… and I’ll bet they can’t even spell it! It is so frustrating dealing with folks who have no desire to educate themselves.

Rice County Planning Commission Meeting June 9, 2005

Here’s Chair Ross Nelson, who plays the “butcher the Commentors name” game, it is so juvenile — every person who signed up to speak was subjected to this dismissive treatment of affected and exaggerated mispronounciation of names that that don’t require instruction to pronounce correctly, and these are regular testifiers, people he should be on a first name basis with by now. He tried, but couldn’t find any bizarre version of “Overland.”

Ross Nelson.JPG

One thing I don’t understand…an aside here, but an important one.. here they were talking about 1080 acres, BUT the original public hearing way back when they rezoned it was for 1047 acres. This is where they issued the two Notices for different parts of the Interstate 35 and Co. Road 1 area, one for 341 acres, the other for the balance, because, they claimed, they did not interpret Jim Brown’s motion correctly (oh, get real, I went to the County and listened to the tape and he said clearly that the area he intended to be covered by his motion was that area WEST of I-35, he was specifically asked if he meant east and west and said “WEST, ONLY WEST.” I submitted a transcript of that part of the tape for the record. Classic Rice County, make it up as you go along.)

The meeting was ostensibly to determine whether they should go forward with “Committee 1’s” recommended plan and complete an AUAR.

First, what’s an AUAR? Thanks to Kathleen Doran-Norton for spreading this around, it’s an EQB explanation of what to include in an AUAR! She’s blogged some about plans for the I-35 and Co. Rd. 1 intersection. And that’s why I’m frustrated with the Planning Commission — not one of the Planning Commission members had read this important document! I asked them on the record, and I hope the minutes reflect this fact.

Here’s who’s on Committee 1

Here’s their brilliant idea, the Master Plan:
North Section
South Section

Comment time was limited to 2 minutes, and people could not speak again if an important issue was raised that requried clarification. Gordon Kelley, known for his distaste for citizen questions, remember his editorial “Rezoning is the right thing to do!” made sure that those in attendance understood that questions would not be answered. For example, it was clear that the Planning Commission didn’t know what all was entailed in an AUAR because they hadn’t read the basic EQB document, didn’t want that sort of info on the record it seemed, but approved it anyway.

Kathleen Doran-Norton spoke that night on behalf of the Northfield League of Women Voters, requesting a transparent process, citizen input and protection of the water. She noted that there are no committee members from the area, and that their process has begun and is felt already in impacts on the area. Who will be paying the estimated $17 million in infrastructure? There is no estimate of the short and long term benefits. An important point, she strongly recommended that the “no build” option be considered, and it’s my guess that analysis and consideration of the “no build” option is required under NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) and MEPA (Minnesota Environmental Policy Act).

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