I appreciate Alan and Carol Koch for their letter in last week’s Coastal View News. It relates to the Feb. 22 City Council meeting about the Surfliner Inn project proposal. Somehow, the citizens’ request for a vote fell on deaf ears. Instead of addressing the central concern of the public, the process was rerouted by a legal eagle somehow aligned with the interest of further developing the project.

I have no issue with private owners developing their own land, but I do have a problem with city council members who fail to do their due diligence on behalf of the entire community. When a lawyer is allowed an inordinate amount of time to shut down and redirect his legal process, we are not inspired to trust the city council or the private developers to consider any interests other than their own personal profits or political positioning.

It is even more disturbing when it appears the city council members lean in favor of allowing four families to develop their commercial project on public lands and granting them a special 99-year lease. Denying us our voice is not an acceptable response to our request for a citywide election.

How will the council address this specific grievance from its citizens? We still request a vote by the citizens of Carpinteria, a simple yes or no vote on whether a private developer(s) can be granted a 99-year lease to develop a commercial venture on lands designated for community use. We are not requesting a special election, but a vote can occur during the next voting cycle without additional cost to the city. When can we expect a response?

 

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