Letter: Island County Planning staff not doing a good job

Editor,

The Island County Planning staff is currently butchering the Island County zoning codes because of a perception that the codes are hard to understand and read. They are not hard to understand and read if you know how to read code.

During a recent eight-month long battle to get a building permit, I was able to read the code, my attorney was able to read the code, and we eventually proved that the planning officials did not know how to read the code.

Visit this link to another recent case heard by the hearing examiner, where the planning director, building official as well as an assistant DA are chastised for not knowing the code and understanding their responsibilities: www.islandcountywa.gov/Planning/Hearing%20Examiner%20Documents/HE%20Revocation%20of%20Permits%201-3-19%20Hearing.MP3

The real problem with the inconsistent use of code is related to the incompetence of the Island County staff and their inability to understand the fundamentals of reading code.

The commissioners think that having these people who do not know how to read code are the correct folks to rewrite code.

It seems to me if they address the lack of trained staff in the planning department first, that they would almost eliminate all of their confrontations with the public, who seem to know the code better than they do.

They are inadvertently changing a code that was written by expert code writers and disregarding all legislative intent of the original codes.

They are doing this under the guise of a “code clean up” with very little discussion and research of the original legislative intent. This seems to be an under-handed way for the planning department to make the code confusing, and they under estimate the intelligence of the common citizen.

Russell Kuehn

Camano Island

More in Letters to the Editor

Letter: Relax, enjoy the fruits of the Trump presidency

Editor, I feel nothing but sorrow for Larry Eaton. His hollow diatribe… Continue reading

Letter: Sound Water Stewards not responsible for petition

Editor, Sound Water Stewards of Island County thanks all who joined us… Continue reading

Letter: Thanks for sharing and editing my letter

Editor, I want to thank you for publishing my last letter in… Continue reading

Letter: Trump reelection warning is a shameful’tactic’

Editor, Larry Eaton’s letter, ‘Trump reelection is a chilling prospect for U.S.’… Continue reading

Letter: Seeking an injunction is COER act of desperation

Editor, I just became aware that the Citizens of Ebey’s Reserve decided… Continue reading

Letter: Trump reelection is a chilling prospect for U.S.

Editor, I’ll keep this very short so that the “Forever Trumpsters” can… Continue reading

Letter: Manufactured home zones provide affordable housing

Editor, In Oak Harbor we are fortunate to have many areas zoned… Continue reading

Letter: Romney symbolizes what America was once all about

Editor, We just heard something we haven’t heard in a long while.… Continue reading

Letter: Appreciative of help from 911 responders, kind man

Editor, Gratitude to the 911 responders and, especially, to the wonderful kind… Continue reading

Letter: Don’t see how new charge will help the environment

Editor, My response to State Law SB 5323: I for one and… Continue reading

Letter: Offering ideas for saving Holland Happening

Editor, I am writing to express my agreement with the sentiment shared… Continue reading

Letter: Hospital provided wonderful expertise

Editor, A long overdue letter is submitted to say thank you to… Continue reading