Today at 0930 we met with California Parks, Monterey District Supervisor, Brent Marshall, and John Hiles, in charge of Parks trail work and planning for the emergency trail. Present were myself, Big Sur Fire Chief, Martha Karstens, Kate Daniels representing Mary Adams, Monterey 5th District Supervisor, and representatives from State Senator Bill Monning.
The topic was planning for the creation of a viable foot trail between the south extent of the failing bridge and a point in the park that would allow safe foot traffic access for locals and essential personnel to maintain the sustainability of the community to the greatest degree possible under the emergency circumstances.
State Park management has made the following arrangements to support the plan. They have:
1. Obtained a permit to allow the construction of a trail as described
2. Established funding sufficient to provide the labor and materials needed to construct the trail
3. Crafted a contract with the California Conservation Corps to do the work, starting at their earliest opportunity, which at present is March 15, 2017
4. Estimated work to take 5 weeks, once started, which translates to completion on or about May 3, 2017. We have agreed that this is not an acceptable target date.
5. Agreed to support the formation of a volunteer crew to assist with the work under the sponsorship of the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade, and this crew can be put to work under Parks supervision starting Monday AM, 3/6/17
While Parks has done an excellent job of bending their normal process to help support the emergency, we are concerned that the time line is too long to be the total solution we need for the residents and businesses. We are pursuing alternate versions of the plan to support the Parks in their legal and liability needs and to provide a more rapid resolution of the access crisis we are experiencing as the days mount up.
Chief Karstens will be the contact person for the formation of a work detail from the community and we will continue to work closely with Parks to augment their resources and logistics to help accelerate the time line and take the pressure off those who are suffering the greatest now and into the near term before the other access plans can be implemented
We now have substantial support from our political leadership at all levels of government and hope to provide the means and motivation to help Parks accelerate their plan to strategy the work and complete it as soon as possible.