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‘Big’ isn’t big, and ‘B’ is more fear than fact

By Jeff Montague

It’s become clear to me that Measure B proponents fail to recognize the flaws and unintended consequences their measure would have on Sonoma. Measure B takes aim at “big” hotels, and their determination that hotels with more than 25 rooms are “big” is a mystery to me. According to Measure B, the Inn at Sonoma, a quaint lodging establishment here in town, is classified as “big” at 27 rooms. If Measure B passes, future hotels of the same scale, or the expansion of existing ones, would be indefinitely prohibited.

MacArthur Place Inn is a 64-room establishment with a spa, restaurant and event space.

I live two blocks away, and I frequent their restaurant Saddles, yet I have never seen a traffic jam there. Further, limiting hotels in Sonoma-proper would facilitate the building of large hotels just outside the city limits, perhaps just south of Leveroni Road. Just imagine the traffic and parking situation if guests visiting our town had to drive to the Plaza, rather than having lodging within walking distance.

The Hotel Limitation Measure tries to fix a problem that doesn’t exist. Their early arguments that Sonoma risks becoming “overbuilt and over commercialized” have been largely discredited, and now proponents argue it’s about anticipating change.

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