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SMBRC: Orientation

Santa Monica Bay National Estuary Program

The Bay Restoration Plan


Welcome! to the Orientation Page for the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Commission (SMBRC), the state entity partner of the Santa Monica Bay National Estuary Program!

This page is designed to be a “one stop shop” for new Governing Board members and members of the public to find documents that explain how the SMBRC is structured, and how it interacts with its partners, including The Bay Foundation and the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Authority. The documents here are public, so they are free to read and/or download.  If you have any questions about these documents or the SMBRC, do not hesitate to contact Dr. Guangyu Wang, Chief Administrative Director, at Guangyu.Wang@waterboards.ca.gov.

Santa Monica Bay Restoration Commission (SMBRC)

The Santa Monica Bay Restoration Commission (SMBRC) is a non-regulatory, locally-based state entity established by an act of the California Legislature in 2002 (Pub. Res. Code ยง30988(d).). The SMBRC is charged with coordinating activities of federal, state, local, and other entities to restore and enhance the Santa Monica Bay, including identifying and leveraging funding to put solutions into action, encouraging public-private partnerships, promoting cutting-edge research and technology, facilitating stakeholder-driven consensus processes, and raising public awareness (www.smbrc.ca.gov). The Commission is composed of the Watershed Advisory Council, the Governing Board, the Executive Committee and the Technical Advisory Committee. Together, these Board and Committees serve as the Management Conference of the Santa Monica Bay National Estuary Program. (Visit U.S. EPA website https://www.epa.gov/nep for further information on the National Estuary Program (NEP) and click the link below for an EPA FAQs on the governance of the NEP.)

The SMBRC Watershed Advisory Council is the broad stakeholder body of the SMBRC made up of Local municipalities, Federal, State and Local agencies, Stormwater and Municipal Wastewater Management Agencies Utilities/Industry/Business, Environmental Organizations/User Groups, and Legislative Representatives. The primary responsibility of the Watershed Advisory Council is to advise the SMBRC Governing Board on Bay restoration priorities for funding, planning, project implementation, monitoring and further research. Qualified stakeholders may apply to the SMBRC Governing Board for membership in the Watershed Advisory Council. The Governing Board appoints eligible stakeholders at regularly-agendized meetings, upon majority vote. Appointment to the Watershed Advisory Council is continuous unless a member resigns or is no longer qualified. Qualifications and the notification process can be found in the SMBRC Memorandum of Understanding.

The SMBRC Governing Board is the key decision-making authority of the Commission making recommendations to other state, federal, and local agencies to provide grants to entities to carry out activities to implement the Bay Restoration Plan and to identify projects funded through state bond programs such as Propositions 12, 50, and 84. The SMBRC Governing Board also approves an annual Work Plan that identifies projects implemented by various entities and coordinates with the Foundation to conduct occasional seminars and workshops. With 27 voting and 9 non-voting members, the Governing Board membership is made up of ex-officio and appointed positions from watershed cities, regulators, and legislators with 7 seats elected by the Governing Board for public and at large seats from the Watershed Advisory Council.  Watershed Advisory Council positions serve two year terms with elections held at the December Governing Board meetings of odd-numbered years. Watershed Advisory Council members on the Governing Board do not have term limits and may run for consecutive two-year terms.

The SMBRC Executive Committee works with staff to formulate agenda items for the Governing Board meetings meeting six times per year during the odd-numbered months. The Executive Committee is comprised of the SMBRC Governing Board Chair and up to six Vice-Chairs, all elected by their Governing Board colleagues to serve one-year terms, with no term limits.

The SMBRC Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) are a group of experts in coastal and watershed science who provide scientific opinions on a broad range of subject areas including intertidal ecology, fisheries, physical oceanography, plankton, sea birds, sediments, wetlands etc. The main responsibility of the TAC is to provide review and recommendations to the SMBRC Governing Board on research, policies, and projects that have a strong technical component being considered by various entities and to develop and adopt a State of the Bay report every five years. The TAC may provide reports to the Governing Board on technical issues as requested by Governing Board members and develop white papers where appropriate or convene ad hoc committees, with members drawn from both within and outside the TAC, to provide guidance on specific issues. TAC members contribute the latest technical input on issues as they have a working knowledge of the current scientific literature in their field and preferably are actively publishing. TAC members are appointed by the SMBRC Governing Board and serve two-year terms without term limits.

Santa Monica Bay Restoration Authority (SMBRA)

The Santa Monica Bay Restoration Authority (SMBRA) was created by a joint exercise of powers agreement between the SMBRC and the Los Angeles County Flood Control District and operates as a local public agency within the Santa Monica Bay Watershed and the jurisdictional boundaries of the SMBRC and the District. The purpose of the SMBRA is to broaden funding opportunities for projects within the Santa Monica Bay Watershed, and it provides an efficient method by which state agencies can fund important programs of the SMBNEP. The SMBRA Governing Board approves its annual budget, monitors and supervises its various programs as funded by local, state, and federal sources, and subcontracts with local entities to carry out projects as needed. Current program examples include a Boater Education Program and various estuary restoration projects throughout the Santa Monica Bay Watershed. The SMBRA Governing Board is made up of the Director of the LA County Department of Public Works or his/her designee and four members of the SMBRC Governing Board including the LA County Board of Supervisors appointee, and 3 other voting members elected by the SMBRC Governing Board. Appointment to the SMBRA Governing Board is made at regularly-agendized SMBRC Governing Board meetings or LA County Board of Supervisors meetings if needed due to a vacancy. There are no term limits for the SMBRA Governing Board members.

The Bay Foundation (TBF)

Updated description under development