February 12, 2016—Professor Sean Hecht was quoted in the Los Angeles Times on the sudden, and unpopular, dismissal of the California Coastal Commission’s executive director, Charles Lester. Chief Counsel Chris Pederson advised commissioners that they were free to discuss any current issues involving Lester's performance because he had chosen a public hearing to defend himself.
Professor Hecht agreed with Pederson's interpretation of the law. He said commissioners could have provided statistics or anecdotes about the pace of processing applications or the pace of other commission initiatives. Their failure to do so "does not make the commissioners look good" and leaves the action open to alternative explanations, Professor Hecht said.