What's the future of Fossil Point? Five local leaders share their ideas

Tribune staff reportJune 18, 2010 

County Supervisor Katcho Achadjian, speaking as a member of the California Coastal Commission:

Some would prefer that it becomes a passive park; some would prefer that it becomes a resort. The possibilities are endless, but we’ll be very respectful of the landlord’s wishes according to the coastal act. Hopefully, the priority will be given to people who have the vision to keep it as it is. But it’s someone else’s property and someone else’s money.

Andrew Christie, director, Santa Lucia chapter of the Sierra Club:

Our position has not changed since former county Supervisor Jerry Lenthall held the community meetings (in 2007). The majority wanted it left as open space. That was No. 1, followed closely by a trail and a Chumash healing center as No. 3. The short answer is clean it up and leave it alone.

Dave Christy, dean, Cal Poly Orfalea College of Business:

I understand the first reaction of someone who says that it should be open space and a park, but then someone has to buy it. What we need is more economic development and businesses that will generate taxes as opposed to park lands that cost money to maintain. There are two kinds of activities that could take place out there. One of them is some kind of residential or hospitality residential, like the fractional ownership or time-share. It’s a magnificent location from a tourism point of view. If it’s a hotel room generating bed taxes and it is high end, this is great for the community. We have some nice properties in the county, but nothing like the Ritz-Carlton level. Then, there’s the whole area of high-end professional services — successful individuals who do business but because so much of it can be handled by e-mail and the Internet, they can be wherever they want to be.

Fred Collins, spokesman, northern Chumash Tribal Council:

Ultimately, we’d love to see the property cleaned up to its absolute highest level and see Chevron donate it to the county as open space. And then, we would like to negotiate with the county to use the space for our ceremonies, to help the land heal, help ourselves heal and help the community of Avila heal. Chevron could give the property as a tax write-off to the county, and it would be accessible to the public forever and would be something everyone would enjoy.

Pete Kelley, president, Avila Community Service District and Avila Community Foundation secretary:

Some people think that if you put another hotel in town that things will get better. But there’s such a thing as saturation. Avila doesn’t have enough water or sewer capacity to handle what’s there now. Let’s see Chevron clean it up and let it rest. Hopefully, they will give it to the county and give money with it, just like Unocal did for Cal Poly with the Avila Beach pier.

Amber Machamer Mata, spokeswoman, Yak Tityu Tityu:

No recommendation yet.

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