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Jefferson County Planning Commission October 11, 2019 <br />621 Sheridan Street <br />Port Townsend, WA 98368 <br />Michael Nilssen, Chair Kevin Coker Matt Sircely <br />Cynthia Koan, Vice Chair Richard Hull Lorna Smith <br />Arlene Alen Chris Llewellyn <br />Re.: MLA19-00013 - Wilke Rezone Proposal <br />Dear Planning Commission Members: <br />Aside from a couple letters from Amy Hiatt, most of the last few months since our <br />submittal of the Wilke site-specific Comprehensive Plan amendment application have <br />been quiet. Then, six days before last Wednesday’s meeting, letters of opposition <br />addressed to the Commission began arriving at a brisk pace, right up to the final hours <br />before the meeting. It was a very well-calculated deluge. There simply was insufficient <br />time to address the written concerns with advance correspondence, and at the meeting <br />itself, Andy and I had but six minutes combined to respond. So I ask that you hear me <br />out in this response to those concerns. <br />Before you is a decision as to whether to affirm the Planning Department’s <br />recommendation of approval of the Wilke rezone proposal or to advise its denial. <br />On the one hand is a dispassionate, objective review of the applicable laws and <br />standards by public and private sector professionals who work daily with such issues. <br />Most of these are, themselves, residents of Jefferson County. On the other hand are <br />citizens in opposition–mainly neighbors–all of whom oppose growth on their doorsteps, <br />marshaling any reason they can, pertinent or not, that might lend itself to denial. <br />Distinctions need be made between what is relevant and what is not and what arises <br />from true concern for the community and the environment versus what is merely self- <br />serving. <br />First, as a general background to my values and professional practice, when I’m <br />approached by a prospective client, two key questions I ask are as follows: Is this <br />proposal viable? Does this project have real merit or is it going to involve harm? <br />There are many consultants who are happy to take on assignments they know from