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SDC plan at odds with state’s goals for open space, climate change

Posted on January 10, 2022 by Sonoma Valley Sun
After years of protecting open space and wildlands through UGBs and Community Separators, Sonoma Valley finds that more and more housing developments are being proposed in unincorporated rural areas.
The State has a policy of transit oriented development to reduce greenhouse gasses through the reduction of vehicle miles traveled and the protection of open space. At the same time State and County bureaucrats, at Legislators’ direction, are pushing for sharply increased housing in unincorporated areas to meet general and affordable housing goals.

Not only are we putting our residents at dangerous wildfire risk due to evacuation congestion on small county roads, but we reduce the ability of the State to reach 30% open space protection by 2030, the governor’s policy for combating Climate Change.

We need our Legislators to lead this process with an approach to development that takes into consideration climate change, community housing needs, fire safety, and the need for rural land to support the local economy both the agricultural and viticultural aspects and the hospitality industry. One obvious example is the conflicting restraints put on the County for coming up with a specific plan for SDC which if built with an emphasis on fiscal feasibility instead of the future well being of the entire community will adversely affect the entire Valley.
Why not require the state to pay for clean-up of the site? Thereby opening the door for other approaches to funding the development like a Land Trust.
— Nancy Evers Kirwan, Sonoma


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