Amy Hutzel Appointed New Executive Officer of the State Coastal Conservancy
The State Coastal Conservancy is pleased to announce the appointment of its new Executive Officer, Amy Hutzel.
Ms. Hutzel previously served as the Conservancy’s Deputy Executive Officer and has been with the agency for over twenty years, during which she has been instrumental in many key projects including the restoration of thousands of acres of former salt ponds in the San Francisco Bay, the creation of the Conservancy’s flagship Explore the Coast and Explore the Coast Overnight grant programs to expand coastal access, and establishing the San Francisco Bay Restoration Authority. She also led the development and implementation of many of the Conservancy’s equity-focused initiatives: Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Guidelines, the ADA Self-Evaluation and Transition Plan, the Beach Wheelchair Grant Program, and the updated Coastal Access Project Standards.
“The State Coastal Conservancy has had a remarkable impact on the California coast in the last 4 decades.” said Ms. Hutzel, “I am honored to take on this role at a time when our work is so essential. Together with the incredible Conservancy staff, I will work to accelerate projects that work with nature to adapt to climate change impacts and increase equitable access to the coast for all Californians.”
“The Coastal Conservancy plays a vital role in achieving the State’s goals for biodiversity, climate resilience, and equitable access to California’s natural wonders. Amy has proven herself as an exceptional leader at the Coastal Conservancy already and I could not be more excited for her to take the reins at this key agency.” said California’s Natural Resources Secretary Wade Crowfoot
Each year, the State Coastal Conservancy issues tens of millions of dollars in grants to non-profit organizations, public agencies, and tribes for projects that restore and protect the California coast, increase public access to it, and increase communities’ resilience to climate change. In addition to its annual appropriations from Natural Resource Bonds, on September 23, 2021, Governor Newsom signed a budget bill that includes a total of $500 million for coastal resilience to be appropriated to the Conservancy in Fiscal Years 2022-23 and 2023-24. The Executive Officer and staff of the Conservancy also manage the work of the San Francisco Bay Restoration Authority, which allocates approximately $25 million each year for restoration projects on the San Francisco Bay shoreline.
“We’re thrilled for Amy to serve as the Executive Officer at the Conservancy,” said Doug Bosco, Chair of the State Coastal Conservancy’s Board, “The Board and I know Amy as a dedicated and collaborative leader with an exceptional track record of delivering complex projects. She will bring her energy and enthusiasm to this role, and a clear vision for what this agency can achieve.”
Ms. Hutzel has been with the State Coastal Conservancy for over 20 years, serving as Deputy Executive Officer, Bay Area Program Manager, and Project Manager. Prior to joining the Conservancy, she worked at Save The Bay and the US Fish and Wildlife Service.
As Executive Officer, she will work closely with the Boards of the Conservancy and the San Francisco Bay Restoration Authority, lead the Conservancy’s 70 members of staff, and support hundreds of climate adaptation, public access, and habitat protection and restoration projects throughout the California coast, in the San Francisco Bay Area, and in coastal watersheds. Amy lives with her husband and two children in San Francisco.
Coastal Stories Grant Program Launched to Support Inclusive Storytelling about the California Coast
The Coastal Conservancy has launched a new grant program that intends to make the outdoors more inclusive and welcoming for all Californians by fostering representation of Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) and other historically excluded groups in outdoor spaces – through storytelling.
Our Coastal Stories Grant Program seeks to fund projects that plan, develop, and implement storytelling installations or materials (such as murals, signage, monuments, or guides) that represent communities and voices that have been historically excluded in the storytelling of California’s coast and publicly accessible lands. These communities may include but are not limited to BIPOC people, people with disabilities, immigrant communities, low-income communities, and other historically excluded communities.
All projects must present a story connected to publicly-accessible outdoors spaces within our jurisdiction, in a way that will reach the public. We encourage proposals for projects that are community-led, that show strong community and landowner partnerships, and that use creative forms of historical, ecological, and cultural storytelling.
$500 million to be Appropriated to Coastal Conservancy for Coastal Resilience over two years
On September 23, 2021, Governor Newsom signed a budget bill that includes a total of $500 million for coastal resilience to be appropriated to the State Coastal Conservancy in Fiscal Years 2022-23 and 2023-24. This coastal resilience funding is part of the larger climate resilience budget package that demonstrates the State of California’s commitment to preparing for climate change impacts, including wildfire, extreme heat, drought, and sea level rise.
The State Coastal Conservancy will undertake a strategic planning process starting in late 2021 to identify priority projects and programs, desired measurable outcomes, and the process we will use for soliciting, evaluating, and recommending projects to the Conservancy Board for funding. This strategic planning process will include multiple meetings with public agencies, tribes, nonprofits, community groups, and the public to seek ideas, input, and feedback. If you want to stay informed of opportunities to weigh in, please sign up for our email list by clicking here.
This funding provides an unprecedented opportunity to move the needle on coastal resilience. The State Coastal Conservancy recognizes the urgency and importance of preparing the coast, and the people and wildlife that depend on the coast, for sea level rise and other climate change impacts. We look forward to working with many partner organizations to make a difference for the health of the coast.
Press Release: State Coastal Conservancy Awards $10.8 Million for Wildfire Resilience in this Fire Season
(Oakland, CA) – Today, the Board of the State Coastal Conservancy authorized funding totaling over $10.8 for 33 projects throughout the coast of California to increase the resilience of coastal forests and open space to wildfires.
“These projects will help prepare coastal habitats for catastrophic wildfires by creating fire breaks, clearing debris, removing hazardous trees along fire roads, and other measures intended to slow the spread of wildfire, protect communities, and help forests recover from fire more quickly.” Said Sam Schuchat, Executive Officer of the State Coastal Conservancy. “California has suffered a string of devastating fire seasons; we are one of many state and local agencies working to help us better anticipate, mitigate, and recover from wildfire in the future. Thanks to early action funding appropriated by the Legislature and Governor in April, we’re going to get these projects underway before the worst of this year’s fire season.”
Today’s grants are part of the Conservancy’s Wildfire Resilience Program, which supports local partners to develop and implement projects that improve forest health and reduce the risk of catastrophic fire in areas where people are living near wildlands. The Wildfire Resilience Program also aims to build organizational capacity at the local and regional level to implement forest health and fire risk reduction projects that help prevent isolated fires from becoming wildfires.
More on the Conservancy’s Wildfire Resilience Program can be found here: https://scc.ca.gov/wildfire-resilience-program/
The projects approved at today’s meeting were:
- A grant of $7,650 to the National Audubon Society to create and maintain defensible space around buildings within Audubon Starr Ranch Sanctuary, located in unincorporated Orange County.
- A grant of $23,588 to the Land Trust for Santa Barbara County to implement prescribed herbivory to reduce fuel loads and create a buffer to prevent wildfire spread in the southern portion of Arroyo Hondo Preservein Santa Barbara County.
- A grant of $35,000 to the Hoopa Valley Tribe to implement shaded fuel brakes or defensible space projects to protect the homes of approximately 75 vulnerable residents on the Hoopa Valley Tribal Reservation, Humboldt County.
- A grant of $45,000 to the City of Carmel-by-the-Sea to remove hazardous fire fuels in City’s Mission Trail Nature Preserve, Monterey County.
- A grant of $47,721 to the Santa Clara Valley Habitat Agency for eucalyptus removal and weed abatement in a high fire hazard severity zone at Davidson Ranch Reserve, in Santa Clara County.
- A grant of $75,000 to the Trinity County Resource Conservation District to implement fuel reduction projects on Bureau of Land Management property in the community of Lewiston, Trinity County.
- A grant of $100,000 to the City of Santa Cruz to undertake vegetation management to reduce fire risk at two open space areas at Arroyo Seco Canyon and DeLaveaga Park.
- A grant of $115,000 to the Cazadero Community Services District to acquire a Brush Chipper, skid steer bucket loader and supplies for use in vegetation management activities, and to undertake such activities, to decrease the risk of wildfire in the vicinity of Cazadero, Sonoma County.
- A grant of $120,000 to the Carpinteria-SummerlandFire Protection District for a multi-pronged wildfire hazard fuels reduction project in the Carpinteria-Summerland area of Santa Barbara County.
- A grant of $130,000 to the City of Pacifica and $67,500 to the City of Brisbane for the North County Fire Authority to implement two wildfire fuel reduction projects in the wildland urban interface in northern San Mateo County, including vegetation management along public roadways in City of Brisbane and a community chipper program in the City of Pacifica.
- A grant of $144,000 to the City of Mill Valley to reduce fuels build up, create defensible space along the Blithedale Ridge Fire Road and perform fire-related public outreach in the vicinity of the Blithedale Summit Open Space Preserve,Mill Valley, Marin County.
- A grant of $150,000 to Sonoma Land Trust to conduct wildfire risk reduction activities on the Little Black Mountain Preserve, Laufenberg Ranch, Pole Mountain Preserve, and Live Oaks Ranchproperties in Sonoma County.
- A grant of $150,000 to LandPaths to conduct approximately 60 acres of fuels reduction and burn area restoration on the Bohemia Ecological Preserve, Riddell Preserve, Rancho Mark West Preserve, and Ocean Song Preserve properties in Sonoma County.
- A grant of $194,400 to Woodside Fire Protection Districtfor fuel reduction management practices and invasive plant removal in San Mateo County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of $197,621 to Mendocino County to implement the Mendocino County Fuels Reduction Capacity Building Projectin Mendocino County.
- A grant of $200,000 to San Lorenzo Valley Water Districtfor vegetation management to reduce fire risk to critical infrastructure on land owned and operated by the District in Santa Cruz County.
- A grant of $209,800 to The Wildlands Conservancy to undertake fuels reduction and vegetation management on the Jenner Headlands Preserve, Sonoma County.
- A grant of $250,000 to the Pala Band of Mission Indians to implement a hazardous fuels reduction project within a wildland urban interface on the Pala Band of Mission Indians’ Reservationin San Diego County.
- A grant of $290,600 to the East Bay Regional Park District to expand on-going fuel treatments and fuel breaks and conduct biological surveys on East Bay Regional Park lands, specifically in two recommended treatment areas: Tilden Regional Park – TI002a and Wildcat Canyon Regional Park – WC005.
- A grant of $277,166 to the Sonoma County Water Agency to conduct wildfire resilience activities at Spring Lake Regional Park, Sonoma County.
- A grant of $345,650 to Sonoma County Regional Parks to conduct wildfire resilience activities consisting of shaded fuel breaks at Shiloh Ranch Regional Park and prescribed grazing at Taylor Mountain Regional Parkand Open Space Preserve, Sonoma County.
- A grant of $575,000 to the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District to conduct wildfire resilience activities at Saddle Mountain Open Space Preserve, Sonoma County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of $1,078,684 to the Napa County Resource Conservation District for wildfire resilience activities at Linda Falls Preserve, Pacific Union College Demonstration and Experimental Forest, Suscol Intertribal Council’s Suskol House Land, and Moore Creek Park, Napa County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of $299,253 to the Dry Creek Rancheria Band of Pomo Indiansto reduce fire-fuels created by the 2019 Kincade Fire and restore approximately 57 acres of the Rancheria in Sonoma County, and adoption of findings pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of $414,000 to the City of Healdsburg for its Fire Department to conduct wildfire fuel management and control line treatments on three open space preserves (Healdsburg Ridge, Callahan and Fitch Mountain) adjacent to the City of Healdsburg in Sonoma County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of $1,000,000 to Save the Redwoods League to conduct forest restoration treatments to improve forest health and wildfire resiliency in the Greater Prairie Creek Watershed within Redwood National and State Parks, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of $1,000,000 to the Marin Municipal Water District to implement vegetation management projects identified in the Biodiversity, Fire, and Fuels Integrated Plan (BFFIP) in the Mount Tamalpais Watershed, and to reduce ladder fuels in the Marin County Parks Blithedale Summit Preserve, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of $396,000 to Santa Barbara County for a community defensible space project in the San Antonio Creekarea of Santa Barbara County.
- A grant of $400,000 to Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District to reduce wildland vegetation fuels, remove fire prone invasive species, and expand shaded fuel break areas through their Wildland Fire Resiliency Program in up to 11 preserves in San Mateo County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of $1,000,000 to San Mateo Resource Conservation District to establish a shaded fuel break and remove hazardous trees along fire roads within Quarry Parkin El Granada, San Mateo County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of $317,071 to the Iipay Nation of Santa Ysabelto reduce fire fuels in undeveloped woodlands and open spaces and create defensible space around buildings, water systems, and roadways on Iipay Nation trust lands.
- A grant of $661,367 to the Urban Corps of San Diego to conduct fuel modification for wildfire resilience in open space in the City of Chula Vista and in seven San Diego County preserves; and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of $581,500 to North East Trees for the Flat Top Park Fire Resilienceproject in the City of Los Angeles.
Press Release: Coastal Conservancy Awards $38 million for Coastal Preservation, Restoration, and Public Access
Today, the Board of the California State Coastal Conservancy approved nearly $38 million in grants for coastal restoration, preservation, and public access including $13.4 million for construction, monitoring and modeling of Phase 2 South Bay Salt Pond (SBSP) Restoration Project actions at Eden Landing Ecological Reserve in Alameda County and $10 million to the County of San Diego to implement the Tijuana River Valley Smuggler’s Gulch Improvements Project.
The Board also allocated $505,000 to the City of Healdsburg for their Fire Department to conduct wildfire fuel management, create defensible space, and update the management plan for Fitch Mountain Park and Open Space Preserve. This project is expected to get underway at the beginning of July to improve the region’s resilience to wildfire in this fire season. This is the first project in the Conservancy’s Forest Health and Wildfire Resilience Program to be funded by the early action funding approved by the Legislature and Governor Newsom last month.
- A grant of up to $269,318 to the Yurok Tribe for planning and to prepare designs and permit applications for instream salmonid habitat enhancement projects in the Elk Meadows Cabin reach of lower Prairie Creek, a tributary to Redwood Creek, in Humboldt County.
- A grant of up to $413,000 to Save the Redwoods League to construct approximately 4.5 miles of new trails extending the coastal trail on the Shady Dell property near the Usal Beach area of the southern Lost Coast in Mendocino County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of up to $505,000 to the City of Healdsburg for their Fire Department to conduct wildfire fuel management, create defensible space, and update the management plan for Fitch Mountain Park and Open Space Preserve in Sonoma County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of up to $2,000,000 to The Wildlands Conservancy to acquire approximately 7,480 acres of the Lone Pine Ranch property at the confluence of the Eel River mainstem and North Fork Eel River in Trinity and Mendocino Counties for the purposes of preserving and restoring fish and wildlife habitat, public access and recreation, open space, and natural resource protection.
- A grant of up to $2,000,000 to the County of Humboldt to complete designs and permits and construct the Humboldt Bay Trail South, a new 4.25 mile stretch of the California Coastal Trail linking the Cities of Arcata and Eureka, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of up to $940,000 to the Smith River Alliance, Inc. to acquire beach, dune, wetland, upland and forested parcels in the vicinity of the Pacific Shores subdivision, adjacent to Lake Earl, Del Norte County.
SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA
- A grant of up to $500,000, including $74,000 in funds from the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, to the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department to realign and improve the existing trail network at Twin Peaks in San Francisco County, part of the Bay Area Ridge Trail alignment, to control erosion, increase public safety, restore native plants, and provide interpretive and directional signs.
- A grant of up to: 1) $7,605,000 to Ducks Unlimited, Inc. for construction, monitoring and modeling of Phase 2 South Bay Salt Pond (SBSP) Restoration Project actions at Eden Landing Ecological Reserve in Alameda County; 2) $720,000 of in-lieu fee funds awarded to the Conservancy from the California Department of Transportation for development of the public access trail as part of the Phase 2 project at Ravenswood in San Mateo County; 3) $3,500,000 to the Alameda County Flood Control and Water Conservation District to conduct studies and prepare designs and a 408 permit application for alterations to flood control facilities at Eden Landing; 4) $460,000 to the Aquatic Science Center for a lead scientist, the SBSP Restoration Project website, and applied studies to support implementation of the SBSP Restoration Project in Alameda, San Mateo, and Santa Clara counties; 5) $385,000 for executive project management of the SBSP Restoration Project; and 6) $800,000 to the California Wildlife Foundation for monitoring and applied studies that facilitate ongoing adaptive management of the SBSP Restoration Project.
- A grant of up to $950,000, to be reimbursed by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service National Coastal Wetlands Conservation Grant Program, to the California Invasive Plant Council for the planning, management, treatment, monitoring, restoration, and permit compliance activities of the San Francisco Estuary Invasive Spartina Project.
- Amending an existing Project Partnership Agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Santa Clara Valley Water District for construction of the Shoreline Project in the City of San José, Santa Clara County
- A grant of up to $60,000 to the California Department of Parks and Recreation to prepare plans, environmental review documents, and permit applications for two new restrooms in Garrapata State Parkin Big Sur, Monterey County.
- A grant of up to $1,123,000 to the Resource Conservation District of Santa Cruz County for the Integrated Watershed Restoration Program to conduct planning and prepare designs and permit applications for 23 high priority watershed restoration projects in San Mateo, Santa Cruz, and Monterey Counties.
- A grant of up to $1,692,360 to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife for design and permitting of the restoration of the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve in Los Angeles County and further authorization to disburse up to $500,000 to the Prevention Institute to support broad community engagement in planning for that restoration; and the adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of up to $1,200,000 to Riverside County Regional Park and Open Space District to prepare plans, designs, and environmental documentation for the 3.4-mile segment of the Santa Ana River Trail known as the Rincon to Prado Spillway segment in the County of Riverside.
- A grant of up to $10,000,000 to the County of San Diego to implement the Tijuana River Valley – Smuggler’s Gulch Improvements Project, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- A grant of up to $700,000 to the Resource Conservation District of the Santa Monica Mountains to augment a previously authorized Conservancy grant of $460,000 for planning for the Topanga Lagoon Restoration Project at Topanga State Park and Topanga Beach in Los Angeles County.
- A grant of up to $255,000 for environmental review and community engagement to support the Malibu Coastal Access Public Works Plan for seventeen sites in the City of Malibu.
- A grant of up to $1,300,000 through one or more contracts to prepare environmental compliance documents and related technical studies for the Ormond Beach Restoration and Public Access Plan.
- Authorization for the City of Chula Vista to remove use restrictions on 1.86 acres of the Conservancy-funded, City-owned Faivre Street property in the lower Otay River Valley in exchange for the City’s acquisition and restriction of a property of equal size and equal or greater value in the Otay River Valley.
Public Input Period: Updating the Project Selection Criteria
The Coastal Conservancy is updating its project selection criteria and we are asking for public comments on the proposed new criteria. The draft proposed criteria are here.
There will be a webinar to discuss the proposed criteria on April 16 at 10:00, to register, click here.
Comments are due by July 1, 2021.
The Conservancy has used project selection criteria for the past twenty years to communicate priorities to potential applicants and project partners, to evaluate grant applications, and to prioritize projects for funding. The current criteria can be found here.
This updating process is in response to the JEDI (Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion) Guidelines adopted by the Conservancy Board in September of last year. The new project selection criteria will reflect the JEDI Guidelines that address funding programs, meaningful engagement and working with California’s tribes. The update is also an opportunity to align the criteria related to climate change with current state policy and guidance.
Coastal Conservancy Adopts Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Guidelines; Awards $7.8 Million for Coastal Restoration, Preservation and Public Access
Oakland, CA – This week, the Board of the California State Coastal Conservancy unanimously adopted guidelines for Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) and 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.
The JEDI Guidelines will steer the approach the Conservancy takes to addressing injustices and inequities, and how we will prioritize this in our work going forward.
“These guidelines, which were developed over the course of a year with input from many community based stakeholders, center equity and inclusion within the work of the Conservancy.” said Amy Hutzel, Deputy Executive Officer, “We know there is still much work to be done to create equitable access to the environmental, social, and economic benefits of California’s coast and coastal watersheds. The JEDI guidelines are the framework for us to put these values into action.”
The projects approved at the September Board meeting were:
- A grant of $979,000 to the City of Eureka to augment the Conservancy’s prior authorizations of $1,377,000 for implementation of theElk River Estuary Restoration Project, a tidal wetland restoration project in Humboldt County.
- Adoption of the Initial Study/Proposed Mitigated Negative Declaration for the Redwood National and State Park Visitor Center and Restoration Project and a Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program; approval of the Redwood National and State Park Visitor Center and Restoration Project, which includes the Prairie Creek Restoration Project; and authorization to disburse up to $1,239,800 to Save the Redwoods League to construct elements of the Prairie Creek Restoration Project, including a 2-acre pond, and approximately 3 acres of upland habitat.
- A grant of $84,250 to Audubon Canyon Ranch to restore native coastal prairie habitat and mitigate fire risk on the Martin Griffin Preserve, in Marin County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
- Authorization to substitute Friends of the Dunes as the interim fee owner of the 356-acre Samoa Dunes and Wetland Complexand disburse up to $30,000 to Friends of the Dunes to provide interim management of the 356-acre Samoa Dunes and Wetlands Complex in Humboldt County, CA.
- Authorization to revise the project scope for the Indian Creek Habitat Connectivity and Restoration Project, previously authorized for Conservancy funding on September 29, 2016, to prepare final designs and restore approximately 3,000 linear feet of salmonid habitat between the upper and lower reaches of Indian Creek,a tributary to the Trinity River in Trinity County, and adoption of findings under the California Environmental Quality Act.
SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA
- A grant of $875,591 for scientific studies to evaluate impacts fromsand mining in San Francisco Bay and Suisun Bay.
- A grant of $1,000,000 for the Rumrill Complete Green Streets Project, which will reduce water pollution from stormwater runoff, encourage active transportation, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and provide carbon storage along the Rumrill Boulevard corridor in the City of San Pablo, Contra Costa County.
- A grant of $75,000 to the Rails-to-Trails Conservancyfor planning to facilitate completion of two trail segments identified as regional priorities, and adoption of findings pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act.
- Authorization to transfer fee title to five Conservancy-owned parcels adjacent to Hidden Beach County Parkto the County of Santa Cruz and approval of the disposition plan for the property transfer; and authorization to disburse up to $35,000 to the County of Santa Cruz to prepare plans, environmental review documents, and permit applications for a new restroom at Hidden Beach County Park.
- A grant of $600,000 to The Land Conservancy of San Luis Obispo County for the acquisition of a conservation easement on the 717-acre Nicholson Ranchin northern San Luis Obispo County.
- A grant of $50,000 to the City of Santa Barbara to conduct community outreach and prepare conceptual designs to redevelop Ambassador Parkinto a park that celebrates the cultural heritage of the Chumash native people in Santa Barbara County.
- A grant of $2,460,000 to acquire the 44-acre Newland Marshproperty in Huntington Beach from the California Department of Transportation, and to transfer the property to the Huntington Beach Wetlands Conservancy.
- A grant of $346,000 to the County of San Diego to prepare a feasibility plan for a California Coastal Trail crossing of the Tijuana River in Tijuana River Valley Regional Park in San Diego County.
- Authorization to disburse up to $86,500 to the Southwest Wetlands Interpretive Association to augment the prior grant to develop studies, designs, and engineering, and to expand the scope of the project to include final designs and permitting for the San Diego Bay Native Oyster Living Shoreline Projectin the County of San Diego. This authorization will augment the Conservancy’s previously authorized funding of $313,953 for the Project.
The next Conservancy meeting is scheduled for November 19, 2020 and will be held via teleconference
Deadlines Extended for Grant Applications
Due to the COVID-19 precautions in place throughout California, we have extended the application deadline for our North Coast Proposition 1 grants to April 27, and for Explore the Coast grants to April 20. For more information, please see the links below:
- Explore the Coast Grant Applications are due
March 30, 2020April 20, 2020
- Proposition 1 North Coast Grant Applications are due
April 1, 2020April 27, 2020
For more information on working with the Conservancy in during the shelter-in-place, please see the message from our Executive Officer.
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.
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!
California State Coastal Conservancy
Request for Partnership Proposals/Letters of Interest for the US Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Coastal Wetlands Conservation Grant Program
This is a call-for preproposals for projects who would like to partner with the California State Coastal Conservancy in order to apply for US Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Coastal Wetlands Conservation (NCWC) Program funding.
- a) This is NOT the official NCWC call for applications.
- b) Projects hoping to receive NCWC funding are NOT required to apply through the Coastal Conservancy. As stated below, there are six other state agencies who are also designated to apply for these funds for the projects in California. However, should a project wish to work with the Coastal Conservancy to manage and administer a potential future grant, please read the following announcement, and if you feel your project fits the NCWC criteria, please submit a brief (~2-4 page) letter of interest via email to email@example.com by 5 PM PST on March 2nd, 2020 (see further details below).
The California State Coastal Conservancy (Conservancy) seeks partners for joint applications to the Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 round of the US Fish and Wildlife Service’s (USFWS) National Coastal Wetlands Conservation (NCWC) Grant Program for coastal wetlands acquisition and/or restoration projects on the California coast or along the San Francisco Bay shoreline. Only seven designated state agencies, including the Conservancy, are eligible to apply for NCWC grants in California. However, the Conservancy can work in partnership with state and local agencies, tribes, and certain non-profits to develop and submit NCWC proposals. The Conservancy can pass through NCWC grant funds to its partners to implement projects. While federal agencies can’t receive NCWC grant funds, NCWC-funded projects can be implemented on federal lands.
If your project is selected by the Conservancy during this initial proposal phase, the Conservancy will work with you to prepare a NCWC grant proposal, which may or may not be awarded funding by the USFWS. The Conservancy will not award state funding grants directly through this solicitation. The USFWS selects proposals for award through a merit-based, national competitive review process. The deadline to submit NCWC proposals to the USFWS for FY 2021 has not been set, but is expected to be in late June 2020. If projects are awarded a NCWC grant, funding will be available for implementation as early as Spring 2021. USFWS will need to meet its project-related environmental compliance requirements before making funding available. A full description of the NCWC program can be found here: https://www.fws.gov/coastal/CoastalGrants/
NCWC provides grants of up to $1,000,000 for the protection and/or restoration of coastal wetlands. Grants are for project implementation, although it is permissible to utilize a small amount (~15%) of the grant for biological surveys or monitoring, planning and permitting if those activities are closely tied to implementation. Projects should be ready for implementation in Summer 2021 or 2022. Projects will be more competitive if the project area is primarily made up of jurisdictional wetlands. The NCWC grant program requires a non-federal match of at least 25% of the total project cost, consisting of either cash or in-kind contributions, and additional points are awarded for match of up to 33% of the total project cost. The Conservancy may be able to provide some or all of the required match, but project partners providing their own match will increase the Conservancy’s capacity to carry out more projects. The NCWC program also prioritizes projects that involve multiple partners providing a cash or in-kind contribution. All projects must ensure long-term (at least 20 years) conservation of coastal resources.
Eligible Activities include:
- Acquisition of a real property interest (e.g., conservation easement or fee title) in coastal lands or waters (coastal wetlands ecosystems) from willing sellers or partners for long-term conservation;
- Restoration, enhancement, or management of coastal wetlands ecosystems; or
- A combination of acquisition, restoration, and management.
Ineligible Activities include, but are not limited to:
- Projects that primarily benefit navigation, irrigation, flood control, or mariculture;
- Acquisition, restoration, enhancement or management of lands required as the result of a regulatory or decision-making process to mitigate habitat losses;
- Creation of wetlands where wetlands did not previously exist;
- Enforcement of fish and wildlife laws and regulations, except when necessary for the accomplishment of approved project purposes;
- Planning as a primary project focus;
- Operations and maintenance, including long-term invasive species management;
- Acquisition and/or restoration of upper portions of watersheds where benefits to the coastal wetlands ecosystem are not significant and direct; and
- Projects providing less than 20 years of conservation benefits.
More information about NCWC grants, including last year’s FY 2020 Notice of Funding Opportunity, is available here: https://www.fws.gov/coastal/CoastalGrants/. Please again note that the FY 2021 Notice of Funding Opportunity for the NCWC program has not yet been released, but it is anticipated to be very similar to last year’s document.
Letter of Interest Submittal:
To indicate your interest in partnering with the Conservancy on a NCWC proposal, please submit a brief (~2-4 page) letter of interest via email to firstname.lastname@example.org, by 5 PM PST on March 2nd, 2020.
The letter should include the following information:
1) 1-2 sentence summary of proposed project,
2) location of the project and its relevance to NCWC’s coastal wetland restoration goals,
3) description of the need for the project,
4) description of the proposed project and how it addresses the need,
5) estimated project cost and description of potential match,
6) approximate timeline for project implementation (include information of the status of project design and environmental review for restoration projects),
7) indicate whether you have a willing seller for acquisition projects, and
8) list of potential project partners and their roles in the project. Include a map showing the project area and providing the approximate acreage of the project area and acreage of coastal wetlands within the project area.
Eligible Applicants: Non-federal public agencies, tribes, and certain nonprofit organizations are eligible for funding. To be eligible, a nonprofit organization must qualify under the provisions of Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
Questions? Questions about the application process and potential projects may be directed to Avra Heller, External Grants Manager, 510-286-1212, email@example.com
- Notice of Intention to amend the Conflict of Interest Code of the State Coastal ConservancyThe Coastal Conservancy proposes to amend its conflict of interest code to include employee positions that involve the making or participation in the making of decisions that may foreseeably have a material effect on any financial interest, as set forth in subdivision (a) of section 87302 of the Government Code. The amendment carries out the […] (Read more on Notice of Intention...)
- Press Release: State Coastal Conservancy Awards $84 Million for Climate Resilience, Public Access, Habitat Restoration, and Wildfire ResilienceLast week, the Board of the State Coastal Conservancy authorized funding totaling $84 million for projects to protect and restore coastal lands, increase coastal resilience to climate change, improve public access to the coast, and reduce the impact of wildfire on coastal lands. Grants awarded include: $5,552,800 to the Redwood Community Action Agency to restore 350 […] (Read more on Press Release: State...)
- San Francisco Bay Area Water Trail Implementation Meeting #41 – September 29, 2023, 10am – 12pmAGENDA September 29, 2023 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. HYBRID MEETING Zoom Meeting Information: Please join us on Zoom at this link: https://scc-ca-gov.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYkf-GtrDgjGtwqmo305QFC6HGMco5kob-0 Physical Meeting Location: Claremont Room, 375 Beale Street, San Francisco CA 94105 If you are planning to attend in person, please email Ben.firstname.lastname@example.org in advance so we know to expect you. We […] (Read more on San Francisco Bay...)