Press Release: Coastal Conservancy Awards over $8.2 million in First Ever Virtual Board Meeting

Oakland, CA – Today, in its first ever virtual Board meeting, the Coastal Conservancy Authorized $8.2 million in grant funding for projects to restore, protect and increase access to the California Coast and San Francisco Bay.  Due to state and local Shelter-In-Place orders, members of the Conservancy’s Board, staff and the public convened via teleconference to discuss and approve 20 projects.

Among the grants awarded was $1,000,000 to the National Wildlife Federation to prepare engineering designs and construction specifications for a wildlife crossing that will connect the Santa Monica Mountains to the Sierra Madre Range over US-101 and Agoura Road, west of Liberty Canyon Road in the City of Agoura Hills.  The wildlife crossing’s primary beneficiary will be the mountain lion (Puma concolor) population in and around the Santa Monica Mountains. There are approximately 10 to 15 mountain lions remaining in this area, and the habitat fragmentation caused by US-101 causes inbreeding, territorial fighting, decreased genetic diversity, and declining health among the mountain lions. Scientists and wildlife managers predict the mountain lion population in the Santa Monica Mountains will be extinct in the next 50 years without a safe US-101 crossing at Liberty Canyon.

The Board also approved a grant of up to $500,000 to the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority to prepare plans, designs, environmental review documents and a public works plan for a campground and associated amenities at the Malibu Bluffs in the City of Malibu.  One of the biggest barriers for low and middle-income Californians to accessing and enjoying the coast is the lack of affordable overnight options. Nearly 60% of Californians never spend the night when they visit the coast. This project will help expand coastal camping in Southern California. When constructed, the Malibu Bluffs Campground would add 50 campsites ranging from platform tent cabins/yurts to pop-up tent campsites, nearly doubling the number of campsites in the City of Malibu, which receives 15 million visitors annually.

NORTH COAST

  1. A grant of up to $94,700 to the United States Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), to improve and expand the Mattole Beach Campground, increasing access to low cost accommodations along the California coast.
  2. A grant of up to $1,300,000 to the Redwood Coast Land Conservancy for the acquisition of the 113-acre Mill Bend propertyand preparation of an integrated resource management plan for the property, located at the mouth of the Gualala River in Sonoma and Mendocino counties.
  3. Consideration and possible authorization to amend the January 18, 2018 authorization to disburse funds to the Marin County Resource Conservation District for restoring coho salmon habitat in San Geronimo Creek, to allow the Marin Resource Conservation District to use $25,000 of those funds for procurement, transportation, and storage of large woody debris for future use on instream coho salmon habitat restoration projects within the greater Lagunitas Creek watershed in Marin County.
  4. A grant of up to $150,000 to Sonoma County Regional Parks to prepare a master plan addressing resource protection and public use, including a segment of the California Coastal Trail and lower cost accommodations for the Carrington Coast Ranchin coastal Sonoma County.

 

SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA

  1. A grant of up to $428,875 to The Watershed Projectto finalize designs and construct green infrastructure and signage to improve water quality, prevent flooding, increase climate resiliency at a city park in Richmond, Contra Costa County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
  2. A grant of up to $1,413,200 to MarinLink for the Novato Baylands Stewardsto restore or enhance approximately 177 acres of wetlands through engaging local communities in Marin County.
  3. A grant of up to $970,000 to the Contra Costa County Flood Control and Water Conservation District to implement the North Reach of the Lower Walnut Creek Habitat Restoration Project, Contra Costa County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
  4. Consideration and possible adoption of a Labor Compliance Program to allow disbursement of Proposition 84 funds for the Bel Marin Keys Unit V Phase Icomponent of the Hamilton Wetlands Restoration Project, City of Novato, Marin County.

 

CENTRAL COAST

  1. A grant of up to $440,620 to the Resource Conservation District of Santa Cruz County to restore 9.9 acres of wetland and upland habitat at Watsonville Slough Farms in Santa Cruz County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
  2. A grant of up to $750,000 to the Carmel Area Wastewater District to develop plans, engineering designs, permit applications and environmental review documents for relocation of a wastewater pipeline in the Carmel River Lagoon, which will help facilitate the Carmel River Floodplain Restoration and Environmental Enhancement project in Monterey County.
  3. A grant of up to $194,689 to the Land Conservancy of San Luis Obispo County for construction of cattle grazing fencing and a water distribution system at the Pismo Ranch Preservelocated adjacent to the City of Pismo Beach in San Luis Obispo County.
  4. A grant of up to $4,200 to the California Department of Parks and Recreation to acquire new beach wheelchairs at Gaviota, Refugio, and El Capitan State Beachesalong the Gaviota Coast, Santa Barbara County.
  5. A grant of up to $130,000 to the Land Trust of Santa Cruz County to prepare designs, plans, permit applications, and environmental review documents for an all-access trail and improvements to associated visitor-serving amenities at Antonelli Pondlocated in the City of Santa Cruz in Santa Cruz County.
  6. A grant of up to $80,000 to the County of Santa Barbara for preparation of design plans, technical studies, and a County permit pre-application package for the addition of campsites, relocation of campground support facilities, and site improvements at Jalama Beach County Parkin Santa Barbara County.
  7. A grant of up to $186,024 to Trout Unlimited to remove a fish passage barrier on Potrero Creek, in the Carmel River watershed, in Monterey County and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.

 

SOUTH COAST

  1. A grant of up to $1,000,000 to the National Wildlife Federation to prepare engineering designs and construction specifications for a wildlife crossing that will connect the Santa Monica Mountains to the Sierra Madre Range over US-101 and Agoura Road, west of Liberty Canyon Roadin the City of Agoura Hills.
  2. A grant of up to $500,000 to the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority to prepare plans, designs, environmental review documents and a public works plan for a campground and associated amenities at the Malibu Bluffs in the City of Malibu.
  3. A grant of up to $177,000 to the University of California Los Angeles to conduct dune restoration performance monitoring for the Cardiff State Beach Living Shoreline Project, County of San Diego; this authorization will augment funding previously authorized by the Conservancy for Project implementation which totaled $2,899,332 and included $83,289 specifically for dune restoration performance monitoring.
  4. A grant of up to $15,000 to the Center for Natural Lands Management to complete a Property Analysis Record (PAR) for the Hobo Aliso Ridge propertyin Laguna Beach, Orange County.
  5. A grant of up to $50,000 to the Orange County Coastkeeper to prepare a business plan, evaluate design options, and prepare permit applications for the purchase and installation of ten prefabricated lower-cost bungalows at the Waterfront RV Parkin Huntington Beach, Orange County.

Working with the Conservancy during Coronavirus Precautions

A message from our Executive Officer, Sam Schuchat:

This message is to let you know how we at the Conservancy are coping with the Coronavirus outbreak, and what you as a grantee, contractor, prospective grantee, or interested citizen can do to help us keep moving forward.

 

As you are aware, seven of the nine largest Bay Area counties issued shelter in place orders effective today for the next three weeks. Everyone at the Conservancy is now working at home. Our most important task right now is figuring how to go completely paperless so that we can continue to pay invoices and keep all our existing projects moving forward. We are working hard on that, but it necessarily involves other parts of state government in addition to us, so it will not be simple or fast.

 

In the meantime, if you are a current grantee or contractor of the Conservancy, you know that the Conservancy requires paper invoices with original signatures. We are making every effort to get approval to process invoices electronically. Starting immediately, please submit your invoices BOTH in paper (via the mail as usual) and electronically. The electronic version should be a complete copy of the paper invoice and should be emailed directly to invoices@scc.ca.gov. We are also working on approval for electronic signatures on new contracts and grant agreements.
If you have mailed in an invoice to the Conservancy in the past 7-10 days, it would likely speed the processing time if you emailed the electronic version to invoices@scc.ca.gov  now.

 

If you had a project for consideration at our April 2 meeting, please be aware that I have cancelled the meeting. Although Governor Newsom issued an Executive Order making it easier to have public meetings electronically, we would still need some number of people in our office to manage it and it would have to be open to the public. That seems unwise in the present circumstances, and I need the staff to stay focused on going paperless in any event. I realize this may present some hardship for you, and I apologize for that.

 

TO REPEAT, THE APRIL 2 COASTAL CONSERVANCY PUBLIC MEETING IS CANCELLED.

 

If you had a project on our April 2 agenda, we will move it to our next regularly scheduled meeting: June 18 in Sacramento. Hopefully we will be through this emergency by then. If not, we will figure something out!

 

If you need to reach someone at the Conservancy, please use email or call their voicemail and they will call you back. If you have questions about your project or grant, please contact your project manager.

If you want to talk about a possible future project, please contact the appropriate person as follows:

 

Del Norte County, Humboldt County, Mendocino County, Coastal Sonoma or Coastal Marin, email Karyn Gear at Karyn.Gear@scc.ca.gov

 

The nine Bay Area counties except the coastlines, email Moira McEnespy at Moira.McEnespy@scc.ca.gov

 

San Mateo coast, Santa Cruz, Monterey, San Luis Obispo, or Santa Barbara Counties, email Trish Chapman at Trish.Chapman@scc.ca.gov

 

Ventura County to the Mexican border, email Megan Cooper at Megan.Cooper@scc.ca.gov

 

A contact list of all Conservancy staff can be found here: https://scc.ca.gov/contact-us/

 

Please stay safe and healthy, and follow the recommendations of your county health officials, as well as that of the State of CA and the CDC. Information from the latter two may be found at: https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/Immunization/ncov2019.aspx and https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

 

We will get through this together, and I eagerly look forward to the day when I can see you in person!

 

 

Sam Schuchat

Executive Officer

California State Coastal Conservancy

Press Release: Coastal Conservancy Awards $7.8 Million for Coastal Restoration, Overnight Accommodation

Board approves first Explore the Coast Overnight Grant

Oakland, CA – Last week, the Board of the California State Coastal Conservancy awarded $7.8 million to 13 projects to protect and restore the California coast and San Francisco Bay, and increase public access to these natural resources.

Among these grants was $2 million to the Crystal Cove Conservancy to restore 17 historic cottages in Crystal Cove State Park in Orange County.  This grant is the first funding to be authorized under the Conservancy’s Explore the Coast Overnight program, which funds projects and programming that create opportunities for all Californians to stay overnight at the coast.  Only 21% of overnight accommodation facilities on the California coast are “lower cost[1]” .  Of that, 62% are camping sites or RV sites, leaving a very small number of “lower cost” hotels and motels to serve all visitors.   The Explore the Coast Overnight program seeks to increase the number of cabins, hostels, hotels, campgrounds and other overnight options available at a rate within reach of most Californians.

The projects approved at the February Board meeting were:

NORTH COAST

  1. A grant of up to $90,000 to the Trinidad Coastal Land Trust for construction of public access improvements, including restroom, picnic area, kiosk, and bike rack, at Houda Pointin Humboldt County.
  2. A grant of up to $838,113 received from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife to the Humboldt County Resource Conservation District to complete construction and implement post-construction monitoring of the White Slough Restoration Projectin the Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge (HBNWR) on Humboldt Bay.

SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA

  1. A grant of up to $200,000 to the Solano Land Trust for construction of a staging area and other public amenities at Rockville Trails Preserveto allow access to new Bay Area Ridge Trail segments, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
  2. A grant of up to $1,700,000 to the County of Napa to restore a two-mile reach of the Napa Riverand a one-mile secondary channel to enhance long-term river and floodplain function, improve water quality and riparian habitats, and attenuate flood damage to adjacent properties.
  3. A grant of up to $239,719 to Friends of Corte Madera CreekWatershed to prepare design criteria, alternatives, and 35% design drawings for channel modifications to improve salmonid fish passage in a 3,100-foot long reach of concrete channel in the Corte Madera Creek in Marin County.
  4. A grant of up to $485,993, to the Alameda County Resource Conservation District to implement the Water for Wildlife, East Bay Rangeland Pond and Trough Enhancement Projectin Alameda and Contra Costa Counties, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
  5. A grant of up to $500,000 to the Association of Bay Area Governments to prepare 60% designs and permit applications for thePalo Alto Horizontal Levee Pilot Project adjacent to the Palo Alto Regional Water Quality Control Plant, City of Palo Alto, Santa Clara County.

CENTRAL COAST

  1. A grant of up to $300,000 to the Land Trust of Santa Cruz County to prepare plans, designs, environmental review documents, and permit applications for approximately five miles of public trails and a trail staging area at the Watsonville Slough Farm.
  2. A grant of up to $40,000 to the County of Santa Barbara to prepare a design and feasibility study for the Santa Maria River Levee Trailin Santa Barbara County.
  3. Consideration and possible authorization disburse up to $670,000 of grant funds from the California Natural Resources Agency’s Regional Forest and Fire Capacity Programto the Contra Costa and San Mateo County Resource Conservation Districts and the Amah Mutsun Land Trust to augment the Conservancy’s October 17, 2019 authorization to disburse funds for planning and implementation projects that will improve forest health and wildfire resiliency, facilitate greenhouse gas emissions reductions, and increase carbon sequestration in forests.

SOUTH COAST

  1. A grant of up to $500,000 to the City of Long Beach to construct a water treatmentfacility and two acres of surrounding green space that will include a one-acre wetland and trails that connect two parks and provide an inland connection to the California Coastal Trail, in the Willmore neighborhood of Long Beach, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
  2. A grant of up to $318,600 to the Ventura Port District to install a one-ton derrick crane at the Ventura Harbor Commercial Fish Pierand enhance a commercial fishing gear storage and net repair facility at Ventura Harbor in Ventura County.
  3. A grant of up to $2,000,000 to the Crystal Cove Conservancy to restore 17 historic cottages on North Beach of the Crystal CoveHistoric District at Crystal Cove State Park in Orange County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.

 

Notes to Editors:

The Coastal Conservancy is a state agency, established in 1976, to protect and improve natural lands and waterways, to help people get to and enjoy the outdoors, and to sustain local economies along California’s coast. The Conservancy is a non-regulatory agency that supports projects to protect coastal resources and increase opportunities for the public to enjoy the coast.

 

Since its founding, the Conservancy has:

  • Funded 2,400 projects along the California coastline and in the San Francisco Bay.
  • Protected 390,000 acres of coastal lands through acquisition of fee title and conservation easements.
  • Restored 33,000 acres of habitat.
  • Built 200 new coastal accessway and 210 miles of new trails.
  • Put $1.3 billion to work for conservation projects, and leveraged far more from federal, local government, and private sources.

 

[1] There are numerous ways of defining “lower-cost” with regard to accommodations, and lower cost does not necessarily translate to affordability for people of low and middle-incomes. For the Sustinere analysis used in the Conservancy’s 2019 Assessment of Lower-Cost Coastal Accommodations, “lower-cost” coastal accommodations were defined as those having a daily rate that was 75% or less of the statewide average daily rate in 2015.

Webinar: The Stories We Don’t Tell About People of Color in the Outdoors

A recording of this webinar can be found here.

 

We hope you can join us for a webinar Thursday, February 28th from 12:00 p.m to 1:00 p.m. to hear about engaging people of color in the outdoors. Speaker Amanda E. Machado will share her personal story as a woman of color becoming involved in the environmentalist movement and facilitate a conversation about how to be more inclusive.

 

“This talk will explore how traditional narratives in the environmentalism movement and in outdoor recreation culture as a whole have historically not reflected the values and experiences of people of color. In this talk, I’ll share my personal story of how I got involved in the environmentalist and outdoors space after taking a year off to travel and hike across four continents in 2012, and why I had felt excluded from those spaces previously. I’ll then present three-five common narratives our culture often tells about people of color in the outdoors, and discuss what they miss, particularly in terms of race and other systems of power. After, participants will have a chance to brainstorm how we can combat erasure and how can tell more than just– as writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie named — the “single story” we often have about people of color outside.”-Amanda E. Machado

About the Speaker

Amanda E. Machado is a writer, editor, and facilitator who has lived and worked around the world. After teaching 9th grade English as a Teach for America corps member, she spent fifteen months backpacking South America, South Asia, Western Europe and the Western United States. Since then, she built a career as a freelance writer while living temporarily in cities like Cape Town, Havana, and Berlin.

 

Amanda has been published in The Atlantic, The Washington Post, Harper’s Bazaar, Vox, Outside, REI Co-Op Journal, Quartz, Business Insider, and others, and has worked as a social justice editor for Matador Network, the world’s largest independent travel magazine. Her work has also been featured in the New York Times, NPR, Longreads, Jezebel, the She Explores podcast, and several other publications, radio programs, and blogs. In addition to her essay writing, Amanda also facilitates workshops on issues of equity and social justice for organizations around the world.

 

Amanda has a degree in English Literature and Nonfiction Writing from Brown University.

Equity and Environmental Justice Survey/ Encuesta de Equidad y Justicia

The Coastal Conservancy is embarking on an effort to create Equity and Environmental Justice Guidelines to direct our agency’s work. The Coastal Conservancy’s vision is of a beautiful, restored, and accessible coast for ALL Californians and we see equity and environment justice as a key driver of our agency’s work.  We would like your feedback to help identify which priorities you think are most important for our agency to address. Please share with any others you think may be interested.

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/GWKLCZD

Surveys due March 6, 2019.

 

Coastal Conservancy está embarcando en un esfuerzo para crear recomendaciones y mejorar el programa Equidad y Justicia en el Medio Ambiente. Nos gustaría que sus comentarios nos ayuden a identificar las prioridades que considera más importantes en su comunidad. Gracias.

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/Q29HQNX

Encuestas programadas para el 6 de marzo de 2019.

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