By Doug Beretta, President
As I sit and write my article this month it amazes me how elected and appointed personnel really don’t understand the benefits of agriculture in this county. Sonoma County Farm Bureau was notified of the LCP review a couple of months ago. Thanks to a number of our costal property owners that heard about some new language in the LCP that would affect their properties and their property rights. We put a group of some amazing landowners, Farm Bureau staff and consultants together. We had 4 meetings digging through the new language. We had meetings with supervisors, Sonoma County Permit staff and legal staff from CA Farm Bureau.
When the LCP came before the Board of Supervisors, we were there in force to make sure it did not get voted on in the form brought to them by staff. We were successful at getting it pushed back to include more listening groups that are taking effect now.
The thing that really bothers me is this was supposed to be a review not a rewrite!! The process is for our county to review the plan in place, see if there are problems and address them. Not for county staff to take direction from the Coastal commission on how things should be written. This way Sonoma County builds a plan that works for all landowners within the coastal zone and then the Coastal Commission ensures that it does not go outside of the Coastal Act.
I know this is late getting to members and landowners but there will be a meeting dealing with agriculture issues on May 1st. The Farm Bureau group will be there to voice our concerns. Then it will go back to the board of Supervisors on July 17th. We will see final language 4 to 6 weeks prior to the July meeting.
If you have concerns or need more information, please contact the Sonoma County Farm Bureau office.