Trestles Update

The Public Hearing with the Secretary of Commerce is scheduled for September 22, 2008 at Del Mar Fairgrounds in O’Brien Hall from 10:30 am – 8:30 pm (2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd.). The hearing location is perfect, since this is where the Coastal Commission heard the facts from both sides and voted 8-2 against the toll road. Also the Park and Trestles beach are in San Diego County, so it’s ideal to hold the hearing where the project will have the worst impacts. As you are aware, an earlier hearing date was canceled as the identified site withdrew its agreement to host the event.

The purpose of the newly scheduled hearing is to solicit public comments. Anyone wishing to provide oral testimony at the hearing must submit a written request via mail to NOAA no later than September 12, 2008. Please contact Bob Mignogna for the address and details on what should be included in the request.

Agenda for Hearing:

10:30am-1:30pm: Testimony from Elected Officials. There are several outstanding elected officials speaking on our behalf including Bobby Shriver, Donna Frye and others.
1:30pm-2pm: Testimony from Organizations. Surfrider Foundation and other interesting organizations will be heard during the next few hours.
2:00-2:30: Official Hearing Break. We are having a rally in the pavilion area behind O’Brien hall. Come and learn more about how the day will go and what to expect.
2:30-5:00: Continued Testimony from Organizations and Native American Tribes.
5:00-5:30: Official Hearing Break. Please be sure to visit our letter writing station during the break. We want to fill the drop boxes with letters opposing the toll road.
5:30-8:30: During this time, organizations will finish testimony and the general public will begin testimony. It’s challenging to say exactly what time the general public will speak. As you know, not everyone from the public will be able to speak since the meeting ends exactly at 8:30.
8:30pm-9pm: Meet us directly outside of the O’Brien hall as we gather to celebrate our efforts, enjoy acoustic music, and listen to special guest speakers. Recognized singer-songwriter Steve Ybarra will play music which has been featured on radio and television across the country. Shaun Tomson, World Champion Surfer, will be our featured guest speaker. Upon listening to Shaun, we will hear from prominent environmental leaders. As you know, there will not be a decision made at the hearing, so it’s important that we come together to ‘celebrate our efforts of the day’ and begin to look forward! We expect the Federal Government will make their decision by then end of the fall/early winter.

Click here to view a list of speakers.

Go to or and you will find how easy it is to make your voice be heard.


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    Bush Administration Rejects Toll Road Agency Request to Override California Decision:

    U.S. Commerce Department Says Toll Road Not in National Interest and Alternatives Exist

    LOS ANGELES – In response to the announcement by the U.S. Department of Commerce to reject a request to overturn the California Coastal Commission decision regarding the proposed 241 Toll Road Extension, Elizabeth Goldstein, president of the California State Parks Foundation and member of the Save San Onofre Coalition, issued the following statement:

    “This decision is a fatal blow to this terrible proposal and a great victory for California. We agree with the sweeping decision by the U.S. Department of Commerce to uphold the California Coastal Commission’s February 2008 vote against the Foothill-South toll road.”

    “Today’s decision by the Bush Administration, which has not distinguished itself on environmental matters affecting California, means this project was so fundamentally flawed even a million-dollar lobbying blitz couldn’t save it.”

    “Today’s decision means that key federal and state agencies have both reached the same conclusion – this proposed toll road violates federal and state laws that protect our coast. The road would destroy the fifth most popular state park and would bring little short-term or long-term traffic relief to southern Orange County and northern San Diego County. Any assertion by the toll road advocates that this road is in the national interest is flatly false.”

    “Alternatives exist and it’s time they get explored fully and objectively. That’s another message from the U.S. Commerce Department to the politicians behind this toll road, and it should be heard.”

    “While today’s decision represents a significant victory for the thousands of individuals and groups dedicated to protecting San Onofre State Beach, this long process is not yet over. On behalf of the Save San Onofre Coalition, we call upon the TCA to suspend all litigation and federal lobbying activities, and take these resources and invest them in studying reasonable alternatives to this ill-conceived toll road.”

    To obtain a copy of NOAA’s press release on the Commerce Department decision, go to

    The Save San Onofre Coalition is a diverse coalition of individuals and groups that includes four former state parks commissioners, local, regional, state and national environmental organizations, cities, counties and elected officials statewide. For more information about the Save San Onofre Coalition, visit

    The Foothill-South Toll Road is a proposed multi-lane highway that would run through the heart of San Onofre State Park, one of California’s most popular state parks. Home to the world famous surfing spot, Trestles Beach, the park encompasses the last pristine watershed in Southern California and receives roughly 2.5 million visitors a year. San Onofre State Beach was created by former President Richard Nixon and Governor Ronald Reagan more than 30 years ago with the intent that it would be preserved as a park in perpetuity.