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News from Santa Cruz County Supervisor Ryan Coonerty
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Supervisor Ryan Coonerty - Third District News
County Launches Focused Intervention Team
The newly launched Focused Intervention Team (FIT) addresses chronic offenders who engage in disruptive and criminal behavior in our community. FIT teams, comprised of Sheriff's deputies and mental health workers, work closely with other local law enforcement agencies to address these most challenging and dangerous offenders.

I appreciate working with Sheriff Hart to develop a program to create accountability for offenders who consistently refuse help and cause so much impact to the community. I'm checking in regularly to make sure this program is reducing impacts in the City. 

Approving Affordable Housing: New Habitat for Humanity Project
I was happy to vote in support of a well-designed and much-needed affordable housing project on Harper Street in Live Oak. This property, which was owned by the County's former Redevelopment Agency, will provide 11 units of 100% affordable housing to local families. Habitat for Humanity is a great partner and this project will be an asset to our community.
 
North Coast Rail Trail Update
PROGRESS: With a unanimous vote on March 7, the Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) certified the Final Environmental Impact Report for the North Coast Rail Trail project-- a 7.5 mile multi-use bicycle and pedestrian trail that will extend along the rail corridor from Wilder Ranch State Park to Davenport. The project includes improvements at three existing parking areas with connections to the trail: Davenport Beach, Bonny Doon Beach, and Panther/Yellowbank Beach. The RTC has received a federal grant to fund the construction of the first segment of the trail taking it up to Panther/Yellowbank Beach.

There is a lot of community enthusiasm for this trail, which will provide a safe, sustainable transportation option to some of the most stunning beaches and coastal scenery in our nation. 



Pushing Back on UCSC Growth
As you know, UCSC has launched their Long Range Development Plan process and the University is exploring expanding the campus by 10,000 additional students as early as 2040. That increase doesn't include the staff and faculty that would be needed for this substantial increase in student population. Like most of the community, I remain very concerned about the impact of UCSC's growth on housing, traffic, and water. Last June, City voters overwhelmingly (77%) approved an ordinance demanding that the University not grow its enrollment without (1) housing all additional students, faculty and staff on campus and (2) providing the infrastructure, on and off campus, to support any further growth. 

I'm working with the City-County UCSC Growth Working Group to reduce or eliminate the adverse impacts associated with UCSC's announced growth plans. The City and County have no direct authority over University growth or land use, but we are collaborating with community partners on a strategy to potentially influence these decisions in order to protect our community from overwhelming impacts. 

Addressing Plastic Pollution
Plastic pollution is a threat to the health of our planet. From poisoning and injuring marine life to disrupting human hormones, from littering our beaches and landscapes to clogging our waste streams and landfills, the exponential growth of plastics is an enormous problem. Santa Cruz County has adopted policies to limit certain single-use plastics from our environment and it is important to take additional steps in order to better protect our environment from plastic pollution. At the urging of Supervisor Leopold and myself, the Board of Supervisors has directed County staff to research options for reducing plastic pollution associated with bottled water, plastic food service ware, tobacco waste as well as other plastic pollution. You can read our Board letter here.
 
Suing Big Oil on Climate Change
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At my urging, the County and City of Santa Cruz filed lawsuits against 29 oil, gas, and coal companies for their role in creating climate change and the resulting damage from storms, fires and sea level rise.

The industry is trying very hard to move our case, along with similar cases, from state court to federal court (which the industry believes will be more advantageous for them). Meanwhile, the County and other plaintiffs have been joined by a broad coalition of entities interested in holding the industry accountable. To find out more about what other are saying in support of this suit, click here. This suit is on contingency and will not use taxpayer funds.
 
Podcast: An Honorable Profession
Please check out the latest episodes of my podcast highlighting local, state, and national leaders who are serving their communities and restoring faith in the American political system during these dangerous times. Recently, I spoke with newly-elected Congressmember Ben McAdams of Utah, Boise Council President Lauren McLean, and Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer. Listen and let me know what you think.  Note: I make no income from this project nor are tax dollars used in the creating of these podcasts. 
North Coast View

Next Board of Supervisors Meeting:
March 26, 9:00 a.m.
701 Ocean Street, 5th Floor

LINKS
Board of Supervisors Meeting Schedule
Agendas & Minutes

EMAIL
Ryan Coonerty

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Rachel Dann
Allison Endert





 
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