Thursday, March 25, 2100

Welcome.


The Surfrider Foundation San Mateo County Chapter has been engaged in an effort to reestablish public access to Martin's Beach, and to preserve access and the beach for future generations to enjoy. This blog is a place to keep posted on campaign efforts, learn more, share your love for Martin's, and get involved.
Photo credit Richard Yelland

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

SB 968 - SIGNED!

Tuesday afternoon, on the last day for the Governor to take action on bills, Governor Jerry Brown put pen to paper and inked him name on SB 968, a bill authored by Senator Jerry Hill (D-San Mateo), which outlined a timeline and process for the State Lands Commission to acquire public access to Martin's Beach.  The bill directs the Commission to enter into negotiations for a period of one year, and if at the end of that year negotiations have not been fruitful, State Lands may opt to use other mechanisms to acquire and facilitate access. 

The bill was fortunate to enjoy bipartisan support in the Senate and Assembly, but even into the final hours its was unclear whether the Governor would sign the bill or not.

Needless to day, we at the Surfrider Foundation are elated that the Governor chose to sign SB 968, and we greatly appreciate that the bill has been given the opportunity to go into effect.  We could not have achieved this action without the leadership of Senator Jerry Hill, co-authors Asm. Mark Stone and Asm. Kevin Mullin, and Speaker Toni Atkins, nor could this have been accomplished without the support of many, including Platinum Advisors; supporting organizations Environment California, California Coastal Protection Network, Sierra Club, Ocean Conservancy, WILDCOAST, Black Surfers Collective, The City Project, Committee for Green Foothills, Save the Waves, Azul, West Marin Environmental Action Committee; outstanding individuals such as former U.S. Rep Pete McCloskey, Rob Caughlan, Warner Chabot, Mark Massara, Christine Craft; our Surfrider Foundation team; and all of you who took the time to write and call your legislators and the Governor to ask for their support.  THANK YOU!!!

We will look forward to engaging with the State Lands Commission in a public process to permanently restore public access to Martin’s Beach.

Supporters can act now by signing the petition to the State Lands Commission supporting this process.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Victory for Beach Goers!

Today, the San Mateo County Superior Court issued its ruling on Surfrider Foundation v. Martins Beach I and II, LLCs.  Honorable Judge Barbara J. Mallach ruled that the permanent closure of the gate across Martins Beach Rd. does, indeed, constitute development, and that Mr. Khosla will need to seek a permit for this development.  Although this ruling does not immediately restore access, it would allow the California Coastal Commission to rightfully pursue enforcement action against Mr. Khosla if he does not apply for a permit for the access closure.  If Mr. Khosla does apply for a permit, the public will have the opportunity to participate in the permitting processes of the County and Coastal Commission and ask that these entities require that a permit to close off access be denied. 

In short, wooooooohoooooooo!!!!!!!!!  We are one very large step closer to restoring public access to Martins Beach, which is great news for the people who cherish it and for future visitors. 

A press release on the win can be found here and our latest entry on the Coastal Blog discusses the bigger picture of this victory.

The full court decision can be found here

This victory is credited to our amazing legal team, led by top trial attorney Joe Cotchett of Cotchett, Pitre and McCarthy, LLP, Eric Buescher, Pete McCloskey, and Mark Massara, in consultation with Angela Howe, Legal Director of Surfrider Foundation.  Of course our case could not have been established without testimony from our witnesses, Lennie Roberts, Bernie Leal, Rob Caughlan, Terry Louwerens, and Surfrider Foundation representatives. 

In another prong of the Open Martin's Beach campaign, Surfrider Foundation is advocating for the State Lands Commission to negotiate a right of way easement to the beach. Add your voice to the fight and ask the state agency to open access here.

If you are inclined to join us and support this effort for the long haul, please visit our donation page.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Show Your Support

Our friends at Represent.com put together this limited edition tee to support the cause.  Get yours today and show your support for beach access and for restored access to Martin's Beach.  100% of proceeds benefit the campaign.  Limited time offer...expires at 1pm on Friday, Sept. 5th!!

On to the Governor!

Senate Bill 968, which outlines a process and timeframe for the State Lands Commission to lead efforts to restore access to Martin's Beach, has made its way through the state legislature and is headed for its (hopefully) last stop before being signed into law: the Governor's desk.  (More on that here.)  The majority of state legislators agrees with the importance of protecting coastal access to the public an has seen fit to help restore access to this special beach, which we very much appreciate.

The Governor has until September 20th to sign the bill, and we need to make sure he hears from YOU!  Please take a quick minute to click and send a letter to Governor Brown.



Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Restore Access by Taking This Survey

Photo courtesy of Judy Allen
The California Coastal Commission has made available a public access survey to gather data on when and how the public accessed Martin's Beach over past decades.  This survey is part of an investigation to determine whether any public rights of access to and/or use of the area exist by reason of past public use.  The data collected could be used to support restoration of public access to the beach in the future.  If you ever visited Martin's Beach before it was owned by Mr. Khosla, please take this survey!


Direct link to PDF file of survey:  http://www.coastal.ca.gov/legal/Martins-PRS-Final.pdf
Do you lack a printer or tech capabilities?  Contact us and we'll send you a printed survey in the mail.

Instructions
Please be sure to:
  • print out the blank survey and complete it - document your visits to the best of your ability,
  • SIGN and DATE the document on pages 4 AND 15,
  • provide any supplementary documentation (i.e. copies of old photos, videos), 
  • make a copy of everything (for your records), and 
  • send the original signed document to the Coastal Commission 
  • **ask everyone you know that used to visit Martin's Beach to please take the survey!** Send them the link above.

Surveys can be sent to the Coastal Commission the following ways:
  • California Coastal Commission
    ATTN: Peter Allen
    45 Fremont Street, Suite 2000
    San Francisco, CA 94105-2219
  • Fax signed copy to (415) 904-5400


You can read more about the survey and the Commission's action here.
http://www.coastal.ca.gov/legal/Martins-PRS-Final.pdf

Monday, July 21, 2014

Setting the Record Straight

In recent media interviews, Vinod Khosla has alleged, amongst other things, that Surfrider Foundation has not been willing to negotiate.  This same allegation has been leveled in court and in the state legislature.  Like the other allegations, this allegation is not only untrue but unwise, as we have documented our every step in the effort to restore access to Martin's Beach.

For a timeline of events associated with the campaign to Open Martin's Beach, please see here.

The timeline also includes links to correspondence that show Surfrider's, the County's, and the beach-going community's efforts to communicate with Mr. Khosla to preserve and restore access by means other than litigation.  Ironically, a letter from Khosla's attorney in 2011 makes clear that it is Mr. Khosla who has been unwilling to negotiate and who has sought litigation from the outset. 

Surfrider Foundation is disheartened that Mr. Khosla is using his energy and resources in such a negative way to broadcast false accusations, instead of taking the very easy and positive step of reaching out to begin a community dialogue about restoring public access to Martin's Beach.  Again, we beseech him to consider this opportunity to move forward in a positive and mutually beneficial way.

An Op Ed from Surfrider Foundation CEO Jim Moriarty on this subject ran here last Friday.