40 people crowded the often sparsely populated Board of Supervisor’s chambers again last night for the Planning Commission. Notably the Commissioners were able to make it too.
The presence of the public standing up for critical, essential, etc. river habitat worked. The Commission could not “brick and mortar vote” (thanks Gordon Leppig) a previous straw vote that stuck or reduced (sorry, late for work) the set back for streams, rivers, etc. (BR-S5)
The Open Spaces Element is still getting re-written by a narrow-agenda-focused majority on this Planning Commission, but this was one section that was critical to keep. To amend as suggested would have been despite the strong protestations of an increasing number of wildlife biologists who know of what they speak.
It’s a start, and it proves so clearly that showing up can make a difference. We can’t change the balance of power over night, but we can stand up for basic principles and make the argument and/or rational to change what shouldn’t be changed much more difficult. Sometimes so difficult that a vote or two can be swayed.
I’m not sure where that leaves us on BR-S5, it will be a little bit of Robert’s Rules drama to find out where we go from here, but stay vigilant and thanks to all you who took the time to show up last night. You made a real, measurable difference.
(The vote on BR-S5 was 3-3 and failed. It was (Ulansey, Morris, and Bongio) for and (Levy, Edmonds, and Matsen) against. McKenny abstained. I fairly certain the difference was Commissioner Edmonds, but don’t have time to double check this now.)