RECENTLY ON TOL:
- A tumblr site dedicated to the people and places that make up Oregon and Southwest Washington.
on Up or Out?
First I want to say thanks to staff of this terrific new addition to the OPB lineup. Very impressive accomplishments.
We have lived on the very northern boundary of Helvetia for 24 years on our 19 acre parcel. In 1990 we purchased a ten acre piece that abuts our 19 acres. We bought this ten acres as an investment property after we consulted with Washington County Land Use and were assured that it was buildable if we met income standards. Other people were meeting those income standards by planting xmas trees, blueberries, peach trees, etc. We started growing hay on the property which was cut for us by a local farmer and have continued to do this for years. There is no well nor road on this ten acres.
Our properties are surrounded by small parcels, 3-12 acres and there are homes on virtually all of the nearby parcels. When the Measure 37 issue came up we discovered that changes in LCDC rules had made it impossible to build a home on the ten acres. Even though we opposed 37 and voted against it, we filed a claim and were approved by both the County and the State. When 37 was rescinded and 49 approved we thought it was by far the best outcome for the State as a whole and were confident that 49 would be a remedy for people like us. We only wanted to do what we were allowed to do when we bought the property, build one home, on an acreage that is in a highly developed area, and is not suitable for any real farming. Our Measure 49 claim was denied as almost all claims for smaller parcels have been. Washington County Land Use staff wrote letters in support of our appeal (and others) saying that the State is not using the standards that were in place at the time of purchase, to make these decisions. It truly makes NO sense and I would love it if your program looked into this. I'm afraid that the Attorney General's decision on how the apply this Measure is ultimately going to result in another Measure 37 initiative.
This is a huge financial loss for us and even though we are liberal Democrats, we feel that progressives often overlook the issue of personal property rights which have to play some part in decisions reached in these matters. This property is now virtually worthless, we are in our 60's and when we can no longer take care of it, it will become a field of blackberry bushes.
posted 3 years, 5 months ago
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