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Oceano Dunes Closure

Oceano Dunes is Under Immediate Threat of OHV Restriction

The California Coastal Commission, a non-elected body, will be meeting on Thursday, July 11th, at the Embassy Suites Hotel in San Luis Obispo to consider the continued use of the OHV area at Oceano Dunes.

We are, quite literally, in the final phases of keeping or losing our local dunes for offroad use - forever. These efforts may come in a full outright closure or under the guise of a slow erosion of dune accessibility prohibiting night riding, increasing enforcement and adding more fences at the park, reducing daily use limits, and more until a full and eventual closure goes in effect.

Attend the Meeting - Be Heard!

• Thursday, July 11th, 9am at the Embassy Suites in San Luis Obispo
• Address: 333 Madonna Road, San Luis Obispo, CA 93405
• All public comments limited to 3 minutes each
• Wear a blue shirt in opposition of these proceedings

What to Expect

It's clearly unknown until it happens, but this meeting could result in the State Parks acting upon the infomation from the Coastal Commission and implimenting a slow or quick aggressive series of restrictions and changes.

Sign the Petition

Visit this link at and sign the growing petition to support maintaining or OHV access and use of Oceano Dunes. As of this posting, there are over 53,000 people who have signed the petition. Make your voice heard and defend your dunes!

Can't Attend the July 11th Meeting?

Voice your concerns and opposition to:

Contact local representataives at the Air Pollution Control District:

Council Member City of Grover Beach
Chairperson APCD
Mariam Shah
154 S. 8th Street
Grover Beach, CA 93433
Phone: (805) 437-4567
Fax: (805) 489-9657                       
District 1 County Supervisor 
John Peschong
County Government Center
San Luis Obispo, CA 93408
Phone: (805) 781-4491
Fax: (805) 781-1350   
District 2 County Supervisor         
Bruce Gibson
County Government Center
San Luis Obispo, CA 93408
Phone: (805) 781-4338
Fax: (805) 781-1350
District 3 County Supervisor         
Adam Hill
County Government Center
San Luis Obispo, CA 93408
Phone: (805) 781- 4336
Fax: (805) 781-1350
District 4 County Supervisor 
Lynn Compton
County Government Center
San Luis Obispo, CA 93408
Phone: (805) 781-4337
Fax: (805) 781-1350
District 5 County Supervisor 
Debbie Arnold
County Government Center
San Luis Obispo, CA 93408
Phone (805) 781-4339
Fax: (805) 781-1350
Council Member City of Arroyo Grande
Jimmy Paulding
214 E. Branch Street
Arroyo Grande, CA 93420
Phone: (805) 473-5404
Fax: (805) 473-0386
Mayor City of Pismo Beach
Ed Waage
760 Mattie Road
Pismo Beach, CA 93449
Phone: (805) 773-4657
Fax: (805) 773-7006
Mayor City of San Luis Obispo
Heidi Harmon
990 Palm Street
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
Phone: (805) 783-7752
Fax: (805) 781-7109
Mayor City of Morro Bay
John Headding 
595 Harbor Street
Morro Bay, CA 93442
Phone: (805) 909-9785
Fax: (805) 772-7329
Council Member City of Paso Robles
John Hamon
1000 Spring Street
Paso Robles, CA 93446
Phone: (805) 227-7206
Fax: (805) 237-4032
Council Member City of Atascadero
Roberta Fonzi
6907 El Camino Real
Atascadero, CA 93422
Phone: (805) 470-3400
Fax: (805) 470-3497

Important Information Links

A well documented show laying out the details. Listen now, at home, at work, or in your car.

Thorough news article detailing the history and current state of this public issue.

Local news coverage on Coastal Commission and possible changes at Oceano Dunes.

Friends of Oceano Dunes has long advocated on the public's behalf in support of OHV use at Oceano Dunes.

This is the Commission spearheading the Oceano Dunes report studies and potential restrictions.

Further Information

The following excerpt comes from an email from South County Chambers of Commerce:

Dear South County Business Owners,

The South County Chambers of Commerce works closely with the business community in order to address their concerns and serve as a partner and advocate for issues that affect the local economy. The Oceano Dunes State Park and Pismo State Beach bring a significant number of customers to many of the local businesses in South County and many others benefit by some means from the tourism revenue.

The 2016/17 Oceano Dunes District, Economic Impact Analysis Report by SMG Consulting reported direct travel spending by park visitors is estimated to be $158M annually from visitors outside San Luis Obispo County. The overall annual economic impact is estimated to be $243M which is based on direct spending, indirect spending and induced spending from visitors coming from outside of San Luis Obispo (SLO) County. To put that in perspective, the number one agricultural crop in San Luis Obispo County, wine grapes, reported a value of $268M in 2017 according to the SLO County Department of Agriculture Weights and Measures.

Furthermore, survey respondents were asked, “If Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area (OHV) did not exist, would they still visit San Luis Obispo County?” Overall, 62% indicated they would not visit the county, suggesting that Oceano Dunes State Park and Pismo State Beach provides a unique set of recreation experiences in a unique location. As such, the State Park and State Beach are “revenue drivers” for the local economy.

As a result of complaints of airborne dust on the Nipomo Mesa the OHV riding area has already been systematically reduced as part of a mitigation plan required by the SLO County Air Pollution Control District (APCD). A further reduction in OHV visitors will directly affect our local economy, businesses, and tax dollars for infrastructure and our schools. Diablo Canyon Power Plant is decommissioning and an estimated 500 high wage jobs in South County will be lost. South County cannot afford to lose another economic driver.

On Thursday July 11, 2019 at the Embassy Suites Hotel in San Luis Obispo, the California Coastal Commission will consider the continued use of the Off-Highway Vehicle State Recreation Area at the Oceano Dunes State Park. Below is a quote from the agenda staff report:

“The bottom line in staff’s view is that the Park and the Coastal Development Permit cannot continue to operate as it has in the past, and that the range of coastal resource issues and constraints affecting ODSVRA together suggest that it is time to start thinking about ways to transition the Park away from high-intensity OHV use to other less intensive forms of access and recreation. Staff believes that it is appropriate to start to make these kinds of changes, and to start to plan for ODSVRA to transition to other less intensive uses…Put simply, in staff’s view a Park that is fully consistent with on-the-ground realities, and with coastal resource protection requirements, does not include OHV use. Rather, it is clear to staff that the significant coastal resource issues and constraints attributable to OHV use render long-term OHV use at this location untenable.”

Because it is evident that the Coastal Commission plans to prohibit OHV riding at Oceano Dunes State Park a group of Business Stakeholders has formed to address the economic impact concerns and advocate for the continued use of the OHV area.

The Oceano Dunes State Park and Pismo State Beach Business Stakeholder Coalition have asked the Chamber to invite you to engage on this issue.

Please plan to attend the Coastal Commission meeting on Thursday July 11, 2019. The meeting begins at 9:00am at the Embassy Suites Hotel 333 Madonna Road, San Luis Obispo CA 93405. To show your support wear a blue shirt and consider speaking during public comment.