Important meeting of the Big Sur Multi-Agency Advisory Council.
This Friday, June 18th, 10:00 am, in the Conference Room at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park.
Several important issues will be discussed.
1. Sam Farr has proposed that the northern portion of the Los Padres National Forest be split off into its own forest, the Big Sur National Forest. A concern is that such redesignation would remove constraints on federal land-acquisition funding, assisting ongoing buyout of the Big Sur community by the Forest Service. Additionally, a small scale map in the Los Angeles Times showed the boundaries of the proposed forest extending west to the Pacific Ocean. Such boundaries would cause landowners in Big Sur to be inholders within the new National Forest. Federal policy is to extinguish inholdings.
2. Implementation of the Coast Highway Management Plan (CHMP) will be discussed. It is expected that discussion will cover the makeup of the ByWays Committee that will oversee implementation of the CHMP. The CHMP is the plan for the Big Sur All American Road, which includes Highway 1 from the Carmel River to the San Luis Obispo County line. CPOA has repeatedly requested that the Byways Committee be comprised of a majority of residents who live within the areas through which the ByWay passes, but CalTrans and others in control have rejected that request. Strong community presence requesting this composition of the ByWays committee is needed if local communities are to have a meaningful say in how the CHMP will be implemented.
3. The Los Padres National Forest Plan is currently being revised and the draft plan is open for public comment. CPOA proposes that a citizens committee be formed, preferably headed by Sam Farr, to suggest changes to portions of the draft plan that affect Big Sur. Last time the Los Padres Forest plan was revised then-Congressman Leon Panetta headed such a group and many positive changes were made to the plan as a result. We need to ask our Congressman to help us ensure that the Los Padres National Forest Plan works for Big Sur.
These meetings are democracy in action. CPOA suggests you attend and speak your mind. A strong community presence is the best way to ensure that the views of the Big Sur community will be considered. Meetings usually run until about 2 pm. Please spread the word about this meeting to your friends and neighbors.
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