SAC Meeting Minutes August 17th, 2007
MONTEREY BAY NATIONAL MARINE SANCTUARY
ADVISORY COUNCIL MEETING
August 17, 2007
Salinas Community Center
The Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary (MBNMS) Advisory Council met on Friday, August 17, 2007, in Salinas, California. Public categories and government agencies were present as indicated:
Council & Staff
|Agriculture: Kirk Schmidt
||CA State Parks: Dave Vincent
|AMBAG: Libby Downey
||Commercial Fishing: Thomas Canale
|At-Large: Margaret Webb
||Conservation: Kaitilin Gaffney
|At-Large: Mike Laffen - ABSENT
||Diving: Frank Degnan
|At-Large: Deborah Streeter
||Education: Shauna Potocky
|Business and Industry: Cynthia Walter
||Ports and Harbors: Steve Sheiblauer
|CA Coastal Commission: Charles Lester
||Recreation: Rexford Keyes
|CA Dept. of Fish and Game: Paul Reilly
||Recreation Fishing: Howard Egan - ABSENT
|CA EPA: Russ Jeffries
||Research: Chris Harrold
|CA Resources Agency: Brian Baird - ABSENT
||Tourism: Michael Bekker
The following non-voting members were present as indicated:
- Channel Islands NMS: Michael Murray - ABSENT
- Gulf of the Farallones NMS: Maria Brown - ABSENT
- Cordell Bank NMS: Dan Howard - ABSENT
- Elkhorn Slough NERR: Becky Christensen - ABSENT
- Monterey Bay NMS: Paul Michel
- U.S. Coast Guard: Capt. David Swatland
Alternates present in audience:
- Lawrence Breaker - Research
- Tim Frahm - Agriculture
- Matt Fuzie - CA State Parks
- Randy Herz - Diving
- Steve Shimek - Conservation
I. CALL TO ORDER, ROLL CALL, APPROVAL OF MINUTES, WELCOME
WELCOME FROM SALINAS MAYOR, DENNIS DONOHUE
Mayor Dennis Donohue welcomed the Advisory Council to Salinas.
APPROVAL OF 06/15/07 DRAFT MEETING NOTES
The Advisory Council adopted the minutes from the June 15, 2007 Sanctuary Advisory Council meeting, accepting changes as submitted by Steve Scheiblauer. Motion introduced by Robert Frischmuth, seconded by Dave Vincent (Vote: 16 in favor, 0 opposed)
II. SWEAR IN OF NEW MEMBERS
Paul Michel, Sanctuary Superintendent, swore in Kathy Fosmark, commercial fishing, Shauna Potocky, education, and Cynthia Walter, business and industry, as new members of the Advisory Council.
Kathy, Shauna and Cynthia provided the Advisory Council their interests in applying for their seats.
III. UPDATE ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBER RECRUITMENT
Nicole Capps, Advisory Council Coordinator, discussed the need to recruit for four seats that expire in February 2008 and for the business and industry alternate. A recommendation subcommittee, comprised of: Cynthia Walter, Steve Scheiblauer, Kaitilin Gaffney and Chris Harrold, was established to meet sometime in November.
Dave Vincent, CA State Parks, announced that he will retire after 33 years of service at the end of September. Mat Fuzie, CA State Parks, will be filling in the role of primary until a final decision is made by CA State Parks.
IV. PUBLIC COMMENT FOR ITEMS NOT ON THE AGENDA
Bonnie Van Hise, Congressman Farr’s office, provided updates on recent bills of interest to Congressman Farr.
Tim Frahm, San Mateo County Farm bureau, announced that the prior weekend was the San Mateo County Farm Bureau’s dinner and barbecue. Both Congressman Farr and Congresswoman Eshoo were invited and were recognized for their efforts in agriculture.
V. UPDATE: MARINE PROTECTED AREAS ALTERNATIVES
Huff McGonigal provided a presentation on the MBMS Marine Protected Areas (MPA) working group and how the Advisory Council will assist sanctuary staff on determining the need for MPAs in federal waters.
After much discussion, it was determined that at the next two advisory council meetings, presentations would be given by the state and federal agencies and the user groups; fishing, conservation and from scientists. The Advisory Council will provide their advice to sanctuary staff at the December meeting and a decision on need will be made at the February meeting.
The Advisory Council requested that ten days prior to each meeting, an executive summary of each presentation would be sent to the advisory council for their review.
VI. EDUCATIONAL BRIEFING: SURF PERCH
Ken Oda, California Department of Fish and Game biologist, provided an informative presentation on the surf perch fishery.
VII. WORKING GROUP UPDATES
Shauna Potocky, Sanctuary Education Panel (SEP) Chair, proposed the advisory council write a letter to sanctuary staff regarding funding for the MERITO program. She passed around a letter the SEP addressed to Deborah Streeter, Advisory Council Chair, encouraging support to restore funding for MERITO.
Dawn Hayes, Education and Outreach Coordinator, explained where the funding for MERITO comes from. The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) cut funding for MERITO this past fiscal year. Dawn’s suggestion for the advisory council would be to copy Paul Michel, Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Superintendent, on a letter to Dan Basta, NMSP Director. MERITO would need a minimum of $150,000 to just keep the staff employed.
After some discussion, the advisory council did not feel that they could vote on a letter at this time. They requested a full presentation on MERITO be put on the October meeting agenda.
Kaitilin Gaffney, Conservation Working Group (CWG) Chair, stated the CWG has been discussing their priorities for the upcoming year. The groups’ priority over the next several months will be marine protected areas.
Chris Harrold, Research Activity Panel (RAP) Chair, stated the RAP has received a presentation from UCSC staff, on marine mortalities in Northern California of harmful algal blooms. There are two forms, shellfish poisoning and domoic acid. This topic will be a focus for the RAP a little further down the line. Also, the RAP has worked on research priorities for the MBNMS. They listed items that they feel should be concentrated on by MBNMS staff. He mentioned that there were several items that were not on the list: a holistic understanding of sediment transport, trophic linkages, harmful algal blooms and oceanic regime shifts. He also commented that the SIMoN program should get more funding.
Deborah Streeter, inquired about the next educational briefing. Paul Reilly suggested a presentation by a UCSC professor on dinoflagellates.
Cynthia Walter, Business and Industry primary, and Michael Bekker, Tourism primary, talked about business and tourism in the Monterey area. Hotels are doing well on rates, but occupancy is down. Retail is also down in the Monterey area. Attendance on the road is up, but they are just visitors coming down for the day. People are spending less money, but they are coming back. The average number of times an individual has visited Cannery Row is 18 times.
Cynthia commented that there has been more Europeans, particularly Italians, throughout the season visiting the area.
Kirk Schimdt, Agriculture primary, announced that the Farm tour on September 21st, needs a charter bus, as the advisory council will be visiting several locations.
IX. MARINE LIFE PROTECTION ACT UPDATE
Paul Reilly, California Department of Fish and Game, provided an update on the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA).
The North Central coast is going concurrently with the South Central coast. Ecotrust has been obtained again to enhance what they did in the Central Coast, to obtain more economic data.
It was asked what’s different about this current process that was learned from the Central Coast process? Paul responded that the pace will still be compressed, but they will spread out the stakeholder meetings to give them more time to make decisions. It will give the Department of Fish and Game a chance to respond to task force comments. The stakeholder group is smaller and more manageable. The task force is smaller, as well as, the science committee is smaller. In all, the process is generally the same. The Department of Fish and Game will not be running for an alternative to the Fish and Game commission this time.
X. OCEAN PROTECTION COUNCIL GRANT PROPOSAL
Dawn Hayes, Education Coordinator, announced that the Ocean Protection Council (OPC) declined the proposal to help the MLPA process with their education and outreach. Staff is trying to get them to reconsider the proposal. Staff was asking if the Advisory Council could send a letter to support the funding of this grant.
Dawn elaborated that this is over $1 million over several years. She explained what has been effective in CINMS and how we can use it up here. Without this grant, the Latino community would not be reached.
After discussion, the Advisory Council decided that as a whole, they would not write a letter, but if individual advisory council members wanted, they could write letters to the OPC.
XI. UPDATE: MARINE PROTECTED AREAS (CONTINUED)
Huff provided additional information on the upcoming process for MPAs in federal waters given the comments provided by the Advisory Council earlier in the morning.
Steve Scheiblauer, Harbors primary, asked that 15 minutes be provided for the alternative process, supported by the Alliance of Communities for Sustainable Fisheries.
It was recommended that Scheiblauer send out an email to the advisory council with a write up of the alternative process and can speak to it at the October meeting when Deborah goes around the table for comments.
It was determined that the meeting in December will be held on the 13th and 14th.
XII. EDUCATIONAL BRIEFING: UPDATE ON MBNMS FIREWORKS PROCESS
Deirdre Hall, Permit Coordinator, provided a presentation on the fireworks permit process for the MBNMS. Shannon Beltrain from the City of Monterey, was also present and provided information, as well as, fielded questions.
Deirdre explained that this year, the day before and after the fireworks display for July 4th, a company hired by the MBNMS surveyed the beaches the day before and after. This was required this year by the National Marine Fisheries Service.
It was asked how the MBNMS could justify permitting these fireworks when a sea lion haulout is right below the fireworks? Since this is historically a heavily disturbed area and the sea lions return every time, we are satisfied with issuing this permit.
July 4th Activities in Santa Cruz
Aleah Lawrence-Pine, Save Our Shores (SOS), explained what they do the day of and after the 4th of July. Several non-profit organizations get together to help clean up the beaches.
The worst debris is the small poppers with streamers inside. SOS is still seeing firework debris at beaches that have had 5-6 cleanups already. There were almost 40,000 pounds of trash picked up by volunteers the day after 4th of July.
A large part of the problem in Santa Cruz, is that people will hit the beaches days before the celebration and bury their illegal fireworks.
Some of SOS’ ideas for next year: getting a billboard (which unfortunately is too expensive), using the California Highway Patrol moveable signs, shutdown the freeway after a certain time, similar to Bolinas, provide active outreach and education beforehand to reduce waste that day, shift their focus to the day of the fireworks, instead of the day after.
XIII. UPDATES: WORK PLAN SUBCOMMITTEE
Deborah Streeter proposed that the Advisory Council executive committee develop the October retreat agenda and figure out how the advisory council will address the issue of establishing a work plan.
XIV. UPDATE: JOINT MANAGEMENT PLAN REVIEW (JMPR) STATUS
Karen Grimmer, Program Operations Coordinator, provided the good new and bad news on the status of the JMPR.
Good News - The Coastal Commission Consistency hearing took place and the Commission voted 11-0 on the plan. Staff can now move forward with the initial plan on introduced species. There will be a new zone at Mavericks. There will be a new part to the cruise ship regulation on discharge and the treatment of sewage to make it consistent with the state regulation.
Bad News – There have been two new changes that we have to do a supplemental notice on: Motorized Personal Watercraft at Mavericks and cruise ship discharges. They will go for public comment period in the next three to four months. Those two changes weren’t in original notice in 2006. With these changes, we will not have to make change to the NEPA document. The impacts are already addressed in the Environmental Impact Statement. As changes are made, clearance on all the documents will still be moving forward. A final rule will be out hopefully early next year.
XV. MEMBER ANNOUNCEMENTS
Libby Downey, AMBAG primary, commented that she was disappointed Steve Scheiblauer’s request to have a 15 minute presentation at the October meeting didn’t want to be heard by the advisory council members and that the subject was closed so quickly.
NEXT MEETING: October 18 and 19, 2007, in Cambria
The meeting adjourned at 3:14 p.m.
Sanctuary Advisory Council Coordinator