Ever wonder why homes in Pullman are so hard-to-find and expensive? Ever wonder why all the new housing developments are jammed in on the minimum amount of land allowed by city code, even though we are surrounded by miles of empty space? The answer is simple. For decades, Whitman County has had a repressive zoning code. The current ordinance requires a three-year moratorium on any land use before the property can be sold. Obviously, developers and farmers alike have been reluctant to have their funds and land tied up for that long. The result: Pullman is bursting at the seams and it is affecting our ability to grow and develop. Pressure was brought to bear on the Whitman County Commissioners by Pullman realtors and businesses to relax this zoning ordinance. The county has proposed doing so. Unfortunately, Whitman County planners have also seen fit to add a bunch of property owner restrictions that never existed before, such as "viewscape" limitations, lighting and spacing restrictions, etc. The proposed ordinance is going to be even more onerous than the original.
What can you do?
A petition to the Whitman County commissioners is currently being circulated asking them to reject the proposed ordinance changes. As the petition states, "Time is of the essence, as the Planning Commission votes on Wednesday, November 2nd, 2005. If passed, the new ordinance will be presented to the County Commissioners within 7 days. All petition signatures must be obtained prior to the County Commissioners Public Hearing which will be scheduled within 14 days of the receipt of the new ordinance. After the public hearing the County Commissioners will vote to accept or reject the new ordinance changes."
You can sign the petition online here or you can click here for a printable version. Contact me to return signed hard-copy petitions.