Friday, July 10, 2009

Assemblymember Wesley Chesbro Statement Today on MLPA

Contact: Andrew Bird @ (707) 445-7014

Chesbro: Make communities equal partners in MLPA process

SACRAMENTO – First District Assemblymember Wesley Chesbro (D-North Coast) released the following statement today on the process of establishing Marine Protected Areas under the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA).

Over the past few months I have been hearing from numerous constituents who have expressed strong concerns regarding the development and implementation of MLPA plans for the North Coast and North Central Coast.

Because of this strong constituent concern, I am skeptical of the process that has been followed in developing proposed plans for these regions. The process must be based on sound science. I have been saying, “show me the science.” So far I’m not satisfied with the answers I’ve been getting.

As a state senator in 1999 who voted for the Marine Life Protection Act, it is my belief that the MLPA will be a failure if the plans are implemented without the full involvement of all participants, especially local community members and stakeholders.

The economic health of local fishing communities must be balanced with the need for habitat protection.

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