Zee and the Stewardship Network Steering Committee (Zee, Lyshall, Stephanie Buffum, Lincoln Bormann) also appointed Julia Vouri as Coordinator of the Stewardship Network/ECONet "under the umbrella of the Conservation District." And when we decipher what that last sentence means, we'll let you know, but it sounds like Zee has found a way to get around the Conservation District Board and absorb whatever/whomever he wants into the CD by using bureaucratic sleight of hand.
So when the Conservation District talks about all the great things they've done (as they do in the email below), the people who are there now are not necessarily the ones who accomplished them. The people who are there now have a different agenda ... empire building. The CD is transforming itself into "grant central" for the county. The CD wants tax money, Salmon Recovery money, Voluntary Stewardship Plan money, and every other public penny it can get its grubby mitts on. It is getting ready for big plans, big money, and good times.
The Conservation District (with their farm plans and native plant sale) is to the Machine/Network what the Genco Olive Oil Company was to the Corleone Family. It's a front. It's a place to launder money from the State and elsewhere ... money for messaging and bad-science ... and re-brand it as grassroots, locally-based, environmentally conscious, conservation "science based planning."
Letting our Conservation District continue to operate would be like letting the mafia survive because we like olive oil.
The email below was sent out recently by the Conservation District to encourage people to support the CD's requested new tax assessment. It was effective. Many people turned out to testify before the County Council about the wholesome goodness of the Conservation District and the wonderful things it does (or used to do). Honestly, though, look how anemic even the CD's own numbers are for the benefits they've bestowed on us.
80 ... they've helped 80 people. Not 80 people per year ... but over 5 years ... that's about half of one percent of our population of 15,000+. And they have benefited (whatever that means) 3,500 acres. Our county has about 110,000 acres.
Frankly, that's not even much of a front. The CD has to go; otherwise, it won't be long before they're making us offers we can't refuse.
----- Original Message -----
From: Bruce GregorySent: Friday, August 02, 2013 1:53 PMSubject: Request for supportDear SJC landowner,
I am contacting you because you have worked with the San Juan Islands Conservation District in the last few years and understand what we do and how we are placed within the context of land conservation for residential, farm or forest lands.
Our history goes back to 1947 in San Juan County. The work with do with landowners is done using a non-regulatory, non-enforcement, science based planning process. We have continued to offer our services over the years while growing with the changes in science and our local land base. We have offered access to information and cost-share opportunites for enhancing your management work and your working lands. Our work has benefited over 80 landowners and 3500 acres in the last five years. You were one of those landowners.
The current County Assessment Ordinance provides us with a $5 assessment per parcel. Because of a recent state Supreme Court ruling the ordinance needs to be re-worded to include a per acre amount to meet the requirements of state law. The proposed new ordinance changes the fee to $5 per parcel plus 5 cents per acre. In other words, an owner of a 10-acre parcel would pay $5.50 rather than the current $5 per year. The additional revenues (approximately $3,800) will mostly be spent on County administrative costs to implement the changes.
To make this change in the ordinance a public hearing is required. Our hearing with the County Council is scheduled for next Tuesday, August 6th at 9:00 AM.
If you would be willing to appear in person (if you can!) or even write an email to the County Council members expressing your support we would really appreciate it.
If you do send an email please do send me a copy of it so I can refer to it during the hearing.
You may reach the County Council members collectively at: SJC Council <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Our via each Council members email contact:
Bob Jarman <email@example.com>
Rick Hughes <Rickh@sanjuanco.com>
Jamie Stephens <firstname.lastname@example.org>Please feel free to contact me or our new district manager Linda Lyshall if you have any questions!Regards,
R. Bruce Gregory
San Juan Islands Conservation District
NRCS Certified Planner
Farm & Forest Resources
Mail: 350 Court St. #10
Office: 530 Guard St.
Friday Harbor, San Juan Is. WA 98250