Ward La Valley of San Andreas emailed me some comments on Monday’s meeting at which the Calaveras Planning Coalition explained its origins, goals and methods to a standing-room-only crowd at the Calaveras County Public Library main branch in San Andreas. Here’s a link to my story on the meeting: http://www.recordnet.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20140204/A_NEWS/402040317/-1/A_COMM02
Here’s what Ward wrote:
It is both gratifying and hopeful that this meeting attracted people who represent a wide range of viewpoints.
It is also possible that the “Coalition types” and the “Tea Party Crowd” may have more in common than they think.
I believe both are essentially populist movements. I know from personal experience that the Coalition is an outgrowth of citizens’ frustration at seeing their County government fail to “accommodate the growth” (to quote Supervisor Callaway) during the housing bubble(s). This failure resulted in the huge deficit in our County’s infrastructure development. We found that this process was driven by special interests having too much influence, and so we organized to stop it.
Is not the Tea Party to a large extent an outgrowth of citizens’ frustration over wasteful and excessive government spending? I would submit to my Tea Party friends that this process, too, is driven by special interests with too much influence, and I see no reason why we shouldn’t work together to stop that, too.
The only immediate antidote to excessive influence by special interests is positive citizen involvement at all levels of government.
There may be, perhaps, irreconcilable differences in economics and philosophy between us. But working together, I submit, we can assure that the processes of updating the General Plan, indeed all of County Government, are driven by the honest citizens who live, love, and pay taxes in Calaveras County.
Ward La Valley