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DECEMBER 3, 2012                                                                           Mary Beth Hutchins or Briton Bennett




“We are …fighting…against a federal government that seems to value lies over the truth and special interests over the welfare of a community,” – Kevin Lunny, owner, DBOC


MARIN COUNTY, CA – Drakes Bay Oyster Company (DBOC) Owner Kevin Lunny announces today a continued effort to fight for his family’s business that was shut down by the National Park Service on November 30.  Retaining the help of government accountability group Cause of Action as well as Stoel Rives LLP, DBOC released the following statement today from Kevin Lunny:

 “We have been a dedicated small family farm for four generations in the West Marin community and when we purchased Drakes Bay Oyster Company seven years ago, we saw an opportunity to revive a part of our community that would provide local jobs, sustainable products for local businesses, and a positive long-term impact on the Bay itself.

The National Park Service has not just shut down our business, but has misrepresented the law, our contracts with the State of California, and the results of scientific studies.

Our family business is not going to sit back and let the government steam roll our community, which has been incredibly supportive of us. We are exploring possible responses to the National Park Service and will be taking legal action against them soon.  We are not walking away, instead we are fighting for our community, our employees, and our family against a federal government that seems to value lies over the truth and special interests over the welfare of a community.”

Cause of Action’s Executive Director Dan Epstein explained why his organization is dedicated to this fight:

“Cause of Action fights federal agencies every day that are abusing their power, ignoring law and procedure, and wasting taxpayer dollars. We aim to hold the National Park Service accountable for their treatment of the Lunny family and the Drakes Bay Oyster Company as we view their actions as a disregard for law and precedent that demands accountability. We are working with the Lunny family on the best legal strategies moving forward.”


About Cause of Action:

Cause of Action is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that uses investigative, legal, and communications tools to educate the public on how government accountability and transparency protects taxpayer interests and economic opportunity. For more information, visit



To schedule an interview with Dan Epstein, Cause of Action’s Executive Director, contact Mary Beth Hutchins,  202-400-2721 or Briton Bennett,, at 202-499-4232.





  1. My name is Christine Johnson-Ridens. From early 1960’s to about 2005 my grandfather and uncles owned and operated Johnson’s oysters (now known as Drake’s Bay Oysters). When my family could no longer tolerate the EIR’s and government actions they were forced to sale. Thus, the Lunny’s (long time neighbor and friends) acquired the the company. They were able to upgrade the property and made tremendous improvements. I watched my family and taxpayers lose money trying to do what was right, I thought the Lunny’s had a chance.
    I have mixed feelings regarding Ken Salazar’s decision to close the oyster farm. One feeling is that we all knew the property was on lease (research what the parks did to the locals in 1962). That I should walk with pride in knowing my grandfather helped preserve a great wilderness area, remembering the stories of Grandpa Charlie warding off would be dumpers of industry wastes after regulations in the early 70’s proved to not be “Cost Effective”. My opinion is strong My family saved the wilderness and did not harm it”. My degree in biology and what I saw watching the oyster farm over 40 years has sustained that. But back to facts, we knew it was leased, it’s over.
    Then there is the other feeling. That feeling fueled by witness and accusations not substantiated by the alleged EIR’s. If, it becomes clear that the Federal government has knowingly and willfully misrepresented allegations against the oyster farm at any time regarding lease rights then, I thank Cause for Action and the actions for the farm you are taking on. There was a time I had tried to fight but 53 regulatory agencies proved more then my family could take on. Good luck and thanks from one of the most unique farms in America a child can grow up on.