NOAA 2000-417
Contact: Connie Barclay

Sanctuary Advisory Council Considers
Proposed Regulation Alternatives
Management Plan Review Underway for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary

After a one and one-half year public process, the Sanctuary Advisory Council for NOAA's Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary, today announced five "packages" for consideration, incorporating sanctuary boundary and regulation alternatives for the management plan of the sanctuary.

The SAC has the ability to make recommendations to CINMS in the selection of a preferred alternative, based on these packages, for a draft environmental impact statement, the next step in the management plan review.

As part of the five-year management plan review, CINMS was directed by Congress to consider the current and potential future resource management priorities, programs and regulations for managing the sanctuary. The management plan review is a necessary and federally mandated process that must be implemented by all 12 national marine sanctuaries. It ensures that CINMS, as all marine sanctuaries, will continue to best preserve, enhance and protect the marine environment for now and future generations.

The CINMS management plan review is based upon community participation through an interactive, public process. The level of public involvement is unprecedented, and was introduced into the process by CINMS with the goal of creating a "bottom up" approach. An integral part of the public process, the SAC's 20 members and 20 alternates represent the community's diverse interests.

With the Sanctuary Advisory Council involved in every step of the process, CINMS staff has drafted language for proposed possible changes to existing regulations and development of possible additional regulations. The result is the five packages of boundary and regulation concepts under consideration.

Since January of 1999, the public has been engaged through a series of public scoping meetings. Issues have been brought to the table by a large array of interest groups to be addressed in the new management plan.

The process has involved and continues to involve input from many concerned stakeholders, including commercial fishing, business and tourism, research and education, conservation and environment, recreation, the public at large, and federal, state and local agencies.

The next step is for CINMS to complete the drafting of a DEIS, to be released for public comment in late fall. After public comment, the sanctuary will address any additional issues and incorporate them into the final environmental impact statement.

For more information on Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary's management plan review, contact Anne Walton at (805) 966-7107. Detailed maps and information on the management plan review are available at