Erik Howell, Pismo Beach councilman, to serve on Coastal Commission

dsneed@thetribunenews.comFebruary 21, 2014 

Erik Howell

JOE JOHNSTON — The Tribune Buy Photo

Pismo Beach City Councilman Erik Howell has been appointed to the California Coastal Commission.

Gov. Jerry Brown made the announcement Friday. Howell, 47, has been on the Pismo Beach City Council since 2012 and an attorney in private practice since 1993.

Howell was not available for comment Friday.

He will be the governor’s South Central Coast representative on the commission. The position is open to city council members or county supervisors from San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties.

He succeeds former Ventura City Councilman Brian Brennan, who had to step down in January because he did not seek re-election to the city council.

Howell, a Democrat, was one of two elected officials from San Luis Obispo County nominated to the commission. The other was Grover Beach Mayor Debbie Peterson. Howell was nominated by the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors, and Peterson was nominated by the City Selection Committee in SLO County, which consists of representatives from each of the seven cities.

The Coastal Commission is a highly influential state panel that works with cities and counties to manage the land and water resources along the state’s coastline. The commission meets monthly and can overrule coastal land-use decisions made by cities and counties.

Howell is involved in a number of civic activities including the Pismo Beach Lions Club and the Shell Beach Improvement Group board of directors, where he has been a member since 2008. He earned his law degree from the University of Southern California School of Law.

His appointment does not require Senate confirmation. He will receive $100 per day compensation.

He could be sworn in as soon as the commission’s March 12 and 13 meeting in Long Beach.

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