March 2004

Ocean View Estates Homeowners Association, Inc. v. Montecito Water District (2004) 116 Cal.App.4th 396.

Failure to adequately address potential impacts of mitigation measures invalidates mitigated negative declaration.

Failure to address impacts on private and public views of four-acre, 15-foot tall reservoir cover invalidates mitigated negative declaration.

by Joel Ellinwood, AICP

It took only two swings for the Montecito Water District to strike out in its attempt to go to bat* for its adoption of a mitigated negative declaration (MND) as CEQA compliance for its plan to build a four-acre aluminum cover for the Ortega Reservoir in Summerland, Santa Barbara County. Perhaps it is understandable that one of the CEQA curve balls that flummoxed the District in a community that is locally known for its unofficial clothing-optional beach was failure to adequately address visual impacts. One might expect that concern over visual pollution and blocking of scenic vistas would be particularly acute there. Continue Reading The View From Here