Big Wave developers are responding to the DEIR comments themselves due to lack of funding

Letter

Posted by
Thu, March 25, 2010


I attended the Planning Commission meeting yesterday.

During the meeting Jim Eggemeyer, County Planning Director informed the Planning Commissioners that the Big Wave Project developers are "collaborating" with the Planning Department by responding to 245 public comments on the Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) themselves.  Eggemeyer also said that the Big Wave Project developers are unable to continue funding the environmental consultants (CAJA).

The Planning Commission Site Visit will be Monday, April 26 at 3:30pm

The Planning Commission Hearing is April 28th at 6:30pm at HMB High School.

Link to Area29 letter hand delivered to the Planning Commission yesterday: http://www.thepelicaneye.com/2010/03/big-wave-project-eir-shenanigans.html

Link to Darin Boville’s Planning Commission meeting article: http://www.montarafog.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=519:county-planning-department-recommends-that-big-wave-help-complete-its-own-environmental-evaluation-&catid=1:latest-news

This "collaborative" approach may cast doubt on the credibility and transparency of the EIR process.


I am shocked at the precedent this sets - plead poverty and write your own CEQA docs.

This hain’t the way government is posed to work.

Per John Lynch : “This hain’t the way government is posed to work.”

What is the gov’t doing wrong? All I see here is a vehement anti-Big Waver saying they are “collaborating” upon responses to the 245 comments (90% of which all read the same, IMHO)?

And what’s this transparency thing I keep hearing, and not seeing… oh what, I’m not supposed to see it. At least at the Federal level.

If the county departed from its established CEQA procedures of using outside consultants for this particular development, it’s a huge issue.

Big Wave may be bigger than any development ever built in the unincorporated county, i.e. in the jurisdiction of the county’s planning department.

To simply say they’re changing the rules because the EIR was more expensive than contemplated suggests the county’s already in over its head on this project. And that Big Wave is getting special treatment.

Apparently Big Wave, the planning department, and the board of supervisors didn’t imagine that building an outsized development in an environmentally sensitive area would require an expensive EIR, or that the first draft wouldn’t be perfect.

Thank you Barry, that’s a bit clearer. However, that’s not the developer’s problem. Where’s the accountability on poor planning by the agencies, commissions, and regulatory bodies to not accomodate for this? Simplified, but frankly, this also proves that the monstrosity of what’s become with EIRs that are in-over-their-heads, and their requirements thereof that are beyond out of control… but that’s for another day/time/thread.

Yesterday, Scott Holmes had the following to say in an interview with Montara Fog:

“We had an agreement with the County and we are sticking with it.”

“The only difference,” between the old process with the consultant and the new process without, “is that I will have to help more in the organization of the document. This is also the case for the County. They will have to expend considerably more time and effort to make sure their review is thorough and the final document is professionally organized.”

“While Big Wave will contribute first round responses and organization of the document,” Holmes says, “the County will have final review and authority over every aspect of the final document…all information provided by Big Wave [will] go through a ‘filter’ and review process, as the County will have final review and authority over every aspect of the final document.”

http://www.montarafog.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=521:project-engineer-for-big-wave-responds-to-controversial-decision-to-allow-him-to-help-complete-big-waves-own-environmental-review-&catid=1:latest-news