EDITOR: The economy and the home-building industry's circumstances have changed drastically, and it is troubling that our City Council seems to be stuck in 2003 thinking ("SR rejects 73-home subdivision plan," Wednesday). There was a wonderful vision for this property in 2003, but the housing market crashed and the property went into foreclosure.
It is Santa Rosa's good fortune that Meritage Homes purchased a portion of that foreclosed property and wants to build on the site, creating much-needed jobs in our area. Our city attorney stated it perfectly when she pointed out that Meritage Homes doesn't own the property where the original 2003 affordable units were planned — "We can't force them to build low-income housing on a site that they don't own."
Since the low-income project isn't included in the portion of land purchased by Meritage, and Meritage had no part in the original agreement, it seems unfair of the council to expect Meritage to honor agreements made 10 years ago. Instead, we should welcome the employment opportunities and economic boost Santa Rosa would receive from the development of this land.
County power plan
EDITOR: The 80 percent greenie sentiment in the county that you cited in Friday's editorial ("Will county power plan pencil out?") should know that no "dirty" power is generated in Sonoma County. All except The Geysers geothermal is imported. Paying a premium to Shell or others in lieu of the source mix coming from PG&E surely doesn't pencil out. Significant also is that the state has excluded hydropower as counting toward reaching the escalating green-power mandate.
ERWIN A. DAMES