Sunday, February 15, 2009

State of the City 2009: Mayor Misrepresented City’s Areas of Special Biological Significance (ASBS) ‘Exception

ABSTRACT: At the 3 February 2009 City Council Meeting, Mayor Sue McCloud presented the “State of the City 2009: PROGRESS ON ACHIEVING COUNCIL OBJECTIVES, January 2009.” On ASBS, she stated that “The City was granted an ‘exception’ by the State Water Resources Control Board. This means the City is in compliance with all of the storm water and ASBS permit requirements.” Yet, according to Connie Anderson, Environmental Scientist, Ocean Unit, State Water Resources Control Board, Division of Water Quality, the City of Carmel-by-the-Sea is currently “out-of-compliance” and the State Water Resources Control Board has yet to consider and vote on the “General Exception,” which includes the City of Carmel-by-the-Sea. BACKGROUND is presented for the purpose of explaining the term “exception,” which was adopted by the State legislature in the late 1960s. An Overview of “General Exception” Process and Status Description of the Ocean Plan “General Exception” for the City of Carmel-by-the-Sea Waste Discharge into the Carmel Bay ASBS are presented. Finally an ADDENDUM consisting of links to relevant documents is provided.

BACKGROUND: In the context of State Water Quality Protection Areas – Areas of Special Biological Significance, the term “exception” does not mean that dischargers are exempt from complying with the California Ocean Plan. Rather, “exception” means the State Water Resources Control Board and the Regional Water Quality Control Boards have regulatory authority to establish terms and conditions of compliance on dischargers. For example, the Exception to the California Ocean Plan (Ocean Plan) for the University of California, Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory Discharge into the Bodega Area of Special Biological Significance, consists of twenty-one stringent “terms and conditions” which the University of California, Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory, must comply with to be in compliance with the law.

State of the City 2009: Mayor Misrepresented City’s Areas of Special Biological Significance (ASBS) ‘Exception:
At the 3 February 2009 City Council Meeting, Mayor Sue McCloud presented the “State of the City 2009: PROGRESS ON ACHIEVING COUNCIL OBJECTIVES, January 2009.” For the 2008/09 Budget Year, Mayor McCloud addressed five priority goals, including “requirements for Areas of Special Biological Significance (ASBS).” On ASBS, she stated, as follows:

Areas of Special Biological Significance (ASBS): The City was granted an “exception” by the State Water Resources Control Board. This means the City is in compliance with all of the storm water and ASBS permit requirements.

Yet, according to Connie Anderson, Environmental Scientist, Ocean Unit, State Water Resources Control Board, Division of Water Quality, the City of Carmel-by-the-Sea is currently “out-of-compliance.” Furthermore, the State Water Resources Control Board has yet to consider and vote on a “General Exception,” which includes 30 dischargers, including the City of Carmel-by-the-Sea.

Overview of “General Exception” Process:
Discharger:
Submission of Monitoring Data & Application Package
State Water Board Staff
CEQA Data Analysis & Preparation of Initial Study (Environmental Document)
Public Review of Initial Study (45 days)
Public Hearing
Board Meeting/Vote

Status Description of the Ocean Plan “General Exception” for the City of Carmel-by-the-Sea Waste Discharge into the Carmel Bay ASBS:
Presently, the State Water Board Staff is finalizing the Mitigated Negative Declaration for a “General Exception,” which includes thirty dischargers, including the City of Carmel-by-the-Sea. These thirty dischargers have in common that they have not been regulated previously and their discharge is similar, i.e., stormwater, et cetera. The Mitigated Negative Declaration is expected to have more terms and conditions and be more stringent than the “Exception” for the University of California, Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory. Once the Mitigated Negative Declaration is finalized, the environmental document will be released to the public for review and comment. It is anticipated that the public review and comment period will be longer than the usual 45 days, probably extended to 60 days. There will then be a public hearing and the State Water Resources Control Board will deliberate and vote on the “General Exception” at a meeting in May or June 2009. If the State Water Resources Board approves the “General Exception,” then the Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board may add additional terms and conditions to the “General Exception.”

NOTE: Special thanks to Connie Anderson, Environmental Scientist, Ocean Unit, State Water Resources Control Board, Division of Water Quality, for taking the time to share her expertise.

ADDENDUM:
State of the City 2009
PROGRESS ON ACHIEVING COUNCIL OBJECTIVES
January 2009


Archived Videos
Regular City Council Meeting February 03, 2009

California Ocean Plan Discharges to Areas of Special Biological Significance
—Update on ASBS Regulatory and Monitoring Efforts
Prop 84 ASBS Grants Program S coping Workshop
September 25, 2007
October 10, 2007
Constance S. Anderson, Environmental Scientist, Ocean Unit, State Water Resources Control Board, Division of Water Quality


MITIGATED NEGATIVE DECLARATION
Pursuant to Section 21080(c) Public Resources Code
Exception to the California Ocean Plan (Ocean Plan) for the University of California, Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory Discharge into the Bodega Area of Special Biological Significance


Ocean Standards
State Water Quality Protection Areas – Areas of Special Biological Significance


Ocean Plan ASBS Exceptions. What are they? Why do you want one? How do you get one?

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Mayor McCloud is infamous among people, who pay attention to Carmel politics, for her lies and misinformation. Sadly she gets away with it far too often because a large percentage of our residents and business people take her at her word without checking for the facts.

Anonymous said...

If the past is anything to go by, once the restrictions of the General Exception are established we can expect the mayor and city council to ignore them because the state doesn't have the will or staff to enforce them.

Anonymous said...

Oh boy, she's at it again is she? Misleading, mischaracterizing, mis everything. When will it ever stop? I guess she thinks she is very clever, telling one lie among some facts, or some lies among one fact, so how does the unknowing public know whether what she says is true, false or a combination of true and false?

Anonymous said...

Sue McCloud is a fundamentally dishonest person. She is dishonest with the public and dishonest with herself. She confuses what she wants for herself with what is best for all of us.
I posit this example is one example among many where she fabricates information to suit her agenda. It must be true because I want it to be true, now.
I would add her fellow council persons to often take her at her word, when they should know by now she is veracity challenged.

James said...

Now we know we have a one person council here in Carmel. The other four are just window dressing. I don’t suppose the lauded Carmel Pine Cone will cover this Sue McCloud embarrassing moment. Nah.