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I trust local officials, Vote no on B

Letter to the Editor

By I-T letters

Editor, Index-Tribune:

I am dismayed that the main issue in the “yes” on Measure B campaign seems to be based on a distrust of our local officials, including the city council and those who volunteer their time to serve on local boards and commissions.

In the 25 years I’ve lived here, I’ve had the privilege to serve on a number of these bodies, including the Environmental Advisory Commission, Sonoma Valley Citizens Advisory Commission and the Sonoma County Parks Commission. In every instance I found my fellow commissioners – all volunteers – to have the best interests of Sonoma in mind. Many offered experience and expertise that paid staff did not have. They made well-reasoned, thoughtful recommendations and decisions that protected our historical integrity, sense of place and quality of life.

Additionally, I’ve appeared before the City Council and other commissions on issues that were of interest to me. I appreciated the courtesy by which I – and others – were treated, and found the quality of preparation and questioning to be excellent.

We are well-served by processes in place that require deliberation of issues on a case-by-case basis and allow for citizen input. We don’t need the cost of an additional bureaucracy to administer arbitrary rules and regulations derived without the benefit of any relevant economic data. Why change something that works?

Sonoma is arguably the best governed city in the county – fiscally sound and scandal-free. I have faith that my fellow citizens have the ability and commitment to continue debating issues that confront us and reach decisions that are to the benefit of all of us who are lucky enough to call this home.

We don’t need Measure B. Vote “no.”

Karen Collins

Sonoma

  • Jim Pacheco

    The residents near the housing development on West Spain Street certainly don’t feel the same way that you do. They feel that the planning commission did not listen to their concerns before approving the plans.

    I do find it interesting that you feel Sonoma is fiscally sound, because most of the other opponents of Measure B feel that the city of Sonoma is doomed fiscally if Measure B passes. So which is it? Is Sonoma fiscally sound or fiscally precarious?

    What additional bureaucracy? I have read the entire Hotel Limitation Measure and can’t find any additional bureaucracy.

  • Mike Stephens

    NIMBY Mr. Pacheco!! Sonoma may be fiscally sound, but any wise town in a desirable tourist destination realizes allowing a quality and higher end hotel will bring the most revenue to Sonoma without having to build apartment buildings and more strip malls that will only crowd the town with more traffic and not bring as much money to our local economy(shops,businesses) as well as the town of Sonoma for improvements and maintenance. Vote No on Measure B!

  • bob edwards

    ” We don’t need the cost of an additional bureaucracy to administer arbitrary rules and regulations derived without the benefit of any relevant economic data.”

    This is another example of deliberate or careless distortion of Measure B by those with a knee-jerk opposition to it.

    As a simple reading of the Measure demonstrates, there is NO additional bureaucracy associated with Measure B. In fact, when it comes to evaluating applications to build large hotels, Measure B would eliminate much of the work of the existing ‘bureaucracy,’ in that no applications to build hotels larger than 25 rooms would be accepted unless occupancy rates for exiting hotels reached an annual rate of 80% for the previous year.

    As the City Planning Director stated in his report on the impacts of Measure B, Measure B would be very easy for the City to administer because the standards are clear and require no interpretation.

    After Measure B passes, the existing process — no more or less bureaucratic than it is now — would remain in place for all applications to build hotels of 25 rooms or less. The same would be true if occupancy hit 80% and large hotel applications were accepted. Measure B would not increase ANY bureaucracy.