State Lawmakers Approve Holden Bill To Protect California Parklands – AB 1767

Monday, August 18, 2014

Sacramento:  Assemblymember Chris Holden’s (D-Pasadena) bill to protect parks and wild spaces by increasing fines for dumping and vandalism in Southern California’s nature areas has been approved by the state Legislature. 

AB 1767 raises the fines for dumping, vandalism or destroying property on Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy properties to $1,500. Because state bonds used to fund much of the SMMC cannot be used for maintenance, the increased fine revenue will help the Conservancy offset its current deficit and repairs.

“If you’ve ever hiked through the Monrovia Wilderness Preserve or walked through the San Rafael Hills or even Griffith Park, then you know the important work of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy,” said Assemblymember Holden.

“I want to thank my fellow legislators for recognizing the importance of preserving our open spaces for our children and grandchildren. This legislation will help preserve the beauty and rich heritage of land in the Santa Monica Mountains for generations to come.”

In recent years, the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy has faced thousands of dollars in deficits resulting from the unreimbursed repair and maintenance costs stemming from damage caused to Conservancy land.  Some 69,000 acres make up the Conservancy stretching from the Pacific Ocean through the Santa Monica Mountains and extending east to include parts of the San Gabriel Mountains, the Verdugo Hills and the San Rafael Hills in Pasadena.

AB 1767 passed out of Assembly concurrence today on a vote of 55 to 18.  It now goes to the Governor for signature.