“It’s their property; they can do what they want with it!"
Did you know that southern California’s most iconic wave and North America’s only World Surf League tour stop might get disappeared? Might slip from the general public’s limp grasp back into the iron fist of the United States Marine Corps? The mighty hand of the United States Navy?
Today, the Orange County Register’s Laylan Connelly has reported that the lease between the Department of Defense and the state of California is set to expire in five short years. The Department of Defense actually owns the land but has leased it to California since 1971. The Nixon years!
Let’s read about it!
…the talks between the state and military are starting, and it’s anyone’s guess where the discussions will lead.
“The only thing we got from them is that it probably won’t be resolved until the end,” Long. “We won’t have an answer this year. The Parks are stating our position – that (the beach) continues to be accessible to the public as it is today, hopefully.”
Carl B. Redding Jr., public affairs director for Camp Pendleton, said lease agreements are usually determined about two years before a deadline.
A letter from state parks officials was submitted and received by the Marine Corps Installations West staff this month, and the military is preparing a response. Redding said the Department of the Navy will have final approval of any lease deal.
Among the list of possible changes: Modifying the public beach zone by changing the borders and/or the size of the park.
Dave Ethington, a San Onofre Parks Foundation board member, said there are other possibilities.
“It’s their property; they can do what they want with it,“ Ethington said, referring to the Department of Defense.
“They can take it back and administer it for themselves. They can renew the lease,” he added. “I think those are the options.”
Ethington believes it’s unlikely the land would be sold for development.
“The fear is they would chop it up and change the park,” he said. “That’s our concern, that they would take sections of the park. … Maybe they would want a little more space.
“Not that any of those things are sitting there in a plan.”
They have five years to sort out the details.
Can you imagine a world without Trestles? Where would young Brazilians flock? Which stop could Jordy Smith win? What would Kolohe and Dino do with their long afternoons together?
Let’s say the military did get it back though. Would you enlist?