Today was a big step for the Beachwood Settlement. As you will recall, the Settlement was hammered out between Palo Alto developer Charles “Chop” Keenan and the Half Moon Bay City Council in several behind-closed-door sessions. The details of these negotiations still remain secret and somewhat perplexing.
But out of those closed doors popped the Settlement, which offers to give Chop all he wished for and more (i.e. permission to build not eighty some houses but 129 houses on Beachwood and an adjoining lot) provided the City would spearhead a drive to pass AB 1991. If passed into law AB 1991 would exempt Beachwood and the adjoining parcel from any further environmental review (nor review for other issues such as affordable housing).
If the City succeeds in getting the bill passed and in defending it against the lawsuits that will follow then Chop will drop the $41 million lawsuit against the City (provided, of course, that the lobbying bills and legal bills haven’t pushed the City’s head under water for the final time). If the City fails in its efforts with AB 1991 then Half Moon Bay will be obligated to pay Chop $18 million. He takes cash or can set up a convenient payment plan at low, low rates.
Today was a sort of coming of age party for AB 1991–its first hearing in Sacramento in, of all places, the Local Government Committee. It passed 4-2 in that friendly environment, although with reservations expressed by the Chair.
Only a few people were able to find a seat in the convoy put together by the Half Moon Bay City Council so you may have missed the show.
If so, never fear. Below is the video of the hearing divided for your ease of viewing into three parts: For AB 1991, Against it, and the discussion that followed.
For Passage of AB 1991
Against Passage of AB 1991
Discussion of AB 1991 and Vote