Thursday, November 3, 2005
UNDER THE WIRE… If there’s one thing Squid has learned, it’s this: Don’t get in between a hungry cephalopod and a slightly smaller, weaker cephalopod. It’s only vaguely more dangerous than getting between the MONTEREY COUNTY SUPERVISORS and any new proposal for a whole lotta growth. (And, it’s probably the one time that Supes, will show that, yes, they can move rapidly when they really want to.)
Squid’s talking about RANCHO SAN JUAN, the biggest development project ever proposed for the county, which is now also the issue of MEASURE C.
On Nov. 8, Measure C will ask voters if they want to approve a series of policy changes, passed by Supes last year, which would allow developers to build 4,000 homes, a golf course, retail space and offices on 2,500 acres of agricultural land between Prunedale and Salinas.
Late last year, after the COUNTY PLANNING COMMISSION unanimously gave the massive project a thumbs-down vote, and under the threat of a referendum from Rancho San Juan opponents, the Supes went ahead and approved the Monster Rancho by a 3-2 vote.
This happened mid-December, which forced opponents to collect signatures to put the initiative on the ballot during the holiday—and flu and storm—season. Still, some 16,000 residents signed the petition, asking Supes to kill the project. They didn’t, and Measure C was slated for the Nov. 8 ballot.
Fast-forward to the present, when it looks like Measure C, and Rancho San Juan, will go down in flames. What should appear, but…a scaled-back version of the project, setting the stage for piecemeal development on the site. Planning Commissioners approved the smaller plan last week, and it’s slated to go before the Supes on Nov. 7, at 9am, a day before the vote.
If it passes, it would practially nullify the limits that would result from Measure C’s passage. And that would open the door for the rest of the monster to be put back together, piece by piece, despite what the voters say.
Like Squid said, don’t stand between the County Supervisors and development—especially one plump with mini-mansions and golf courses.
5MPH ROAD RAGE… While on one tentacle Squid applauds Carmel for discouraging chain stores in favor of local businesses, Squid also likes to duck into the Carmel ALBERTSON’s and visit the STARBUCKS kiosk. Albertson’s has even gone so far as to provide coffee cupholders on their carts, although the cupholder is no match for the bumpy parking lot. One day last week, Squid had almost made it to the Squidmobile when a horn blasted from behind. Squid tried to move out of the way, but the car kept coming. A woman leaned out the window, screaming, “Who do you think you are? Taking up the whole parking lot! Get out of my way!”
Hmph. Squid decided to ignore her, but the madwoman veered into the nearest parking spot, leapt out of her car and started marching towards Squid. “Who the hell do you think you are…?” she started. Squid decided that it wasn’t Squid’s day to speak crazy. “I don’t want to talk to you,” Squid said. And that, thankfully, ended the conversation.