Monday, June 21, 2021
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What is Bonner County Planning Department for?

| June 8, 2021 1:00 AM

My recent experience reporting the denuding of the entire southern bank of Boyer Slough by Tricore Investments, LLC, i.e. Adrian Cox, has made me wonder what purpose our county Planning Department serves.

At first Josh Pilch told me in front of his planners that there was nothing he could do because no one listens to them. Then I was told that building permits take priority. So denuding the bank down to water line on a slope that is at over 30% slope, silt entering the slough, excavation into the shoreline buffer zone with the potential for a landslide (which we have already experience on a less steep slope and which homeowners had to band together to dredge out so we could navigate out of the Slough into the Lake) is not a priority for Bonner Planning but getting those building permits approved is the priority.

Why do we have an ordinance providing for a 40-foot horizontal buffer zone from the water if the Planning Department ignores it?

Oddly after my formal complaint, the developer who hadn't worked at the site for over a week showed up and quickly excavated more of the hillside and even carved out a road quickly while no action is taken on my complaint. I was going to go to Commissioner Dan MacDonald but was told that he is with the developers and ensured planners knew development at the cost of our shoreline and waterways is the priority.

So my question is why do we have a Planning Department? Developers first, shoreline last!

LANA WILLINGHAM

Sandpoint