Letters to the Coastal Commission from our organization about Pebble Beach Co.'s Measure "A" Initiative and the proposed Major Amendment No. 1-05 to the Monterey County Local Coastal Program/Del Monte Forest Land Use Plan

June 7, 2006 - Carl Nielsen's letter--as co-chair of Concerned Residents of Pebble Beach and Monterey County-- in response to the PB Co.'s attorney letter to the Coastal Commission on March 12 about "Mapping Errors" and zoning in the Sawmill Gulch Scenic and Conservation easements
June 7, 2006 - Letter to Khatchik Achadjian,just appointed to the Coastal Commission
April 4, 2006 - Extend"Time Limit" for Coastal Commission action on PB Co.'s Measure "A"
March 5, 2006 - Proposed removal of Historic Polo Field/Equestrian Center - loss of Community "Commons on the Green"
March 2, 2006 - Major Amendment No. 1-05 to County Local Coastal Program - Staff preliminary report - Agenda Item THb for Public Hearing
August 10, 2005 - Objection to proposed Amendment to Spanish Bay Permit on conditions required to protect Sawmill Borrow Site as permanent scenic easement


Carl E. Nielsen
24755 Summit Field Road
Carmel, CA 93923
P.O. Box 223358
Carmel, CA 93922-3358
Telephone: (831) 626-6711 Fax: (831) 626-6721

June 7, 2006

Meg Caldwell, Coastal Commission Chair
Stanford Law School
559 Nathan Abbott Way
Owen House Room 6
Stanford, CA 94305-8610

Dear Commissioner Caldwell:

Re: Monterey County LCP Amendment 1-05 (Measure A)
Subject: Letter from Anthony Lombardo to Meg Caldwell dated May 15, 2006,
Monterey County LCP Amendment 1-05 (Measure A) Mapping
Errors -- Exhibit 10 Recent Pebble Beach Company Correspondence


Dear Chair Caldwell:

In Mr. Lombardo’s letter of May 15, 2006, pages 2 and 3, he discusses at some length the definition of recreation contained in the Upper and Lower Sawmill Gulch scenic and conservation easements approved as a condition for the development of Spanish Bay Resort in the mid-1980’s. His purpose is to attempt to expand the definition of “recreation” beyond what one would reasonably infer by reading the easements. Unfortunately, Mr. Lombardo resorted to some creative editing in an attempt to prove his point.

For example, Mr. Lombardo has edited item F of the Lower Sawmill Gulch easement agreement as follows:

That scenic easement allows “use for recreational purposes and construction,
maintenance and repair, and use of facilities related to . . . recreational uses . . . “

The scenic and conservation easement entered into by the Pebble Beach Company and the County of Monterey as a condition of the Spanish Bay development permit states in Section I - Restrictions on Use:

Grantor covenants and agrees that no development or use of the Sawmill Borrow Site shall take place except the following-described development and uses: ( italics indicates words omitted by Mr. Lombardo)

F. Use for open space and recreational purposes and scientific study and the construction, maintenance, repair and use of facilities related to maintenance and use for open space, recreational and scientific study uses.

Mr. Lombardo has clearly edited Item F to imply that recreational purpose is the principal or significant allowed use in the Lower Sawmill site. Item F clearly includes open space and scientific study as well as recreational uses. When the term “recreational uses” is viewed in the context of the scenic easement its intent can only be low intensity uses; a fully developed, high intensity equestrian center would never be compatible with the easement’s intent.

Mr. Lombard has also taken this approach in his interpretation of the Upper Sawmill Gulch easement instituted by the Coastal Commission in 1987.

Mr. Lombardo goes on to state: “Each of these scenic easements thus allows recreational uses and facilities in a portion of the former Sawmill Quarry areas. While I recognize the staff has consistently taken the position that an equestrian center exceeds the scope of those allowed recreational activities, it cannot be denied that some level of recreational activity facility is allowed under the existing easements.” I take great exception to Mr. Lombardo’s attempt to create an impression that the scenic easements allow an expansive interpretation of the word “recreation”. This is his justification for the proposed Measure A zoning of “Open Space Recreation”. The existing “Open Space Forest” zoning on the Sawmill sites and the related scenic and conservation easements mutually support the concept of low intensity recreational uses, i.e., horse riding and hiking trails., etc.

I believe strongly that these easements, placed on the Sawmill sites as conditions for the approval of the Spanish Bay development, were conditioned with the words “preserved in perpetuity” for a purpose. Simply stated, the Sawmill sites should stay as the County of Monterey, Coastal Commission and Pebble Beach Company agreed upon in binding contractual obligations they all willingly signed. Mr. Lombardo is trying to undermine strength and purpose of these easements.

Please vote to uphold these easements and the “Open Space Forest” zoning on these two sites and find Measure A inconsistent with the Coastal Act.


Carl E. Nielsen

cc: Coastal Commissioners
      Dr. Charles Lester
      Rick Hyman
      Dan Carl








June 7, 2006

Khatchik Achadjian
California Coastal Commissioner
San Luis Obispo County Supervisor
1055 Monterey Street, Room D-430
San Luis Obispo, CA 93408

Subject: Protect the Del Monte Forest - Vote NO at the June 14th public hearing on the proposed Major Amendment No 1-05 to the Monterey County Local Coastal Program that changes Zoning and Policies to allow excessive expansion of commercial development projects in the Del Monte Forest

Dear Mr. Achadjian,

Congratulations on becoming one of the twelve California Coastal Commissioners.

Your predecessor, Dr. Dan Seacord, has received several letters from us expressing our strong opposition to the subject proposed Major Amendment No. 1-05 to the Monterey County Local Coastal Program/Del Monte Forest LUP.

Please carefully consider the enclosed material and the recent June 2nd Coastal Commission Staff Report/Recommendation before you vote at the June 14th public hearing in Santa Rosa.


Carl E. Nielsen

Ted R. Hunter

cc: Charles Lester, Dist.Dir; Dan Carl, Sr. Planner




California Coastal Commissioners
C/o California Coastal Commission
725 Front Street, Suite 300
Santa Cruz, CA 95060

April 4, 2006

Dear Commissioners:
Hearing Subject:
Extension of Time Limit for Coastal Commission Action on Proposed Monterey County Local Coastal Program (LCP) Major Amendment Number 1-05 (Measure A)



Please extend the time limit for Major Amendment Number 1-05 (Measure A).

Measure A and all of its ramifications are of great importance to the property owners and residents of the Del Monte Forest as well as the whole of the Monterey Peninsula. To fully explore the issues raised by Measure A the general public as well as the Commission need sufficient time to analyze and react to the Commission staff report.

/ss/                        /ss/
Ted R. Hunter       Carl E. Nielsen

Cc: Charles Lester, Deputy Director

CLICK here to download this Coastal Commission Public Hearing Notice (300KB pdf)



March 5, 2006
Charles Lester, Deputy District Director California Coastal Commission
725 Front Street, #300
Santa Cruz, CA 95060

Subject: Pebble Beach Company’s Measure “A” Initiative and Proposed Removal of
Historic Equestrian Center and Polo Field - The Community “Commons on
the Green”.

Dear Mr. Lester,

A copy of the enclosed letter concerning the destruction of the existing Equestrian Center and
Collins Polo Field to make room for another golf course in the Del Monte Forest was given to our organization by Mrs. Tagg.

As you know, our organization is opposed to the proposed excessive expansion of commercial
high-end visitor serving facilities in the Forest residential community. We believe the proposed destruction of the historic community public recreational center to allow for the construction of another exclusive and expensive golf course is in conflict with the California Coastal Act.

In your recommendations to the Commissioners please consider the following guide line:

“Article 2 - Public Access - Section 30213
Lower cost visitor and recreational facilities shall be protected, encouraged, and, when
feasible, provided. Developments providing public recreational opportunities are preferred.”

Thank you and your staff for keeping us informed on the Commission’s action on the proposed major changes in the Del Monte Forest Land Use Plan/LCP zoning and policies as described in the Measure “A” Initiative.


/ss/ Carl E. Nielsen       /ss/ Ted R. Hunter
cc: Peter Douglas, Exec. Dir.
Mr. & Mrs. J. Tagg
CR-PB & Monterey County Steering and Advisory Committees



March 2, 2006

California Coastal Commission
Attention: California Coastal Commissioners
Central Coast District Office
725 Front Street, Suite 300
Santa Cruz, CA 95060

Dear Commissioners:

Subject: Monterey County Local Coastal Program Major Amendment
Number 1-05 (Measure A) Agenda Item TH8b

The Concerned Residents of Pebble Beach and Monterey County are pleased to submit comments on Measure A for your consideration.

We recognize the Coastal Commission staff has produced a preliminary report and further review is necessary. This being the case we support their position that there be no Commission action at this hearing.

One significant Measure A issue involves rezoning major tracts of land to “Open Space Recreation” for golf purposes. Another is the Sawmill Gulch area zoning change from “Open Space Forest” to “Open Space Recreation” and the resulting conflicts with the Spanish Bay development conditions imposed on this site by both the County of Monterey and the California Coastal Commission. Finally, imbedded in Measure A is Appendix A, a 25 year old listing of specific species as endangered and making this list the governing ESHA definition. We believe that all of these Measure A-imposed changes are inconsistent with the California Coastal Act.

Rezoning of Area MNOUV for an 18-hole golf course and Area C for a golf driving range is inconsistent with the Coastal Act provisions defining Environmentally Sensitive Habitat Area (ESHA). It has always been our understanding that both these areas are ESHA because of the large, nearly intact stands of Monterey pines, the presence of wetlands, and the prevalence of endangered and rare plants and animals. The staff report clearly supports this position. This being the case, the “Open Space Recreation” zoning which allows for golf courses and related golf activities would be inconsistent with the Coastal Act.

When the County of Monterey and the Coastal Commission approved the Spanish Bay development in the mid-80’s the County imposed scenic and conservation easements on the Lower Sawmill Gulch site and the Commission imposed scenic and conservation easements on the Upper Sawmill Gulch site. The zoning was changed to “Open Space Forest” and the Upper Sawmill Gulch site was incorporated into the Huckleberry Hill Natural Habitat Area. These actions were intended to be in perpetuity.

Measure A has changed the zoning to “Open Space Recreation” which would allow an equestrian center. Construction of major equestrian-related facilities would be permitted. This would allow a substantial number of equestrian events, related vehicular traffic, and equestrian and special event parking. These uses are totally inconsistent with the easements and the Coastal Act since Huckleberry Hill Natural Habitat Area is clearly ESHA.

Finally, the inclusion of Appendix A, List of Environmentally Sensitive Habitat, in Measure A as the governing list is inconsistent with Coastal Act provisions. Title 20, Coastal Implementation Plan for Monterey County, in Section 20.147.020(AA) defines rare and endangered species as “those identified as rare, endangered and/or threatened by the State Department of Fish and Game, United States Department of Interior Fish and Wildlife Service, the California Native Plant Society and/or pursuant to the 1973 convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna.” This definition is consistent with the Coastal Act definition. This also means that the content of the list is not static but changes as species are added or dropped. Measure A’s Appendix A is static and therefore inconsistent with both the Monterey County Coastal Implementation Plan and the Coastal Act.

We feel there are a great many Measure A issues that need further exploration before you make your final decision.

We strongly recommend that you defer action on Measure A at the March 9th meeting and wait until the staff has completed its in-depth review.


/ss/ Carl E. Nielsen       /ss/ Ted R. Hunter
Cc: Charles Lester, Deputy Director
Rick Hyman, Central Coast Chief Planner
Dan Carl, Coastal Planner
CRPB Steering Committee



and Monterey County

a Non-Profit California Corporation

Dedicated to Preserving the Natural Environment and Quality of Life in Del Monte Forest and Peninsula Communities

August 10, 2005

Mr. Charles Lester, Deputy District Director
California Coastal Commission
725 Front St. #300
Santa Cruz, CA 95060

Subject: Pebble Beach Company’s pending Application - PLN040160 Amendment to
CDP PC-5040 (Spanish Bay Development) to Delete conditions for maintaining
Sawmill Borrow Site, & County Supervisors Resolution No. 05-063 to allow
new relocated Commercial Equestrian Center

Dear Mr. Lester,

On April 25, 2005 we forwarded to your office an Appeal From Coastal Permit Decision of Local Government document outlining reasons why the Pebble Beach Company’s proposed major projects in Del Monte Forest should not be approved.. We have learned that PLN040160, the subject proposed Amendment to the Spanish Bay Coastal Development Permit PC-5040 is not an item for coastal permit action and that the proposed changes to the Spanish Bay coastal permit must be submitted separately by the applicant (PB Co.) to the Coastal Commission staff.

Our organization is opposed to any amendment to Permit PC-5040 and changes in the conditions governing the Sawmill Borrow Site. Conditions of approval Number 8, 9 and 10 relating to grading, seeding and vegetation of the Sawmill Borrow and Conditions 13(s) and 13(t) relating to restoration and utilization of the Sawmill Borrow Site should NOT be deleted . We also oppose the action taken by County Supervisors in Resolution No. 05-063 to allow a new commercial Equestrian Center and special event parking on the Sawmill Borrow Site.

The existing Monterey County and Coastal Commission scenic easements on the Upper and Lower Sawmill sites should NOT be amended or deleted. They were established for the preservation of open space forest, re-vegetation and low intensity recreation. The easement documents clearly state... “a permanent conservation easement for preservation of natural and scenic resources”.

The use of the Sawmill Borrow site for a commercial equestrian center and special event parking will have an adverse impact on the environment and quality of the adjoining established residential areas in Del Monte Forest and Del Monte Park in Pacific Grove.

It is respectfully requested that the subject proposed amendment be denied.


/ss/ /ss/
Ted R. Hunter Carl E. Nielsen

cc: Peter Douglas, Exec. Director
California Coastal Commission
45 Freemont St. #2000
San Francisco, CA 94105-2219
CR-PB Steering and Advisory Committees