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County planning update needed

| September 14, 2022 7:27 PM

I speak to our communities, if you’re concerned about land uses, seemingly fast-tracked approvals for unpublished minor land divisions that mimic subdivisions, and a zoning code that does not reflect the comprehensive plan. Then the time to speak up is now. It is time that the County Comprehensive Plan and Zoning Code be fully revised, be responsible and reflect the will of the people and future generations.

I recently worked with my neighbors and community to appeal a Minor Land Division approved by the Bonner County Commissioners. For the use of the term “urban water” in this approval to mean “private well system” and that county administration inferred this concept from the code, should cause concern for everyone who lives and appreciates a rural way of life. Especially for those that choose a rural way of life over an urban one. For the BOCC to say they’ve “completely unpacked this thing” and that staff has “ran it through the ringer”, yet not provide the community with evidence of that other than interpretation made from the zoning code is erroneous and irresponsible.

I’ve heard both Mr. Gabel and Mr. McDonald say, “If someone can provide the definition of responsible growth, I’d like to hear it.” Although I provided it that day, here it is again, in its purest form: "To meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs." This means we are actively maintaining and preserving local livelihoods for our children and beyond. Local livelihoods are small-town characteristics and an ecosystem that invite tourism, sustainable timber management, hunting, fishing, wilderness survival, ranching, small and large farms, homesteading, off-grid living, and many more. These are the livelihoods that this area has now and has had for generations. It is time to speak up for them.

In gratitude for our lands and communities,

LIZ IHA

Sandpoint

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