Assemblyman Das Williams, D-Carpinteria, Assembly Natural Resources Committee chair, and Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara, Senate Select Committee on Refugio Oil Spill chair, will hold an joint oversight hearing to examine the cause and response to the devastating oil spill which has gravely affected the coast line, ocean waters, wildlife and the local economy near Santa Barbara beaches.

“I learned how to surf within 50 yards of where this tragedy occurred. This beach is special to me, our community and our state. I am saddened and angered to see it covered in oil,” Williams said. “It is clear that no matter how many times the oil industry says they are able to protect our environment, there is always tremendous risk to sensitive habitats surrounding pipelines.

“The goal of this oversight hearing is to get clear answers on chain of events, timeline, response time and to assess the short and long-term effects of the damage.”

Williams will also introduce legislation (AB 864) that will require pipelines in environmentally sensitive areas along to coast to use the best achievable technology to reduce the amount of oil released in an oil spill in order to protect state waters and wildlife.

The joint hearing will take place in Santa Barbara on Friday, June 26 from 2 to 5 p.m. in the Board Hearing Room on the fourth floor of the County Administration Building, 105 E.Anapamu St.

— Lourdes Jimenez is the chief of staff for Assemblyman Das Williams.