Our mission is to protect the habitat of Puget Sound tidelands from the underregulated expansion of new and intensive shellfish aquaculture methods. These methods were never anticipated when the Shoreline Management Act was passed. They are transforming the natural tideland ecosystems in Puget Sound and are resulting in a fractured shoreline habitat. In South Puget Sound much of this has been done with few if any meaningful shoreline permits and with limited public input. It is exactly what the Shoreline Management Act was intended to prevent.

Get involved and contact your elected officials to let them you do not support aquaculture's industrial transformation of Puget Sound's tidelands.

Governor Inslee:

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

California Coastal Commission may be Given Ability to Fine, as 20 Other State Agencies Are Able To

[Update 8/22: Read Paul Rogers' article on why giving the California Coastal Commission to fine egregious violators is important.]

KQED's Michael Krasny hosts Sarah Christie, Legislative Director with the  the California Coastal Commission;  Jennifer Thompson with the Pacific Legal Foundation; and,  Paul Rogers, managing editor of KQED Science; and environmental reporter for the San Jose Mercury News. Information on AB 976 is available on California's leginfo site where entering 976 will bring up information.

California's Senate will consider a bill which will allow the California Coastal Commission to fine those who ignore regulations in place to protect California's beach habitat. Currently the CCC must engage in costly legal efforts in order to fine those who ignore current regulations. The state Coastal Conservancy would be the recipient of any fines collected and the public would be the beneficiaries through less costly enforcement actions.

The Pacific Legal Foundation is against the proposal because they feel if the CCC looks hard enough anyone will be found to be in violation of something and neighbors turning in neighbors runs a risk of unfounded violations. The counter argument is that there is a huge backlog of current violations not resolved due to a lack of enforcement capabilities with many violators being aware they may simply run out the clock because there is currently no threat of a fine without significant legal actions.

Drakes Bay Oyster Company has been used as an example by some of a company who simply ignores agreed to Cease and Desist orders. If the bill is passed, instead of simply being able to try and run the clock through legal maneuvers, DBOC would be heavily fined for what has been described by CCC as "egregious" behavior (which Marin Supervisor Steve Kinsey agreed with, as part of the unanimous vote to find DBOC in violation of coastal regulations).

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