Saturday, May 5, 2012
Hood River County Planning Commission will hold a public hearing May 9 for a conditional use permit application filed by Hood River Valley Parks and Recreation District (see page A1 for more). The application is for a public park on a 31.4-acre plot of land the district has owned since 2007 at the corner of Barrett Drive and Alameda Road.
Since the property is zoned Exclusive Farm Use, certain developments and activities are explicitly prohibited. Others uses, however, are allowed by law and will be up to the approval of the county planning commission. Among the proposal, several sports-related activities/developments are listed, including about 11 acres of open play fields, biking and walking trails, a mountain bike skills area, bocce ball courts and a remote control flier area.
Among the commission’s duties is to evaluate the application based on specific land use laws and criteria. The commission, guided by staff recommendations, will be able to impose changes, conditions or removal of certain elements of the application before granting a CUP.
For the public, the meeting is a chance to voice concerns or show support for certain elements of the application; particularly for elements where the commission will have leeway in what decision to make.
“Unlike a lot of the decisions the decisions the commission makes that are very cut and dry, there is a lot of grey area in this case,” said Scott Baker, HRVPRD assistant director. “The meeting will be a great opportunity for people to take an active role in the process and support, or question, what is proposed.”
A good example is a proposed mountain bike skills area, which the staff report recommends against but states that “staff is on the fence when it comes to deciding whether this type of facility confirms to the ‘passive, low-intensity’ requirement or not.” The decision on this approximately 2-acre element of the park will likely be up to the discretion of the commission, so public input could weigh heavily on their decision.
The meeting will be held at 7 p.m. May 9 in the County Administration building, 601 State St. To read the staff report, visit www.hoodrivernews.com.
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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"
Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge