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LA Times: “The beach belongs to everybody. Not just the rich and famous and the mainstream enviros.” Gov. Brown mute.

“We’ve made tremendous progress under Dr. Lester,” said lawyer Robert Garcia of the City Project, which has fought for beach access in Malibu and other areas where private property owners have used guards, bogus signs and parking restrictions to keep citizens off public beaches. “The beach belongs to everybody. Not just the rich and famous and the mainstream enviros.”

Fifty environmental and social justice groups say that Lester’s five-year record of interpreting and enforcing the Coastal Act is a good one. That coalition made its feelings known Tuesday in a sharply worded letter delivered to commission Chairman Steve Kinsey and state leaders.

“We are deeply concerned over the unjustified and misguided attempt currently under way to oust Dr. Lester,” said the letter from representatives of the Natural Resources Defense Council, Heal the Bay and dozens of other groups. . . .

The gang of 50 enviro groups’ letter also blows away any suggestion that Lester’s been sitting on a beach sunning himself.

Among the accomplishments it cites:

New penalties for those who illegally deny beach access.

A massive blueprint for helping local communities plan for sea-level rise.

The updating of local coastal plans up and down the state.

Reduced process times for permits and appeals.

Creation of a database so the public can get information on projects in the works.

Treating beach access for low-income and minority residents as a civil rights issue.

“We’ve made tremendous progress under Dr. Lester,” said lawyer Robert Garcia of the City Project, which has fought for beach access in Malibu and other areas where private property owners have used guards, bogus signs and parking restrictions to keep citizens off public beaches. “The beach belongs to everybody. Not just the rich and famous and the mainstream enviros.”

Read the rest of this column by Steve Lopez in the L.A. Times

Read the letter from over fifty diverse allies to Steve Kinsey, Chair of the California Coastal Commission, and elected state leaders. En español

Speak up at the Coastal Commission hearing February 10, 2016.

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 Partial list.

Illegal signs proclaimed public beach private property in Malibu.