Community planning groups

COUNTY SUPERVISORS VOTE TO RESTRICT ROLE OF COMMUNITY PLANNING AND SPONSOR GROUPS

Local planning group members and residents voice concerns over stifling of powers for communities and heavy influence of developers

By Miriam Raftery

December 12, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – By a 5-0 vote, San Diego’s Board of Supervisors this week unanimously voted to  place limits on the powers and influence of community planning group and sponsor group members.   

The action follows recommendations made by a developer-stacked Red Tape Reduction Task Force, which had sought to eliminate planning and sponsor groups completely.  Supervisors previously voted to retain the groups, but make some changes.  But changes approved this week are sparking concern and outrage among many local planning and sponsor group members, as well as the public that they serve.

One local planning representative is even calling for a ballot measure to shift power from Supervisors back to local planning group members and the people in rural communities.

NOT ENOUGH CANDIDATES: MANY PLANNING GROUP SLOTS TO BE FILLED BY APPOINTMENT

By Janis Mork

October 12, 2012 (San Diego’s East County)- In the November election, community planning association (CPA)/community planning group races countywide give voters few choices.  Most are not competitive – with either the exact number of candidates as seats vacant or in several cases, fewer candidates than openings. That means many vacancies will be filled by appointments approved by Supervisor Dianne Jacob.  

The moral of the story? If you  want to have a say-so in development projects planned for your area, run for office! Your odds of getting elected are high, based on this year’s low number of candidates. Plus if your planning group has fewer candidates than seats open, you can ask to be considered for appointment to fill a vacancy.

EDITORIAL: SUPERVISORS SEEK TO SQUELCH NOTICE OF PLANNING GROUP MEETINGS, HIDE AGENDAS FROM PUBLIC

By Miriam Raftery

September 15, 2012 (San Diego) – Thanks to Valley Roadrunner editor David Ross for giving us a heads up on County Supervisors’ latest attempt to hide their actions from public scrutiny.  The newest scheme to keep the public in the dark is a proposal that would limit publication of community planning group meetings to a tiny two-by-two inch square ad in print publications—with no agenda included.

ECM EDITORIAL: SAVE COMMUNITY PLANNING GROUPS FROM DEVELOPER-BACKED SCHEME TO SQUELCH LOCAL INPUT

 

SIGN A PETITION! Key vote Feb. 29 could take away your right to be informed and speak out

By Miriam Raftery, Editor, East County Magazine

“People will never hear about projects until after they’re done if this [elimination of planning groups] goes through.” – Mark Ostrander, chair, Jacumba sponsor group

February 2, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – I've rarely published an editorial commentary, reserving my opinion for only those matters with the gravest of consequences for East County. One such matter will come before San Diego's Supervisors on February 29, when supervisors will vote on whether or not to eliminate all community planning groups countywide.  They will also weigh other “reforms” aimed at making it easier to pave over paradise--or put a goliath-scale project next door to you--with nobody the wiser until it's too late.

This ill-conceived idea is the brainchild of a “Red Tape Reduction Task Force” stacked with developers. If adopted, it will stifle voices of concerned residents in the early planning phases of major development projects from condo complexes to wind farms. 

Danielle Cook, a concerned citizen in Jacumba, has launched an online petition calling on Supervisors to save community planning groups. I have signed it, and urge all County residents to do the same if you value a democratic process that allows people’s voices to be heard, not just special interests. You can sign the petition here: https://www.change.org/petitions/san-diego-county-supervisor-save-our-planning-and-sponsor-groups.