Home > elections > Estelle will run for Supervisor

Estelle will run for Supervisor

It appears Estelle Fennell quit her gig with the Humboldt Coalition for Property Rights (HumCPR) to run for the 2nd District seat on the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors.

Reports the Times-Standard:

Fennell sent out a press release this morning, confirming speculation that she will make a bid for the seat. She plans to kick off her campaign at 11:45 a.m. at the Veterans Memorial Hall in Fortuna, followed by a kick-off event in the Garberville Town Square at 5 p.m.

This will be Estelle’s second campaign for that seat.  She came in third behind current Supervisor Clif Clendenen and a write-in campaign by Johanna Rodoni in 2008.

  1. Anonymous
    September 20, 2011 at 3:39 pm

    Go Estelle!!!

  2. Ben
    September 20, 2011 at 4:35 pm

    Getting to know Estelle has been one of the most pleasurable experiences I have had. She is caring and intelligent and would make a fine Supervisor. She has a passion for her district and will represent a broad spectrum on interests. She is a formidable candidate and clearly is the frontrunner in this campaign.

  3. Anonymous
    September 20, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    I have allways liked Estelle, but her connection with CPR is mystifing.

  4. tra
    September 20, 2011 at 5:04 pm

    Well I agree with most of your comment, Ben, except for when you say that Estelle “clearly is the frontrunner in this campaign.”

    I don’t think anyone should underestimate the benefits of incumbency. Incumbents generally start with a significant advantage over challengers unless the incumbent is widely perceived to be especially stupid, corrupt, or incompetent.

    I don’t think Clif is widely seen as stupid, corrupt, or especially incompetent. Plus, he’s from Fortuna, where the largest bloc of voters lives. I think Estelle would make a better supervisor, but I don’t think Clif is so unpopular in the district that he would actually start out in the “underdog” category.

    Until I see some polling data that suggests otherwise, I’m going to assume that Clif probably starts out in the “frontrunner” position.

    But I do think Estelle will be a formidable challenger who will have a real chance of winning.

    Of course we’ll have to see who else gets into the race.

  5. tra
    September 20, 2011 at 5:18 pm

    By the way, the above quote from the Times-Standard includes the place and time, but not the date, of Estelle’s kick-off events.

    The date is this Thursday, September 22nd.

  6. _______BLACK-FLAG_______
    September 20, 2011 at 5:30 pm

    write in for Black Flag and I’ll propose to shut down any and all government and refuse a 100k pay for being a leech on the free market. what type of a hunk of trash would call them a “supervisor”?

    tear down government, bring back tar and feathers with torches, ropes, and pitchforks.

  7. September 20, 2011 at 5:32 pm

    Blackie makes HumCPR look positively left-wing.

  8. September 20, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    I’m glad Ben thinks Estelle is the front-runner. Ben thought he was the front runner in District 5 a few years back, but he vastly over-estimated his own popularity and got thumped by Jill Geist. Estelle is a nice person but she turned her back on friends and party when she decided to take Rob’s money.

  9. wurking stiff
    September 20, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    flag is an idiot living in a make believe fantasy world that exists only in his own mind. get real pinhead!

  10. odds are
    September 20, 2011 at 6:50 pm

    I think Estelle will easily outdistance Cliffy. Not only can she stay awake during meetings, she’s far enough to the right to get conservatives and far enough to the left to pick up the liberals. I seem to remember the last successfull supervisor from the 2nd shared similar traits that crossed the left/right divide. Clif just sinks lower in approval ratings the more we get to know him.

  11. Clif's the man
    September 20, 2011 at 7:28 pm

    Estelle sold her soul four years ago to HumCPR in her blind quest for votes and campaign donations. Yes, once upon a time (when she worked for KMUD), she had real integrity – when she didn’t need anything from anybody. Now she holds her finger up to the wind to see which way the wind is blowing before she opens her mouth.

    The pot growers from SoHum who joined HumCPR are not the same idealistic hippies who came there in the 70’s. Now those folks just want to put roads and additional homes on their TPZs, or subdivide their parcels and sell them off to get richer. How sad.

  12. grouchy
    September 20, 2011 at 7:35 pm

    Estelle is a fake progressive as is anyone who lists Joe Russ as one of her (or his) primary supporters. (Among other things, I once heard Mr. Russ say he believed that only property owners should be allowed to vote!) Not to mention her long & happy association with CPR, which in my opinion is a fundamentally dishonest organization started by and serving big landowners like the Russes, the Barnums, and Green Diamond. On the surface this seems to be an alliance of freedom loving “little people” (like the Tea Party) but (like the Tea Party), actually supports the old boys and big landowners who used to hold all the powers in this county and lost decisively in 2008. These people founded CPR when the county fumbled on the TPZ moratorium. What they really want is to be able to subdivide their property and still receive tax benefits from TPZ. They co-opted the small, theoretically environmentally sensitive (and in many cases, actually so) landowners by appealing to their sense of disenfranchisement. Also many rural people in SoHum, having lived proudly independent (or “outlaw”) lives for decades, are abysmally ignorant about how government works, which you have to know, like it or not, if you’re going to participate effectively.
    Why didn’t all my fellow SoHummers start their own organization to make their voices heard? Why coattail on CPR?
    As for Clif, he is an honest, unbought, undeluded person who is, indeed, somewhat stiff and awkward, and I dare say disorganized so that he’s spreading himself too thin. And perhaps too thoughtful to be quick on his feet in public. But he had no previous political background and he lacks the power team and money that the Rodonis and now Estelle have behind them. Think of other people in public office who started with good intentions and the right ideas, had rough first terms, and then got better as they matured in office.
    ‘Course if you hate progs, Estelle’s your candidate.

  13. not so sure
    September 20, 2011 at 8:31 pm

    The Second District isn’t as obsessed with Rob’s money as you are and that argument may not carry much weight in this race. More of an issue for the voters I talk to is that Clif is tied to the northern political machine of Lovelace, Salzman, et. al. and appears to allow them to lead him around by the nose on many issues. Clif’s a nice guy–what’s not to like about him as a person–but he hasn’t been very effective for the Second District.

  14. Anonymous
    September 20, 2011 at 8:50 pm

    Dear Mr. Flag.
    Please, by all means shut down the gov mint.
    I support you and your adolescent dreams.
    When you grow 2 hairs between your balls, you will be asking for handout. Just like the rest.
    Sweet dreams.

  15. September 20, 2011 at 8:50 pm

    political machine of Lovelace, Salzman, et. al.

    Did you stop paying attention before the last DA race or have you always been so out of touch?

  16. Not A Native
    September 20, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    Grouchy has the politics nailed. I also think Clif, in time, will become to be regarded like Jimmy Smith is.

    As to why SoHummer didn’t start their own organization, Grouchy answered that question too. Being ignorant(and suspicious) of how democratic government works disempowers people from being able to create political organizations. In short, by their own choices, SoHummers have relegated themselves to be followers, not leaders. CPR cleverly marketed them and they bought.

  17. Arthur Murray
    September 20, 2011 at 9:15 pm

    She has to be a better dancer than Clif.

  18. not so sure
    September 20, 2011 at 10:01 pm

    “Did you stop paying attention before the last DA race or have you always been so out of touch?”

    Maybe “machine” was the wrong word…I am in touch enough to know that even tho Salzman is trying to fly under the radar and is stinging from the last elections he’s still there trying to flex his waning muscle. And I’m happy to say I’m not as out of touch as Not A Native is to think that Clif would ever be regarded as a “Jimmy Smith.”

  19. September 20, 2011 at 10:07 pm

    Salzman is stinging from a Gallegos win? Go figure.

  20. Anonymous
    September 20, 2011 at 10:17 pm

    Jimmy didn’t get his boat from his father and although a lib he does have a working man understanding. Jimmy is a solid B-. Cliff is a D+. Estelle is a B from the get-go.

  21. not so sure
    September 20, 2011 at 10:49 pm

    It’s interesting to see so much desperation on Clif’s behalf so early in the run. Clif’s people seem a little defensive right now.

  22. Anonymous
    September 20, 2011 at 10:53 pm

    “grouchy” said: “What they really want is to be able to subdivide their property and still receive tax benefits from TPZ.”

    And with that statement you have demonstrated that you have zero understanding of the TPZ issue as it relates to rural Humboldt.

    The issue on the table is whether TPZ owners will still be allowed to build a single house on an existing TPZ parcel without having to go through a new kind of expensive, time-consuming and unreliable “discretionary permit” process.

    Subdivision of existing parcels into new parcels is a completely separate issue. Conflating the issue of subdivision with the debate over a ministerial permit process versus a discretionary permit process is, at best, a sign of ignorance, and at worst, a sleazy and cynical attempt to deceive the public. But I’m going to go ahead and give you the benefit of the doubt that you’re just extremely ignorant, rather than a would-be deceiver.

    Given the level of ignorance in some quarters about what is actually being debated, no wonder some people are so “puzzled” about Estelle’s support for the rural property rights movement.

    But I guess instead of making any effort to learn about the legitimate concerns of rural property owners and rural residents, it’s easier to just believe the propaganda about how Estelle has “sold out to greedy developers” and so on. That approach is a good example of what is known as “willful ignorance.”

  23. tra
    September 20, 2011 at 10:54 pm

    That was me at 10:53

  24. tra
    September 20, 2011 at 11:22 pm

    I wonder if Estelle’s entry into the race will prompt Clif to finally reveal his secret plan on rural land use policy — the one that Eric Kirk has hinted at, saying that rural residents may be “pleasantly surprised” by it.

    If Clif really does decide to come out in favor maintaining the current “ministerial” permit process for TPZ owner-occupancy, perhaps that may help to shore up his support among some of the rural residents who voted for him last time but have been unimpressed with his non-leadership on this issue ever since (on the other hand, it may be that by delaying so long, he has already squandered the opportunity…I guess time will tell).

    Of course if Clif does announce support for maintaining the ministerial permit process for homes on TPZ parcels — rejecting the idea of instituting an expensive, time-consuming and unreliable new “discretionary” permit process — then he may lose some of the support he has among the Healthy Humboldt / GPU Option A True Believers.

    In any event, it will be interesting to see how all this plays out. One thing is for sure — with Estelle in the race it’s going to be tough for Clif to continue to duck the issue much longer.

  25. Walt
    September 21, 2011 at 6:16 am

    Sorry, Tra. “What they really want is to be able to subdivide their property and still receive tax benefits from TPZ.” Grouchy nailed it. Would anyone spend the kind of time and money CPR have spent on Estelle for a matter of principle? Follow the money. That’s all you need to know about politics.

  26. Ed
    September 21, 2011 at 7:15 am

    Following the money is a good rule of thumb when it comes to political backing, I’d also add follow the number of parcels.

  27. Decline To State
    September 21, 2011 at 7:38 am

    I’m torn between Fennell and Clendenen. Both seem to be genuinely nice, thoughtful people with the best interests for the 2nd District at heart. For the most part I agree with Estelle’s politics but like others, am disturbed by her involvement with HumCPR. I think she would perhaps be a more effective supervisor than Cliff. I also like Cliff’s genuine concern for the 2nd District and well rounded agenda. Not wanting to be a one-issue voter I’m faced with a choice between someone I generally agree with but who hasn’t proved terribly effective and someone who I also generally agree with but have a strong difference on one issue but who would perhaps better represent the 2nd.

    The election is a ways off yet. We’ll just have to sit back and see how things unfold. Hell, Joanne Rodoni hasn’t even declared yet.

  28. Ben
    September 21, 2011 at 7:44 am

    Cliff’s rural plan is what ever Mark Lovelace wants. Everything that Mark wanted is what Cliff wanted in the rezone debacle. Remember that Cliff “won” with only 38% of the vote in the last election and those in So Hum now know him better, which is not good for him.

  29. Up front
    September 21, 2011 at 8:34 am

    Cliff = $40,000 utility fees for all of Southern Humboldt just like Shelter Cove. You ‘all [sic] have to pay for your impact. (i.e. roads, water, parks, sporting clubs, maintaining the elderly retired, and big government wages and pensions)

    Get to work!

    2009 Shelter Cove Resort Improvement District Salaries

    Shelter Cove Utility Superintendant $108,989
    Shelter Cove General Manager $105,341
    Shelter Cove Utility Superintendant $97,544
    Shelter Cove Construction Superintendant $82,377
    Shelter Cove Construction Foreman $78,436
    Shelter Cove Senior Utility Operator $71,723

    http://lgcr.sco.ca.gov/CompensationDetail.aspx?entity=SpecialDistrict&id=12271206700&year=2009&GetCsu=False

    Monopoly force of government is the greatest danger to liberty and the long-term well-being of the populace, State label: a “gang of thieves writ large”—the locus of the most immoral, grasping and unscrupulous individuals in any society.

    All services provided by monopoly governments can be provided more efficiently by the private sector. Regulations and laws ostensibly promulgated for the “public interest” are self-interested power grabs by scheming government bureaucrats engaging in dangerously unfettered self-aggrandizement, as they are not subject to market disciplines.

    Thoughts from Murray Rothbard

  30. tra
    September 21, 2011 at 8:35 am

    Walt,

    You may like “grouchy’s” assertion that “What they really want is to be able to subdivide their property and still receive tax benefits from TPZ,” but this assertion is, quite simply, counterfactual.

    The one place where grouchy did “nail it” was where he says:

    “These people founded CPR when the county fumbled on the TPZ moratorium.”

    As many folks seem to have forgotten, this moratorium was a ban on any new housing permits on existing TPZ parcels, not a ban on subdividing parcels into new parcels, which is a totally different process. Similarly, the ensuing debate on whether to institute an expensive, time-consuming, unreliable new “discretionary permit” process for anyone who wants to build evven a single house on their TPZ parcel is all about existing parcels, not subdivision.

    But of course you’re welcome to continue to believe the counterfactual spin if you like. 2nd district residents know Estelle, they know the actual issues that are in play here, and they are not fooled by the propagandistic narrative being pushed by the cynical and swallowed by the ignorant.

  31. Plain Jane
    September 21, 2011 at 9:01 am

    How could you forget that the TPZ debacle began because Palco said they were going to subdivide their forest lands to pay off debt, Tra? Not to mention all the “parcels” that Barnum, Arkley and Green Diamond have planned for cut-over timber land. Estelle has been taking their money for years now and no one should doubt she will be voting for their interests if elected.

  32. Anonymous
    September 21, 2011 at 9:13 am

    tra asserts above that rural Humboldt folks are concerned with but a single issue, and nothing more: the ministerial vs. discretionary permitting regimen for TPZ parcels. tra goes on to state that anyone who thinks otherwise must be “extremely ignorant” (his words). Really, tra? C’mon. One look at HumCPR’s newspaper confirms otherwise, and please don’t tell us that the SoHum folks HumCPR represents are not also concerned with parcel subdivision issues, road creation and maintenance regulation, etc., before you so breezily and arrogantly insult us, as you seem to increasingly do on this blog.

    Now, who is the “would-be deceiver”?

  33. Eric Kirk
    September 21, 2011 at 10:21 am

    Hell, Joanne Rodoni hasn’t even declared yet.

    She would have to move first.

  34. anonymous
    September 21, 2011 at 11:44 am

    PJ hits nail on head

  35. The Big Picture
    September 21, 2011 at 12:27 pm

    Once again, a tiny landed minority and their candidate will eclipse the biggest issues facing Humb. Co.

    Their counterparts around the nation and the globe exercise similar dominance of media, politics, public subsidies and incremental environmental devastation.

    Clendenen faces a formidable challenge to return land-use issues back to their logical, unemotional perspective and refocus the debate onto more pressing problems.

  36. September 21, 2011 at 3:58 pm

    Ben’s musings are entertaining. He thought he had the voters of his own district figured out several years ago, but they rejected him and elected Jill.

  37. tra
    September 21, 2011 at 7:44 pm

    tra asserts above that rural Humboldt folks are concerned with but a single issue, and nothing more: the ministerial vs. discretionary permitting regimen for TPZ parcels.

    No, I did not assert that. You need to work on your reading comprehension.

  38. tra
    September 21, 2011 at 7:48 pm

    How could you forget that the TPZ debacle began because Palco said they were going to subdivide their forest lands to pay off debt, Tra?

    Well actually you’re just making a very common error — confusing the selling off of existing parcels as opposed to actual subdivision which involves dividing up existing parcels into new parcels. The MAXXSCAM plan involved the former, not the latter.

    Again, subdivision is a different issue, “grouchy” is either confused, or attempting to confuse others.

  39. tra
    September 21, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    Barnum, Arkley and Green Diamond …Estelle has been taking their money for years now and no one should doubt she will be voting for their interests if elected.

    So when Bonnie Neeley took a huge donation from out-of-area developer Foster-Gill, she was selling her vote, too? And when Clif took a huge donation from the Blue Lake Casino, he was selling his?

    Or perhaps your cynicism is just rather selective, only applying to those candidates that you oppose?

  40. Plain Jane
    September 21, 2011 at 7:57 pm

    The difference being payroll and donations, Tra. And you are wrong about Palco. They submitted a reorganization plan before the bankruptcy court that would subdivide some of 22000 acres of PALCO’s timberland into 160 acre parcels.

  41. Plain Jane
    September 21, 2011 at 8:00 pm

    “Palco filed for bankruptcy in January 2007 after failing to make a payment on its huge debt. Its own restructuring plan filed in the fall was met with skepticism in Humboldt County, relying on carving out 22,000 acres for an exclusive resort-like subdivision and the sale of protected lands for $300 million.”

    http://www.times-standard.com/ci_8821009

    And THAT is what started the TPZ moratorium fiasco.

  42. Doug Fir
    September 21, 2011 at 8:13 pm

    New subdivision v. recognition of existing legal parcels which pre-date the subdivision map act = giving the finger from the right hand v. the left. Same result in the end. A flaw in the Forest Practices Act, all those years ago, that did not anticipate TPZ lands being worth anything other than for timber production.

  43. Eric Kirk
    September 21, 2011 at 9:29 pm

    Doug – not exactly true. Some counties anticipated it. Siskyou County for instance requires that a timber management plan be filed with the County before any construction of structures, which are very strictly regulated. Lassen County allows no construction on TPZ land. Period.

  44. Eric Kirk
    September 21, 2011 at 9:30 pm

    Clendenen faces a formidable challenge to return land-use issues back to their logical, unemotional perspective and refocus the debate onto more pressing problems.

    Yes. And I believe he will meet that challenge.

  45. tra
    September 21, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    P.J., the Times-Standard’s use of the term “subdivision” notwithstanding, I believe the 160’s in question were already existing parcels. Which is why the temporary TPZ moratorium was enacted in the first place. If MAXXSCAM’s plan had involved actual subdivision, no TPZ moratorium would have been needed, since the county would have already had the authority to not allow the subdivision. But all those separate parcels were under one ownership, and MAXXSCAM planned to sell them all off to separate owners. So it was certainly going to be division, though, unless I’m mistaken, technically not an actual subdivision.

    At any rate, I certainly agree with your use of the term “fiasco” to describe the TPZ moratorium. In order to understand how this debate has evolved, it’s important to remember that even after the bankruptcy judge in the MAXXSCAM case had rejected Hurwitz’s plan, there was an attempt to make the temporary TPZ building moratorium — which applied to all existing TPZ parcels, not just large timber holdings and not necessarily anything to do with subdividing — into a permanent TPZ moratorium that would have prevented anyone from building even a single house on their existing TPZ parcel.

    As Hank Sims wrote at the time, at a hearing just before the temporary TPZ moratorium was passed, at least one prescient speaker warned of the coming bait-and-switch game whereby there would be an attempt to extend the “temporary” measure into a permanent TPZ moratorium.

    http://www.northcoastjournal.com/news/2007/11/08/backwoods-brawling/

    When rural residents got wind of that scheme and started organizing and making their voices heard, that idea crashed like a lead balloon, and then those who wanted to put an end to owner-occupied Small Timber tried a different approach — claiming that the existing rules already banned any home from being built on a TPZ parcel unless the home could be shown to be necessary for timber harvesting (in other words, pretty much never). Never mind that the TPZ rules had never been interpreted that way in Humboldt before, never mind that folks who had bought TPZ land with the idea that they could both grow timber AND build a home and live on their parcel were basically going to have the rug pulled out from under them with no warning.

    Well, that attempt went down in flames, too. So, unable to get an actual moratorium, either by hook or by crook, those opposed to owner-occupied Small Timber then appear to have moved on to try to create a de-facto-moratorium-through-overregulation in the form of GPU requirements for an expensive, time-consuming and unreliable new “discretionary permit” process.

    A year or so ago, the Humboldt County Planning Commission, after hearing all the arguments, opted to NOT recommend this change to a discretionary permit process, but Healthy Humboldt and the Option A True Believer crowd has continued to push for the Board of Supervisors to ignore the Planning Commission’s recommendations and go ahead and impose the new discretionary permit system anyway.

    Long story short: Overreach creates backlash, and this was a case of severe overreach, which has, quite predictably, created severe backlash. The Healthy Humboldt / Lovelace / Option A True Believers / Planning Department Apologists crowd only have themselves and their own arrogance and hubris to blame for the backlash that their attempted overreach has created.

  46. tra
    September 21, 2011 at 9:40 pm

    Lassen County allows no construction on TPZ land. Period.

    It would be interesting to find out how many small landowners dropped out of the TPZ program when that rule went into effect. And how many of those, faced with higher taxes, then applied to subdivide their land or sold out to developers.

    And how many began to harvest their timber more frequently and more intensively (more clearcutting, for example), since they would now be taxed every year, rather than having the taxes on the timberland deferred until after an eventual harvest.

  47. tra
    September 21, 2011 at 9:47 pm

    “Clendenen faces a formidable challenge to return land-use issues back to their logical, unemotional perspective and refocus the debate onto more pressing problems.”

    Yes. And I believe he will meet that challenge.

    No sign of that so far.

  48. Anonymous
    September 21, 2011 at 10:48 pm

    Jeez TRA… you are far from the “reasonable” objective commentator in this one. Have any TPZ land at stake??

  49. Anonymous
    September 21, 2011 at 11:07 pm

    If I were a fish I know who I would vote for.

  50. tra
    September 21, 2011 at 11:32 pm

    Have any TPZ land at stake?

    Nope.

    you are far from the “reasonable” objective commentator in this one

    Well first of all, thanks, I’m flattered by your high expectations.

    I certainly wouldn’t deny that I have strong feelings about the way that both Planning Department staff and the leadership of the Option A crowd have approached the TPZ issue. Various actions, some of which I have alluded to above, have led me to distrust the motivations and question the integrity of some of these people.

    But I would add that I don’t think this distrust and skepticism is actually “unreasonable” at all, given the sordid history of the “emergency” TPZ moratorium, the attempt to extend that moratorium, the attempt to “creatively reinterpret” the existing TPZ rules, and so on.

    If you care to make some kind of substantive comment indicating where you think I’m wrong and why, I’m certainly open to discussing it.

  51. Eric Kirk
    September 22, 2011 at 11:26 am

    It would be interesting to find out how many small landowners dropped out of the TPZ program when that rule went into effect. And how many of those, faced with higher taxes, then applied to subdivide their land or sold out to developers.

    Well, I’m pretty sure it went into effect when the whole process was established, which means that nobody got into it without notice that the whole point of TPZ is to preserve resources and not provide for rural residential living. No other county except Mendocino has quite so many residential subdivisions going so far out into the woods, so I don’t think the same dynamics apply. Basically, the County looked the other way back in the 70s and 80s, and it didn’t really become an issue until the Palco bankruptcy.

    But to the extent that some people bought into properties with the assumption that they were buying land just like any other except that you get to pay low taxes if you don’t cut the trees, they were definitely not served well by the County at the time. Perhaps a few Realtors and even attorneys were lax as well. But even before I became an attorney, if something like that came up on my title report at purchase, you can bet I would have been asking questions.

  52. The Big Picture
    September 22, 2011 at 11:56 am

    Thanks for your knowledgeable comments Eric, I hope you provided the county with similar testimony.

    I must agree with 11:07.

    Well said.

  53. Eric Kirk
    September 22, 2011 at 12:07 pm

    Big Picture – well, I’ve had conversations, but it’s 20 to 30 years too late.

  54. tra
    September 22, 2011 at 12:59 pm

    Thanks for the thoughtful reply, Eric.

    As far as your statement that…

    the whole point of TPZ is to preserve resources and not provide for rural residential living

    …my point of view is that those two goals are not necessarly mutually exclusive, especially since homesites on TPZ parcels are limited to a couple of acres, and in many (most?) cases the homesite is placed in already-existing clearings, not areas that have to be cleared to put in the house. In those cases, I guess you could say that the homesites are potentially displacing cattle and perhaps some wildlife, but not necessarily timber. And in many cases, the roads involved are also already-existing timber and ranch roads, which are often improved by the owner-occupant TPZ owners and the road improvement associations that they pay into.

    I think there is a reasonable case to be made that owner-occupied Small Timber, which tends to involve less-frequent, less-intensive harvesting may actually do a better job, on average, of preserving habitat and environmental quality as compared to Big Timber. There are certainly plenty of legitimate issues — especially drought-season water use and water quality — but those impacts can be minimized and mitigated, and I don’t think it would necessarily require a “discretionary permit” process (and certainly not a total moratorium) to achieve those ends.

    In 2010, when the Humboldt County Planning Commission voted 4-1 in favor of rejecting the move to require a discretionary permit system or TPZ housing permits, Daniel Minz, reporting for the Independent, included this exchange between two of the planning commissioners:

    Commissioner Ralph Faust…said the rest of the state law talks about preventing timberland conversion to urban uses and discouraging the expansion of urban services into timberland. “How can a legislature that says that is the purpose of its law then go on to say that any parcel zoned TPZ gets a residence? How does that limit urban expansion into timberlands? It does precisely the opposite,” he said…

    Commission Chairman Jeffrey C. Smith disagreed. “When you look at these parcel sizes that we’re talking about in TPZ, they’re very large,” he said. “And I don’t think allowing one house on a TPZ parcel is converting it to an urban use.”

    I think that sums up the debate pretty well.

  55. tra
    September 22, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    And Eric,

    I also appreciate your comment on your own blog yesterday, where you said:

    Estelle is also active on numerous nonprofit boards, and I’m certain more of then would love to have her. She is very much involved in a number of community issues which have not necessarily been on the HumCPR agenda, so it simply added to the burden of her workload. She is an exceptional woman who is tirelessly committed to the community. Although I am in disagreement with about 70 to 80 percent of what HumCPR stands for, I believe that Estelle has the depth to understand the differences between her prior role as advocate and her intended role as consensus builder.

    My differences with her are strictly policy based, and I simply believe that Clif is better for the Second District as a whole. But we could do much worse than Estelle.

    My own view, as stated abiove, is that Estelle would be the better supervisor for the 2nd district (and especially for SoHum), but that we could do much worse than Clif.

    Which is why it seems to me that if it came down to a two-way race between Clif and Estelle, that would be a pretty good position for 2nd district voters to find themselves in.

    And I agree 100% that I hope this will be a good, clean campaign, focused on issues and records, and not based on the demonization of either candidate. Making legitimate criticisms, expressing differences of opinion, and highlighting the policy differences between the candidates are all appropriate, of course, and there’s nothing wrong with a vigorous and “hard-hitting” campaign, but I hope it stays well within the bounds of a civil debate. As you noted on your blog, it was a pretty positive, fair campaign last time around, and there is no reason this time should be any different.

  56. Ed
    September 22, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    I live on a 5 acre rural ag/residential lot. At the end of the road, the timber co. sold 160 acres in TPZ. The buyer built a house on it and proceeded to have 5 kids,added a mother in law unit, a shop, and a huge garden using about 900 gallons of water per day in the summertime. Now the creek is almost used up and the coastal cutthroat haven’t been seen in 2 years. The additional roads account for another 20 acres requiring maintenance it doesn’t get and taking that much more out of timber production. This is what happens once the foot is in the door. Sound familiar? If you tell me it can’t happen here, it will fall on deaf ears. All the development above was legal.

  57. Ed
    September 22, 2011 at 1:34 pm

    Forgot to say, that was just the first parcel, now I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop.

  58. tra
    September 22, 2011 at 1:52 pm

    Ed,

    When you claim that new roads on your neighbor’s TPZ parcel are taking up 20 acres out of a 160 acre parcel, to me that kind of suggests that you’re exaggerating quite a bit and this tends to reduce the credibility of your other claims. My apologies if I;m wrong about this being an exaggeration, but that figure seems really, really high to me. (1/8 of the whole parcel is covered by new roads? Really?).

    But of course I agree about the problems that can arise from too much drought-season water withdrawl. Fortunately we do get plenty of rainfall here in the wintertime to meet all our water needs, and then some. But it has to be stored so that water doesn’t need to be withdrawn during the drought season. I think we need to do a lot more to incentivize winter water storage, and personally I would be quite willing to consider a requirement for water storage as one of the underlying rules to receive a permit. We also need to do away with the requirement for a water-wasting conventional septic tank system, and make it much more feasible for people to get permits for composting toilets and greywater systems. Perhaps the money they saved from not having to put in an expensive conventional (water-wasting) septic system could be used to help pay for water storage tanks. That seems like it would be a win-win to me.

    Unfortunately, it seems to me that there are at least some folks who are much more interested in using the water-related issues to provide an excuse to ban any new rural residences, as opposed to being interested in actually working toward solutions to those issues, since those solutions would undercut their argument against allowing owner-occupied TPZ.

  59. Anonymous
    September 22, 2011 at 2:19 pm

    You might be able to collect enough water for very conservative household use, but not for ag. The trend has always been toward more subdivision, not less. When have developing real estate interests ever been deterred for long?

  60. tra
    September 22, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    You might be able to collect enough water for very conservative household use, but not for ag.

    Well I’d agree as far as large-scale, industrial agriculture, but not so much for smaller, homestead-level agriculture.

    Given that, at least as far as I know, aside from timber, the only really large-scale ag being carried out to any significant extent on local TPZ parcels is ganja growing (and those giant grows still only account for a relatively small minority of TPZ parcels), that issue may be best addressed through proposals to regulate large-scale pot grows. It is my understanding the county is already working on a such an ordinance, which will reportedly be at least partly based on the Mendecino ordinance (which does address water issues).

    If I’m wrong and there is some other large-scale agricuture that I’m not aware of that is increasingly being practiced on those lands, then I’d be open to looking at broader water-use regulations to address that. And I suppose there may be a good argument to be made that any water-usage regulations should apply equally to any sort of agriculture, rather than just singling out ganja-growing. But in either case, I don’t think that an overall policy of trying to prevent TPZ owners from living on their parcel is the appropriate approach.

  61. High Finance
    September 22, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    Even Cliff’s supporters must cringe at the thought of him trying to match wits with Estelle in a debate.

  62. Not A Native
    September 22, 2011 at 2:38 pm

    Its refreshing to read so many different commenters here refuting the propaganda, misdirection, disinformation, and sometime outright lies that TRA puts out here ad nauseum and repetitively and in multiple successive posts.

    It heartens me to know that in this instance at least, all the people can’t be fooled. Anyone who travels(and takes the time to trespass) to see what’s actually happening ‘on the ground’ observes the lie of the claim of good stewardship by most far rural dwellers. And the ultimate insult is they demand tax breaks to maltreat the environment while not even having the timber company’s excuse that they provide jobs and fiber.

    So with this small evidence, I’ll make the prediction the CPRers won’t prevail at the polls.

  63. Anonymous
    September 22, 2011 at 2:46 pm

    Even a backyard garden will use 10 times as much water as a household. That is one good reason to use TPZ for timber period.

  64. The Big Picture
    September 22, 2011 at 3:02 pm

    “One of the pleasantest and most invigorating human indulgences one can contrive is to run and jump across the Humboldt River till he is overheated, and then drink it dry”. (Mark Twain).

    Good luck with your gawl-darn water regulations tra.

    Estelle’s big donors and HumCPR will drop her in a heartbeat if she promotes the sensibility of fundamental carrying-capacity studies as a condition of development.

    (I’d laugh if it wasn’t another tragic repeat of history).

  65. Apologist Not
    September 22, 2011 at 3:08 pm

    “The only really large-scale ag being carried out to any significant extent on local TPZ parcels is ganja growing.”

    All those Olympic pools, orchards, vineyards, private lakes, trout farms, and bozos who’s water-systems spew millions of gallons onto vacant hillsides until they return to make repairs next Summer….

    ….is merely the price of freedom to use “their” water as they see fit.

    Who’s water????

  66. Anonymous
    September 22, 2011 at 3:38 pm

    all TPZ properties exist in watersheds, sometimes more than one, assuming owners have rights to that water, the probability of use for development far exceeding the natural state is very high and is reason enough to follow the lead of most timber producing counties.

  67. Eric Kirk
    September 22, 2011 at 3:45 pm

    Even Cliff’s supporters must cringe at the thought of him trying to match wits with Estelle in a debate.

    No offense intended HF, but I suspect that Estelle supporters are cringing at the thought of an HF endorsement of Estelle.

  68. tra
    September 22, 2011 at 3:55 pm

    NAN said “… disinformation, and sometime outright lies that TRA puts out here.”

    Of course NAN doesn’t point out any examples of my alleged “disinformation” or “outright lies.” Which isn’t surprising, because I haven’t offered any.

  69. Not A Native
    September 22, 2011 at 4:07 pm

    Oh get off it TRA, you’re disseminating untruths whenever your fingers touch the keyboard.

    For one, the TPZ tax break is real. TRA denies that with a lie that it isn’t. The tax on the property being held for future subdivision or used as privacy buffer while not being actively manged for harvesting is a speculation or rural lifestyle subsidy, paid by the rest of us. The high costs of publically provided services and infrastructure to far flung rural areas is subsidized through the low tax rate.

  70. tra
    September 22, 2011 at 4:08 pm

    Even Cliff’s supporters must cringe at the thought of him trying to match wits with Estelle in a debate.

    While I do think Estelle comes off as more mentally agile “qucik-witted” and perhaps more articulate, I don’t think she’s smarter or will necessarily come off better in a debate than Clif. It seems to me that both are intelligent and well-informed, they just disagree on some policy matters.

    And to some extent Clif may have an advantage in debates in that he may come off as a bit more of a “folksy everyday kinda guy,” whereas Estelle’s precise, sometimes rather formal manner of speaking may be somewhat off-putting to some folks. So both have their strengths and weaknesses in a debate setting.

    In any event, I look forward to them debating the issues. If the debates are structured well and the questions and follow-ups are good, it should make for be a very interesting and informative exchange of ideas.

  71. tra
    September 22, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    Oh get off it TRA, you’re disseminating untruths whenever your fingers touch the keyboard.

    For one, the TPZ tax break is real. TRA denies that with a lie that it isn’t.

    Uh, no I don’t. The TPZ tax break is real, but so is the fact that if a TPZ owner builds a house on their TPZ parcel they are taxed at the normal residential rate for the house, homesite and any outbuildings or other improvements related to the house and homesite. The TPZ tax break on the rest of the land, which takes the form of a deferment of taxes until the timber is harvested, remains in place, which is a good thing since it prevents the owners of that land from being incentivized to harvest frequently in order to afford the taxes.

    As far as taxes go, the current TPZ taxation system works exactly as designed: Timber is taxed as timber, residences are taxed as residences. I have yet to hear any real argument as to what is supposedly “unfair” about that.

  72. Bullwinkle
    September 22, 2011 at 4:59 pm

    watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat

  73. Walt
    September 22, 2011 at 5:09 pm

    . . .and Rocky says: “That trick NEVER works.”

  74. Anonymous
    September 22, 2011 at 7:08 pm

    Ed, I call bullshit. 20 acres of roads. no way. that’s around 10 miles of roads @ 18′ wide.

  75. Anonymous
    September 22, 2011 at 8:05 pm

    nan didn’t you read your groups talking points? you aren’t telling that tpz tax lie right now!

  76. Anonymous
    September 23, 2011 at 4:45 am

    As far as taxes go, the current TPZ taxation system works exactly as designed: Timber is taxed as timber, residences are taxed as residences. I have yet to hear any real argument as to what is supposedly “unfair” about that.

    There isn’t any argument tra. Thats why nan, hh, and the likes have to make things up.

  77. Steak n Eggs
    September 23, 2011 at 8:21 am

    If she promises to help oust Kirk Girard, she will win the 2nd District in a landslide.

    Kirk’s gotta go Estelle.

  78. Apologist Not
    September 23, 2011 at 1:00 pm

    “As far as taxes go, the current TPZ taxation system works exactly as designed: Timber is taxed as timber, residences are taxed as residences. I have yet to hear any real argument as to what is supposedly “unfair” about that”.

    tra posed this question but already provided the answers:

    There’s no requirement for a timber harvest plan, no regulations restricting water use, no vehicle to properly assess the direct public costs of infrastructure serving remote residences. (Unfunded subsidies estimated at thousands of dollars annually for every residence 10 miles outside city-centers).

    A privileged minority’s expectations of public subsidies for unbridled access to remnants of wilderness and headwaters, by virtue of their largess, is an outrage.

    That this issue plays so prominentlyu when 75% of county residents don’t qualify to own a home anywhere in Humboldt County….is another.

  79. Not A Native
    September 23, 2011 at 1:03 pm

    The TPZ designation was’t created to reduce the holding costs of backyard trees and land being held for speculation for residential development. Or land held for eventual sale at a price that’s inflated by a lower property tax. Having reduced taxes for land not being used primarily for fiber extraction is a subsidy.

    And the other fact brought up by many here is the excessive and unmitigated environmental impacts caused by rural resedential properties. The NCJ recently had an article about the extinction of salmon in the Mattole directly due to the numbers and practices of rural residents. Another fact is the many miles of sediment bleeding provate dirt roads. And expensive publically maintained ‘essential private driveways’ to rural residences are locally subsidized.

  80. tra
    September 23, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    And now we’re back to the fascinating contradiction in which the same folks who claim to be concerned about habitat are simultaneously complaining that TPZ owner-occupants aren’t “extracting fiber” from their forests fast enough. Go figure.

  81. tra
    September 23, 2011 at 1:48 pm

    If the only goal was to incentivize timberland owners to harvest as frequently as possible, then there would never have been any reason for the tax-deferment in the first place, because if the owners had to pay taxes on the land every year, they would be incentivized to harvest as soon as possible. Or they could have structured the program to have the taxes deferred for a finite period, say evey 20 years or something like that, which again would have provided a strong incentive to harvest frequently.

    But if you accept that there is an economic benefit to deferring harvest (allowing forests to mature to the point where the eventual harvest is more valuable, and preventing the market from being flooded with timber in the short-term, which could drive prices down, reducing the economic value of the harvested timber), then something more like the current system begins to make sense.

    If the concern is that the current system doesn’t ensure that ANY harvesting is done, even in, say, 50 years, and the only factor considered is economic, then in theory the program could be modified to require that some portion of the deferred taxes would have to be paid at 50 year intervals, harvest or not, or something along those lines.

    On the other hand, if ecosystem benefits are considered, rather than just economic factors, then an outcome in which some of these parcels aren’t commercially logged at all for the next hundred or more years doesn’t seem like such a bad thing. Whether that incentive to conserve forests over the long-term was originally part of the purpose of the TPZ program or not (and the name “Timber Production Zone” suggests it was not), it is not necessarily a bad thing that it is working out that way in practice.

    And I do find it ironic that self-described “environmentalists” would would be so upset that a tax-deferrment program originally intended to benefit commercial timber extraction may in some cases be manifesting as a “subsidy” of sorts for landowners who are willing to allow their forests to grow without harvesting for a long period of time.

  82. Not A Native
    September 23, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    TRA you just distract and dissemble and try to create divisiveness over timber harvesting. Environmentalists don’t oppose timber harvesting in every form, just the destructive practices that have been adopted, largely to externalize the costs.

    Even old growth redwoods aren’t more than about 800 years old, nature constantly replaces trees over large areas. But when smaller areas are managed for commercial timber harvest, it is more intense and environmentally harmful.

    Nope TRA, peddle your bogus divisive issue elsewhere. I’m in favor of TPZ zoning for the purpose of enabling environmentally sustainable timber harvesting practices over a wider land area and longer time. Very selective logging over a large area(not an individual’s 40 or 160) is both economically and environmentally sustainable. I’m also in favor of the creation of National Parks and wilderness areas, where no logging occurs.

  83. The Big Picture
    September 23, 2011 at 2:29 pm

    tra was just beginning to make a little sense when he advocated for water-use regulations as a condition of residency.

    Go figure.

  84. tra
    September 23, 2011 at 2:33 pm

    But when smaller areas are managed for commercial timber harvest, it is more intense and environmentally harmful.

    And yet the argument being made by those who are critical of the way the current TPZ taxation system works out in practice, is that the problem is that these small timberland owners should be harvesting more frequently and intensively than they are currently doing, where the lack of frequency and intensity and failure to “extract” as much “fiber” as possible is portrayed as cheating the county out of the timber tax revenues that they should be getting. It’s quite an interesting contradiction.

    By the way, at one point there was a proposal to have a separate category and different rules for large timber holdings (“industrial TPZ”) versus smaller TPZ, with residences more strongly discouraged or maybe even disallowed (except in exceptional circumstances) on the large holdings that would be zoned as “Industrial TPZ.” While I think the Planning Commission did not include that in their recommendations, I suppose everything is still on the table when it (finally) comes before the Board of Supervisors and they put together a final plan.

    And if the concern is about the large timber holdings being split up and sold off along their existing historical parcel lines (often referred to as “subdividing,” though I think it is also sometimes referred to as “parcelizing”), I know that there have also been proposals that would allow the County to officially “merge” those parcels to prevent that kind of division of the large holdings. For my part, I’d be willing to consider that as potentially a good idea from the point of view of maintaining economies of scale in commercial timber-harvesting. Not so sure about the desirability of that environmentally (Big Timber has a pretty mixed record, to put it mildly), but I’m open to it.

    But if the idea is to try to take away the tax deferrment from existing small TPZ holdings (160s, for example), and/or disallow or greatly disincentivize owner-occupancy of those Small Timber holdings, in the hopes that this would eventually lead to more of them being merged into larger commercial Big Timber holdings, I just can’t get behind that idea.

    For one thing, I think it would be extremely unfair to current small TPZ owners who bought their property under the current system and have organized their lives accordingly, and I am also concerned with unintended consequences, such as higher/annual taxes on those parcels leading to more frequent, more intensive harvesting on those Small Timber holdings.

  85. tra
    September 23, 2011 at 3:05 pm

    tra was just beginning to make a little sense when he advocated for water-use regulations as a condition of residency.

    Here’s a handy hint: The more you pay attention to what I actually say, and the less you pay attention to the false characterizations of my motives and distortions of what I actually support, the more “sense” it’s all going to make, B.P.

    Which brings us back to the subject of the original post, Estelle’s candidacy.

    Some time back I heard her interviewed on KMUD and she expressed willingness, even enthusiasm, for getting past the “discretionary permit” vs. “ministerial permit” issue and into what she referred to aas the “meat of the matter” (or something like that), namely what are the actual rules that underline that permit process, for example rules concerning water storage, erosion control, and other mitigations of various sorts. Interestingly, this approach is actually quite similar to the approach suggested by Erik Kirk, a leading SoHum supporter of Clif Clendenen, on his blog SoHum Parlance. So there may in fact be a lot more room for compromise and in some cases even consensus, than some of the dialogue over the past several years would suggest.

    The Planning Commission has already recommended against changing to a discretionary permit process and in favor of staying with a ministerial permit process for TPZ residences, and if we could get a majority of the Supervisors to publicly commit to following that recommendation, we could, at least in theory, put that part of the issue behind us and look at what it would take to minimize the impacts of whatever (probably pretty modest numnber of) residences may be built on TPZ parcels over the next few decades.

    Unfortunately, it does not appear that the leadership of the Healthy Humboldt / Lovelace / Option A True Believer clique is prepared (at least not yet) to accept defeat on that point and accept that the county will continue to have a “ministrial” permit process for someone who wants to build a single residence on an existing TPZ parcel (“if you follow all the underlying rules, you WILL get your permit in the end”) rather than their preferred option of a new “discretionary” permit process (“if you follow all the underlying rules, spending all the necessary time and money to do so, then you MIGHT get a permit in the end, or you might not, depending on the discretion of the Planning Department staff).

    There certainly do seem to be some real ideologues on both sides of this debate, some people so committed to their dogma and so dug into their positions that they aren’t really interested in finding common ground, but I’m not one of those, and it seems pretty clear to me that Estelle isn’t either. For that matter, I doubt that Clif really fits into that category either, which is why I wish he would finally start to address the specifcs of these issues. Hopefully Estelle’s entrance into the race will help bring that about., the sooner the better.

  86. The Big Picture
    September 23, 2011 at 3:21 pm

    It is the radical property rights clique that built this county and its cities beyond infrastructure capacity and into moratoriums, not the divisive “anti-growth” myth that Estelle is already anxiously reviving in her campaign in today’s TS.

    Can tra explain his obsession with a privileged minority’s public subsidized lifestyle and why it should continue to eclipse the far larger 75% who can’t afford any kind of residence in this county?

  87. tra
    September 23, 2011 at 3:34 pm

    Can tra explain his obsession with a privileged minority’s public subsidized lifestyle…

    Well of course I disagree with the premise of your question.

    I think I’ve made my position pretty clear above: there is nothing “unfair” about the current TPZ system, which allows a single home (and if the parcel is large enough, a mother-in-law unit) to be built on an existing TPZ parcel, and in which the home and homesite are taxed at the normal residential rate while the rest of the parcel continues to be taxed as timberland.

    As far as housing affordability goes, I don’t see how changing the TPZ rules to disallow or greatly disincentive TPZ owner-occupancy would do anything to increase the supply of affordable housing for the 75% that you say cannot currently afford a home. Seems like a seperate issue to me. Perhaps you could explain where you think those issues are connected?

    I have not yet read the Time-Standard article you’re referring to, but I’ll check it out. Right now I have some chores to do, but I’ll take a look at it and check in later. For now I’ll just repeat what I said earlier, that some of the dogmatic rhetoric and positions taken by some of the idoelogues on both sides seem counterproductive to me, and I hope that we can get past that and into the important details.

  88. Anonymous
    September 23, 2011 at 3:38 pm

    the anti growth meme is right up there with job creators and is a dead giveaway. Also, notice how the land rich financial backers for CPR have moved into the background? Their public expressions ring hollow for this election cycle.

  89. Anonymous
    September 23, 2011 at 3:44 pm

    Regardless of tax issues, the water issue has not been answered. Denial of the ecological ramifications of TPZ development is unacceptable.

  90. Walt
    September 23, 2011 at 5:07 pm

    In the 1980s Deng Xiaoping said, “To get rich is glorious” and later added “some should be allowed to get rich first.”

    Wonder if Estelle and Perry will run using that slogan.

  91. Anonymous
    September 23, 2011 at 5:36 pm

    And the unaddressed Elephant in the room is?

  92. tra
    September 23, 2011 at 8:30 pm

    Regardless of the tax issue, the water issue has not been answered.

    Well it’s a long thread, so I can’t blame you if you missed it, but here’s what I wrote at 1:52 yesterday:

    But of course I agree about the problems that can arise from too much drought-season water withdrawl. Fortunately we do get plenty of rainfall here in the wintertime to meet all our water needs, and then some. But enough of it has to be stored so that water doesn’t need to be withdrawn during the drought season. I think we need to do a lot more to incentivize winter water storage, and personally I would be quite willing to consider a requirement for water storage as one of the underlying rules to receive a permit. We also need to do away with the requirement for a water-wasting conventional septic tank system, and make it much more feasible for people to get permits for composting toilets and greywater systems. Perhaps the money they saved from not having to put in an expensive conventional (water-wasting) septic system could be used to help pay for water storage tanks. That seems like it would be a win-win to me.

    And then at 3:05 today, I briefly returned to that subject in a discussion of Estelle’s comments on KMUD some time ago, and my thoughts on the prospects for hopefully finding some common ground::

    Which brings us back to the subject of the original post, Estelle’s candidacy.

    Some time back I heard her interviewed on KMUD and she expressed willingness, even enthusiasm, for getting past the “discretionary permit” vs. “ministerial permit” issue and into what she referred to aas the “meat of the matter” (or something like that), namely what are the actual rules that underline that permit process, for example rules concerning water storage, erosion control, and other mitigations of various sorts. Interestingly, this approach is actually quite similar to the approach suggested by Erik Kirk, a leading SoHum supporter of Clif Clendenen, on his blog SoHum Parlance. So there may in fact be a lot more room for compromise and in some cases even consensus, than some of the dialogue over the past several years would suggest.

    The bottom line is that we have plenty of water, the challenge is to get people to store enough water during the rainy season so that they aren’t withdrawing too much water from the springs, creeks and rivers during the drought season. I recognize that it would not be an easy thing to accomplish this (I assume it would require some kind of mandatory requirements for new housing as well as greater education and/or incentives to encourage current residents to do their part too). A challenge, yes, but it’s certainly not impossible.

    So water supply is fundamentally not the limiting factor, though it seems like there may be some folks who wish it were.

  93. Anonymous
    September 23, 2011 at 8:55 pm

    water supply is the limiting factor. The cost of collecting and storing rainwater at levels to support 5 dry months is prohibitive for the typical homesteader. Yes it may be possible, but most will simply take the cheap route, plastic pipe in a creek. Perfectly legal with regulation unenforceable. That’s the reality in the hills today and will be until pot is legalized and the siphon freaks give up and leave.

  94. tra
    September 23, 2011 at 8:56 pm

    Big Picture,

    I couldn’t find the Times-Standard article that you referred to at 3:21. Could you provide a link, or tell me what the headline said, so that I can try to track it down?

    Thanks,

    tra

  95. Anonymous
    September 23, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    A third of Cal’s. rainwater falls in the north coast and it still dries out every year. The only reason farms flourish in most of the state is from hugely subsidized storage and irrigation systems. The forest stores water. Development uses it.

  96. Anonymous
    September 24, 2011 at 9:35 am

    i’ll try again: Pot.

    It is the strangest thing people are arguing so passionately over the damage a driveway or house may do on 160 acres while the hills are literally strewn with fertilizer, pesticides, armed criminals, poorly constructed roads, and greenhouses. The parks are dangerous to hike, often times whole creeks are diverted to provide water supplies for mj operations. Hazardous materials are dumped along the roads and into the streams, neighbors are threatened, and people are killed. Yet Healthy Humboldt and the option “A” crowd insist the undoing of our environment and community will be a few people a year building a house out in the woods. Not much talk about the growers, the people doing the real environmental damage. I don’t understand if they are afraid to say anything or what. It is strange to expend so many resources on an issue that has a negligible effect compared to what the mj industry is doing. I guess it is because we all benefit economically but it seems ludicrous to go after the homesteader who is doing a legal division and takes the time to go through a permit process while their neighbor very likely is doing 100X the environmental damage. What is the point? You keep 15 houses from being built on 1000 acres while 500 greenhouses go up in the same place.

  97. The Big Picture
    September 25, 2011 at 1:36 pm

    And yet, without pot, the same destruction appears throughout the state and the world….

    tra: Estelle renews the “no-growth economy” myth in the same TS article referred to in this post by Heraldo. Make no mistake who it’s appealing to.

    Humboldt County’s 25% housing affordability rate was arrived at by both Healthy Humboldt and Humboldt Home Builders in public testimony before the Planning Commission on numerous occasions.

    This is NOT a separate issue.

    You stated: “(TPZ) homesite(s) are taxed at the normal residential rate while the rest of the parcel continues to be taxed as timberland”.

    If you haven’t noticed, all those legal fees, taxes and “normal” rates are woefully insufficient and the public, (that mostly cannot afford any home anywhere), is subsidizing the even-higher costs associated with remote developments.

    The infrastructure belongs to all citizens but the benefits are far out of balance.

    It’s another sad irony that those who rightly condemn their nation’s “perfectly legal” appropriation of resources from foreign lands, are blind to their own “perfectly legal” appropriation of limited infrastructure and water resources at home…and the negative impacts on the larger community subsidizing it….

    …as if the historic precedence in California and around the world doesn’t even exist….

  98. The Big Picture
    September 27, 2011 at 12:27 pm

    My post must be too long for tra to respond, or has he pulled a “Hi-Liar”?

    Funny.

  99. Anonymous
    September 30, 2011 at 8:43 pm

    Or you are so stupid it is a waste of time.

  100. Anonymous
    September 30, 2011 at 9:22 pm

    “I would be quite willing to consider a requirement for water storage as one of the underlying rules to receive a permit.”

    If it is determined that a watershed is already impaired would you be willing to have the water storage requirement linked to a prohibition on dry weather water withdrawal from the natural system?

  101. tra
    September 30, 2011 at 9:49 pm

    My post must be too long for tra to respond, or has he pilled a “Hi-Liar”?

    The answer is (c) — None of the above. I didn’t notice your comment because it came two days after my last comment on this thread. Once a thread has “gone dormant” for a couple of days I would only notice a new comment if I happened to see it in the “Recent Comments” section on the front page. Yours slipped by.

    At any rate, the Times-Standard article that Heraldo quoted above was this one:

    http://www.times-standard.com/ci_18943195

    But I don’t think that’s the article you were talking about. The one that contains the phrase “no-growth economy” is this one:

    http://www.times-standard.com/ci_18960800

    I certainly agree with you that Estelle’s implication that her opponents are trying to promote a “no-growth economy” is not accurate.

    Because the truth is that those pushing for an Option A-style GPU are all in favor of “growth,” as long when it takes the form of a massive suburban subdivision in Cutten, with 1,400 housing units and 200,000 square feet of new commercial space, all to be built by a large, out-of-area developer (who gave a large donation to Bonnie Neeley).

    So, no, they’re not anti-“growth” and not even anti-“developer” — as long as the “growth” is the kind of Anywhere, USA cookie-cutter suburban development project that they associate with “progress” (and as long as the out-of-are developer puts some money in the right politicians’ pockets), then, sure, they’re all for that kind of “growth.”

  102. tra
    September 30, 2011 at 10:18 pm

    Big Picture,

    With regard to infrastructure expenses, it seems to me that the most expensive infrastructure costs are related to extending water and sewer services — which applies to the kind of suburban sprawl we see in Cutten/Ridgewood (and which some folks would apparently like to see even more of), but not to “remote” homes, where people must provide their own water and septic systems. As far as roads go, the more remote homes tend to be on private roads, paid for by private Road Improvement Associations, not by County taxpayers.

    On the other hand, I understand that some things, like emergency services, cost more to deliver to rural residents than urban and suburban residents. Is the cost of these items more than the savings on items like water and sewer? I don’t know the answer to that…do you?

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