By now everyone should know the futility of doing things the same old way and expecting the results to change. If so, why is Hollister considering resuscitating a version its Measure U Growth Management Program that did not work?
I want to change the way we do growth, but I’m interested in real improvement not just repeating the same old mistakes. That’s why I’m so disappointed in an interim growth management proposal that fails to address the essential issues and capture the real opportunities. I’m also disappointed with the Mayor’s failure to clearly convey the City Council’s consensus to get moving on this issue – especially shortly after he complained, publicly and correctly, that so many things the city does administratively take much too long.
We’re not going to solve our problems with a point system that does little to encourage significant infrastructure improvements. If we want the builder to paint the fire hydrants pink, then that’s what our architectural and building standards should say; no extra points for that or anything else the should be our minimum standards.
The hangover from Measure U and the buildup of unused allocations is what put us exactly where we are today because it’s nothing but a numbers game. These types of simplistic non-solutions generate a lot of support from a frustrated public, but a decade later that same public is looking for the serial number of the locomotive that ran them over.
Where are the requirements to use development agreements to get more and improved public facilities such as road completions, educational facilities, and/or added recreational amenities in exchange for permission to develop? A passing reference is inadequate.
Where are the requirements to closely coordinate growth with county developments that impact the city and the other way around? They are not taking inter-agency planning seriously.
We have to get both Hollister and San Benito County to stop looking at developments as individual impact areas and start looking at them as changes that affect our “micro-region.” Likewise, infrastructure improvements have to be micro-regional; improve the highway feeder roads or Hollister’s internal road net and both the county and city dwellers benefit.
Revising Measure U and also putting it on the slow boat is a surefire road to failure; it’s double-death and the lazy way for all concerned and of course it’s a political football. We’ll just stall out or get it going just when the next recession hits and permission to develop has no value.
Let’s get moving, get it fixed and quickly. With the right ideas we can reap the benefits during the period where permission to develop has so much value and use it to improve our infrastructure shortcomings, especially those related to recreation, education, and transportation.
Just once let’s put away the horse and buggy and get ahead of the well-known power curve.