SAC Meeting Minutes February 3rd, 2006
MONTEREY BAY NATIONAL MARINE SANCTUARY
February 3, 2006
Asilomar Conference Grounds
Pacific Grove, CA
The Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary (MBNMS) Advisory Council met on Friday, February 3, 2005, in Asilomar, California. Public categories and government agencies were present as indicated:
|Agriculture: Kirk Schmidt
||CA State Parks: Dave Vincent
|AMBAG: Stephanie Harlan
||Conservation: Steve Shimek
|At-Large: PJ Webb
||Commercial Fishing: Thomas Canale
|At-Large: Mike Laffen
||Diving: Frank Degnan
|At-Large: Deborah Streeter
||Education: Tracey Weiss
|Business and Industry: Nancy Black
||Ports and Harbors: Steve Sheiblauer
|CA Coastal Commission: Tami Grove
||Recreation: Dan Haifley
|CA Dept. of Fish and Game: Paul Reilly
||Recreation Fishing: Howard Egan - ABSENT
|CA EPA: Russ Jeffries - ABSENT
||Research: Chris Harrold
CA Resources Agency: Leah Akins
|Tourism: Michael Bekker
The following non-voting members were present as indicated:
- Channel Islands NMS: Michael Murray
- Gulf of the Farallones NMS: Brian Johnson
- Cordell Bank NMS: Dan Howard - ABSENT
- Elkhorn Slough NERR: Becky Christensen
- Monterey Bay NMS: Karen Grimmer
- U.S. Coast Guard: LT Todd Moe - ABSENT
Alternates present in audience:
- Anjanette Adams - Business
- Robert Frischmuth - At-Large
- Cindy Walter - At-Large
- Harriet Middledorf - At-Large
- Steve Clark - Education
- Libby Downey - AMBAG
- Randy Herz - Diving
I. CALL TO ORDER, ROLL CALL, APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Lynne Kay and Pam Aramis of California State Parks, welcomed the Advisory Council to the Asilomar Conference Center in Pacific Grove.
APPROVAL OF 12/3/04 DRAFT MEETING NOTES
The Advisory Council adopted the minutes from the December 3, 2004 Sanctuary Advisory Council meeting with no changes.
Motion introduced by Dan Haifley, seconded by Chris Harrold (Vote: 12 in favor, 0 opposed, 0 abstentions)
APPROVAL OF 10/7/05 DRAFT MEETING NOTES
MOTION: (Passed) The Advisory Council adopted the minutes from the October 7, 2005 Sanctuary Advisory Council meeting with the following change: Page 2, paragraph 1: remove Cindy Walter.
Motion introduced by Chris Harrold, seconded by Tracy Weiss (Vote: 8 in favor, 0 opposed, 5 abstentions)
POSSIBLE CHANGE IN ADVISORY COUNCIL SCHEDULE
Due to the fact that the CA Fish and Game Commission meetings are primarily on the same days as the Advisory Council meetings, some Advisory Council members involved in the state’s Marine Life Protection Act will not be able to attend some Advisory Council meetings in 2006.
After much discussion, the Advisory Council decided to poll the entire Advisory Council by email to see if the Advisory Council meetings could be moved from the first Friday of the month. Possible changes included: third or fourth Friday of the month, Wednesdays, or evening meetings. The Advisory Council will make their final decision at the April meeting.
Brian Johnson (Asst. Manager, GFNMS) commented there was a scheduling conflict for the December joint meeting with GFNMS. The Advisory Councils need to figure out which date works best (Dec. 1 or 8).
HARBOR SEAT TRANSITION
Deborah explained the Harbor seat rotation process. Every two years the harbor seats rotate in and out of the Advisory Council. She announced that Steve Scheiblauer (primary) and Linda McIntyre (alternate) would be the Harbor representatives for the next two years. There was discussion of potentially changing the Advisory Council Charter to reflect the shifting of the representation of Pillar Point Harbor to the GFNMS. Deborah felt this was a good discussion topic for the upcoming December joint meeting.
NEW MBNMS STAFF INTRODUCTIONS
Karen Grimmer (Acting Superintendent, MBNMS) introduced Sophie De Beukelaer (GIS Analyst), Paul Householder (Marine Operations Coordinator), and Lorraine Anglin, a Sea Grant Fellow working with SIMoN.
II. PUBLIC COMMENT FOR ITEMS NOT ON THE AGENDA
David Dillworth of Helping Our Peninsulas and Environment (HOPE) had two issues to discuss: 1) The concept of Responsibility Reversal, or blaming the victim. David mentioned this in regards to the MLPA process and felt that this process can be corrupted. 2) Solutions to Oil Spills through the use of fuel bladders. He discussed their use versus the use of fuel tanks to prevent oil spills. David requested that the Advisory Council add to the agenda a discussion of the paper (written by HOPE) “Preventing Oil-Tanker Spills with Aircraft Technology” which addresses this concept.
III. PRESENTATION OF COMMERCIAL FISHING – TROLL FISHERIES
Tom Canale (Commercial Fishing) prepared a presentation on the Troll Fishing industry. Unfortunately data files did not transfer and he was unable to present. The presentation was postponed to the April meeting.
IV. MBNMS TRANSITION/FY 06 BUDGET
Karen Grimmer gave a brief overview of the West Coast Regional office opening, staffing, logistics, etc. Nicole Capps (Regional Coordinator) followed with a short discussion about her new role. Karen explained Bill Douros’ new role as Acting Regional Superintendent. If Bill is selected for the permanent position, recruitment for the MBMS Superintendent will begin. In the meantime, Karen will be acting Superintendent until July when Holly Price will be taking over.
Budget FY 06 Karen gave a presentation showing National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) budgets for FY05 and FY06, depicting an approximate 30% loss in Program Base funding. This was followed by a slide depicting MBNMS Base Budget with a breakdown including PAC funds and Indirect Benefits (from NMSP Headquarters).
Stephanie Harlan (Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments - AMBAG) suggested that individuals write Senator Feinstein and Congressman Farr to ask that Program Base funding be reinstated to full allocation as well as ask any other groups the Sanctuary community might be associated with to write group and/or representative letters. Stephanie offered sample letters and talking points.
V. 2006 MEETING PLANNING
October Retreat Deborah asked for volunteers who might be interested in planning. Margaret Webb (At-Large), Stephanie, and Chris Harrold (Research) volunteered for the planning committee. It was suggested that the Advisory Council might focus the retreat around the release of the final Management Plan.
Possible field-trips Deborah suggested field trips during non-meeting months beginning with May. After discussion, the Advisory Council came up with the following ideas: a kayak trip through Elkhorn Slough (Becky Christensen), the Slough Safari for the group to take a boat tour, or an interpretive walking/ hiking slough tour, a trip on the Fulmar in July, a snorkeling trip (Frank Degnan), a whale watching tour (Nancy Black), a kayak trip (Anjanette Adams), a Point Sur lighthouse tour (Robert Frischmuth), leatherback turtle watching (Barbara Block), a Camp Sea Lab tour (Tracy Weiss), and a Pigeon Point light station tour (Dave Vincent).
VI. MARINE LIFE PROTECTION ACT (MLPA) UPDATE
Paul Reilly (CA Department of Fish and Game) said the Blue Ribbon Task Force (BRTF) meeting was well attended. A summary of fishery closures and fishery management regulation changes in central coast state waters was presented. Studies indicate that most overfished lingcod and rockfish stocks were reported to be in recovery or ahead of schedule. A discussion occurred about four packages proposed by stakeholders for Marine Protected Areas, encompassing between 17 and 27% of state waters in the study region. The goal of each package is to offer protection of representative habitats and ecosystems. However, analysis is complex due to habitat placement, shifting fishing patterns, the stated importance of fishing grounds, etc. Package #1 proposed the least amount of potential negative economic impact. Modifications to existing packages were suggested as opposed to creating new packages. The issue of kelp bed leases occurring in areas where MPAs were proposed was also discussed. More information is available on the web at: www.dfg.ca.gov/mrd/mlpa There will be a March 14-15 BRTF meeting in Seaside to further discuss the MPA package proposals. Paul said the focus of the next meeting is for the BRTF to discuss the packages and recommend which ones should be forwarded to the Department. The Department will present package alternatives, including a preferred alternative, to the Fish and Game Commission in May, and the Commission may adopt a network component of new central coast MPAs in November, after a series of public hearings.
VII. CALIFORNIA OCEAN PROTECTION COUNCIL (COPC) UPDATE
Leah Akins (CA Resources Agency) stated major progress in implementing the Ocean Action Plan and they were working to get federal implementation. In California they are planning the upcoming World Ocean Conference and have released the World Ocean Economy Report. Their next meeting will be held in April in Sacramento. The COPC has $26 million in funding, held four public meetings, and sent a letter requesting a moratorium on offshore oil drilling. At present, $16 million in projects have been approved. A few examples of projects are: State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) rapid water quality indicators projects, seafloor mapping initiative, funds for research partners w/ Sea Grant, ROV for Channel Islands, oyster habitat protection in San Francisco Bay, and derelict fishing gear removal project.
COPC is looking for an executive officer and is currently working on a Strategic Plan: Draft Outline.
VIII. GROUP PHOTO / LUNCH
IX. CLARIFICATION ON CONSULTATION / COORDINATION PROCESS BETWEEN NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE, FISHERY MANAGEMENT COUNCILS, AND NATIONAL MARINE SANCTUARY PROGRAM
Holly Price presented a NOAA draft document "Clarification on Consultation/Coordination Process between National Marine Fisheries Service, Fishery Management Councils, and National Marine Sanctuary Program." A discussion followed with the Advisory Council members feeling it appropriate to comment on the draft flowchart. It was further stated that all Advisory Council members’ comments need not be in agreement, just put together in one comment letter.
This document attempts to describe the current coordination process between these agencies and does not create new authorities or regulations.
The Advisory Council agreed to set aside time at the April 7 Advisory Council meeting to review a draft comment letter. Advisory Council members agreed to submit suggested wording of individual comments beforehand, in order to have a draft to work with at the meeting. The deadline to receive comments on the document is April 30.
Public comment: Kathy Fosmark (Alliance of Communities for Sustainable Fisheries) thought it would be helpful for the Advisory Council to have a copy of the MSA.
X. RESPONSE TO VICE-ADMIRAL LAUTENBACHER’S OCTOBER LETTER ON FISHERIES DECISION **POSSIBLE ACTION **
Deborah commented that this topic had been covered sufficiently in the previous agenda item.
XI. MANAGEMENT PLAN UPDATE
Karen announced Sean Morton is on detail at headquarters in Washington DC and will now be the National Oceans Service Liaison to brief the Admiral.
Karen provided a historical brief on the Joint Management Plan Review process involving GFNMS and CBNMS from 2001 to the present. After the scheduled document release (Summer 2006) and a 60-day review with five public hearings, and two staff briefings for the Advisory Council approximately 10 days after release, a final Management Plan will be developed.
The Advisory Council again voiced concern over the fact that it has taken 6 years to create a 5-year management plan, and that as a result we need to start scoping already for the next plan. The point was raised that in the future the Management Plan will just be updated and not completely recreated.
It was commented that the public hearings were an opportunity to reeducate the public and raise consciousness about the Sanctuary and the Management Plan. Other plans for raising public awareness include a ‘communications package/ roll-out,’ community events, a PSA, etc.
Michael Bekker (Tourism) announced the Monterey County Hospitality Association will host a seminar on “Why Sustainable and Organic Means Business to You.” The meeting will be presented by the Monterey Bay Aquarium and Seafood Watch on February 15, 4-5:30p at Heritage Harbor in Monterey.
Stephanie Harlan announced an AMBAG grant that will be doing desalination-related studies and will provide interesting information with ‘what if’ scenarios. She suggested Brad Damitz (MBNMS Environmental Policy Water Specialist) present to the Advisory Council with findings.
Margaret Webb (At-Large) addressed the Bureau of Reclamation Estero Bay project. She hoped an ocean disposal alternative would hopefully be off the table. There was an oil spill south of the dunes at Guadalupe Dunes. The elephant seal rookery at Piedras Blancas is in full swing. Morro Bay was granted $5,000 for ecosystem-based management to keep its waters clean. There is a new triage facility for bird washing at the Duke power plant (Morro Bay) for oil spills.
Steve Shimek (Conservation) discussed highlights from the GFNMS January12 Advisory Council meeting. One GFNMS member (Brenda) wants the entire “donut hole” area brought into the Sanctuary or tightened considerably. She believes many residents of communities like Pacifica would embrace Sanctuary protections. There was a presentation on the Mavericks surf contest regarding surfers paddling out with the use of MPWCs only for safety.
Brian Johnson announced that Brenda was asked to be the lead on looking into the donut hole issue. The Mavericks surf contest is scheduled. A Memorandum of Understanding was signed with the event manager. The Sanctuary program will have monitors for the event. He thanked Scott Kathey for redeploying a GFNMS buoy. SIMoN is expanding north through a National Marine Sanctuary Foundation grant. Lastly, GFNMS is putting $50,000 into the Fulmar production from its operations budget.
Chris Harrold (Research) announced that Wal-Mart has agreed to implement a sustainable seafood-purchasing plan over the next three years. Also, on March 4 is the Sanctuary Symposium: “Marine Protected Areas: New Strategies for Healthy Oceans.”
Steve Scheiblauer announced that the Monterey City Council will have an informational session on each proposed MPA package under the MLPA and there will be a public meeting on February 22nd at 4pm.
Randy Herz (Diving) announced an artificial reef proposal. A couple of months ago Monterey was voted as one of top 10 diving destinations. In a recent issue of SCUBA Diving magazine Monterey was listed several times as a top dive destination. He wishes to create an artificial reef in northern California and to present his proposal to the Advisory Council. Randy would like to see it in the Monterey Bay area, such as off Sand City.
Robert Frischmuth (At-Large) announced a new group – “Sustainable Monterey County,” which will be meeting March 9 at the Central Ave Bakery.
Nicole Capps announced Amendment #3 to the Advisory Council charter is to be attached to the charter until 2008, when it will be included into the revised charter.
XIII. ADJOURN NEXT MEETING: April 7, 2006, Salinas The meeting
adjourned at 3:15 p.m.
Sanctuary Advisory Council Coordinator