Oil Drilling in the Future in the Palisades?
No Oil, Inc., Save the Coast Foundation (remember Occidental Oil and Prop O?) and Pacific Palisades Residents Association (PPRA) are greatly alarmed by a provision in the City’s “Master Covenant and Agreement” received last week from Laurie Collins, Chief Counsel, Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy (SMMC).
Emily Gabel-Luddy, Associate Zoning Administrator, City of Los Angeles, promised the residents of Pacific Palisades a covenant prohibiting “oil drilling activities in any form” on the Los Angeles Metropolitan YMCA option of Temescal Canyon property, which is part of the State Park located at the northeast corner of Sunset Blvd. and Temescal Canyon Rd., when she granted the Y’s request to split the property from the State Park.
Unbelievably, the “Master Covenant and Agreement” now states that the covenant prohibiting oil activities will only continue “until the City Planning Department of the City of Los Angeles approves its termination.”
The fate of this parcel must not be left to the whim of the City Planning Department, or any other political body. The future of this parcel must not be left in the hands of elected officials, much less politically appointed officials. The “Master Covenant and Agreement” must not be signed in this form.
In 1998 SMMC passed resolution No 97-185 which stated that the SMMC would ensure that the sale of the 3.95 acre parcel would be accompanied by a complete prohibition on oil drilling on the parcel. On August 13, 2002, City Councilwoman Cindy Miscikowski’s letter to Ms. Gable-Luddy urged the city to impose a condition on the parcel map that ran with the land and prohibited oil drilling. Never was there a mention that the oil prohibition would be revocable by the City at will.
We do not want the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy to sign this insidious document. What is their part in all this? Where is Joe Edminston, the executive director of SMMC? There is no reason or obligation for them to sign this document in this form. The only thing that can result from this is further destruction of the Santa Monica Mountain State Parkland and the deterioration of the quality of life for all.
It is time to put an end to this more than 25-year saga. PPRA, No Oil, Inc., Save the Coast Foundation and the community do not need or want another Occidental Oil type battle. However, if the YMCA, the City and the Conservancy continue on this destructive path we will not stand by and witness this sell-out.
Chief Financial Officer, No Oil, Inc./Save the Coast Foundation, Inc.