The Coastal Post - October, 1999

Against All Odds

By Judy Borello

Right now there is a plan in the cozy little town of Pt. Reyes Station to squeeze 50 homes and 36 units for the elderly right smack in the middle of the downtown area.

Now, whether it's low-cost housing or high-cost housing, it doesn't really matter-the point is that it is a large-scale development squeezed on 19 acres of land and an adjacent 14 acres.

The same people who support this development would not allow a man to build one large home on 90 acres six miles out of town.

Also, these same people want to force their supposed dearly-beloved stewards of the land (the ranchers) into a National Park Boundary Zone because they are paranoid of development.

The ranchers' land is under so much restriction, they're lucky if they can build a barn. In the past, there was a great respect for the ranchers-not anymore!

The hypocrisy in all of this is that because of the heavy restrictions placed on ranchland in a span of over 20 miles from Pt. Reyes Station to north of the town of Tomales (the proposed National Park Boundary Zone), you would never see the development of 86 dwellings. Yet full speed ahead, folks! Cram those 86 dwellings right in the heart of Pt. Reyes Station and then force the rancher into a "park zone" that will negatively effect agriculture and his family for generations because you don't want development! What a bunch of bunk!

Those of you who think nothing of taking someone else's property and forcing it into parkland better think again-you're causing your own demise. All the land you remove from the private sector, which in Marin County is about two-thirds, causes what little private property is left to skyrocket in price. Then you lament, "We can't afford to live here anymore! We need low-cost housing."

It is a never-ending vicious cycle. Over 10 years ago, Pt. Reyes Station assimilated 10 homes for low-cost housing and a senior citizens' apartment house. Now, 10 years later, it's 50 low-cost houses and 36 dwellings for seniors. What will it be 10 years from now?

People emigrate to America because in their homeland they are not allowed to own property or the property they once called home is taken away from them by the government. Now, in America, in fact right here in West Marin, your own neighbors will force you to give up your land-use rights and devaluate your property in honor of the public trust! That's socialism, folks, plain and simple! When two-thirds of Marin's land is publicly owned (federal, state and county open space), I'd say, "No wonder our taxes are no high and only the wealthy can afford to live here." The irony in all this is that a lot of the children of the '60s, who were anti-government, are the same people today who solicit and endorse the government take-over of the ranchers' land.

The liberals aren't in my definition "liberal" anymore; they are truly socialists and want the government to own all land that they consider environmental "gold," supply them with homes, and by all means tear down the wealthy because even if the wealthy earned it the hard way, they certainly don't deserve it!

Since Zippergate has been in the spotlight, the one lesson it has brought to the fore is that lying is a definite flaw in one's character and mars one's integrity.

Is it acceptable behavior to the supervisors of Marin County and all the associations that back Lynn Woolsey and her Park Bill (HR 1995) that she lied? And Woolsey didn't lie once, she lied three times.

1. She promised the ranchers that if the majority of them did not want the Park Bill, she would not go the Congress with it! She did!

2. Woolsey states the majority of ranchers support her Park Bill. They don't and have signed documents to prove it!

3. Woolsey states that being within the Pt. Reyes National Seashore Boundary is voluntary. It is not! We will become part of the Park, whether we like it or not!

The Pt. Reyes Light, the Independent Journal, and all the associations that support the Woolsey Bill have been educated on this subject and still endorse her lies, which makes them part and parcel of her deceit. Remember Goebel's Big Lie in Germany under Hitler? If you tell a lie long enough and repeat it over and over again, it will then be perceived as truth.

If the supervisors, our newspapers, the associations, and Lynn Woolsey are truly rancher-friendly and sincerely regard the ranchers as the stewards of the land, I suggest-since we all agree that Marin Agricultural Land Trust should be funded to buy the development rights of ranchers on a voluntary basis-that we all work together again, even stronger than last time, to put a half-cent sales tax on the ballot in Marin County. That would be a win-win situation and it would certainly show support for the rancher rather than force parkland down his throat at any cost, including deception.

P.S. Thanks so much to Congressman Don Young of Alaska, Congressman Pombo of Central California and Congressman Hansen of Utah for standing by us and stating back in Congress that it doesn't matter if all of Marin County pushes this bogus bill, the most important people who count are the landowners themselves, who this Park Bill impacts the most. Thanks also for spreading the word to Woolsey's co-sponsors of the Park Bill that she does not have the majority of the ranchers' support as she deceptively told them. Recently, the news came that the Congresswoman from Wyoming removed her sponsorship from the bill! Good job, Pat Davison, and keep up the good work!

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