Category Archives: San Mateo County Harbor District

Letter to the Editor

Sabrina Brennan

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

 

California is shrinking

It’s time to accept that coastal California is shrinking. A new study from the Union of Concerned Scientists predicts chronic Bay Area flooding from rising seas as early as 2060. “Cities around the San Francisco Bay will begin to experience more frequent and disruptive flooding in the coming decades and will have to make tough decisions around whether to defend existing homes and businesses or to retreat,” said Erika Spanger-Siegfried, senior analyst in the Climate and Energy Program at UCS and a report author.

The Pacific Institute calculates that San Mateo County will lose more in property value than any other county in the state. Property damage in the county is estimated to be in the region of $39 billion, with sea level rise projected to affect more than 100,000 residents.

In July, the Mercury News reported that San Mateo and Marin Counties and the City of Imperial Beach filed a lawsuit in Marin County Superior Court. The suit alleges that, “major corporate members of the fossil fuel industry, have known for nearly a half century that unrestricted production and use of their fossil fuel products creates greenhouse gas pollution that warms the planet and changes climate.”

The suit argues that 37 oil, gas and coal companies actively worked to “discredit the growing body of publicly available scientific evidence and persistently create doubt” in “a coordinated, multi-front effort.”

The suit asserts what many of us already accept as fact, that fossil fuel companies “have promoted and profited from a massive increase in the extraction and consumption of oil, coal and natural gas, which has in turn caused an enormous, foreseeable, and avoidable increase in global greenhouse gas pollution.”

Armoring the coast and building levees in the Bay will be an unimaginably expensive public undertaking, and that doesn’t include relocating highways, railways, airports, and other critical infrastructure.

Last month, the Guardian reported that Mayor Serge Dedina said that up to 30% of Imperial Beach could be affected by climate change. “As the lowest-income, highest poverty-rate city in San Diego County, we have no capacity to pay for the extensive adaptation measures.” Within 15 years flooding could affect tens of thousands of Marin County residents and cause upwards of $15.5 billion in property damage. “This lawsuit is intended to shift those costs back where they belong – on the fossil fuel companies,” says Marin County supervisor Kate Sears.

A well-funded army of lawyers is organizing to defend deep-pocketed multinationals that include San Ramon-based Chevron, ExxonMobil, BP, and Shell, while at the same time the Plaintiffs continue to approve new development within sea level rise inundation areas. These new developments will add to the already huge cost of removal and replacement of hospitals, schools, airports, fire stations, police stations, ports, roads, railroad tracks, pump stations, sewage treatment facilities, power plants, utilities, hazardous material sites, and more.

As communities become dependent on costly levee systems to stay dry, and climate projections continue to worsen, we will soon be spending exponentially larger sums of money to protect development now being built in inundation zones. One good example is the 8-mile long levee do-over in Foster City that is now budgeted for $90 million. That levee must be rebuilt three feet higher or residents will be required to buy costly flood insurance.

In addition to suing oil companies our elected representatives have a responsibility to protect the public from the huge financial burden sea level rise will bring to coastal California. They can do this by using their powers to implement policies that limit development in known inundation areas and to prohibit future shoreline armoring in favor or wetland restoration.

Suing the fossil fuel companies is a great start to holding those responsible for the coming disaster to account, but that must only be a beginning. Without common sense and practical pragmatic legislating any legal action becomes nothing more than a show. If they really want to leave a lasting legacy current local legislative bodies must show through use of their powers that they have an understanding that development in inundation zones is literally pouring money down the drain. Anything less is going to be an expensive and complex disaster.

Sabrina Brennan is a resident of Moss Beach

This op-ed does not represent the views of the San Mateo County Harbor Commission

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Filed under Board of Supervisors, Carole Groom, Dave Canepa, Dave Pine, Don Horsley, Letters to Editors, Plan Bay Area, Sabrina Brennan, San Mateo County, San Mateo County Clerk to Supervisors, San Mateo County Harbor District, San Mateo County Manager, San Mateo County News, T. Jack Foster, Tax Payer's Advocate, Uncategorized, Warren Slocum

SMCHD Commissioner Sabrina Brennan not allowed to speak as a Private Citizen. Here is the real reason.

Sabrina Brennan has done it again, she has demonstrated that she looks out for the close to 800,000 residents and taxpayers of San Mateo County. She was concerned and she had good reason to be concerned. She was Not allowed to speak as a Private Citizen at the meeting, Here is her letter.

Dear Mayor Gupta, President Mattusch, Mr. Futrell and Mr. McGrath, 

 
I’m concerned about public safety and the safety of Harbor District employees.  
 
On Wednesday, Oyster Point Marina fuel system hazards were not discussed during a Special Meeting held at South San Francisco City Hall at 2:00pm. The meeting was specifically about the attached Draft Agreement.
 
The fuel system appears to be in extreme disrepair. As you know the fuel system is located in an area exposed to significant flooding. Please see the attached photo. 
 
The public and the unidentified people currently operating the fuel system are unaware of the safety concerns raised in the attached May 26, 2017 Fuel Dock Condition Assessment.
 
For years Drake Marine operated the fuel system at Oyster Point. Jim Drake sub-leased from Oyster Point Development. On Wednesday, I learned from Mike Futrell that the Drake Marine lease has been terminated. However some people are still operating the Fuel System at Oyster Point Marina.  I’m not sure who these people are but they don’t appear to work for Oyster Point Development (the current lease holder), the City of South San Francisco, or the SMC Harbor District.  
 
Who is providing oversight for the fuel system operation?  
 
Yesterday, I learned that the City of South San Francisco has performed a number of Fuel System inspections at Oyster Point. It’s my understanding that the Harbor District requested the inspection reports some time ago and has some of them but not the most recent inspection report. I would like to read all fuel system inspection reports including the most recent report. Please provide them unredacted. 
 
Yesterday, I also learned that Steven Miller, general counsel for the Harbor District sent a strongly worded letter regarding concerns about the fuel system at Oyster Point.  Please provide Miller’s letter unredacted.
Sincerely,
Sabrina Brennan

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Filed under Board of Supervisors, Carole Groom, Dave Canepa, Dave Pine, David Silberman, Don Horsley, John Beiers, John Maltbie, Letters to Editors, Sabrina Brennan, San Mateo County, San Mateo County Harbor District, San Mateo County News, Tax Payer's Advocate, Those Who Matter, Uncategorized, Victim's Advocate, Warren Slocum

San Mateo County Harbor District’s Closed Door Session ended before it could start.

June 5, 2017 6:30PM El Granada, California The District had scheduled a closed door session to discuss the Bankruptcy of Cartel Management/Titians of Maverick and its impact on the District who had issued a 5 year permit.

Commissioners Sabrina Brennan and Edmundo Larenas  refused to attend if attorney Steve Miller was going to attend. Robert Bernardo and Virginia Chang Kiraly were ok with it, WHY?

Hanson Bridgett LLP the law firm representing the District was the cause of the abrupt but not unexpected ending before the start of the closed meeting. There were two members of the public who spoke during the public comment section. I Michael G. Stogner spoke to inform the District that I had filed a criminal complaint with the District Attorneys Office on May 8, 2017 that covered the vote to issue a 5 year permit was illegal, the Commissioners were notified that Discussion of the permit was on the agenda and only the discussion, 2 of the Commissioners understood that and complied one recused himself and one abstained. The other three made a motion and voted for something that wasn’t on the agenda which means the public had no idea this might happen. This happens more often than you would think in San Mateo County. The Supervisors did it on July 12, 2016 agenda Item 7 for example. The difference was the District’s attorney and Manager clearly informed the Commissioners that they were there that night to Discuss the subject of a 5 year permit. Part of my comment identified Hanson Bridgett LLP as being 100% responsible for all cost to the taxpayers for any expense related to the 5 year permit because they allowed the 3 Commissioners to create this permit that night knowing it was wrong.

The other public comment was by John Ullom who told them “I told you so.”

John and I were the only members of the public who attended the meeting.

Virginia Chang Kiraly closed the meeting as Sabrina Brennan tried to read a letter into the record. VCK would not allow it, she knew what was going to be read because she had received a copy of the letter earlier.

At issue is the fact that Hanson Bridgett LLP is the cause of the 5 year permit existing in the first place. There are several legal issues because of that and 2 Commissioners see the obvious Conflict of Interest in allowing Hanson Bridgett LLP to attend the closed session meeting.

Hanson Bridgett LLP should be terminated Immediately and all costs related to the 5 year permit should be recovered.

Legal counsel is the public’s safety net when elected official want to do something illegal. They are there to guide the elected officials. That did not happen in this case.

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Filed under Board of Supervisors, Sabrina Brennan, San Mateo County, San Mateo County Harbor District, San Mateo County News, Steve Wagstaffe, Those Who Matter

Griffin Guess Cancels Auction to sell San Mateo County Harbor District Permit.

Griffin Guess owner of Cartel Management Inc, & Titians of Mavericks has canceled the Auction that was set for June 7, 2017. The reason given was there was not one buyer who would put up the $50,000 deposit with a $1,000,000 min. bid.

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Filed under Board of Supervisors, Carole Groom, Dave Canepa, Dave Pine, Don Horsley, Sabrina Brennan, San Mateo County, San Mateo County Harbor District, San Mateo County News, Those Who Matter, Victim's Advocate, Warren Slocum

Virginia Chang Kiraly is asked to resign one of two Special District seats.

FOR IMMEDIATERELEASE

Wednesday, February 8, 2017
Media Contact: skygizmo@skygizmo.com

Commissioner/Director Virginia Chang-Kiraly hit with CA Attorney General in quo warranto Request to Remove her From Office

Half Moon Bay— On Wednesday February 8th local activist John Ullom served paperwork on Virginia Chang‐Kiraly formally challenging the legality of her dual‐holding of two San Mateo County Special District Offices. Chang‐Kiraly is a Director on the Menlo Park Fire District Board, and is also a Commissioner on the San Mateo County Harbor District Board. Ullom contends in his filings that these are incompatible offices, and the numerous factual citations contained therein support this argument.

Numerous complaints were made by local individuals over the course of the past year in an attempt to get the San Mateo County District Attorney to pursue the conflict of interest to no avail. As a result Ullom decided to take the bull by the horns and file what is called a quo warranto action. Quo warranto means “by what authority” and is the formal procedure used in California for challenging the legal right of any person to hold an office. The action begins by serving the individual officeholder and then serving the Attorney General with the same pleadings, asking the Attorney General to allow the “Relator” (Ullom in this case) to sue on “behalf of the People of the State of California.”

As described in the Memorandum of Points and Authorities filed by Ullom, Chang‐Kiraly has no less than six separate conflicts which past Attorney’s General have found to be in violation of the relevant State Codes that prohibit someone from holding incompatible offices. Chang‐Kiraly has fifteen days to respond to the filling before the Attorney General will be permitted to rule on the request. If the case does go to trial and Ullom prevails then Chang‐Kiraly will be removed from the Menlo Park Fire District Board seat as this was the first office she entered and the statute requires forfeiture of the first office entered into.

Alternatively Chang‐Kiraly could resign either position at this time and bring a halt to the proceedings as they can only go forward if the officeholder continues to hold two offices simultaneously.

John Ullom is a local government transparency and oversight activist and has been advocating for transparency and the rule of law in local governmental agencies in San Mateo County for the last 8 years.

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Filed under Board of Supervisors, Carlos G. Bolanos, Carole Groom, Dave Pine, David Silberman, Don Horsley, John Beiers, John Maltbie, Sabrina Brennan, San Mateo County, San Mateo County Harbor District, San Mateo County News, Steve Wagstaffe, Those Who Matter, Warren Slocum

It’s Illegal to file a false Police Report in San Mateo County.

Thursday November 17, 2016 The Palo Alto Daily Post did a front page story titled “Official Investigated for assault.” by Emily Mibach. It’s not illegal to lie to a reporter.

Newly re-elected San Mateo County Harbor District Commissioner Sabrina Brennan with 145,710 votes is being accused by Brian Overfelt a board member of The Titans of Mavericks, and owner of The Old Princeton Landing Restaurant of assault.

If that were true Sabrina would have been arrested that night. The reason I say this is She was inside the restaurant with her wife and friends when two Sheriff Deputies walked up to her and informed her that “Brian wanted her to leave.” If I had been assaulted I would want her arrested, and I would have called the Sheriff’s Office to have her arrested not escorted out of my place of business. As it turns out when the 2 Sheriff Deputies realized that several people had the phones aimed at them they ceased with their mission of ‘Brian wants you to leave” and that was it for awhile.

I look forward to see the statement Mr. Overfelt has made to a Law Enforcement Officer. He told the Post she “threatened him, pushed him, and said she wanted to take me and my family down.” Again a reporter would ask Brian Overfelt, If that really did happen why did you ask the Sheriff Office just to ask her to leave, very strange.

It is no secret that a small group of political people would love to cause harm to Sabrina Brennan. She is at risk for living in an area that is patrolled by the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office. The Sheriff might consider referring this investigation to another agency, he is close to Supervisor Don Horsley aka, Leader of the Coup on July 12, 2016 which appointed him to Sheriff when it wasn’t on the agenda.

There was also the May 26, 2015 Harbor District Meeting where SSFPD Deputy Chief Mike Brosnan refused to enforce the law. Supervisor Don Horsley requested a body guard from the Sheriff’s Office for his safety. Supervisor Horsley and his 2 staff members Chris Hunter and Nicholas Calderon attended that dangerous meeting and didn’t say a word, after Citizen Access TV owner John Ullom informed the public he was ordered not to turn on his broadcasting device until the meeting was over.

Who gave that order? Mike Brosnan.

MS & SN

May 26, 2015 Harbor District Meeting

Michael Stogner warning the BOS of a Brady Officer Sgt. in the SMCSO. 5:18 mark

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Filed under Carlos G. Bolanos, Don Horsley, Sabrina Brennan, San Mateo County, San Mateo County Harbor District, San Mateo County News, Those Who Matter, Victim's Advocate

San Mateo County News.com

Recommends  Lois Garcia for Sequoia Healthcare District on November 8, 2016 election.

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Filed under San Mateo County, San Mateo County Harbor District, San Mateo County News