Letters to the Editor

Land Bank benefits quality of life, property values; 'Yes' on Prop. 1 | Letters

Since moving to San Juan Island 33 years ago, I have purchased and sold several different homes, including two since 1990 when 60 percent of San Juan County voters approved the creation of the Land Bank.

I have never regretted paying 1percent to the Land Bank.

The Land Bank is unique in that it preserves agricultural, historic, scenic, recreational and other lands, all of which benefit every resident. It is no wonder that in 1999, 73 percent reauthorized Land Bank funding to 2014.

Now we are asked to authorize the renewal of Land Bank funding and I plan to help do that with my vote.

In spite of the fact that property values both nationally and locally have fallen dramatically, people are still drawn to island life, partly because of the work of the Land Bank. A property's value is worth more that it would be without the Land Bank.

When people buy houses, they look for good schools, good fire protection, and a good environment. In San Juan County, it is the Land Bank’s acquisitions — a stunning valley, rich farmland, a place to sit by the water and watch for whales — that surprise us no matter how many times we've seen them before. Its beauty is for everyone; one does not have to own land or a home to enjoy island life.

Tourists flock here for that enjoyment. They aid the island economy, and many will decide to stay.

If they are asked to pay 1percent to the Land Bank, many will do that without question, since the Land Bank preserves that which initially attracted them to the islands. Common sense suggests that a vote for the Land Bank is a vote for ourselves.

Please join those of us who are committed to where we live and vote for the renewal of the Land Bank.

Jeff Brash

San Juan Island


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