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Letter To The Editor – Jeri Soulier

Dear Washington County Residents,

We are at a turning point in our state/county – yes, it is the year of  Covid 19, but this is beyond anything we have seen so far. What do I mean?

What I am referring to is the 39 pages of proposed changes to our County Code that Commissioners Kirk Chandler and Lisa Collini are pushing to make into County Code this year, prior to Ms Collini’s term expiring. Thirty-nine pages of changes?  Yes.  Who created them? NOT the Planning and Zoning Commission, but Commissioner Kirk Chandler. When attending a  recent P&Z hearing, a P&Z commissioner stated that some of these proposed code changes will have dramatic affect to our county’s historical and future agricultural land useThat P&Z commissioner suggested these proposed code changes be delayed to allow for a full series of public hearings and brain-storming sessions, to include the newly elected county commissioner.  Mr Chandler responded with, “ a commissioner is a commissioner until their last day – this will not be delayed.”  

One of the proposed changes is removal of our Code’s definition of an “original parcel” of land, which, according to the opinion of Prosecuting Attorney Delton Walker, would allow any parcel over a couple acres to be split into one acre parcels, without the existing processes to limit those splits.  Agriculture is the backbone of this County and the suggested code changes could hamstring the future of agriculture and ranching forever.  Would that change the nature of this community? Would that change where you live and the property you chose to buy, based on the historic “original parcel” definition in our Code? Please consider reading the 39 pages of proposed changes – available from P&Z at 208-414-3631, and attending and sharing your thoughts and opinions at the next Planning and Zoning hearing on these changes on Tuesday, November 17th at 7 pm.  Call your Commissioners and ask them why push these changes, right now, without input from the next elected commissioner and the whole county’s ideas and viewpoints considered? Kirk Chandler 208-550-2477, Lisa Collini 208-407-4170. Commissioner Nate Marvin (208-550-1367) has not expressed any support for these rushed changes. (Lyndon Haines – incoming Commissioner 1/12/2021).

Thank-you,

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