This last week State Commissioners refused to approve a $22 million public loan for construction of a private mega-marina in Clipper Cove at Treasure Island.
Deadlocked by a 2-2 vote on Wednesday, Commissioners for the California Division of Boating and Waterways (DBW) declined to endorse a DBW staff proposal to conditionally fund just $4.2 million of the proposed $22 million loan. The loan application had been submitted by Treasure Island Enterprises, the consortium of real estate speculators seeking to build the mega-marina. And the loan application had been endorsed by the Treasure Island Development Authority Board led by Board Chair Vivian Fei Tsen.
The champions on the DBW Commission who stood up for public use at Clipper Cove were Katherine Pettibone and Cecily Harris. Pettibone and Harris deserve applause for standing tough in the face of heavy pressure by developers.
The DBW staff report noted "financial inconsistencies" in the loan application as well as “issues” regarding “public support” and “permitting.” Numerous public interest groups spoke at the Commission meeting prior to the vote, urging Commissioners to postpone consideration of the loan. Groups urging postponement of loan approval included the Sierra Club, the U.S. Sailing Association, and the Treasure Island Sailing Center.
The DBW staff report recommended approval of just $4.2 million in order to encumber current year funding provided in the State’s fiscal year budget. The staff also recommended that disbursement of the loan be withheld until all financial inconsistencies were “resolved” and “all outstanding issues described in this report have been addressed.”
Nevertheless, the DBW Commission refused to endorse even a partial loan with conditional terms recommended by the DBW staff report.
Action on the loan application now shifts to DBW Deputy Director Lynn Sadler to take a final decision later this spring.
In the meantime, the campaign to save Clipper Cove will return to the board members of the Treasure Island Development Authority (TIDA) and urge them to reconsider the proposed mega-marina. The clear rejection by state DBW commissioners who refused to endorse even conditional financing should be a wake-up call for TIDA Board Chair Tsen and her fellow board members. This proposed marina project is off-track. The TIDA Board needs to step up and rein the marina project back in.
Do you like this post?