No matter where you stand on the marijuana policy being crafted by the County, THC sure hopes that you can appreciate when things at public meetings get a little more entertaining than usual.
Now, heated meetings and expansive and idiotic public comments can be expected in a lot of regular meetings. The Board of Supervisors’ meetings are usually a good source, and lots of the time the stupid comments come from the Supervisors themselves. The Arcata and Eureka City Council meetings are generally sure-fire bets to provide some sort of moronic sound bites. Especially the Eureka Council meetings on homelessness.
It came out of nowhere, in THC’s mind, when a friendly little tipster told us to check out the recording of the County Planning Commission’s January 7th meeting. We watched, and we sure wish we had made some popcorn first! Click here for a link to the video, and skip past the boring first 2 hours and 8 minutes to the point of the meeting where Planning Chair Bob Morris begins to talk about the Commission’s “housekeeping” duties.
What a hoot! Aside from feeling a little bad for interim Planning Director Rob Wall, THC just couldn’t be more pleased with the buffoonery going on here. It’s a darn public sideshow!
What was your favorite part? Was it County Counsel Jeffrey Blanck back-pedaling like a pro to avoid a major violation of the Brown Act? Was it when County Planner Michael Richardson turned tail and ran out of the meeting because he couldn’t take the heat? Or was it the numbskulls sitting up on the dais trying to figure out how to raise their hands together all at the same time? What a joke!
Aside from the entertainment factor of the Planning Commission Circus, THC finds the parallels between the accusations of the Commission and the fairly recent history of the Planning Department under the direction of Steve Girard disturbing.
Girard was a P.O.S. Let’s all just agree on that here and now, please and thank you. For quite some time, Girard wielded the Planning Department as a means of forwarding his own personal agenda without regard for the needs of the public, and with a complete lack of respect for the process in which the Planning Department, and government in general, operates in.
If the Planning Commission’s accusations are true – that County Planning Staff deliberately misrepresented the work of the Planning Commission, and deliberately ignored direction given to them by the Planning Commission – then all of Humboldt County should have their hackles up. The mess Girard created for Humboldt via his manipulations of the GPU process are going to impact the County for a long-time coming. If staff is, once again, ignoring the direction of their superiors in order to achieve their own desired results, then THC has to imagine that the effects of the marijuana policy are going to be the same.
According to a few of the folks that THC contacted on this issue, we shouldn’t be surprised when a couple of Planners – namely Steve Lazar – for the County are asked to leave should Director Rob Wall find evidence to back up the Planning Commissioners’ claims.
If that’s the case, maybe the County will look into finding some planners who actually do their well-paid jobs the next time around.