This was the news today. The Coastal Commission voted behind closed doors to fire a public servant who was doing too good of a job. The Edge of U2 needed his home where no one else could build one, and so did many others. Looks like the scales of development justice have just been made a great deal more favorable.
The development that will be built in expedited fashion from a new Executive Director that might not have the expertise but will be a more willing listener to what the people through their representatives want.
Lookit, a couple of early morning thoughts as we begin to live in the new world that we have known was in the offing for a couple of years.
a) This is an outrage b/c it’s another example of what sadly, Humboldtians are all too familiar: crushing the responsibility of a governmental agency from the inside. The problem is not with the Coastal Commission who was doing it’s job just fine, thank you very much. The problem was the Development Commission wasn’t doing it’s job. Of course there isn’t a Development Commission, so to change things we have to tweak the mission of the Coastal Commission just a bit. Maybe we should rename it the Incentivizing Coastal Protection and Development Commission.
b) This is not about growth vs. no growth (from the NYT “It stirred longstanding tensions here between environmentalists and advocates of growth.”). This is about where to grow and how. I have no problem with Edge or the myriad of nameless and soon to be much more well-to-do land owners and tenets with the amazing views, but it is right that we do the development where it is appropriate and it would be nice if we had strong and competent individuals to follow the mandates behind the Coastal Commission and the Act that created it.
c) We need more information. Please, please more public interest reporting on this. Who voted for firing Charles Lester? Who nominated them (update: more coming and here), what are their backgrounds and their interests? How did they understand what is needed to protect the coast better than a professional?
d) As a member of Gen X, as someone who has spent countless hours listening actively or passively during my formative years to Bono and The Edge, let me say to those younger and older: I’m sorry. I’m sorry that we haven’t been more active. I hope this will change in months and years to come with those Gen Xers who get it. Who knew that all that amazing music was, in the end, really about buying the coolest homes you could. Congrats. Glad I could contribute.
Well one of my requests had been answered. Thank you LA Times.
Votes to fire Charles Lester: (7)
Olga Diaz, Erik Howell, Wendy Mitchell, Effie Turnbull-Sanders, Mark Vargas, Martha McClure and Roberto Uranga
Votes no (to retain): (5)
Carole Groom, Mary Shallenberger, Commission chair Steve Kinsey, vice chair Dayna Bochco and Mary Luevano.
NOTE: FANCY TABLE TO FOLLOW…dogs need a walk, then work, etc.