[Don Horsely is the president of the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors. Last Wednesday he outlined a plan to save Moss Beach Park after it was auctioned off to a Pacifica developer. Pictured: Rockey Raynor of the Boys and Girls Club, an unidentified employee of the San Mateo County Treasurer’s Office, and Supervisor Don Horsley.]
Dear Friends of Moss Beach Park,
It is with great enthusiasm that I report to the community on the most recent activities surrounding the Moss Beach Park. On Tuesday, September 10, the delinquent property tax was paid and the tax sale was officially canceled! None of this would have been possible without the generosity of Paul and Julie Shenkman, Sam’s Chowder House, and the Boys and Girls Club of the Coastside. When it was made known that in order to cancel the sale of the land, the outstanding property tax had to be paid, Paul and Julie Shenkman and Sam’s Chowder House generously volunteered to pay the tax bill. Because the Coastside Preservation and Recreation, Inc. (CP&R) had lost its non-profit status, the Boys and Girls Club of the Coastside accepted the Shenkman’s donation and wrote a check to the Tax Collector’s Office for the property tax. On Tuesday, Rocky Raynor of the Boys and Girls Club and I hand delivered the check to the Tax Collector’s Office. Yesterday, I spoke with the Tax Collector’s Office and was informed that the check is being processed and the sale is officially canceled. Please join me in thanking Paul and Julie Shenkman, Sam’s Chowder House, and the Boys and Girls Club of the Coastside.
Now that the property tax has been paid, the sale has been canceled, and the park is no longer in danger of being taken from the community, what’s next? The County is working hard to determine two things: 1) how do we indemnify the CP&R Board and 2) how do we make sure the transfer of land meets all legal requirements. I have asked the County Manager and County Counsel to draft a contract between the individual CP&R Board members and the County that will indemnify the individuals who have agreed to volunteer for the CP&R Board and provide liability coverage for the park. This contract will be brought to the CP&R Board members once completed.
With regards to the incorporation of the Moss Beach Park into the County Parks Department, it is our primary objective to ensure that this process is conducted appropriately and in accordance with the law. To date, we have learned that the CP&R Board is limited in their abilities to transfer the park as long as their status as a corporation is “suspended”. The County is in communication with the Secretary of State’s Office to determine what we can do to change CP&R’s status to “active” so the land can be legally transferred to the County. My office will continue to lead this effort until the Moss Beach Park can be incorporated by the County. The good news is that during this process, the park will not be in danger of being sold or lost.
With the property tax paid and the County providing liability coverage for the park, we have established a solid foundation that will protect the park and everyone involved while we work out the details of the land transfer. It is unknown at this point how long the process will take to incorporate the park into the County Park Department but we will keep the community involved as we go forward. Lastly, thank you for all of your involvement in this important community project. It has been my privilege to work with the Coastside community throughout this process.