We are also opposing AB 2002 (Stone; D-Scotts Valley) which seeks to codify unnecessarily strict rules for communicating with members and staff of the Coastal Commission, again, in response to a personnel discussion at the board.  This bill is unnecessary and duplicative of strict lobbying disclosure and communication requirements in the Coastal Act that already impose severe penalties for noncompliance.

The bill would create a unique rule for the Coastal Commission and conflict with Political Reform Act requirements for all other state agencies. The bill would also discourage applicants for coastal development permits from hiring representation, require even single family homeowners who hire Coastal consultants to register as “lobbyist employers,” and create burdensome paperwork for applicants and their technical consultants.

We do not have an issue with registration of lobbyists that are working within the system.  However this bill goes far above and beyond what is required at all other state agencies and sets a precedent of making it more difficult to work through permitting and dispute resolution issues.

We believe the public should be encouraged to communicate directly with public agency representatives, provided this communication is properly disclosed. There is no reason to change the current practice. To limit the free exchange of information by imposing burdensome and costly requirements serves no public good.

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