July 19, 2024 The Best Source of News, Culture, Lifestyle for Culver City, Mar Vista, Del Rey, Palms and West Los Angeles

Coastal Commissioner Being Sued

The Malibu City Council is suing the Executive Director of the California Coastal Commission, Peter Douglas, over his support of overnight camping in public parks.

Executive Director Peter Douglas, California Coastal Commission

The Malibu City Council voted unanimously to file suit, though Douglas calls the charges “technical hair splitting.â€

Douglas’ support for the measures in the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy parks was in direct opposition to the city’s request to the Coastal Commission for a ban on overnight camping on Malibu public land.

The conservancy made the application for overnight camping in response to the city’s request to the Coastal Commission for a Local Coastal Program LCP) amendment to ban camping. The conservancy filed a LCP Amendment Override that Douglas supported.

The City of Malibu and the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy had initially agreed on a limited plan for camping, but fires in October and November of 2007 triggered strong community opposition. The Corral fire in November destroyed 53 homes after an unsupervised bonfire raged out of control. In an argument intended to ignite controversy, Conservancy attorney Laurie Collins told the Malibu Times, “There is no doubt in my mind they oppose public access.†Douglas repeated the refrain, stating, “The arguments are specious and are there just as a cover for a blatant hostility to this kind of use in the city.â€

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