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Repeal KPB Ordinance 2011-12

Posted: August 10, 2012 - 9:05am

Figure out what the community as a whole can do to address the issue. In the process, check perceived muscle flexing and arrogance at the door.

At a recent meeting moderated by Citizens 4 Responsible Waterfront Land Use, various people expressed concerns. Waterfront property was now water “view” property in one person’s eyes. Mandated buffer zones usurped three quarters of another’s property given location. Yet another maintained he had not received notice sent to others but, since a creek ran through his property, viewed guides as an issue as well. Consensus was that the ordinance negatively impacted property value and would have been a factor when buying their places had people known.

In general, those present were trying to wrap their minds around the degree to which this ordinance impacts them.

Along with the power Borough officials perceive they have to mandate a 50 foot buffer zone above high water mark on private property bordering lakes, streams, etc. that harbor anadromous fish populations comes the power to “exempt.” To date Seldovia and natives have been given a pass according to Borough personnel at that meeting. One might infer future salmon returns are not important to those entities or that targeting Caucasian waterfront property owners is sufficient to resolve what is perceived of as a problem. Dubious.  

Since my ancestry is primarily Norwegian, Caucasian defines me.  However, I was born and raised in the U.S., as were my parents, and am, therefore, Native American. Tribe? Viking if I must fill in that blank. This Norwegian American, for the sake of argument, pictures exempted parties receiving permanent fund dividend checks, paying taxes, and hoping salmon are around for years to come much as she does.

The concept that allowing borough residents to have input into things that directly impact them somehow erodes what Borough Personnel perceive of as powers vested in them from on high is ludicrous. Being told the Borough has a right to implement and its residents have no right to counter or petition for change is to say there is no system of checks and balances — something that does not sit well with KPB residents. That this cake is frosted with exemptions and smacks of discrimination is galling. If all who use the water and the land bordering it are not part of the solution, Borough officials are spitting in the wind as the saying goes and, in my opinion, openly discriminating against one segment of the population as things stand.

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