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  • Paul Jenkin
    NEWS: MORE FLOODPLAIN DEVELOPMENT COMING TO VENTURA COUNTY The Local Agency Formation Commission voted to allow the city and the Limoneira Co. to move forward
    Message 1 of 10 , Apr 2 9:10 AM
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      NEWS:

      MORE FLOODPLAIN DEVELOPMENT COMING TO VENTURA COUNTY

      The Local Agency Formation Commission voted to allow the city and the Limoneira Co. to move forward on a plan to build a massive master-planned community.

      LAFCO approved letting the city annex the land on its eastern edge. Limoneira plans to build 1,500 homes, community fields, parks, police and fire stations, and new commercial buildings in what would essentially amount to a new 537-acre community.

      "This is unquestionably the most important event probably in the history of Santa Paula," Mayor Fred Robinson said.

      The vote was 6-1, with Commissioner Carol Smith, who also is a Ojai City Councilwoman, opposed because of potential flood risks near the proposed development. Commissioner Linda Parks, a county supervisor, also expressed concerns about possible flooding, as well as the potential of a lawsuit from environmental groups, but opted to support the annexation.



      Promenade Repair and Maintenance Project (Phase I)

      During the next four months the City will be repairing deteriorated portions of the beachfront promenade and performing maintenance to provide a safe walkway for pedestrians.

      This project is expected to extend the design life of the structure by another 20 years or more, reduce costly emergency repairs and on-going maintenance, and has numerous benefits to the community including an improved viewing platform, new rinse-off shower, energy-efficient lights along the promenade wall and new beach access stairs. For more information 
      click here
       





      EVENTS:


      Surfrider Ventura Chapter Meeting:  Movie Night!

      Tuesday April 4, 6pm EP Foster Library, Downtown Ventura

      We are please to present "Melali: The Drifter Sessions"  

      The trailer is online here:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_m6dK-YuGW0



      Ventura Earth Day Eco Fest, April 16

      Saturday, April 16, 2011 from 10am to 5pm.

      The Ventura Charter School of Arts and Global Education, in cooperation with the City of Ventura, invite you to attend Earth Day Eco Fest to be held at Ventura’s Seaside Promenade Park  

      If you would like to volunteer to help Surfrider please contact:  sfvccvolunteer@...




    • Paul Jenkin
      Cañada Larga - Ventura drops annexation efforts due to costs On Tuesday night City Council made the right decision - to keep Westside redevelopment within our
      Message 2 of 10 , Apr 21 8:27 AM
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        Cañada Larga - Ventura drops annexation efforts due to costs

        On Tuesday night City Council made the right decision - to keep Westside redevelopment within our city boundaries.  Thanks to everyone who dedicated their time and energy to help protect the Ventura River since this issue came up last year! 

        After hearing speakers for more than three hours, the council spent 30 minutes debating the details of the Westside plan. On a motion from Councilman Karl Morehouse, the council directed Community Development Director Jeff Lambert to work with the planning and design committees to include community comments to prioritize parks, housing for active seniors and local shopping.

        ...Even Bonsall, who represents the family who owns the Cañada Larga property, ultimately told the council that they should forego annexation and development at this time in favor of the long-promised plan.

        Read more: http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/apr/20/ventura-drops-annexation-efforts-due-to-costs/


        Ventura Promenade work on schedule for May completion

        A city project to repair and renovate the walkway, begun in February, is on schedule and expected to be completed by early May, according to De Anda. City engineers estimate the repairs, which include use of concrete and steel designed to resist salt corrosion, will extend the life of the structure for at least 20 years. The first phase of the project, budgeted at about $1.2 million, includes rebuilding six alcoves that extend the walkway closest to the sea, moving a staircase extending down to the beach, and repairing cracks.




        McGrath State Beach will close indefinitely

        McGrath State Beach in Oxnard, Ventura County's busiest state park and oceanfront campground, will be closing in September for an indefinite amount of time because of lack of funds to fix an aging sewage line.

        The park may be closed for years as it needs $500,000 to repair the line and the California State Parks is grappling with up to $22 million in future budget cuts.



        http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/apr/13/mcgrath-state-beach-will-close-indefinitely/


        Sardines, anchovies die in Ventura Harbor

        Thousands of anchovies and sardines were dead or dying in the Ventura Harbor on Monday from what officials think was a lack of oxygen in the water because of a high concentration of fish.
        http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/apr/18/sardines-anchovies-dying-in-ventura-harbor/



        Chinook Salmon Season Opens Following multi-year Closure

        A preseason report from federal biologists projected 730,000 adult chinook salmon in the ocean this year, significantly higher than the 245,000 last year.  For the most current information on the seasons, see the Pacific Fishery Management Council web site at:  www.pcouncil.org.



        Radioactive Fish Discovered Off the Coast of Japan: 

        Japanese authorities said on 5 April that they had discovered for the first time fish swimming off the country's Pacific coast carrying high levels of radioactive materials. The finding is creating concerns about environmental damage to local marine life, the safety of the nation's food supply, and the viability of Japan's iconic seafood industry, which has already been struggling significantly following the tsunami.
         
        http://newsfeed.time.com/2011/04/06/as-its-nuclear-crisis-continues-japan-catches-radioactive-fish/


        Court battle expected over Central Valley levee vegetation

        Controversial federal rules that could require nearly every tree and bush to be chopped down from Central Valley levees are likely headed for a court battle. On Tuesday, Sacramento-based environmental group Friends of the River and another group, Defenders of Wildlife, notified the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers they intend to file a lawsuit against the rules

        Ventura County levees are subject to the same rulings...  


        EVENTS:


        Ojai Earth Play 2011
        Saturday April 23, 2011  11:00AM - 4:00PM 
        Oak Grove School, 220 West Lomita, Ojai California

        In celebration of sustainable living, global awareness, and the joy of nature, four Ojai-based green non-profit organizations - Food for Thought, Oak Grove School, Ojai Valley Green Coalition, and Ojai Valley Land Conservancy - are teaming up to host this once-a-year community event. Along with environmental exhibits, the day will include arts and outdoor activities for all ages, live entertainment, local foods, new ideas, and more. 

        someplace with a mountain
        Saturday April 23, 2011  4pm
        EP Foster Library, 651 Main St , Ventura

        Narrated by Chevy Chase, this tragic yet hopeful documentary tells the story of a small group of Island Atolls that are disappearing because of sea rise. Activist, Sailor, and Filmmaker, Steve Goodall left the U.S. in 2004.  He bought a 34-foot sailboat, the Manta and sailed away. Twelve thousand miles and four years later, he came upon a group of remote Atolls so beautiful they took his breath away. Steve discovers the people there are unaware of the the current forecasts for sea level rise. Once informed they asked for his help.


        Ventura Hillside Conservancy 8th Annual Community Meeting
         
        Friday, April 29, 2011 -  6 PM to 7:30 PM
        Patagonia headquarters Grand Conference Room

        Guest speaker Paul Jenkin, Environmental Director of the Ventura County Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation and founder of the Matilija Coalition, will present Toward Ecosystem-based Management - A Case Study of the Ventura River
         
        The meeting will also include a screening of Trout on the Wind, a film that documents the removal of the Columbia River’s Hemlock Dam. The 10 minute short video documents the removal of the dam located within the Gifford Pinchot National Forest, Trout Creek is a tributary of the Wind River which runs into the Columbia River Gorge.  The film won the coveted John Muir 2010 Film Award in Environmental Film Competition.

        Further information: www.venturahillsides.org.




        HEADWATERS TO OCEAN CONFERENCE 

        24-26 May, 2011 - Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa on Mission Bay in San Diego, California. 
          
        The 2011 "Headwaters to Ocean (H2O)" Conference will cover a wide spectrum of coast and ocean issues. Of local relevance will be a session on Managed Shoreline Retreat including presentations from Surfrider, City of Ventura, and the engineers responsible for the implementation of the Surfers' Point Managed Shoreline Retreat Project.  Paul Jenkin, Ventura Campaign Coordinator for the Surfrider Foundation, will also present Toward Ecosystem-based Management - A Case Study of the Ventura River.

        Early registration ends on May 3. The conference program is available online at: www.coastalconference.org/h20_2011/2011_program1.php



      • Paul Jenkin
        NEWS Ventura councilman named to Coastal Commission Brian Brennan, a Ventura city councilman since 1997 and a founding member of the local chapter of the
        Message 3 of 10 , Apr 29 7:10 AM
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          NEWS

          Ventura councilman named to Coastal Commission
          Brian Brennan, a Ventura city councilman since 1997 and a founding member of the local chapter of the Surfrider Foundation, has been appointed to the California Coastal Commission



          Ojai Moves to Ban Plastic Bags, Supports Local Control of Water

          ...the (Ojai Green Coalition) had expected the state Legislature to pass a ban on plastic bags, but after that effort failed, it has fallen to cities to craft their own bans. Ojai would be the first city in Ventura County to ban them.

          The council also unanimously voted to support efforts by a group of residents trying to gather signatures to petition the Casitas Municipal Water District to consider taking over the portion of the Ojai water-service market now handled by Golden State Water Co. Among other things, the residents are upset over large Golden State water rate increases.





          Watershed Education Funding Cut

          Once Upon a Watershed provides hands-on watershed education, restoration, and stewardship experience to 4th, 5th and 6th grade students in the Ventura River Watershed.  Last month they were informed that their 3-year federal grant has been withdrawn after the first year - a victim of the federal budget cuts. 

          Erin Marnocha, project director, explained that Once Upon A Watershed is a program run through the auspices of Oak Grove school to educate students about the watersheds in Ventura County. "We want to increase awareness around the watershed and get the kids and communities as partners."

          For more information or to help support this important program, please see http://onceuponawatershed.org/



          Floodplain Development and Urban Sprawl

          Agreement reached between environmental group and Limoneira Co.

          One of the greatest threats to water quality and quantity and our coastal ecosystem is unsustainable urban development. Although Ventura County has some of the most progressive land use guidelines in southern California, constant vigilance is required on the part of the citizens to ensure such guidelines are followed.




          Beach Fill Gone Bad

          While the Surfers' Point Managed Retreat Project continues to make progress, things are not looking good at Goleta Beach in Santa Barbara County.  Here 'beach nourishment' has been seen as a way to widen the beach in response to coastal erosion.  Unfortunately, materials dredged from the slough turned out to be pretty ugly once dumped on the beach.


          But I guess this is not as bad as unexploded munitions accidentally pumped ashore in 2006 during a beach replenishment project in New Jersey!   More than 1,100 munitions have been found since that beach replenishment project was completed. The cleanup is estimated at 17 million taxpayer dollars!

          These projects are examples of why Surfrider Foundation is opposed to artificial beach fill.




          San Antonio Creek Spreading Grounds

          On Tuesday April 26, the Ventura County board of Supervisors approved the environmental document for the San Antonio Creek Spreading Grounds project.  Although the project has broad support from the water agencies, the resource agencies (NOAA and DFG) have filed letters on the project. NOAA filed a protest to the State Water Board.  At issue is whether appropriation of surface water will affect endangered steelhead and it's habitat.





          EVENTS


          Ventura Hillside Conservancy 8th Annual Community Meeting
           

          Friday, April 29, 2011 -  6 PM to 7:30 PM
          Patagonia headquarters Grand Conference Room

          Guest speaker Paul Jenkin, Environmental Director of the Ventura County Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation and founder of the Matilija Coalition, will present Toward Ecosystem-based Management - A Case Study of the Ventura River
           
          The meeting will also include a screening of Trout on the Wind, a film that documents the removal of the Columbia River’s Hemlock Dam. The 10 minute short video documents the removal of the dam located within the Gifford Pinchot National Forest, Trout Creek is a tributary of the Wind River which runs into the Columbia River Gorge.  The film won the coveted John Muir 2010 Film Award in Environmental Film Competition.

          Further information: www.venturahillsides.org.



          Ojai Valley Green Coalition - Watershed Council
          May 3, 6-7:30 p.m.

          Food, Fun, Facts -- that's the agenda for the Ojai Valley Green Coalition's new Watershed Council Roll-out Party. Basically eat, drink, be merry and share an overview of the Coalition's new project-based structure and how watershed and water issues and you fit in.
          Watershed Council Roll-Out party on May 3, 6-7:30 p.m. at Kathy Nolan's home located at 340 Avenida De La Vereda, Ojai 93023.



          HEADWATERS TO OCEAN CONFERENCE 

          24-26 May, 2011 - Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa on Mission Bay in San Diego, California. 
            
          The 2011 "Headwaters to Ocean (H2O)" Conference will cover a wide spectrum of coast and ocean issues. Of local relevance will be a session on Managed Shoreline Retreat including presentations from Surfrider, City of Ventura, and the engineers responsible for the implementation of the Surfers' Point Managed Shoreline Retreat Project.  Paul Jenkin, Ventura Campaign Coordinator for the Surfrider Foundation, will also present Toward Ecosystem-based Management - A Case Study of the Ventura River.

          Early registration ends on May 3. The conference program is available online at: www.coastalconference.org/h20_2011/2011_program1.php


        • Paul Jenkin
          Ventura hires general manager to oversee new water department She and another finalist were interviewed by a panel of city officials, environmentalists and
          Message 4 of 10 , May 20, 2011
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            Ventura hires general manager to oversee new water department

            She and another finalist were interviewed by a panel of city officials, environmentalists and business leaders, including representatives of the Ventura Chamber of Commerce and the Surfrider Foundation, according to the city.

            http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/may/14/ventura-hires-general-manager-to-oversee-new 

            Letter to the editor:

            While it is misleading to suggest that Surfrider Foundation formally endorsed Ms. Epstein, we are reserving judgment until we see if she can succeed in integrating our water supply, stormwater and wastewater management. ... [Otherwise]...the ratepayers will merely be paying more money for more of the same, while jeopardizing our sustainable future. And that will be much worse than just another missed opportunity.
             


            Ventura Promenade Repairs

            Repairs are in progress on the Ventura Promenade. The seawall and stairs have taken a beating, and much of the rebar internal to the concrete structure is in a state of decay. Surfrider commented on this project in 2001 when environmental documents were first circulated. One of our concerns was the plan to introduce additional rip-rap (boulders) along the bottom of the seawall. This is now happening...

            http://www.venturariver.org/2011/05/ventura-promenade-repairs.html



            Ventura County Fire Department hires herd of goats to clear brush

            ...they cleared about an acre a day, at least as effectively and as inexpensively as hand crews using machinery and without disturbing landowners.  the goats' method doesn't require sawing, stacking or burning the brush.  "These guys take care of all that," he said. "They eat it, trample it and redistribute it into the ecosystem." 



            EVENTS:


            Oil Piers Project Update - 
            BEACON will hear a presentation from United States Army of Corps of Engineers (USACOE) on the planned artificial reef at Oil Piers Beach along the Rincon.
            BEACON meeting  Friday, May 20, at 9:00 a.m.
            Carpinteria City Hall5775 Carpinteria Avenue
            Meeting agenda, along with staff reports, are available at  www.beacon.ca.gov.

             
            May 21, Saturday: Rehydrating a Thirsty Land Workshop 
            9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

            Includes bring your own lunch picnic. Cost $25 paid OVGC members/$30 non-members. Registration required, final details will be sent upon receipt of information and payment. 
            Limited to 20 participants.
            Led by David White and Connor Jones, this workshop will take a close look at how the landscape hydrates itself and how we can assist in that process. Participants will learn the importance of working with the contour of the landscape, excavating swales, mulching, restructuring creeks and waterways to reduce erosion and slow, sink, and spread water into the landscape. You will also learn about trees and their purpose in creating rain, moderating the water table, and preventing flash floods.

            May 21, Saturday: Riparian Habitat Restoration Tour and Volunteer WorkDay 
            9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. 

            Join members of the Ojai Valley Green Coalition in Libbey Park on Saturday, May 21 for a Creek Restoration Workday. We'll start with a tour of work already done and why and then move on to mulching and planting trees. The day will begin at 9:30 a.m. and go to 1 p.m. Volunteers will meet up the stairs from the Libbey Park lower tennis courts and we recommend parking in the lower parking lot on Montgomery Street. Wear sturdy work shoes, a long-sleeved shirt and long pants. Volunteers are also encouraged to bring gloves and a shovel or pitch fork. Snacks and water will be available. This phase of creek restoration work is funded by a U.S. Fish & Wildlife grant.

            May 24 - Water: Changing Habits, Changing Policy with Ron Merckling, Kathy Nolan and Bill O'Brien
             

          • Paul Jenkin
            “They don’t believe green infrastructure can really solve problems, they think of it as something dreamed up by hippies,” - A Natural Resources Defense
            Message 5 of 10 , Jun 1, 2011
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              “They don’t believe green infrastructure can really solve problems, they think of it as something dreamed up by hippies,”
                           A Natural Resources Defense Council attorney, Ann Alexander, referring to Chicago and its frugal spending on environmentally friendly drainage—$325,000—compared to Cleveland's $42 million.




              Last week city councilman Brian Brennan and Surfrider Foundation's Paul Jenkin accepted the "Friend of the Coast" award on behalf of the Surfers Point Working Group.  The California Coastal Coalition gives the award at their annual 'Headwaters to the Ocean' Conference.  The Conference was held May 24-26, 2011 at the Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa on Mission Bay in San Diego, California.  The conference included a panel on 'Managed Shoreline Retreat', and Paul also presented Towards Ecosystem-based Management, describing the efforts to protect and restore the Ventura River watershed to benefit our coastal resources.







              BEACON is the lead agency on a proposal to construct an artificial surfing reef at Oil Piers.  This is idea that originated when the piers were removed, causing loss of the surf break.  BEACON staff are currently working with the USACOE and ASR Ltd Team to deliver a new project design. Depending on federal funding, the goal is to have the project constructed in 2012.




              Ventura County in line to win $17.5 million for water projects

              Ventura County stands to get $17.5 million in bond funds to boost water supply, prevent flooding and improve the habitat for wildlife under newly released recommendations.  Under the 'Integrated Regional Water Management Plan' grant funding the Ventura River will receive funding for the Ojai Meadows Preserve and the San Antonio Creek Spreading Grounds project:

              - $500,000 to the Ojai Valley Land Conservancy, to replace weeds with native vegetation in the Ojai Meadows Preserve in Meiners Oak. The 41-acre project is expected to help wildlife, curb erosion and stabilize land that drains into wetlands.




              Ojai residents are pushing to switch water supplier

              Ojai residents who want to ditch the city's private water company have submitted nearly 2,000 signatures to the agency they'd rather buy water from.  Golden State Water Co., a subsidiary of American States Water Co., provides water to about 2,800 households and businesses in Ojai. A citizens' group called Ojai FLOW — Friends of Locally Owned Water — is asking the Casitas Municipal Water District, a public agency that provides water to some parts of the Ojai Valley, to buy out Golden State and take over its Ojai territory.


              Read more: 
              http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/may/29/ojai-residents-are-pushing-to-switch-water/



              UC Hansen Trust selling Ventura property


              In 2008, the Ventura City Council approved a proposal to transform it into six acres of public parks, 131 detached homes, 31 condominiums, open spaces and 20 to 24 units of farmworker rental housing. The property was in the city's sphere of influence and targeted for housing. It was annexed by the city in 2009.

              Read more: 
              http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/may/26/uc-hansen-trust-selling-ventura-property/


              Malibu Lagoon Restoration Project & Surfing

              Since the late 1990s, a plan has been underway to restore the wetlands in the Malibu Lagoon. The Surfrider Foundation and our West LA / Malibu Chapter has been involved and supportive of this project since the beginning. In recent months controversy over the project has erupted with concerns about the approach being taken to restore the wetlands and also potential impacts the restoration project may have on surfing at Malibu's famed Surfrider beach. On May 20th, a San Francisco Superior Court judge issued a stay on the project through October 1st, which essentially delays the project for one year because the work can only be done during the summer months to minimize impacts to sensitive species.



              Lessons on Floodplain Management:

              A New Flood, Some Old Truths:  The thousands of people forced to abandon their homes in recent weeks to floodwaters are victims not just of nature but of human error as well. Years of mismanagement of the vast Mississippi River ecosystem — the relentless and often inadvisable construction of levees and navigation channels, the paving over of wetlands, the commercial development of flood plains — have made the damage worse than it might otherwise have been.





              EVENTS:

              The SBCK Ventura Stream Team will be monitoring the Ventura River during morning (pre-dawn) and afternoon shifts again this month.  Monitoring according to the diurnal cycle (photosynthesis and oxygen) allows us to record dissolved oxygen measurements when they are at their minimum (pre-dawn) and near their maximum (early afternoon); and provides better data for evaluating the impact of algae and the overall health of the river.  Volunteers who would like to partcipate this Saturday must RSVP to Ben Pitterle at the contact/address below.
               
              Predawn group will meet at 4:20 AM at 239 West Main St., Ventura, next to the Bike Depot.  After sampling, breakfast will be provided to volunteer for this time slot.
               
              Afternoon group will meet at 12:30 PM at the same location, (though please do not park in the Bike Depot parking lot).  Pizza will be provided after sampling for the PM shift.

               

              Please call Ben if you have any questions. Thanks and hope to see you this weekend!
               
              Ben Pitterle
              Watershed Programs Director
              Santa Barbara Channelkeeper
              Office: 805-563-3377 x3
              Cell: 805-636-6189




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