Surfing is steadily becoming a pay-for-play-only activity in the City of Santa Barbara. Surfing resources in the city are sparse. With the proliferation of surf schools, often with 20-25 customers, the public is being effectively pushed out of the break at Leadbetter Beach.

At the head of the line taking over this historically public resource is Santa Barbara City College, which this fall has paid City Rec to use Leadbetter in order to increase its surf classes from four sessions a week to six sessions. The break will be effectively unusable by the public on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. throughout the SBCC term. In addition, a number of other surf schools and camps, many of them private and unpermitted, use the break.

The college, the city, and surf schools do not own this resource. This practice needs to stop or at the very least be capped. The resident public is being pushed out.


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