Carr Cabana Appeal

From ActCoastal

Month May
Year 2014
Summary This was an appeal by Commissioners Zimmer and Bochco regarding the approval of a permit in the Hope Ranch area of Santa Barbara County. The property in question is a bluff-top estate with several pre-Coastal Act non-conforming structures including a cabana located in the middle of an eroding bluff . The prior owner had done extensive unpermitted work and was the subject of at least two open violations cases. The current owners, who were aware of the unpermitted work prior to purchase, applied to the County for a permit in 2009 for “as built’ construction. That application was withdrawn when the County recommended denial and the removal of the cabana. The owner then sought Landmark status for the cabana that was initially denied. A second attempt at Landmark status was approved in 2012. The owner then argued that the cabana’s Landmark status trumped all other policies in the LCP. The Planning Commission went against its staff’s recommendation of denial and ultimately approved the “as built” permit in March 2014. It is that local government decision that was appealed.
Outcome Green Dot.png
Outcome Description The Commission voted unanimously to find Substantial Issue and assume jurisdiction over the permit. At a future de novo hearing, the Commission will consider all Coastal Act policies that apply to this permit. Several Commissioners expressed concern that the County’s Local Coastal Program was being circumvented because it contains policies that prohibit development on a bluff face except in narrow circumstances that were not applicable here. Other Commissioners felt that the County’s decision compromised the intent of the LCP, which clearly states that policies that are “most protective of coastal resources take precedence” and disagreed with the applicant’s argument that the development’s new historical Landmark status supersedes the LCP and the Coastal Act.
Why You Should Care This was a critical vote because the Commission avoided a negative precedent of allowing historic Landmark status to trump applicable coastal policies. Further, it is critical that the CCC address existing non-conforming structures, like this mid-bluff cabana, in a manner that does not extend their life via the approval or improvement of shoreline protection devices.
Image Cabana-300x168.jpg
Decision Type Substantial Issue hearing. Appeal by Commissioners Zimmer and Bochco.
Staff Recommendation Staff recommended Commission find Substantial Issue, noting several Coastal Act and Local Coastal Program (LCP) inconsistencies such as: impacts to visual resources, weakening of bluff development standards, creating landform alterations, and raising concerns about the non-conforming structures needing future shoreline protective devices.
Staff Report
Lobbyist/Agent Chip Wullbrandt
Opposition to Project
Coastal Act Policies Coastal Act Sections 30251 and 30253 (as incorporated into the LCP pursuant to Policy 1-1), and Coastal Zoning Ordinance (Article II) Sections 35-67, 35-160, and 35-161. Land Use Plan (LUP) Policies 1-2, 1-3, 2-6, 3-4, 3-7, 3-14, 4-5, GEO-GV-1, GEO-GV-3

Voting Detail for Carr Cabana Appeal

Individual vote detail for Issue: Carr Cabana Appeal
Martha McClureGood Vote
Mary K. ShallenbergerGood Vote
Jana ZimmerGood Vote
Dr. Robert GarciaGood Vote by Alternate
Mark VargasAbsent for Vote
Wendy MitchellGood Vote
Steve KinseyGood Vote
Carole GroomGood Vote
Greg CoxGood Vote
Dayna BochcoGood Vote
Erik HowellGood Vote
Effie Turnbull-SandersGood Vote

Meeting Page

View Meeting Page for the meeting where this issue was discussed/voted on.