Including Bud the cat was tasteless
My dog died this year. I had him for 11 years. He was the best dog ever. Never would I consider putting his name and picture on the same page with honored members of our community. I am especially outraged for the heroes who died in defense of our country. What a disgrace. The idiot who gave equal status to Bud the shelter cat should apologize for their utter lack of taste.
Thanks for including Justin Stegemann
Thank you for including Justin Stegemann as part of your list of 20 who passed away in 2007. Justin was so proud to have lived in Carson Valley for almost most of his life and he sure had many great friends. As hard as his passing has been on me, I am so honored to see how Justin has affected so many lives. I am working on fulfilling Justin's last wish, to have his ashes spread on the top of Jobs Peak. We were going to take care of that this past October but we had an early snow fall and couldn't do it. As soon as the snow melts this summer, we will be out to spread them. Justin wanted a view of where his heart has always been, Carson Valley.
Thank-you again and I am very honored to have Justin remembered and included in your list. Go Tigers!
Master plan isn't designed to just roll over
Having devoted many hours of my time to work with members of the county planning department and its consultants on the update of the master plan, I am deeply concerned about the way land owners like Park Cattle Co. assume they can roll over the work and wishes of Douglas County citizens.
Work on the master plan update cost the county many thousands of dollars. The final product was debated in public meetings for months on end, and everyone who lives here had the opportunity to put in their two-bits worth. Some did and some didn't, but the final product was approved by the elected county commissioners.
Park Cattle had the opportunity to give input to the master plan update, knowing full well what they were planning to do with their holdings in the Valley. A lot of work went into creating a separate agriculture component to address the needs, wants and fears of the ranching community. Significant steps were taken to mitigate those issues in a way that was acceptable to the ranchers.
To find now that Park Cattle held several "public comment" meetings with selected invitees and another with little or no public notice, is more than disturbing. Then to find that they have already decided they will try to roll over the county planners, planning commission and county commissioners to basically make moot all the work that went into the master plan update is more than disappointing. It's clear bold evidence of what's gone on in our county far too long - smoke and mirrors at public meetings while deals get cut in the back room.
I don't hold much hope for our master plan or the views of the majority of Douglas County residents when the views of extremely well-educated and experienced planners like the late Ray Smith, Terry Burnes and Mitch Dion are ignored, when the financial analysis of the county books by the meticulous Jack Van Dien are blown off, and the careful scrutiny of missteps by our elected and appointed officials by Jim Slade and others are ignored. What's left is government run amok.
We elect commissioners who make all sorts of promises to protect the rural nature of our county only to see them whisked away to some orientation retreat, be brainwashed and return as pawns of those who will profit the most by doing just the opposite from what they promised. Be it to move up the political ladder or to a higher paying job in a larger county, the wishes of the people are kissed off on a regular basis.
It's time to clean house from top to bottom, and this is the year to do it. Get involved in the process. Get candidates to put their promises in writing, and then hold them to it. If they go back on their word, recall them. Enough is enough.
Master plan must be enforced
After reading the guest opinion by Terry Burnes, I would like to comment that I too was at the Dec. 12 meeting with the Park Cattle Co.
After listening to all their proposals and viewing all the pretty pictures of what they wanted to build in Douglas County, I asked what they would do if our county commissioners were able to find the backbone to uphold the existing master plan. The spokesman said they'd probably have to cover their 4500 acres with 19 acre ranchettes, instead of building a "planned community" with 4-6,000 houses After realizing that would be approximately 250, rather than 4500 houses, everyone at the meeting applauded. Now, the hard part will be to get our commissioners to enforce the master plan that they spent so much time and money creating.