Metolean machinations

From State Senator Ted Ferrioli

Last week in his official capacity as Land Conservation and Development Commission Director, former Assistant Attorney General Richard Whitman visited my office to inform me that the Governor has directed him to create the “Metolian Overlay” with the effect of prohibiting destination resorts anywhere in the Metolius basin.

Whitman described a never-before-used process for designating an “area of statewide concern” through staged public hearings, presumably to be held in Portland and Bend to build a record of support for the overlay.

According to Whitman, the outcome of the public input process is irrelevant: The Metolean Overlay is preordained. When pressed, he asserted that no other outcome would be allowed by the Governor, by LCDC or by the process.

Trouble is that Jefferson County has already approved a destination resorts overlay in an extensive public process that has already withstood multiple legal and administrative challenge.

With the Metolean Overlay, the rule of law, due process and the right of local government to self-determine for land use decisions is suspended.

The Bend Bulletin has editorialized rightly on this issue: If the decision is already made, if the outcome is predetermined, why bother with public input?

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Posted by at 03:59 | Posted in Measure 37 | 29 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • Anonymous

    The left has always had a penchant for show trials.

  • Bob Clark

    It’s sad but Oregon government could create tens of thousands of jobs without having to subsidize certain new industry one plug nickel. It simply could provide a cookbook on how local government can permit development while preserving a balance of open space and space for future public transportation grids. This could spur a lot of new community building. It doesn’t stop there by any means. Oregon government could form an oil enterprise which would explore for oil and natural gas, or co-lease exploration rights to industry. It could form another enterprise to help harvest state forest lands with a gentle environmental touch. It could circulate these new revenues into helping expand the supply of doctors and nurses for the supply starved health industry, thereby moderating health costs.

    Oregon government has it backwards. Instead of restricting supply of various activities, it needs to ease off restrictions and take on an entrepreneurial drive.

    Another crazy idea would be to foster gold and silver mining, and maybe take a royalty share. The state could back its bonds and a portion of its pension obligations with hard goods like lumber, gold, silver and oil (if any is actually found). This could lower the interest cost on Oregon government bond issues helping reduce state government costs. That’s right in this disappointing world where the U.S government is fevorishly printing out new paper money, Oregon could offer a real financial alternative while promoting new jobs.

  • Rupert in Springfield

    Why is it that one need read no further than the phrase “metolean overlay” to realize this is a new, inventive, “like seen on TV” way to screw you?

    I’m thinking about imposing a “sub fiscal increment overlay” on my quarterlies.

    Yeah, now you got it.

  • Anonymous

    What ever happen to local control?

    This should not be a state decision. This is why we have to add density to our neighborhoods, because the LCDC demands it.

  • Joe

    Do we really need resorts? Maybe people should just learn to stay home and enjoy their lives there.
    This overlay may be a good thing, as it will preserve the natural beauty of Oregon for years to come.
    Who wants to see a fancy resort when they could see trees, shrubs, birds, dirt, rocks, and other natural things??
    Plus, resorts have golf courses. Where would the water come from? The ground table? I don’t think so.
    This governor may be smarter than he looks. He is single-handedly preserving Oregon for generations to come. Look how he blocked the crazy LNG terminal.
    He is a brave and strong man.
    I applaud his efforts to save Oregon from the wanton waste and destruction caused by developers who only care about money.
    Mother Earth has been saved by one strong, lone Dem.
    He is to be commended. His legacy will be a great one.
    I am proud to have voted for him. I only hope he can find some way to run again.

    • Anonymous

      Good thinking Joe

      We kill the timber industry because we are going to rely on tourists

      Then we kill the resort industry and we all stay home because we don’t have any jobs.

      • Anonymous

        Central Oregon has more destination resorts by far than any other area of the state, and yet unemployment is consistently higher and wages are consistently lower there than the state average. Destination resorts provide few jobs once the construction is over, and those are mostly low-paying service jobs.

        Moreover, the destination “resorts” being built nowadays have only a token amount of overnight lodging for tourists. Essentially they’re high-end rural subdivisions built around a golf course.

  • Dave Hunnicutt

    Actually, county officials love destination resorts, because they contribute significant amounts to the property tax rolls but demand very few services. Because the homes are typically second homes, and the residents not year round, there is not a demand created for more public services (schools, police, fire etc.), making them cash cows.

    What is really bad about the Metolius bill is the fact that Governor Kulongoski has added a section to the bill that eliminates the property owner from making a Measure 49 claim against the state for removing the destination resort overlay.

    I keep reminding people that M49 contains sections that require the state to compensate property owners for the impact of new laws that take their property, in the same way that M37 applied to new regulations.

    So Ted, who told us that M49 created a fair and workable land use policy, takes the first opportunity to ignore the law he just advocated for. If M37 was still in place, the Governor would have done the same thing, but here he is taking the very first opportunity he can to violate the law he just advocated for. The guy is shameless. I guess Ted really means that M49 is only “fair” and “workable” when Ted is sticking it to a property owner, and not when the property owner uses the Measure to fight back.

  • reper

    Dave states

    “eliminates a property owner from making a claim”

    soon it will be…

    “eliminating the property owner altogether.”

    People always get in the way of perfection!

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