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July 24, 2007

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Arguments by Measure 37 supporters and Measure 49 opponents distill down to two straightforward conclusions: Misstatements and hidden agendas. What they stand for can be enacted, and has been enacted. What they need to do is to be stand up people and admit to us what it is they want and then let us decide the prudence and wisdom of their goals.

Misstatements

We are told that all claimants will have to refile. That is wrong. They have already filed and by doing so have established their date of ownership and the laws and rules that purportedly resulted in a decline in value.

Hidden Agendas

They say it takes away rights guaranteed by Measure 37. Yes, but they should say what those rights would be – the right to build a shopping center, large subdivision, industrial site, gravel pits, destination resorts. Yes, it limits what they can do to residential only. When they speak of rights taken away, make them explain what it is that is taken away. It borders on deceit to hide behind such vagaries.

They say that in effect many will not be able to profit from their claims. That is true. If the person wants to develop more than three homesites they must establish that what they want is commensurate with their loss. Again, it does not have to be this way, it can be the way it is now. I know of a claim in which the property, purchased about 20 years ago, appears to have lost 2% of its value as the result of a land use regulation. Brought up to date at a 10% rate of interest, compounded monthly, the loss comes to about $15,000 – they want nearly a million dollars. If this is what we want, fine, but make them describe it to us.

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