By Karen Brainard
With notice that community planning groups could be eliminated or reduced to a limited role, members of Ramona’s group agreed they are willing to compromise, if necessary.
San Diego County Board of Supervisors is scheduled to vote on possible changes to rural planning groups on Feb. 29.
In December, supervisors heard recommendations from the county’s Red Tape Reduction Task Force to either remove planning groups from under the county’s “umbrella” or limit their scope of review, reduce the number of members, adding term limits, and revise board policy I-1, the policies and procedures for the advisory planning and sponsor groups.
District 2 Supervisor Dianne Jacob, who represents Ramona, requested time to meet with the groups in her district before a decision was reached.
At the Jan. 5 meeting of the Ramona Community Planning Group, Chair Jim Piva reported that Jacob held a meeting for the planning group chairs the previous morning.
Piva said Jacob was looking for planning groups to come up with some type of compromise that could be used if the other supervisors support changes or elimination of the groups.
Chris Brown, a consultant who was at the RCPG meeting, told members he had attended every Red Tape Reduction Task Force meeting and it was never mentioned that planning groups should be completely eliminated. He pointed out that one of the options instead was to remove the groups from the county’s “umbrella.”
“You know what that means?” RCPG member Chris Anderson asked. “We would not be indemnified. We could be sued. They made it very clear at the one that I attended they did not want to get rid of us. That was not the purpose for it. But the end result from what they recommended would be — I wouldn’t run.”
Planning group members unanimously agreed to offer the following compromise: term limits of two consecutive four-year terms with a minimum of two years off before being able to run again; mandatory annual training with an online option on the state’s open meeting law, Policy I-1 and the Form 700 statement of economic interest; and downsizing the group from 15 to nine members.
“This doesn’t mean it’s going to be adopted,” Piva said, adding that those option are only “cards” for Jacob to play if she cannot reach an agreement with the other supervisors to retain the planning groups.