Anna Schuessler’s story “Conflict over height limits wears on” in the Monday, July 2 edition of the Daily Journal is factually incorrect, sets up a conflict where there is none and completely misses the real conflict. Make no mistake, the citizens’ initiative to renew Measure P does in fact, provide the needed “fix” the reporter refers to in order to reconcile city and state housing rules. This alone renders a competing ballot measure by the City Council unnecessary and counterproductive.
So why would the city move forward with their competing measure anyway? Because in an unannounced move at midnight at the prior council meeting, councilmembers Goethels, Bonilla and Papan voted to include “carve outs” of certain areas that would be exempt from height limits. Just who’s interest would these “carve outs” serve?
Never part of the council’s initial intent, why did “carve outs” only come up when Bohannon Company representatives were in the room? Why, exactly, is the city council even considering a competing measure that would carve out special exemptions for special interests? And, why have they not supported the citizens’ ballot initiative that includes the “fix” they said they were looking for?
By moving forward with their own ballot measure that competes with 7,000 petition signers, it signals to the public that our city government is quite willing to cater to special interests at the expense of the voters. That, in a nutshell, is the newsworthy conflict that should be reported.