Mailbag: Counting the reasons why Coastal Commission should nix rezoning Magnolia Tank Farm

Signs held by protesters in the audience at a 2019 Huntington Beach City Council meeting objecting to Magnolia Tank Farm.
Mailbag contributors this week are calling for the California Coastal Commission to deny a zoning change that would allow the Magnolia Tank Farm development to move forward. Above, signs held by protesters in the audience at a 2019 Huntington Beach City Council meeting showed strong opposition to the redevelopment process for the project.
(File Photo)
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While Huntington Beach has had a significant number of issues lately, one in particular affects all of us who want to protect Orange County’s beaches.

The Huntington Beach City Council has asked the California Coastal Commission to change the zoning for the area between the Magnolia Marsh wetlands and the Ascon toxic dump known as the Magnolia Tank Farm. The commission’s “yes” vote would allow the development to proceed. The Shopoff Corp. would like to build a hotel, retail space and 250 moderate-density houses there.

Commissioners will vote on this zoning change on Wednesday, July 10.

It hasn’t been that long since the commission denied the Poseidon desalination plant. The reasons why have not changed. Yet commissioners are poised to allow the development of this coastal area. The possibility of flooding, earthquakes, toxic water contamination, disruption of the wildlife and extreme traffic density are some of the reasons this should not happen.


If you agree that this is a very bad idea please consider speaking by Zoom to let them know. You can find out information at You can attend the meeting remotely on July 10 at Huntington Beach City Council Chambers starting at 9 a.m.

Sandra Fazio
Huntington Beach

Here are some reasons this Magnolia Tank Farm coastal development is a terrible idea:

  • This is a low-lying area subject to flooding, sea level rise and tsunamis. The Ascon Superfund toxic dump will flood into the residential area.
  • It will disrupt the wildlife at Magnolia Marsh.
  • The south branch of the Newport-Inglewood Fault lies underneath the site.
  • The local area cannot handle the increased traffic and parking.
  • The Ascon Toxic Waste Dump, a Superfund site, is adjacent to the property.

It is important to protect local residents, wildlife and the ecosystem from the adverse impacts of this project. The California Coastal Commission needs to take into consideration the vulnerabilities of this site in terms of climate change and sea level rise as well as the long-term potential risks to people who have invested in their livelihoods here.

K. Jenkins
Huntington Beach

Firsthand experience dodging e-bikes

Although no recent articles regarding the influx and potential problems with a massive number of e-bikes permeating the O.C. coastal area have appeared in the Daily Pilot, previous articles have concerned this topic, and I’d like to share a very recent experience with those silent, quick-moving two-wheel devices.

My son called me early Sunday morning and asked if I wanted to go biking with him and his two daughters. I said sure, why not, even though I’ve not been on a bike in about 12 years, but I hear it’s not unlike riding a bike. Ryan picked me up at my condo development, and we drove down to Newport pier, found a parking space after almost 30 minutes looking for one, then walked to one of the many bike-rental places in that area. Ryan got a two-seater for him and Annie, who is 6, a single bike for me and a single for Scarlett, who is 9. As we pedaled south on the boardwalk towards our goal of the Wedge, we were going at a pretty good pace and were passing those who were walking like they were standing still. The e-bike riders, however, were riding on the same boardwalk and passing us like we were standing still.

An 8-mile speed limit is printed on the cement of the boardwalk, but those on e-bikes were probably doing about 15 or 20 miles a hour, barely missing those walking and going slow on the pedal bikes. There were some very close calls, and I could easily see where the problem lies, which is how those riders perceive themselves as above the law with nary a care in their selfish bones for other people and slower riders. If something isn’t done very soon, there is definitely going to be trouble in paradise with unfortunate people being hit by those speedsters and winding up in hospitals. If no one enforces what is turning into a real problem of reckless riders, it will not be stopped. I don’t know, but has anyone considered actually policing the areas where these speed riders ride with authorization to stop and ticket these law breakers? Hey, it’s something to ponder.

Bill Spitalnick
Newport Beach

Min’s accomplishments impress

While all eyes and ears have been focused on the national scene, especially after last week’s presidential debate, an important victory for gun rights opponents was unanimously upheld by the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court on June 11.

The court upheld the constitutionality of Senate Bill SB 915, originally authored by state Sen. Dave Min in 2022. Min, a Democrat, was quoted on this legislative victory by saying in part, “Today’s decision is a win for Orange County and California families who are sick and tired of senseless gun violence.” The bill prohibits the sale of firearms or ammunition on state property, including 73 state fairgrounds across the state.

Min in his monthly newsletter announced that he and his team had passed a total of 11 bills in the California Senate focused on Orange County priorities. He represents the 37th Senate District and was elected in 2020.

Min is currently running against Republican Scott Baugh in the November general election for the 47th Congressional District. According to Politico, this race could determine the balance of power in the House in 2024.

Interestingly, Min worked as senior economic adviser to U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer, the current Senate Democratic Majority Leader. And as a state senator, Min has passed 28 bills. He is focusing his current campaign on abortion, gun violence and climate change. Before entering politics, Min was a law professor at UCI where he taught and researched in the area of business law.

I have been following Min’ s political career and considerable accomplishments for several years and highly support his election to U.S. Congress.

Lynn Lorenz
Newport Beach