September 8, 2020
Re: BCDC Pays over $340,000 in Court Ordered Fees
Dear BCDC Commissioner:
Please find a press release published today by the SF Bay Stewardship Alliance. We want to draw this Public Records Act dispute to the attention of all BCDC Commissioners as you may not have the full background and facts surrounding this unfortunate situation. The press release is self-explanatory, and we believe this all could have been avoided and BCDC would not have suffered a serious loss of credibility, nor caused the needless waste of much tax payer’s time and money, which might otherwise have gone to a positive purpose.
The Alliance continues to focus its energies on reforming BCDC. We are encouraged by the recent passage of AB2809 as a first step towards these reforms. We are an environmentally conscious organization of Bay-Area activists who believe the San Francisco Bay is a precious asset to be enjoyed by all, and embody and value the mandate of BCDC. As the recent California State Audit highlighted, there are many processes and policies that urgently need improvement.
One suggestion we made in March was a recommendation to revise the permit process by following procedures used by other agencies regarded as well-run and efficient. One example is The San Francisco Bay Restoration Authority led by David Pine. It has taken the initiative to establish a collaborative approach to permits, by asking all agencies to get together and agree on a single permit process. This will save many cycles, cost tax payers far less, and present a service-oriented approach to permittees. For your information, the dredging permit (DMMO) process is a similar approach to the same problem. The recent Foster City levee permit, which was finally issued was a delayed process as reported in The Daily Journal last November, is just one glaring example of the frustration and inefficiency of the present BCDC approach.
The Bay Stewardship Alliance would welcome an opportunity to engage directly with the BCDC Commissioners, as we have other recommendations which we believe would have a very positive environmental impact, and help BCDC become an efficient and respected force for good by the public as well as other agencies.
We look forward to hearing from you.
The SF Bay Stewardship Alliance