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Men's Fall Fashion Issue | Letters

He Preferred Mel Lane's Approach

September 12, 2004

Your article about former Sunset magazine owner and California Coastal Commission Chairman Mel Lane was excellent ("The California Coast's Friend in Deed," by J. Michael Kennedy, Aug. 22), but you should have compared his leadership with today's leadership. As an attorney representing clients in matters before the California Coastal Commission, I was present at the first meeting and at most meetings thereafter for several years.

Lane was different from the current commission because he (1) not only welcomed members of the public who had never attended meetings, but also welcomed developers who were entitled to a hearing and (2) he made sure that his philosophy permeated his staff. Today the staff runs the commission and never feels bound by the law or any other rules. That is why I stopped representing people before the commission, although I still represent clients who are suing the commission.

Al Kaufer

Malibu

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