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Legislation Would Extend Desalination Construction Permit

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Aired 9/2/09

An opponent of a Carlsbad desalination project is blasting a California assembly bill that would give Poseidon Resources more time to build the plant.

— An opponent of a Carlsbad desalination project is blasting a California assembly bill that would give Poseidon Resources more time to build the plant.

An assembly bill to improve social services for veterans was amended this week. The bill now includes a provision to give Poseidon Resources an extension of a coastal development permit to build the desalination plant.

The permit requires the company to start construction by November 14th. If they do not, Poseidon would need an extension.

Bruce Reznik, Executive Director of San Diego Coastkeeper, says if the bill becomes law it would usurp the power of the California Coastal Commission.

"What is going on here with this bill is really sort of an end run around what are well-established regulations for the Coastal Commission," Reznik says. "Regardless of whether or not you like the Carlsbad desal[ination] project, you should not like this legislation."

Reznik says the Coastal Commission has indicated it would give Poseidon Resources an extension if the company needed more time to start construction.

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