I was glad to read in The Union that the County supervisors voted 4-0 on Tuesday to dissolve a citizens’ committee to “review” Nevada County planning and building fees.
Why? Because the committee of “citizens” included some self-serving, property-rights activists. It is a growing problem in our community: activists and political ideologues sitting on “citizens committees,” civil grand juries and the like and trying to steer the outcome to extreme positions to suit themselves.
“It’s a further disenfranchisement of taxpayers,” The Union quoted realtor Kirk Pharis as stating.
No it’s not. What The Union didn’t report (and should have) is that Pharis has been a longtime member and supporter of CABPRO, the property-rights activist group.
“Kirk (Pharis), Kim (Janousek) and I would like to thank all of the members who showed up at the March 17th Special Membership meeting to support us,” as CABPRO told its members in a recent newsletter. “Well over a quorum came out and voted to continue with CABPRO as an organization, and voted unanimously to have Kirk, Kim and I continue our leadership as the Board of Directors.”
Why didn’t The Union disclose Pharis’ obvious bias? It is glaring.
“According to DeCamp (director of the county’s Community Development Planning Agency), the committee had included one representative each from: architects, civil engineers, county supervisors, county planning department, Nevada County Contractors Association, Nevada County Board of Realtors and general contracting,” The Union reported.
‘“You didn’t have a member representing the public at large?” asked Supervisor Terry Lamphier, who had served in that post in a Grass Valley fee committee some years back.”
Good point! Another supervisor referred to some of the committee’s actions as a “witch hunt,” and I couldn’t agree more.
I’m reminded of the one-sided flap in The Union titled ““Nevada County church told to take down ‘Support Our Troops’ sign.”
Contrary to the incomplete reporting, the County Planning Department worked with the church to address the concerns of noncompliant signs, and the sign is back up with a sincere “Support Our Troops” message. Imagine that.
We have to stop letting the self-serving political ideologues in our community lead the rest of us around by the nose, just because we’re too busy to fill all the vacant positions on boards and commissions throughout the county. It could only get worse too. Details here.