Our Land Use Program has increased its capacity to handle numerous important cases at once,
and has won a string of victories.
| Nov 27 NEW Parks Commission Tentatively Okays Land Swap|
View of land to be traded as part of the Bandon Biota exchange with State Parks. The proposed land swap between the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) and “Bandon Biota” was tentatively approved by the Parks and Recreation Commission during their November meeting.
Oregon Shores was represented during the hearing by Executive Director Phillip Johnson and by attorney Courtney Johnson of the Crag Law Center, who works with us through our Coastal Law project. Oregon Shores did not take a rigid position against the exchange of property, but argued that a decision was premature until OPRD had obtained, and made public, both environmental assessments and real estate appraisals of all properties involved. The commission rejected our appeal not to make a decision at the meeting—but did follow our request that no final decision be made until more information was available on the ecological and cultural values of the sites.
The commission will take up the matter again in February. Written comments and audio testimony from the November hearing can be found online.
Bandon Biota—the development arm of the Bandon Dunes golf complex—has proposed that State Parks trade a 280-acre parcel of the Bandon State Natural Area, just south of Bandon, in return for two smaller parcels totaling 210 acres. Bandon Biota would also provide funds to assist State Parks in purchasing lands at Whale Cove, near Depoe Bay, and at Grouse Mountain in eastern Oregon
Oregon Shores has concentrated on the process by which the decision is made, strongly urging that full details be revealed to the public, and the public then be given time to digest the information and then comment. State Parks recently completed a full analysis of the 280-acre parcel that would be traded away, which clearly reveals that the parcel, despite being infested with gorse, contains important resource areas and high-value habitat. Oregon Shores’ position is that no decision should be considered until a similarly detailed study is done of the parcels to be traded to the public in return. Oregon Shores has also taken the position that it is inappropriate to consider the Grouse Mountain property in weighing the benefit to the public, on the grounds that coastal shorelands are limited and irreplaceable, and thus can’t be compared to land in the wide-open spaces on the other side of the state.
This is the first such land exchange to be considered since the Parks and Recreation Commission adopted new rules requiring that any land swap proposed by private interests provide “overwhelming public benefit.” The decision in this case thus has important precedent-setting value.
For more information on the issue and Oregon Shores’ stance, contact Phillip Johnson, (503) 754-9303, or click here.
Contact: Phillip Johnson, Executive Director, (503) 754-9303, or EMAIL
| Oct 21 Oregon Shores Wins Another Appeal of Crook Point Resort |
The state’s Land Use Board of Appeals (LUBA) has once again found in Oregon Shores’ favor in an appeal of the proposed Crook Point destination resort. In a recent decision, LUBA agreed with us that Curry County once again failed to follow either its own comprehensive plan or the underlying statewide land use regulations in designating “coastal shorelands.” This is a crucial point, because areas ...
| Sep 28 Adaptive Planning for Climate Change is Our LCDC Message|
Oregon's Land Use and Development Commission (LDC), which oversees the state's land use planning system, recently invited comments from the public on its agenda for the coming biennium. There is plenty that we could say, but we seized the opportunity to focus our comments on one, all-important topic: adaptive planning for the climate change impacts which will inevitably re-shape our shoreline in ...
| Aug 24 Proposed Oyster Lease in Netarts Draws Opposition|
Oregon Shores has taken a position against a 32-acre oyster lease that has been requested for Netarts Bay. An outfit calling itself the Shuckin’ Food Oyster Company has requested the plat for oyster production from the Oregon Department of Agriculture, which handles such leasing arrangements. While oystering is an important economic activity in Netarts Bay, and Oregon Shores does not oppose the ...
| Jun 10 Clean Water Act Lawsuit Filed to Protect Coalbank Slough|
Oregon Shores has joined with Coos Waterkeeper in filing a civil lawsuit in federal court to enforce the Clean Water Act for the protection of Coalbank Slough and the Coos Bay estuary. The lawsuit filed on our behalf by the Crag Law Center, our partners in the Coastal Law Project, arises from a failed grading and fill project that has dumped about 1,500 cubic yards of spoils into an important ...