The California Coastal Commission has postponed its discussions regarding the potential removal of restrictions from Surf Beach until December at the soonest, Lompoc Mayor Jenelle Osborne announced this week.

The issue had been tentatively scheduled for discussion at the commission's July meetings but was instead pushed back until its Dec. 11 to 13 meetings in Oxnard.

Osborne announced the change in scheduling at the Lompoc City Council's June 4 meeting.

The planned discussions were sparked by a push this year from Lompoc leaders to remove the annual restrictions at the beach, which have been in place for about 20 years.

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The beach is located on Vandenberg Air Force Base property, and the restrictions are enforced by base officials in what they say is an effort to protect the Western snowy plover, a small bird that nests at the beach.

In a letter dated May 8, Lompoc City Manager Jim Throop asked the commission to not only open the beach up for year-round access but also to recreational fishing.

The mission of the California Coastal Commission, according to its website, is to protect and enhance the state’s coast and oceans for current and future generations “through careful planning and regulation of environmentally sustainable development, rigorous use of science, strong public participation, education and effective intergovernmental coordination.”

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This report was prepared by Willis Jacobson. He can be reached at wjacobson@leecentralcoastnews.com.