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Federal agency extends deadline for public to chime in on proposal to create massive new marine sanctuary off Central, South Coasts

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A map of the Chumash Heritage National Marine Sanctuary proposal. A plan will be formalized during a public review process.

Deadline for comments on proposed Chumash Heritage National Marine Sanctuary pushed back to January 31.

The public is now getting more time to comment on a proposal to create a massive new national marine sanctuary off the Central and South Coasts.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has added three weeks to the deadline for people to submit comments for what would be the Chumash Heritage National Marine Sanctuary.

The 7,600 square mile monument would extend from Point Conception to Cambria. It would provide new protections for Chumash tribal lands, on and offshore resources, as well as some shipwrecks.

The public comment period runs through January 31st. It will be followed by public meetings, and development of a draft proposal. NOAA officials will then decide whether to pursue the marine sanctuary designation.