Let’s review some of the statements presented in last week’s Malibu Times “down and dirty” editorial column.
The Editorial: “I know that on February 21st, Sara Wan, Chair of the California Coastal Commission and Ozzie Silna, activist in the Malibu Coastal Land Conservancy (MCLC)…are hosting a very exclusive and expensive fundraiser…”
Fact: On Jan. 10, the same day that some of the invitations for the fundraiser were mailed, the fundraiser was canceled. Senator Burton had more important items on his agenda, specifically one that could help the State as well as Malibu. He asked that I devote my energies to gathering support for Proposition 40 (AB1602), which will be placed on the March 5th ballot. In addition, the Governor’s office asked that Sara Wan take on the position of Co-Chair of the Southern California fundraising effort for this bond measure. Proposition 40 is a $2.6 billion part bond act designed to protect California’s coast, improve water quality and provide safe places for children to play, and to help meet the park and open space needs of California’s fast growing population, including those here in Malibu.
Fact: The fundraiser was not exclusive and, if it had not been canceled, an invitation would also have been sent to the Malibu Bay Company and their sympathizers, as it has for each annual fundraiser held.
The Editorial: “Her (Sara Wan’s) appointment is up this spring and I am just wildly guessing that she’d like to stay on the commission and also continue as its chair. For both, she will need the strong support of Burton…”
Fact: Sara Wan has already been re-appointed to the Coastal Commission and was re-elected Chair in December, which is determined by her colleagues, not by Senator Burton.
The Editorial: “On the other side of the coin, the City can’t spread money around like that.”
Fact: The City has spent and is continuing to spend considerably more than was anticipated being generated by this fundraiser. They have hired two lobbyists, Mike Roos (whose specialty is bending the ear of Sacramento politicians) and Susan McCabe (whose specialty is working the Commission).
The Editorial: “The MCLC is pursuing its no-growth agenda by ignoring he City of Malibu and going directly to the Coastal Commission and State politicians.”
Fact: The MCLC is on record as supporting a reasonable amount of commercial development of more than 250,000 square feet in the Civic Center. The MCLC has not ignored the City of Malibu. It has made every effort to be heard, but the City of Malibu ignored the MCLC and most of Malibu. It is well documented that the City did not notify the MCLC or anyone but a select handful of pro-development folks of meetings that were held to discuss the Land Use Plan. Contrary to its official claims that the City held “public hearings,” Malibu has failed to develop its position with the Commission based upon meaningful public input.
Fact: The MCLC has never discussed the LCP with “state politicians”.
The Editorial: “In fact the MCLC, or its sympathizer, has already filed a couple of lawsuits against the city…to try and block the City from participating in the LCP Process.”
Fact: The MCLC has never filed a lawsuit against the City and fully supports and endorses participation of the City in the LCP process but only in a legal and democratic way.
On a personal note, I support Senator John Burton because I truly believe that he has the interests of this State and the protection of this City’s rural way of life as his prime motivation. I also note that the intense and deliberate saber rattling by the politicians of this City and the Malibu Times does not serve us well in Sacramento.