Diane Dillon: Issues Quick Takes

Diane Dillon On the Issues
- The County’s longstanding city-centered growth land use policies mean also that the County actively must support the creation of affordable housing within our cities/town. And the Board of Supervisors does! Actions speak louder than words. Since the 1990s, the County has loaned or committed over $27 million towards the creation of over 1,100 units of deed-restricted housing (see this chart).

Diane also supports the creation of more affordable housing in Napa County by: advocating to increase our affordable housing fee whenever she can; and lobbying for and supporting State legislation that removes impediments to the creation of more housing that’s affordable. For more information, click here.

MEASURE C - is a voter-designed initiative on the June 5 ballot. It is based on good intentions. With voter approval, it will set into place immediately a provision for watercourse buffers in which trees cannot be cut - which in some cases is duplicative of what already exists, and in other cases increases the area where trees cannot be cut. Measure C will also establish a policy regarding oak woodland removal for agricultural purposes that may not occur for several years.

Diane wants to hear from the voters on these important policy decisions; she has no recommendation on Measure C. For fuller thoughts from Diane on this important policy initiative, please click here for ISSUE: MEASURE C.

For more information regarding these two changes to the County’s existing regulatory system on agricultural watershed (AW) zoned lands (our hillsides), click here.

TRAFFIC - the Board of Supervisors currently is responding to the concerns about cumulative effect of traffic growth in the County by revising our Circulation Plan in the General Element. It was written in 2008 as a projection to serve the County for at least 10-15 years, and was based on 2007 data (as general plans are typically written).

Diane and her colleagues realized in early 2014 that it needed updating sooner. There have been a lot of bumps in the road because of major disasters within the County and changing state law - but the first draft of the revised plan is finally coming to the planning commission within the next month; it’s based on 2016 data. Click here for more information.

MEASURE D - is another voter-designed initiative on the May 5th ballot. As a current supervisor, I am, of necessity, neutral on Measure D. All the sitting Supervisors need to be careful about uttering an opinion because of a quasi-judicial appeal of a helipad permit denial that is scheduled to come before us in July. If we display bias towards or against private-use helipads prior to that hearing, we could be disqualified from voting on the matter. That said, I supported the existing 2004 regulations banning private helicopter use.

DEFINITION OF AGRICULTURE - CHANGED?  WHEN?  WHY?  Much has been written in the last year about the changes to the definition of agriculture made by the Board of Supervisors, beginning in 2008 ... and many intentions ascribed to those changes without a full examination of the circumstances and reasons for the changes ... which go back to the 1990 Winery Definition Ordinance.  Please click here to see the explanation of why those changes were made - and when - and how they related to each other. 

CALISTOGA FAIRGROUNDS -  What is to become of the Napa County Fairgrounds in Calistoga? I am fighting for a solution that will preserve Napa County Fairgrounds for public benefit, and as a proud feature of Calistoga. As District 3 Supervisor, I will continue to do everything I can to urge the County and my fellow Supervisors to invest in Fairgrounds property and assets. Read more...