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President's Message (Pearl Johnson)
League Comments on City's Proposed Transit Plan
Astrid Monson Spoke Out for LWV (Helen Griffin)
New Officers
Environment Committee Meeting
Voter Service Committee Begins Projects (Nikki Love)
Welcome New Members

President's Message

Protecting our coast has been the subject of my last two messages. Now I must report a major setback. The Governor has vetoed HB 2266 that would have allowed only the State to claim title to accreted beaches.

I will dip into the nitty-gritty of the bill and its veto and hope you find it an interesting glimpse into the legislative process.

The Governor's veto message says the bill's definition of accreted lands does not include the requirement that an accretion be permanent (in existence for at least 20 years.) Don Bremner and Chip Fletcher, in their rebuttal addressed to the legislators, say permanence does not belong in the definition. The claimant to the title must prove permanency, which under this bill would be the State.

The Governor says the bill would place a cloud on the title of privately owned beachfront land by amending the definition of "public land". Bremner and Fletcher say land already awarded to a private owner cannot be construed to be public land.

The Governor says that the bill inadequately addresses accretion that only restores previously eroded property. Bremner and Fletcher say the bill does not change the burden of proof on the claimant to previously eroded property.

The Governor says currently pending applications are endangered by the bill. Bremner and Fletcher say general law precludes retroactive application and the bill's intent is to address only future applications is clear.

I have only summarized four pages of argument. If you want to see the Governor's veto message and the rebuttal, they are at the League office.

It's unfortunate that these technical objections were not raised in the seven public hearings or in the meeting held by Sen. Chun-Oakland with two Deputy Attorneys General and interested parties. Both houses of the Legislature passed HB2266 unanimously. However, a veto override is not likely.

Pearl Johnson

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