|Unpaid and unsolicited community postings and opinions.
These postings are solely the opinions of the author(s).
|Article in the Marin Independent Journal, Tues. Nov. 21, 2006 -
by Mark Prado
Gives the impression that:
1. Residents on Panoramic Hwy. are resigned to increased traffic due to the Closure of Shoreline Hwy. #1 and detour/alternate use of Panoramic Hwy. , w/o safeguards: Would you be? Presently there is a lack and need to install signage[that residents are backing out onto roadway]benefiting both drivers and residents of Panoramic Hwy. that back out of their driveways onto Panoramic Hwy. Signs requiring safer speed limits, an accident due to high speed, would stop all traffic on Panoramic. Emergency vehicles would occupy both lanes, for cleanup, as such the only access No. to Shoreline Hwy. #1 and So. to 101, would be closed.. More Turnouts would be helpful, there are a no. of less than sufficient in length and depth, for Hwy. standards and regulations, that should be improved by resurfacing, during this detour emergency.
Let me remind, there is no alternate for four mos., Shoreline Hwy. #1 Closure..
2..Detour Signage, is sufficient, for continuation of commerce No. of Detour. It is not, the signage should be changed to reflect the 1/2 Mile Detour, which is the actual difference in mileage, of Panoramic versus Shoreline Hwy. #1.
3. This is the slow season for all businesses in SW Marin, to the contrary, this is the high season, for many businesses in SW Marin: the overnight accommodations industry of Muir Beach, Stinson Beach, Bolinas, No. West Marin, see an increase in foreign travelers[taking advantage of the incentive rates offered by the motels, B&B's, & Inns - very vulnerable to confusing media releases of Closure and Cal Trans Detour Signage ], this is their vacation period as well as that of domestic summer employees of summer sports and National/State Parks[for example an only summer sport such as white water staff and employees], tour guides, national and state parks summer employees/staff, before snow season employees of ski resorts. This the season for Elephant Seal, Whale, Tule Elk, Bird Species[Audobon Society, British Royal Birdwatching Society, Scientists studying migratory patterns of migratory birds, Environmentalists studying decline of individual bird species] , Coho Salmon and the many species of animals and sea life that abound in our forests, beaches and sea, enthusiasts/watchers/ scientists/ naturalists/ environmentalists who seek shelter amidst our overnight accommodations industry and sustenance from our eateries, restaurants and grocery stores here in SW Marin. Thriving in abundance during this period of affordable accommodations and plenty of parking due to an absence of beach goers and absentee home owners: Commercial and Residential Contractors[roofers, interior and exterior specialists, home builders, re modelers, plumbers, electricians, painters, carpet installers, storm and disaster special workers] ; Cal Trans employees as well as related contractors doing Shoreline Hwy. #1 Improvements; contract employees installing the emergency transmission tower on the Bolinas Ridge for benefit of coordinating Disaster Related Agencies responding to earthquakes-Fires-Tsunami-Flood emergencies. Winter Sports Businesses[Pt. Reyes Kayak Tours] such as Kayak [Kayak and Bike Rental Specialty Businesses, Kayak Tours, Hiking and Running enterprises[ex. Enviro-sports of Stinson, Hike w Llamas Tours], Hanglider enthusiasts and Tandem Hanglider flight enterprises. Last but not least, seniors and other age groups, no longer interested in the Ski Slopes due to age/accidental/choice inspired physical handicaps or preference to enjoy the Coast Outdoors-watch the waves, run in the surf, enjoy the scenery-unimpeded by loads of people and motorized traffic vehicles, articulate in artistry or photography, nature for pleasure or profit...
4. Contrast: Year Around Family Owned and Managed businesses with live-in help that depend on the winter and spring season to continue vs. Summer Oriented Businesses with hired help few if any live-ins, that can financially survive until the next summer.. the reportage of this article gave the summer oriented viewpoint. Harken to the section that covered the Pelican Inn, Katinka Mckay, general Manager of the Pelican, said," There seems to be a bit of confusion out there in some of the media reports, We can see there are fewer people here today"..That is the general misgiving of the housing and food vendors of SW Marin." We want to survive, as a viable business enterprise, The Closure of Shoreline Hwy. #1, during the 4 mos. of Repair", quote Margaret Clayton, proprietor of the Redwoods Haus-Beach, Bed and Breakfast in Stinson Beach. Please ask the opinion of other merchants in the SW Marin Area, who live and work full time, have no reduced winter hours, as well as carry live-ins at their business enterprises, of whether or not they expect full occupancy or patronage during this period of Closure, it is always high season in SW Marin: the Stinson Beach Motel, the Sandpiper Motel, the Ocean Court Motel, The Stinson Beach Market, the Parkside Restaurant, the Stinson Beach Grill, the Coast Cafe and Blue Heron of Bolinas, The Bolinas Market, Stinson Beach Health Club, Odyssey Video of Stinson and Bolinas, Live Water Surf Shop, etc.
6. That the business community of SW Marin is are happy and content, with the media coverageof the Shoreline Hwy. #1 Closure, no we are not. We need media support, not arbitrary independent opinion sampling of the uninformed and sensationalism that creates confusion with potential clientele and long time patronage of the affected businesses and enterprises of SW Marin impacted by the Closure of Shoreline Hwy. #1..
Representing the Interests and Consensus of the Business Community of SW Marin, impacted by the Closure of Shoreline Hwy. #1 for 4 mos. due to the need for Repairs on the Roadway. John Posadas, Stinson Beach Chamber of Commerce, www.stinson-beach.org <http://www.stinson-beach.org/> ., 415 868-1330, See the Stinson Beach Community Network, www.stinson-beach.net <http://www.stinson-beach.net/> in cooperation with the Redwoods Haus-Beach, Bed and Breakfast in Stinson Beach 94970, www.stinson-beach.com <http://www.stinson-beach.com/> , 415 868-9828, proprietor Margaret Clayton..Please send your comments and additions to this response of media inaccuracy/critique to the SBCCommerce, Closure@stinson-beach.com.
|“Friends of Easkoot Creek”
Suggestions filled out in a survey which will be given to CalTrans,
the Federal Government and the Media from their community -Regarding the closing of Highway One.
The flood advisory board has completely ignored questions regarding our ability to hold a local meeting without county staff, the responsibilities of the Flood Advisory Board, etc.
Supervisor Kinsey is making calls this next Monday, to a no. of advocates for action on this matter, in the flood affected community of Stinson Beach..Due to his realization of the urgency, that this is a health as well as property threat.
If you have a few minutes could you please make a call or drop an email asking for a meeting to be called to:
firstname.lastname@example.org or 415-499-6000
In the communications, put forth by Flood Affected-Friends of Easkoot Creek, the need for the meeting includes:
a) our flood advisory board was defunct for over 10 years and so we have many years of neglect to catch up on. This includes discontinuation of creek cleanout that stopped in 1997.
b) our flood advisory board has not passed on information to the community about items such as cleaning out the creek, FEMA applications being put out to people in the community for raising houses, or discussions that are starting between the Federal Park and the County.
Many houses that should have been eligible to be raised were bypassed. Reasons unknown.
c) our flood advisory board is not representing our interests by not communicating the Zones desire to pursue a diversion channel. No member of the Board stated the boards position when public comments were requested.
d) no one is protesting that the Arenal Bridge did not get cleaned out with the others. The Arenal Bridge will flood the Parkside and everything around it. It will also flow through the GGNRA parking lot and into Calle Del Pinos.
e) we need a health and safety plan if flooding occurs again.
Emergency Services to the Calle's, Patios and Seadrift and town in a flood situation.
Water Lines cross under the bridges and could be easily washed out.
Emergency Workers will be exposed to hazards if septics overflow again, how to avoid this.
Both Fire Stations are located on Easkoot Creek and much more.
Please take a moment to hit on the ones that you feel are the most important and send your concerns to Supervisor Kinsey by Monday afternoon. This may be a good opportunity to get something to happen.
I'll send more detail later, but want to alert you to a meeting that is occurring on Monday November 13.
There is an Executive Board Meeting for the Bolinas Lagoon Project on November 13. The purpose appears to be to summarize comments made at the meeting many attended in Bolinas, solicit other input and talk about process.
Here's the link to the agenda:
A couple of you said you'd try to attend, and I think it's important we have some representation at this meeting on top of our previous public comments. Please try to make it if you can.
The location is: Friends of Marin Room, Marin Center Exhibit Hall, Avenue of the Flags, San Rafael.
Thank, Friends of Easkoot Creek
|Letter of Thanks from John Posadas,
November 27, 2006
Bob, wanted to say thanks, for all the media coverage of All Points No., via Panoramic Hwy. Ha! Ha! Great coverage on the signs for Stinson, at Shoreline Hwy. #1 and Panoramic[So. Intersection] thanks, keeps the good times rolling down here at the Beach. Katrinka Mckay, has an issue with the signage on Shoreline Hwy. #1, no. of the intersection of Muir Woods Road and Shoreline Hwy. #1, it is confusing and unnecessary, contact her for specifics.. Sam Temer, wants inclusion of 1/2 mile detour on signage at Shoreline Hwy. #1 and Panoramic Hwy., So. Intersection... Continuing-----.But, traffic has backed off..due to the closure news sensationalism, confusion, or the instilled media impression that, "we don't need the business since we are in our slow season", as well as the random rain and cold.. Also, sorry about the changing priorities in my emails of the Talking Points, I have more than one area of allegiance:
-representing overall business interests in SW Marin( need for continuation of business as usual during Closure, media references for high season vs. slow season; the Stinson Beach Village Association TrafficCommittee [slowdown and backup driveway warning signs on Panoramic Hwy. also signage and thresholds for Dipsea Trailhead on Panoramic and Shoreline Hwy. #1, creation of walkways and bikeways along Shoreline Hwy. #1 in Muir Beach and in Stinson Beach on the west side between the Belvedere Fire Station and the No. Intersection of Panoramic and Shoreline Hwy. #1 , diversion of bike traffic from Panoramic during period of closure/detour, paving non-standard turnouts on Panoramic Hwy., signage and threshold for the Dipsea Trailhead on Panoramic and Shoreline Hwy. #1, ----------- to favor smooth traffic flow during/after this emergency]; the Stinson Beach Fire Dept.-Caution Signage, battery or electric operated-so. and no. of the Belvedere Ave. Station;
the Stinson Beach Community Network Site
for the purpose of public exposure for future commercialization as a uptodate reliable roster of issues affecting lifestyle and commerce in SW Marin... ;
the Redwoods Haus-Beach,
Bed and Breakfast,
for their financial and physical support of the SBCCommerce..;
Seventh World, www.seventhworld.com
financial and creative support/ webdesigner, of the above websites, whose goal is to keep for posterity the pristine quality of life, here in SW and West Marin.
---Thanks from all of Us, for your continued dedication, attention to detail, support-above the call of duty,of the needs of the communities bordering Shoreline Hwy. #1
in SW Marin, for Cal Trans.
| Repairs on Shoreline Highway 1, Mid-Sept through Dec 2006
Cal Trans will be making much needed repairs on the sections of Shoreline
Hwy. #1 from Stinson Beach to Slide Ranch/ Green Gulch Zen Center to South-East
Intersection of Shoreline Hwy. 1 and Panoramic Hwy beginning Mid-September[possibly
at end of Sept.]- December. Access to GreenGulch and the Pelican Inn will
be via Panoramic to Muir Woods Road to Shoreline Hwy. #1.
Stinson Beach Chamber of Commerce
Stinson Beach Village Association
Bob Haus-Cal Trans Public Information Officer, will appear before the Stinson Beach Water District Board this month, in order to make the public announcement, answer questions and comments on this project, to all in attendance. This S.B.W.D. Board meeting will be chaired by Scott Tye, applications for candidates to fill vacated S.B.W.D. Board will be accepted until next Friday, also, job applications for open position formerly held by Richard Dingiss are are available at Stinson Beach Water District Bldg.
There have been a no. of comments made since this bulletin went out, as to the traffic signs and singlelane improvements on Shoreline Hwy. #1, bolstering confidence that Shoreline Hwy.
#1 would remain open, during this multiple[10 separate improvements to roadway]construction-shoring/repair project period, be at the meeting or contact, Bob Haus, Public Info. Officer for Cal Trans directly, for clarification. Businesses affected by the closure, can remain confident that, Commerce will continue uninterrupted, via Panoramic Hwy. and Muir Woods Road, Sir Francis Drake Blvd.West; Lucas Valley Road West; Petaluma Valley Road West. to Shoreline Hwy.#1- No. and So. What is most important to business owners is for them to individually or through public participation, the media, positive signage at key locations [Shoreline Hwy.#1 and Sir Francis Drake at Olema, the Southern and Northern Intersecitons of Panoramic and Shoreline Hwy. #1, the intersection of Panoramic Hwy. and Muir Woods Road, Muir Woods Road and Shoreline Hwy. #1, Cal Trans Digital Readout Signs strategically located w positive and nonconfusing directions] to get out that message, Business as Usual-----if those methods are not sufficient then a general meeting can be coordinated by the Stinson Beach Chamber of Commerce with all those affected by the closure and our local Supervisor Kinsey as well as: Point Reyes Public Info. Officer Dell'Osso; GGNRA; Mt Tam State Park; Democratic State Assembly Candidate Jared Huffman; Stinson Beach Fire Chief -Ken Stevens; MCFD; MCSD: to mete out solutions and take positive action to further our mutual needs for continuation of commerce and the steady flow of traffic in SW and NW West Marin...Please pass on this adjusted bulletin to any and all businesses and individuals impacted by the impending closure for the retrofit of Shorline Hwy. #1.
------ Stinson Beach Chamber of Commerce, see the Stinson Beach Community Network Site at
for continued updates and past history of Shoreline Hwy. #1 Closures for Repairs and SW Commerce Response...
|The Need to clear debris and build retaining walls at
EASKOOT Creek Landside
|David Boyd, Senior Enviromental Scientist, Calif. State Parks,
North Bay District,
P.O. Box 1016,
Novato Ca. 94948,
cell 415 706-0448,
fax 415 898-1213.
Dear Dave, I am asking you in the name of the inhabitants of the flood plain bordering Easkoot Creek, why and what is going on, in order not to repeat the experience of last years flooding. There has been no dredging of the creek, whose creek bottom raised up to 5' in areas, resulting in the flooding of many residences in the Pradero and Pinos Streets of Stinson Beach. There has been no removal of debris from the Landslide onto Easkoot Creek, from Tamalpais State Parkland, nor any shoring of that landslide, to prevent further debris from entering the creek, further raising the creek bed downstream, that could increase the likelihood of further flooding of more residences, businesses and a worst scenario of the loss the the Easkoot Bridge, spanning Shoreline Hwy. #1 at Belvedere. If the Bridge should be impacted by the accumulation of debris as well as the rising of the creek bed, enough to fill its interior throughfare, it would become a dam, flooding the Disaster Emergency Response sthe Stinson Beach Volunteer Fire Department Building as well as erode the adjacent earthen and rock banks, ultimately leading to the erosion of the East Commercial Area of Shoreline Hwy. #1[Healing Arts Center, S.B.Medical Clinic, S.B. Chiropractic Clinic, S.B. Bookstore, Stinson Beach Grill, both Village Green Parks, the Post Office Complex and the Shakespeare at Shakespeare Grounds], as well as imperil the Redwoods Haus-Beach, Bed and Breakfast on #1 Belvedere and Shoreline Hwy., the Stinson Beach Motel, Starbucks Salon Bldg., Live Water Surf Shop Bldg., Sandollar Restaurant, Oceanic Realty, Meristem Florist, Fire Chief Ken Stevens Residence, Many Villages Emporium, Stinson Beach Market, as well as other residences located on the West End of Shoreline Hwy. that is the Southern Area of Commercial in Stinson, the No. East Section of Commercial and Residential also is in peril.. To be included in the Fema and Ca. State Remedy of after flood mitigation, being allowed to raise the aforementioned on piers, is not feasible, in a commerical enviroment[raise firehouse? the medical center?], not a solution to our beloved Community's needs. A much simpler method is to remove the offensive material, stop the talking, get down and do the right thing, discount the impact on the polywogs/fingerlings, they can be placed by volunteer enviromentalists in holding pens [this is a fish friendly period of the year] until the project is completed before the rains begin. The affected past flood victims and the potential flood residents of Stinson Beach as well as SW Marin and NW Marin who have similar flood related potential and experience, invite you to reply to this plea, to insure that our livelihoods, homes and businesses will not be negatively impacted by a repitition of last yrs. floods due to preventitive measure that can be carried out forthwith by the State,
Federal and County Agencies that are there to protect us from floods, lets not repeat the New Orleans Experience. Your response will be posted, to the Stinson Beach Community Network Site, www.stinson-beach.org
There is a need to address the business community of Stinson and SW/NW Marin, a meeting to be scheduled by the Stinson Beach Flood Advisory Board, may address that need, otherwise, there may be a meeting called by the Stinson Beach Flood Victims of 2005 themselves, at which, you will be invited to address.
|Neighborhood Watch Program Meeting May 6th 2006
This Saturday, May 6th, Deputy Ted Keehn will address the SBVA between 10 a.m. - Noon, over the merits of a Neighborhood Watch Program here in South
West Marin. All those negatively impacted by: unlawful behavior; the continuance of substance abuse by locals, overtheHill transients and day time visitors to our community; crimes against personal property; home invasions & breakins; trash in our woods and beaches leftover from illegal campgrounds-should attend, voice their concerns, get questions answered and make suggestions on how to improve our living conditions in our Greater Community of SW Marin. Remember, the improvement made in the cleanliness and return of security to the Beaches and surrounding neighborhoods of SW Marin during and after last Summers, 4th of July celebrations, due to the coordination and cooperartion of concerned members of the residential and business community of SW Marin with the Marin County Sheriffs Dept. and Ca. Hwy. Patrol, in order not to repeat the chaos of July 4, '04. .......John Posadas, SBCC-www.stinson-beach.net, SBVA Traffic Committee Member, 415 868-1330.
|Opinion: Another Milestone for Crime due to Meth Use, the break-in of the Stinson Beach Medical Center in Stinson this week has stimulated the need for the creation of a Neighborhood Watch here, in SW Marin, or has it? Do we collectively need to pool information about what we experience and see on our Beaches, in our Woods and on our streets: the corruption of local youth; continued migration of lawless and drug addict homeless individuals that contribute broken beer bottles, litter, cram our medical centers in search of vicodin/pain killer prescriptions, drink openly in public, sell drugs[meth, heroin, crack] to locals as well as their own brethern, camp anywhere and everywhere, pose a health hazard and practice poor hygiene, break/squat in empty or occupied homes as well as vehicles; face it SW Marin is a pushover and ripe for the plucking..This Saturday, the Stinson Beach Village Association will meet at 10a.m., there we can discuss this matter until Noon, do come and be frank about what is happenning in our greater Neighborhood of SW Marin, the intermittent car burglaries and all of the latter mentions, what to do about it, do we support our Local Law Enforcement, do we gather information and clean up this situation or continue the same..Come voice your feelings on this matter, its going to be a long hot summer, afterwards a wet cold winter,,,They got to go somewhere else, maybe back to San Rafael or San Francisco, SW Marin is experiencing the Summer of Love but they ain't the FlowerChildren.. John Posadas, Stinson Beach Chamber of Commerce, Stinson Beach Village Association Traffic Committee... If you can't make it, email me your ideas on this matter and suggestions so they be aired at the meeting. Another Milestone for Crime due to Meth Use, the break-in of the Stinson Beach Medical Center in Stinson this week has stimulated the need for the creation of a Neighborhood Watch here, in SW Marin, or has it? Do we collectively need to pool information about what we experience and see on our Beaches, in our Woods and on our streets: the corruption of local youth; continued migration of lawless and drug addict homeless individuals that contribute broken beer bottles, litter, cram our medical centers in search of vicodin/pain killer prescriptions, drink openly in public, sell drugs[meth, heroin, crack] to locals as well as their own brethern, camp anywhere and everywhere, pose a health hazard and practice poor hygiene, break/squat in empty or occupied homes as well as vehicles; face it SW Marin is a pushover and ripe for the plucking..This Saturday, the Stinson Beach Village Association will meet at 10a.m., there we can discuss this matter until Noon, do come and be frank about what is happenning in our greater Neighborhood of SW Marin, the intermittent car burglaries and all of the latter mentions, what to do about it, do we support our Local Law Enforcement, do we gather information and clean up this situation or continue the same..Come voice your feelings on this matter, its going to be a long hot summer, afterwards a wet cold winter,,,They got to go somewhere else, maybe back to San Rafael or San Francisco, SW Marin is experiencing the Summer of Love but they ain't the FlowerChildren.. John Posadas, Stinson Beach Chamber of Commerce, Stinson Beach Village Association Traffic Committee... If you can't make it, email me your ideas on this matter and suggestions so they be aired at the meeting.
(This preceding statement is the sole opinion of the author.)
|3. Beware! The Return of the Towers!
Commercial Communications companies are approaching citizens,
businesses and public groups to place relay towers on their property.
Two years ago citizens stopped a similar activity due to potential health
risks to the entire community and reduction of property values.
A community task force is working on developing a telecommunications
policy for the benefit of the entire village.
If you are approached to rent space for a tower, please contact the
Telecommunications Policy Committee Chair.
Sandra Cross 868-9570
|4. Traffic Committee, Stinson Beach Village Association
P.O. Box 706
Stinson Beach, CA 94970
Subject: GGNRA No-Fee Parking History
Stinson Beach Village Association Resolution dated, 10-03-04
PARKING FEE HISTORY PRE-GGNRA
The 1970s was a decade that involved a multitude of planning issues for Stinson Beach.
The community was simultaneously engaged in:
1.) Comprehensive planning for Unit 1 of the Local Coastal Plan.
2.) The proposed transfer of Stinson Beach State Park into the
Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA).
3.) Working with the Regional Water Quality Control Board,
(RWQCB), and the Bay Area Sewer Service Agency,
(BASSA), to form the Stinson Beach County Water District.
Prior to the transfer of the Stinson Beach State Park to the GGNRA, the park was administered by the California State Park System. In the 1960s, there was no admission fee for parking in the State Park. However, during the final years of State Park administration, a vehicle parking fee was imposed. The impact was immediately felt by the town since many visitors who previously parked in the park opted to avoid this fee by parking in both the commercial area of the town and the Calle and Patio residential subdivisions. It significantly impacted the town during the week and on busy weekends it created traffic havoc to the point of impeding public safety vehicles.
In 1975, the Marin County Sheriff’s Department provided the community with a traffic control officer to issue citations for vehicles improperly parked on public streets. That generated a lot of citations and revenue for Marin County but it ultimately had no practical effect in persuading visitors to use the fee parking facility because the visitors reacted by shifting their parking to the privately owned and maintained streets in the Calles and Patios. Because these streets are not part of the streets and highways of California, neither the California Vehicle Code nor country regulations were usable for parking enforcement. Consequently, the Sheriff’s department advised the community that the traffic enforcement officer could not cite visitor parked vehicles on these privately owned streets and that it was a civil matter to be dealt with by the property owners. In 1983, the Traffic Control Officer position was eliminated.
PARKING FEE HISTORY POST-GGNRA
When Stinson Beach learned that the State Park was scheduled to be transferred to the GGNRA, it was a matter of concern to the community because it seemed likely that the National Park Service, imitating their predecessors, would pay scant attention to the inevitable impact of a highly promoted Federal beach on the business and residential areas of the community. To address that concern, there were a number of meetings held between the GGNRA Park officials and local residents who were active in community affairs. It turned out that the concern was largely unfounded. A constructive dialog quickly developed between the community and Bill Whalen, the superintendent of the GGNRA. Bill Whalen and his assistant, Doug Nadeau, proved to be responsible and accessible administrators and demonstrated a gratifying sensitivity to the potential impact of the park on the local community. For example, in response to a community concern regarding the loss of historic local use patterns on the beach area adjoining the Calles and Patios, Bill Whalen agreed to drop a GGNRA proposal to acquire the Marin County owned beach. That is why, today, this beach area is still a low-key jewel in the Marin County park system.
Another leading concern to the local community was the issue of fee parking. The historical parking problem during the State administration was discussed with Bill Whalen. He acknowledged the chaos that fee parking chronically caused in the community, particularly on busy days. He assured us that under his supervision, there would never be any access fee at the park but cautioned us that this policy could be subject to change by future regional superintendents.
Consequently, in a search for a more durable commitment to no-fee parking, the community enlisted the assistance of Congressional Representative Phil Burton who was instrumental in shaping the formative legislation that created the GGNRA. Mr. Burton’s response was gratifying. He expressed his own hope that the projected use intensity of the GGNRA would not significantly alter the character of pre-existing communities within or adjacent to GGNRA Park facilities. With respect to Stinson Beach, he fully supported the incorporation of language in the GGNRA Park Bill ensuring that the Stinson Beach Park would always remain a no-fee facility as a critical element in mitigating the impact of park visitor vehicle traffic in our community. This amendment was approved by Congress and subsequently codified in 16USC 460bb-3 (e), as follows:
(e) No fees or admission charges shall be levied for admission of the general public to the recreational area except to portions under lease or permit for a particular and limited purpose authorized by the Secretary. The Secretary may authorize reasonable charges for public transportation and, for a period not exceeding five years from the date of enactment of this Legislation, for admission to the sailing vessel Balclutha.
This legislation was truly prophetic because in later years, during the tenure of National Park Service (NPS) director William Penn Mott, there was an attempt to reinstate the parking fee in the Stinson Beach Park. Had the no-fee status of the park been merely a function of park policy or regulatory interpretation, Mr. Mott could have, and would have rescinded this no-fee provision regardless of the impact on the community. Fortunately, the no-fee provision was imbedded in the enabling legislation that created the GGNRA, and Mr. Mott was unable to secure Congressional support for changing this provision.
COMPREHENSIVE TRANSIT MANAGEMENT PLAN (CTMP)
Despite a 30 year history of no-fee parking, a proposal has been resurrected to institute a fee for vehicle access to the Stinson Beach Park. The ongoing CTMP planning process addresses a variety of rationales for instituting such a fee but, when push comes to shove, the core rational is to provide a fiscal mechanism to help finance any implemented CTMP proposals. Stinson Beach has vigorously objected to the imposition of any vehicle parking fees in the park because it threatens to destroy the character of the community. CTMP planners, however, have apparently not taken the community reaction seriously and seem more disposed to crafting some artful tactic to circumvent the no-fee parking provision by altering the name of the proposed fee from a “use” fee to a “parking” fee. Consequently, there is a mounting apprehension in the community that the CTMP planners are so focused on generating revenue from the park, that they have lost sight of the paramount obligation of the National Park Service to mitigate the impacts that park facilities can produce in adjacent communities.
In any event, this proposal to institute fees at the Stinson Beach Park for
revenue purposes suffers from this fatal planning flaw:
All the CTMP proposals outlined in the transportation plan are subject to the law of consequences intended
and unintended. However, for the bulk of these proposals, there is the remedy of aborting the proposal or suspending its implementation if it produces an undesirable result.The untoward result, as a practical matter, is reversible.
On the other hand, while a revenue driven parking fee can be aborted in its conceptual state, once that fee is
actually implemented, for all practical purposes, it is, irreversible, regardless of the depth or breadth of the
havoc it can wreak on the residents and businesses in Stinson Beach. The implementation of this proposal
would be tantamount to unleashing a runaway train of adverse consequences for this community. It is a bad
idea that falls well short of the threshold for cautious and responsible planning.
On October 2, 2004, the Stinson Beach Village Association voted unanimously to reaffirm their unequivocal opposition to the retention of any CTMP planning element that involves the introduction of any parking fee, use fee or financial extraction of any kind for vehicle access to the Stinson Beach Park. Incorporated into this resolution were the following findings:
a.) The imposition of a financial extraction of any kind
for vehicle access in Stinson Beach Park is contrary
to the unequivocal language contained in
16USC 460 bb-3 (e).
b.) The re-labeling of vehicle admission charges for
the purpose of negating or circumventing the no-fee
status of the Stinson Beach Park is contrary to the
legislative intent that inspired Congressional passage
of 16USC 460 bb-3 (e).
c.) The imposition of vehicle access fees of any kind
in the Stinson Beach Park will produce adverse
impacts on the surrounding community including,
but not limited to, traffic gridlock, the preemption
of commercial and residential parking spaces and
interference with the safe passage of public safety