The California Fair Political Practices Commission recently determined that three Marin County supervisors cannot vote on the proposed streamside conservation ordinance (SCA) due to financial conflicts of interest. So why is the county scheduling a public hearing on the SCA for Oct. 29? As reported in the Marin IJ on Oct. 1, Supervisors Steve Kinsey, Katie Rice and Susan Adams own homes within 500 feet of the streamside conservation areas and are"presumed" to have economic interests in the rules. The county counsel suggested that the conflicted supervisors would "draw straws" to decide which one of them could vote with the other two. This is an unacceptable way to decide conservation policy that could determine whether endangered coho salmon survive or go extinct in Marin. Perhaps an independent panel of scientists should craft the SCA ordinance for the county. Or maybe the state of California or federal wildlife managers should take the reins. Maybe Marin's state assembly member and senator should sit in for the conflicted supervisors. In any case, the supervisors should not vote on a streamside ordinance on Oct. 29. Instead they should stop and consider ways to move forward without the cloud of conflicted interest. At the very least, Supervisor Kinsey should recuse himself from voting and taking any further action on the streamside ordinance. And in no circumstances should he be one of three to vote on an ordinance.
Teri Shore P. O. Box 370 Forest Knolls, CA 94933 415 663 8590, ext. 108 707 934 7081