The Healthy Humboldt Coalition

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The Healthy Humboldt Coalition
P.O. Box 1301,
Eureka CA 95502
January 22, 2007

All County Supervisors
825 5th Street
Eureka, CA 95502
Re: Request for 60-day review period for General Plan Update documents

Dear Supervisors and Staff,I am writing to request that your Community Development staff provide a 60-day public review period forthe draft chapters of the General Plan, EIR, and ordinances, rather than the 30-day period currently beingprovided.

We believe that this extended review period will provide greater opportunity for public input, willimprove the quality of that input, and will ultimately result in greater public understanding of, andconfidence in, the final General Plan.The December 5 th , 2005 General Plan Update: Status Report and Proposed Work Plan states:The Department will publish hearing drafts of the Plan, EIR and ordinances at least thirtydays prior to Planning Commission and Board review. Updated versions, revised throughpublic hearings, will be published at least ten days prior to Planning Commission andBoard review, unless your Board or the Planning Commission modifies the public reviewtime period.From the December 5 th , 2005 Schedule for the General Plan Update it appears that the revised drafts willtypically be made available at the same time that the initial draft documents for the next group are beingreleased. Similarly, there will likely be some overlap between the hearings on the initial draft documentsfor a given group and the hearings on the revised drafts for the prior group. Both staff and the public willthus have to juggle initial and revised draft documents for two different groups within an overlapping 30-day window. This is simply not enough time for the public’s input to be meaningful, and will likely lead toincreased confusion and decreased confidence in both the process and the product.These grouped chapters for the General Plan are likely to be lengthy and complex, and will requiresignificant time for public review. For organizations such as Healthy Humboldt, we will need time toreview and discuss these documents before we can provide informed and meaningful input in the way ofsuggestions or recommendations. Additionally, time will be needed for us to gather input from oursupporters and from the broader community. We believe that a 60-day review period for the initial draftdocuments will improve the public’s understanding of these documents, provide greater opportunity formeaningful input, and increase the public’s confidence in the resulting General Plan.We are aware that initial hearings on the first two Chapter Groups are already being scheduled, and thatthis 60-day review period simply could not be accommodated for these groups without creating asignificant delay. Due to this, we believe that it would be prudent and reasonable to accept the 30-dayreview period for these first two groups and move towards the 60-day review period beginning with Group3 or, if that cannot be accommodated, Group 4.We thank you for considering these comments.

Sincerely,Mark LovelaceHealthy Humboldt Coalition