Legislation aimed at reopening Martin’s Beach in Half Moon Bay to the public is headed to the governor’s desk after clearing a major hurdle Thursday by passing on the Senate floor for a second time.
State Sen. Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, authored Senate Bill 968, which received bipartisan approval and passed 23-9 in the Senate Thursday.
The bill would require billionaire Vinod Khosla, who bought the coveted property in 2008 for $32.5 million, to negotiate with the State Lands Commission to reinstate public access.
If a compromise cannot be met by Jan. 1, 2016, the SLC could use its authority to create a right-of-way access road through condemnation.
Once it reaches his desk, Gov. Jerry Brown has 12 days to sign it into law.
The bill, which easily passed the Senate, traveled a rocky road in the Assembly and was amended in both the Natural Resources and Appropriations committees. It narrowly passed the Assembly floor Wednesday on a second vote after Hill said he worked to earn an additional 10 votes. It passed 41-24 — the exact amount of votes needed to progress.
As the bill was amended in the Assembly, it necessitated another vote on the Senate floor.
Concurrent efforts to reopen the beach include two civil lawsuits and the California Coastal Commission has gotten involved by creating a survey it said it may need to use in court.
SB 968 will not interfere with those cases, according to Hill’s office.