Secretary of Commerce Upholds Coastal Commission Decision

San Clemente, CA (December 18, 2008) – It seems that legal matters never end. There's always an appeal lurking around the corner or some brand of red tape that prevents decisions from being final, but today a giant leap in the fight to save Trestles was taken as the Secretary of Commerce voted to uphold the Coastal Commission's decision.

That means we can breathe a little easier on our descent to Southern California's best wave. So long as Trestles intends to stick around without another clunky road hovering over it, it might be time to celebrate with a session and maybe another note to officials expressing your approval. After all, public demonstration was largely responsible for this decision. Pat yourselves on the back.

The following is a release sent out by Surfrider Foundation:

The Department of Commerce announced today that it would uphold the California Coastal Commission's ruling that found the TCA's proposed extension of the 241 Toll Road inconsistent with the California Coastal Act. In a release issued from the Department of Commerce, they "determined that there is at least one reasonable alternative to the project [and] that the project is not necessary in the interest of national security."

"We are elated that the Secretary of Commerce chose to uphold the California Coastal Commission's ruling against the planned extension to the SR-241 toll road," says Surfrider Foundation's Assistant Environmental Director Mark Rauscher. "This decision is a significant milestone in our efforts to protect San Onofre State Beach Park and the surrounding environment; and underscores the effectiveness of grassroots activism."

While this is a major victory for the Surfrider Foundation and its coalition members, the fight to build the toll road is not over. Toll road opponents need to continue writing letters and communicating with their local elected officials to convey pleasure with the results and support the Department of Commerce's decision.

"This victory would not have been possible if it was not for the activists who showed up by the thousands at the California Coastal Commission and Department of Commerce hearings," continues Rauscher. "Should the TCA decide to appeal the decision, the Surfrider Foundation and its coalition partners are ready to fight that battle as well."

The Surfrider Foundation now calls upon the TCA and other state and local officials to embrace alternative transportation strategies that will better address the county's traffic issues without jeopardizing our environmental, recreational and economic resources.