Letters to the Editor

CAO: P.C. may be the last line of defense | Letters

I found the recent letter, (“In praise of county planners”, March 14, Journal pg. 6) somewhat surprising.

Another opinion was expressed by a resident with extensive experience in environmental regulation and enforcement when he stated during the recent Planning Commission hearing on March 6, that the wetlands section of the draft CAO was the worse regulation he had encountered across his entire career.

This opinion was echoed by numerous residents who are scientists, planners and city managers. (The video is available at http://www.avcaptureall.com/Sessions.aspx#session.96c24bd2-d63b-49ec-922a-3219e035ecea.)

Our desire is also to see San Juan County in compliance with the state’s Growth Management Act, and to protect the long-term environmental health of our islands for future generations. Sadly, the proposed complex, costly and burdensome new regulations have nothing to do with those goals.

Instead, they will bankrupt a county that has no staff for interpreting the rules for permits, or funds for the inevitable litigation—not to mention further losses of revenue from construction and property taxes.

The planners concede that they have not done any analysis of the potential economic impact of these rules on the county, its businesses, or its residents. And the expensive “science” they rely on turns out to be worthless. Good job all around.

Our principal hope now is that the planning commission acknowledges the issues and forces the county to confront them.

Peg Manning/Orcas Island



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