Thursday, January 17, 2008



Stefanie Sekich
Surfrider Foundation
San Clemente, CA 92674-6010
Phone 1:800-743-SURF / Fax (949) 492-8142


Governor Announces Support For Environmentally Harmful Road

San Clemente, CA (January 16, 2008) – Yesterday, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger issued a letter in support of the proposed 241 toll road extension in South Orange County. The letter was issued just two weeks before a critical vote by the California Coastal Commission to determine if the proposed extension violates the California Coastal Act. A staff report prepared by the CCC concludes that it does.

“We are absolutely taken aback by this,” said Surfrider Foundation CEO Jim Moriarty. “For the Governor to take this unprecedented step of interfering with the workings of an independent and non-political commission, an entity which was established by California voters and whose sole responsibility is to decide the future of California’s coasts and beaches based on law and fact, is entirely inappropriate.”

The disappointing announcement comes just six days after the California Governor unveiled his plans to close forty-eight California State Parks, allow for the early release of prisoners from state correctional facilities, and raise Department of Motor Vehicle fees.

“We had hoped that Governor Schwarzenegger was insincere in his threat to close state parks and beaches,” says Moriarty. “It now appears that he is absolutely intent on sacrificing our state park system and natural resources for his political objectives.”

The California State Parks Department has maintained that they may be forced to abandon nearly sixty percent of San Onofre State Beach Park, including the popular San Mateo Creek Campground, should the proposed extension to the 241 toll road be completed,

Governor Schwarzenegger’s failure to support San Onofre State Beach Park by endorsing the 241 toll road extension is in direct contrast to the efforts of his Republican predecessors, President Richard M. Nixon and then-Governor Ronald Reagan, both of whom worked to establish San Onofre State Beach as a part of their legacy; hoping that it would exist as a resource to be used and enjoyed by future generations.

The Surfrider Foundation activists and other opponents to the planned toll road will be gathering in Oceanside, California on February 6th for a planned rally outside the California Coastal Commission hearing. All members of the public are invited to attend. Please go to for more information.

About the Surfrider Foundation

The Surfrider Foundation is a non-profit grassroots organization dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of our world’s oceans, waves and beaches. Founded in 1984 by a handful of visionary surfers in Malibu, California, the Surfrider Foundation now maintains over 50,000 members and 80 chapters worldwide. For more information on the Surfrider Foundation, go to



gregt said...

What a bunch on BS... I cannot believe that anyone would demonstrate such a lack of responsibility in looking out for the best interests of the public. Money comes and goes, but our natural resources can not be reproduced. I am not sure what he is thinking, but i hope this is a sign that voters figure out and start voting against measures and politicians that threaten our environment.

brian katz said...

Let the gov know how you feel at
or email him at
info at joinarnold dot com.
And let neutral news outlets and online blogs know about it too, so we're not just preaching to the choir...
.. here's my letter to the gov.

Here's what i wrote:
I am writing to express my extreme disappointment in your recent decision to draft a letter of support for the proposed Foothill South Route 241 Toll Road Extension, which will be built in South Orange and North San Diego Counties.
I, and a great, great number of my fellow Calfornians, do not want to see this road built. We know it will have a severe impact on the quality of life in Southern California by negatively affecting public recreational and environmental areas, like San Onofre State Park, and Trestles Beach.
I have spent the past 3 years working with 1000s of other citizens to try and stop this unneccessary and deceptively marketed project. I have been to public meetings where amazing numbers of people of all sorts waited for hours to express their opposition. I have written letters. I have signed petitions and joined campaigns. I have made phone calls. I know 1000s of others have also. I know there is a huge movement of people against this road. And there is every indication that there is no equivalent public movement on "the other side". I have seen this personally, for example, when i go to a hearing at which almost 1000 people, with businesses, families, and concerns, spend energy and time to make their feelings and thoughts known, while only a handful of individuals, almost all of them representing the TCA and a very small contingent of businesses who would directly profit financially from its construction, had anything to say in support of it.
Past toll roads like this have proven to be economic losses, and have not solved any transportation problems. Once I drove the 73 through Orange County. It was so barren as to be depressing. Perhaps the trickle of traffic was flowing nicely, but it was at the expense of so much tax money and so much otherwise unsuburbanized land, that I was ashamed to be on it.
The TCA's remediations for the damage this toll road would cause strike me as specious and unsatisfactory. I do not trust them, and I do not believe they will work. The only way to remediate is not to destroy.
Referencing your letter, how will they "[protect] surf conditions at Trestles Beach"? What penalties will there be if they fail to do it? Remediation promises like this are hollow. They won't work both because there's no incentive for them to work, and because nature is not as simple to control and predict as is a line of apshalt.
It is strange that you send this support letter mentioning a small number of visitors at San Onofre state beach at the same time you propose a closure or reduction in operations of 48 state parks. I can't believe you consider San Onfofre a park with a "[low] number of visitors". Have you ever visited on a sunny summer day? You will not get in if you come after 10am. It is packed. Perhaps you could wait until June to visit it, and then make your decision.
Governor, I voted for you and I have defended you to my friends and colleagues who dislike you because you are a Republican, or you are too conservative, or because they think you are just acting, or for whatever reason. I have seen you as a friend of the environement, a reasonable, intelligent man, and someone I can trust as leader of my state. But this is one issue where I will reconsider all that, because I have put my soul into protecting my beaches and surf breaks. We do not need the road, we do not want the road, it benefits the few, and harms the many.
I cannot agree with you or any person on everything. But if you continue to support this toll road extension and do not reverse your support for it, I will not be able to support you, in any way. This issue is too close to my heart and too clear in its morality. I would like to be able to be proud of my state, and to continue to have faith in you. But without a reversal, I won't be able to. You will lose me.

Anonymous said...

FYI everyone... the governator was in Chula Vista today.

Anonymous said...

I sent this to the OC Register today.
Open letter to the Governor:

Two years ago in the Governor's chambers, you looked a small group of us in the face and told us that you and Maria and the kids loved the ocean; the beaches. You regaled us with stories of growing up in Austria among the beautiful mountains, streams, and open spaces. You told us you loved California for many of the same reasons. Apparently you are willing to trade future generations' ability to enjoy some of Soutern California's last open spaces for developers' blood money. We know the 241 will not only not relieve traffic congestion, but create more once the land in around the San Mateo Creek watershed is developed. Congratulations: just as Ronald Reagan left his legacy in this region by creating San Onofre State Park in 1971, you too will leave yours by condoning the paving over of it along with some of Southern California's last coastal open space.

Brian Alper
South Orange County, California

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Governor Schwarzenegger was a Republic for about 1 comparing him to other republican governors is incorrect. Since the recall of Davis, he has done a 180 on almost every issue and has continued to cater to special interest groups. Spending is at an all-time high with the Terminator. It is time to terminate his reign as Governor.

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