Category: Growth Management

Mariella Smith speaks for Sierra Club against Urban Sprawl

Citizen victory against urban sprawl

Citizens won a major battle against costly urban sprawl at a public hearing last Tuesday when County Commissioner Pat Kemp led the board to deny two proposed changes to our Comprehensive Plan. The proposals would have paved over rural areas with urban subdivisions, impacted wetlands, undermined community plans, and burdened taxpayers with the transportation costs that come with adding suburban commuters to far-flung rural areas.

Final Hearing LDC amendment

Success! Ruskin Community Plan Guidelines Amendment Approved!

Citizen action won the day last Thursday when the County Commission unanimously approved the Ruskin Community Plan Guidelines amendment to the Land Development Code. A good-sized group showed up at the final hearing to demonstrate support of the Ruskin Plan specifically, and ALL Community Plans in general. Speaking in support of the amendment were Sandy Council, President of the Ruskin Community Development Foundation; Kent Bailey, Chair of the Tampa Bay Sierra Club; and me, Mariella Smith.

County Commission Boardroom

Final hearing on Ruskin Community Plan’s guidelines

The Final Public Hearing on the Ruskin Community Plan’s Guidelines is this Thursday, May 29, 6:00 pm. Our attendance at this hearing will show the county commissioners that our Community Plans are important to us—the Ruskin Community Plan specifically, and the implementation of ALL Community Plans in general.

Emails needed for Draft #2 of Ruskin Community Plan Guidelines LDC amendment

Hopefully, we just need one more batch of emails to get the Ruskin Community Plan Guidelines codified (see sample email). Thanks to terrific community participation and all your emails, our county commissioners and planners heard our complaints about their first draft of the Ruskin Plan Guidelines amendment to the Land Development Code (LDC). They have now written a good second draft which closes the loophole in the first draft, and firmly codifies the Guidelines into the LDC, consistent with the Ruskin Community Plan. But this is still only a draft, so we need to stay involved until the proposed amendment is adopted, to make sure it doesn’t get weakened or delayed along the way.