December 9, 2011 Karl A. Uppiano
5988 Malloy Ave.
Ferndale, WA 98248 File Copy – Whatcom County Planning Commission
5280 Northwest Drive
Bellingham, WA 98226 Subject: Public Comment – Concerns Regarding Birch Bay Watershed Action Plan Dear Planning Commissioners: I want to share my impressions of the public hearing last night. You may remember me; I was the only one who spoke on the principles of good government. All through the meeting, I kept thinking of a quote by Ian Malcolm from Jurassic Park: “[they] were so preoccupied with whether they could that they didn't stop to think if they should.” A lot of the second part of the proceedings was devoted to how many angels could dance on the head of a pin, but no one questioned the forgone conclusion about whether the Birch Bay watershed actually needs fixing, and if so, whether the government should do it. Where does this authority come from?
- One commissioner noted that there was “overwhelming support” for this measure.
- Several commissioners expressed concern about the size and complexity of the measure.
- At least one commissioner was concerned about the likelihood that the regulations would change over time.
The internal effects of a mutable policy are still more calamitous. It poisons the blessing of liberty itself. It will be of little avail to the people, that the laws are made by men of their own choice, if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood; if they be repealed or revised before they are promulgated, or undergo such incessant changes that no man, who knows what the law is to-day, can guess what it will be to-morrow. Law is defined to be a rule of action; but how can that be a rule, which is little known, and less fixed?
- One commissioner noted (as justification?) that if the county does nothing (or even if it does something), ever more stringent state regulations will follow.
- More than one commissioner was concerned that what is now voluntary will become mandatory.
- One commissioner mentioned that the county wants to help the people of Birch Bay, who want this.
- One commissioner suggested CAPR testimony should be disregarded. (Seriously?!)
- One commissioner suggested that if this is voluntary, why not simply publish the LID materials, and leave it at that?
- Several commissioners expressed concern for the amount of time, effort and expense already spent for research and development on this project and the potential waste if it fails.
You may not feel that this is relevant to you if you live outside Whatcom County. If that is the case, then I would encourage you to Google "Sustainable Development", "Smart Growth", "ICLEI" and "Agenda 21". Then, attend your city and county council meetings. Be prepared for a shock. You might discover that, at the behest of environmental extremists, the government has made you a mere tenant on your own property. You can still develop and use your land, but only in very special ways, after paying the government exorbitant fees for the permission to do so. Tried any remodeling lately?