individual sever storms are likely.
• Still working with NOAA on the weather alert transmitter; finding as location is the problem. They need a 15 year commitment in order to qualify for grant funding.
• The CWPP went before the Board of Supervisors on September 21, 2010 to allow comment before the Board; County staff will present at the Board hearing on November 9, 2010.
• was formed by parents to develop a cohesive way to address educational and funding needs for schools in the Big Sur area.

Martha Karstens (Big Sur Chamber of Commerce):
• The 30th Annual Big Sur River Run is on October 23, 2010.

Ned Callahan (CPOA):
• Urges the Board of Supervisors to adopt the CWPP.
• The CPOA Annual Meeting is on December 6, 2010 at the Grange.

Laura Lawrence (Planning Dept):
• Caltrans has pulled a permit for emergency work on the river, and to shore up the Lucia hillside which was moving.
• Projects lists are available in the back.
• Permit applications are down.

Dave Potter (Monterey County Board of Supervisors):
• Optimistic that the General Plan will be adopted on October 26, 2010; many discussions surrounding water supply, Carmel Valley traffic and development on slopes.
• After the General Plan is finished, we will start on the Local Coastal Plan Amendments.

Lee Otter (California Coastal Commission): absent

Steve Price (Caltrans): absent

Joe Dinofrio (Monterey Peninsula Regional Parks):
• Joe will be retiring.
• He remembers the first BSMAAC Meeting in August 1998 had a lot of tension and anger.
• There was a need for the agencies and the community for forge better relationships; he is proud of the small role he played in changing that dynamic.

Mat Fuzie (State Parks):
• The new budget will be similar to last year’s year.
• Hopes that major project continues to move forward and start on April 15 and that the general plan efforts for Pt. Lobos and Hatton Canyon will be funded.
• A member of the public thanked State Parks for opening the Limekiln campgrounds, noting that this is a little jewel on the coast.

Paul Michel (MBNMS): absent

Sherry Tune (USFS):
• FireSCAPE is a priority for the Los Padres National Forest
• Funding has been secured for people to start working on it.
• The Big Sur Multi-Agency Facility staffing is at a minimum.
• Stimulus dollars funded trail work; more work utilizing the CA Conservation Corps is anticipated next year.
• The Jade Festival went well even though parking was an issue.
• The Kirk Creek Campground will be converted to a dry site; the well does not meet water quality standards and there is no money to drill a new well. Vault toilets will be installed and campers will need to bring in their own water.
• Stan noted that the parking was opened for the Jade Festival and that made a huge impact and he appreciated USFS helping in that way.

Noelle White for Bill Monning (27th District, State Assembly):
• Coastal Trails meeting will be held on December 14 at the Monterey College of Law Community Justice Center.

David Meyerson for Representative Sam Blakeslee (15th District, State Senate):
• Looks forward to working with the group on issues.

Congressman Sam Farr (United States Congress):
• Congress is not in session.
• Not much will get done.

Next meeting is scheduled for February 11, 2011. The meeting was adjourned at 12:45 pm.

July Minutes

The meeting was called to order by Supervisor Dave Potter (Monterey County, 5th District) at 10:20am. Role call and introductions were made. Attendees are: Assembly Member Bill Monning, Supervisor Dave Potter, Reed Russell (Caltrans), C.L. Price (State Parks), Sherry A. Tune, (USFS), Kirk Gafill (Chamber of Commerce), Richard Ravich (CPOA), Paul Michel (MBNMS), Rito Guerra, Alec Arago, Frank Pinney, Kate Novoa, Lee Otter (CCC-present even though on furlough).

III. Minutes:
• No comments and minutes were approved as submitted without change.
IV. Public Comment on Non-Agenda Items:
• Dick Ravitch – Unfortunately, we received a 60k grant but can’t find a private location that will accept a 15 year grant. No NOAA emergency radio beacon in Big Sur. Alec and Sherry are willing to try and work on another grant cycle. Buzzard’s Roost was location we were looking for, but can’t quite determine who owns the land.
• Scott Miller- Introduced himself as a candidate for Sheriff.
• Lawrence Miracle – Adler Ranch property. Currently the Adler’s access is across his property on Palo Colorado. They are trying to file quiet title action to force access, but I am trying to block. Please see me if you know details.

V. Old Business – Update on the Monterey County Community Wildfire Protection Plan.

• Frank Pinney – work going on for several years. 6-8,000 hours have been coordinated
and donated to benefit land. Idea is to get concentrated stake holders focused on five
issues. We can expect more fires when state dries out. Now ready to approve, 18
stakeholders signed, but county needs to sign. Every stakeholder has had opportunity to
provide input. Will put into place the fuel mitigation plans. From fire point of view – Basin Fire made clear that fuel mitigation is critical in a Wildland Urban Interface. We are at risk of creating fire or becoming overcome by wildland fire. Fire has a specific job to do in our
ecosystem. Road access and ability to take equipment up was often impeded by poor road
conditions and overgrowth. This is a community based plan and we want the Board to
move forward. Will be circulating a petition to get the Board to sign doc. Millions
available to areas that have CWPP.
• Mike Caplin – my understanding is Sierra Club has threatened to sue if BOS signed. We
need a general meeting of the Ventana Chapter of the Sierra Club to explain why this should be signed. The steering club has not been interested in participating. Ventana Wilderness and Sierra Club invited to participate, but did not.
• Martha Diehl– we received specific mentions of the CWPP to not slow down the GPU. The GPU needs to move forward, and be amended to deal with CWPP.
• Frank Pinney – hoping Board presentation will provide another opportunity for
community to tell their story. CEQA and NEPA are being adhered to. Tie into Healthy
Forest Restoration Act, to allow money to come into the community.
• Mike Caplin – also allows Monterey County to apply for fuel mitigation funds, be sure to
include that in your balance sheet. We are using DeShutes Co., OR. as a model. Greatly
improved their fuel mitigation program and reduced their buildings lost to zero.
• Sherry Tune – In proposed federal budget, there are requirements to only fund grants in
places that we have identified Wildland Urban Interfaces (WUI) and a CWPP.
• Mike Caplin – HR 4040 needs to be amended to not lose benefits in the wilderness. Sherry Tune and Mike will discuss with Alec.
• Butch Kronlund – HR 4040 has to be amended to allow use of mechanized tools.
• CPOA would like to continue working with Farr on HR 4040.
• Alec – to be reintroduced in January.
• Mike Caplin – hopes it won’t be backed into omnibus bill at last minute.
• Alan Perlmutter – has Congress or State Assemblyman support of CWPP and can they help with the Sierra Club?
• Mike Caplin –Alec, I heard you had Tom Hopkins ask federal agencies to remove their signature.
• Alec Arago – There are portions of the plan that call for federal law to be changed, and federal agencies can’t lobby Congress, unless done by their senior leadership. I merely pointed that out.
• Frank Pinney – we saw unintended consequences and will ask for those laws to be changed.
• Sherry Tune – I am reviewing very carefully the CWPP and we are committed to following all federal laws and regulations. We will be forwarding those comments to the Fire Safe Counsel.

1. Anderson Peak Telescope Presentation

• Pat Barthelow – we have been working for a year to try and save the telescope and transfer to another use. Would like offer this great asset to the Big Sur community to encourage young people in science, math, engineering technology. Can be used remotely. Would like to encourage local youth to help run the telescope. There are some access issues and some owners aren’t there yet. History has been contractors using road daily. Shares site with FAA, AT&T and county communications has repeater sites. The land is owned by the USFS, we are looking for permittee agreement, and we want to keep it in use for long term. Revenue generated by government grants and educational grant. You can also rent telescope time. Group to run it has not been decided.
• Pat – Esselen Institute – we are interested in expanding our program in this area and would be interested in speaking with you.
• Pat Barthelow – Air Force is obligated to tear it down. Traffic history has decreased dramatically. Once we get it automated, necessary traffic would be reduced. Once operational, may be traffic once or twice a month.
• Bill Nye – I knew the guy who ran it went up daily. We would greatly reduce that. Are you open to MIRA being the lead?
• Pat Barthelow– Our missions are slightly different, but there is room for discussion. No intent to bring school kids to sit on site, more of a in classroom experience. Willing to let community be involved in the plan.
• Sherry Tune – USFS needs to do NEPA analysis to remove telescope. We can’t consider any future use without agreement of Coast Ridge Road.
• Pat Barthelow – I have already received one return call.
• Sherry Tune – You can hike.
• Pat Barthelow – Over a million taxpayer dollars have been used over the last 30 years to maintain use. Doesn’t seem right that taxpayers have paid for road and private landowners can block access. We would reduce the traffic. FAA has 35 year lease remaining.
• Bill Burleigh – We’ve talked. I don’t agree that any homeowner can block it. I don’t agree with legal interpretation. I don’t own the road; I don’t know that anyone owns Coast Ridge Road. Get an independent legal opinion.
• Mary Trotter – Unanimous agreement along this section; against proposal.
• Pat Barthelow – I disagree.
• Dave Potter – Get more information.

2. Milpitas Special Treatment Area

• Sherry Tune – There are several key goals in developing management plan, including
protecting cultural resources. The Salinan people believe this is their “Washington Office.”
We want to preserve those characteristics. Doug Stevens of my staff is working on this.
We will be setting 2 public meetings in September.


Frank Pinney (Resident of Big Sur):
• CWPP- we are developing our own CWPP, we’ve essentially completed with Steve? and will bring that forward in next few months. BSLT funded $60k effort, will need county approval on that. Will make it publicly available at library and through internet. There are numerous other areas that need fuel mitigation efforts other than the west side that we are working on. Plan goes to the Little Sur. Palo, Highland are being encouraged to develop their own plans using our research. CHFPD has just received a grant to do a CWPP.
• Fire Safe Council last Thursday of the month at Cal Fire
Kirk (Big Sur Chamber of Commerce):
• Having a terrific summer, building off strong spring. Coastal community doing quite well in the leisure market , drivers travel independently, not corporate or group.
• Health Care is provided to their employees and the new federal law will have an uncertain future in 2014 to see how we will respond to that?
• To Caltrans- can you update us on what is going on with project just north of here?
• Lance – we’ve been working with planning and with CCC and have permits from Fish & Game. The County determined that we need a CDP. Will look at August 29th. We know what we are going to do. Start after Labor Day and be done in a couple of working days.
• Mary Trotter – Going before LUAC on 8/10.
• Kirk – How is CHP housing going?
• Bill Perlstein – Sacramento decided to allow us to start 18 month review process. There might be small problem with contract on treatment plant, but were working on that. Have meeting to get CHP to join MAAC. I’m very encouraged on process.
Dave Potter (Monterey County Board of Supervisors):
• Board on break.
Lee Otter (California Coastal Commission):
• Consolidate CDP – rebuild rock at Limekiln Creek Bridge. We did whole process, experiment seems to be moving well. Contractor does not want to operate equipment in sea water. We did approve some low tide evening work.
• Next CCC is August 11-13, SLO Board Chambers. No Big Sur items.
• Amateur photo contest – deadline for entry is 8/31/10. Four categories, great work that comes from that. Go online
• 26th Annual Coastal Clean Up Day, Saturday 9/25/10.
• Mike – there’s language in our CDP that allows removal of vegetation. You had said that intent was that work could be done anywhere.
• Lee – that was the intent, will say so on the record. Community made it clear that idea was to make it easy to remove those plants you didn’t want. Idea was to ID bad actors. That is in the plan that has been certified by CCC. County had to define removal of major vegetation – that’s important because that is also the definition of development so a CDP would be required. County did not make effort to define that. Mike – my recollection was that big debate was trees 6 or 12” without permit. We decided on 12”. Lee – the zoning ordinance 12” at breast height (4.5’ average grade). County did 6” for coast live oak in North County. Mike – someone in the County has decided to interpret that differently and I don’t recall any CEQA. County requiring permit to remove dead trees. The work in Big Sur was proposed to be done so that they would need a CDP. Now they are saying that they want another type of permit. They are making this stuff up. How do we get the county to issue letter saying they’ve been complying with environmental regulations. We’re waiting for county to issue permitting. Lee – could it be for CEQA reason? Mike – CEQA only applies when a discretionary permit is needed. Cal Fire is doing work because they are doing work, so CEQA is being done.
• Pam – would CCC draft a memo clarifying the intent behind that language?
• Martha – Let’s get people in the same room to talk. Let’s get people in the room to talk.
Reed Russell (Caltrans):
• List of projects at the back.
• Lance Gorman is also in attendance today.
• Traffic personnel are working to coordinate lane closures to maintain flow.
• Starting to prepare for furloughs.
• Frank Pinney – 1983 slide south of Hurricane Point. That divot has returned, are you observing that? Just hoping that you are making that one be on your radar. North side of Hurricane Point, Coast mile 57.3.
• Bill – there is a similar problem south of Little Sur river maybe undermined by water.
• Lance – these scalloping areas are monitored by the maintenance crews. Handled locally when possible.
C.L. Price (State Parks):
• JP Burns Bridge to waterfall trail will be open.
• Pfeiffer Group Campground will be reopened.
• Jack – can any sound dampening be done to control sound?
• Martha – Garrapata? Monterey sector. Impacts how people park along Highway One.
Sherry Tune (USFS):
• Received stimulus $ and beginning road brushing project today.
• Did work on 27 miles of trail. Brush grows fast and the Redwoods fall.
• Thanks to Ventana Wilderness Alliance for their help.
• Fire Scape is our #1 priority, so we are working on that.
• Hope to start public meetings in October.
• Developing budget for FY 10-11. We won’t be hiring seasonals or extending staff contracts. Want to work to staff front desk at MAF.
• Kirk Creek water system – we aren’t meeting county requirements on quality. We need $80k to fix problem otherwise that and Plaskett Creek will have to close. If funding is done right money from CWPP can be used to help fund environmental docs for Fire Scape. Visitors Center can be staffed with volunteers.

Noelle White for Assemblymember Bill Monning (27th District, State Assembly):
• Coastal Trail Working Group met in June- have defined our working ethics.
• CWPP – we welcome further dialog. Mike – thanks to Monning for his help in the Coastal Trail – agreement to use community based approach will be used. Won’t be planned across private land unless invited, maintenance of trail is part of the plan. Odds are greatly improved that this will be good.
Alec Arago for Congressman Sam Farr (United States Congress):
• Many emails and calls regarding local post office. Mr. Farr called the Regional Manager; he was to call Andrew about keeping him here. Biggest hurdle is union bargaining rules over seniority guidelines and who gets what post. Mr. Farr expressed that Andrew was important to this community.
• To Mike – if federal local agencies are recommending federal regulation changes that needs to come from Secretary level.
• Sherry – Kate brought to our attention abandoned campfire. Region 5 will receive $160 million in claims where it was shown that there was someone responsible. That work starts on the ground to do investigation properly to recover funds from those who are responsible for fire.

Next meeting is scheduled for 10/22/2010. The meeting was adjourned at 1.:15 pm.

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