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Letter of the Day: Ignoring a contract

  • The Santa Rosa Planning Commission approved a zoning change to convert the old Warrack Hospital into rental housing for young adults who aged out of foster care. (The Press Democrat)

Ignoring a contract

EDITOR: Although the community appears divided on the Dream Center proposal, apparently the Santa Rosa Planning Commission isn't, having voted unanimously to grant a zoning change. It makes one wonder.

Zoning changes are almost never a good idea because they change the rules for those who already have made a place their home. Whatever you may think of those rules, they constitute a legal contract with the city, and altering them for the benefit of a private company is a betrayal.

In this case, the commission is just doing a favor for Sutter Health and Social Advocates for Youth. If SAY wants to open a facility for more than 60 kids with a lot of problems, it should find a place that is zoned for such an operation.

If we need to provide more money to properly care for our young people, then we should provide it. We don't need to provide pastel holding pens for them in lieu of decent job opportunities. There's no sense in displaying compassion for one group of people (troubled kids) while penalizing others (current neighborhood residents).

If we still have a democracy, at the very least, what we need is a chance to vote on the issue.

JOHN QUINN

Santa Rosa

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