9/10/22, 2:46 PM
Last Thursday (9/8/22), the Jefferson County Planning Commission held two back-to-back hearings at the Ranch Chapel regarding the MacPherson’s family proposal to build 54 residential lots on Crooked River , designated as Phase 17.
There has been some on-going confusion related to the hearings and in a nut shell, the first hearing dealt with the re-zoning aspect and the second related to the actual subdivision.
The meeting was well attended and the residents asked a lot of important questions for the Planning Commission’s consideration. Other than the stakeholders, public input was clearly opposed to the development.
Jefferson County Planning Director, Phil Steinbeck opened the first hearing by reading into the record his Staff Report along with newly received information that included a letter from the Crooked River Ranch Board. Steinbeck stated:
“Earlier today, a letter was received from the Crooked River Ranch Board. The letter was in support and there was a request earlier this evening for it to be read into the record…”
Chair, Roy Hyder asked Steinbeck to read it into the
record, but not before some objections from residents.
SEE ATTACHED VIDEO SNIPPET & OUR STORY “IMPORTANT UPDATE” PUBLISHED ON 9/8/22 .
The Commission heard testimony from the applicant’s attorney, Adam Smith, Linsey Godwin, MSS Engineering, Joe Bessman, Transight Consulting and attorney, Carol Macbeth, with Central Oregon LandWatch-Opposing the re-zoning.
Jefferson County Community Director, Scott Edelman told Ranch Matters that the zoning change issue is significant because if for any reason the proposed property failed to be rezoned the second subdivision proposal wouldn’t be necessary.
Edelman addressed the process and stated:
“From some of the comments made at the meeting, it is clear that not everyone understands the review process-and that is fine, they don’t deal with this stuff all the time and it is our job to help make it clear. In particular,
I think there has been some misunderstanding in regard to the role of the planning Commission as several of the comments seemed to indicate the commission has already made a decision. This is not the case. County staff recommended approval of the proposed amendment and subdivision, based on their review of the evidence, which includes the public input received orally and in writing.”
Director Edelman further addressed the actual commission and their role regarding land use decisions:
“We have a great group of VOLUNTEER commissioners who take their role very seriously and a Chair who has served the county on the commission for over 20 years. They are appointed by the Board of Commissioners with the goal of having broad representation throughout the county, both geographically and in terms of their expertise and unique perspectives.
While they do come from different areas of the county, it is not their job to represent any particular one-their role is to provide a public forum in which they can make land use decisions through an unbiased review of the evidence and testimony they receive.”
The Planning Commission voted to continue the hearing process on October 27,2022, at the Ranch Chapel.
We will be posting miscellaneous videos in a later report-Check Back.