Some may regard the Commission as a foe.
The Commission, a judicial-like state agency with multiple offices, functions to protect the coastal regions of California which vary from a few hundred feet in width up to 5 miles in rural areas. Specifically the Commission’s role is to:
“Protect, conserve, restore, and enhance environmental and human-based resources of the California coast and ocean for environmentally sustainable and prudent use by current and future generations.” (from their website)
Issues of public access to and use of beaches and surrounding area, and broad educational programs are important components as well. The Commission partners with coastal cities and counties in order to regulate the use of land and water, which obviously impacts the construction of new buildings along the ocean. California has some amazing coastline, which, in many areas, suffers from overbuilding and erosion, and the agency’s role is critical to preserve the fragile coastal regions for generations to come.
As a current or potential homeowner on the coast, know that any plans you might have to modify your coastal home through remodeling, additions and other improvements may very well be regulated by both the town building codes and the Coastal Commission.
The administrative review and approval process of coastal projects can take months or even years depending on the scope, and certain changes will not be permitted. The Surfer’s Point Resort in Leucadia (Encinitas) just finally received California Coastal Commission approval which has taken many, many months and has been hotly debated by environmentalists.
The Surfrider Foundation is a grassroots, nonprofit environmental group (founded in CA but now with chapters worldwide) that strives to ensure the protection and enjoyment of beaches, oceans and waves around the globe for all; activism, education, conservation and research are key activities of the foundation.
Many coastal projects have been stalled, modified, or even prohibited through this group’s efforts. The Surfrider Foundation has been very involved in criticizing components of the plans for the desalination plant in Carlsbad, for example.
The group also sponsors numerous initiatives and educational programs to improve the ocean and beaches.
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All content copyright © 2007 Jeff Dowler Carlsbad Homes and Real Estate Tidbits