Preservation of Los Olivos update:

Your efforts do matter! Please forward to your neighbors!

We would like to thank Senators Anderson and Wyland, and Assemblyman Garrick, for taking additional time to review letters submitted by community members, the Patchak Decision, Carcieri Decision, pending Supreme Court Decisions and other documents to gain a more complete understanding of the negative impacts of fee-to-trust on the state of California, and communities. We are confident that after they review all the information, they will choose to withdraw this bill, permanently. We will keep you posted.

In addition, there is more excellent news!


The United States Supreme Court ruled that Mr. Patchak has standing to sue the federal government on fee-to-trust / tribal casino in Michigan. In this 8-1 decision the U.S. Supreme Court protected individual rights, denying the federal government Department of the Interior’s (DOI) argument that an affected individual could not object to fee-to-trust or a casino.

Patchak is a major breakthrough for individual rights. The Department of the Interior is now accountable for land use. This means that every individual within the zone of interest of land in trust has the “standing” to sue (within a time period) and have a court listen to the reasons why they believe they are being harmed. As we know here in the Santa Ynez Valley, there are tremendous negative impacts surrounding land in trust. Just look at the crime blotter and arrest reports. Land in trust is outside local and state jurisdiction and taxation, and the Community Plan. Prior to Patchak, property owners near land in trust had no reasonable expectations of what could be developed on land in trust, and no ability to object to any development that occurred.

Patchak’s standing to sue follows what P.O.L.O. achieved in 2008 for a citizen group in P.O.L.O.’s lawsuit on the 6.9 acres across from the Chumash Casino and Resort.

Although this has been an arduous 7 years, because of your efforts and financial support, and efforts of people like Mr. Patchak all over the country, we are holding our government accountable to the people. Before we were beholden to elected officials to defend our rights. Now we can defend ourselves.

It is very exciting to see that individuals can make a difference. Mr. Patchak is not a big corporation, or special interest. He is a man who was willing to take a stand. He made a huge difference.

P.O.L.O. is not a big corporation or special interest. 0We are community members who were willing to take a stand. We all have made a difference.

Back to SB 162. It took tremendous effort by you all to stop this bill from going to committee and vote on 6/20/12.

P.O.L.O. would also like to thank the following elected officials and community groups for their leadership and rapid submission of excellent letters on SB 162. These letters can be used by individuals or groups all over the country regarding land in trust (to view the letters go

Individuals all over the state and country who took the time to contact officials

Third District Supervisor Doreen Farr, chair, Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors

Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors Salud Carbajal, Janet Wolf, Joni Gray, Steve Lavagnino

United States Sen. Diane Feinstein

Assemblyman Das Williams

Solvang Mayor Jim Richardson

The California Coastal Commission

California State Association of Counties

California Coastal Protection Network

The Wildlands Conservancy

Planning and Conservation League

Surfrider Foundation

North County Watch

Natural Resources Defense Council

Neighborhood Defense League

Women’s Environmental Watch, W.E. Watch

Stand up for California

Santa Ynez Valley Alliance

Santa Ynez Valley Concerned Citizens

Other citizen groups who participated in this education effort.