Stranger in a strange town

This Times-Standard reader says public officials should make decisions based on the public’s best interest.

He must not be from here.

Sidestepping the process

Letter to the Editor, Jan. 22, 2011
I attended the Jan. 18 Board of Supervisors meeting in which the reappointment of outgoing Planning Commissioner Emad, was a vocal, focal point. I applaud Mr. Emad for his public service exemplified by many years on the Planning Commission. The critics of the reappointment were not critical of Mr. Emad, but were critical of the basis on which some members of the board were prepared to act.

Public officials should make their decisions based on what is in the public’s best interest. This should be the ultimate benchmark in their decision-making process. Injecting factors such as whether someone will feel “slighted,” “inconvenienced” or “hurt” have no place in the political, decision-making arena. There will always be someone “hurt,” “slighted” or “inconvenienced” by their decision.

It was encouraging to me that the new faces on the board recognized that the normal appointment process was being unwisely sidestepped. Once one starts short circuiting a well-tested appointment process it makes it easier to do it in again in the future. Why establish a vetted and proven appointment process if it can be sidestepped so casually? If the appointment term is four years, why choose an applicant who has publicly informed the board that they are not prepared to serve out the full term? A new appointee with “fire in their belly” may add a new and needed perspective to a commission that is publicly growing frustrated with the pace of the update process.

Bob Morris

Blocksburg

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Ralph Faust asks Coastal Commission to stop cleanup of Balloon Track–with meaningless updates

Fuck all y'all.

And he reportedly did so, unlike in this photo, with a completely straight face.

Not that any of this is funny in the usual sense of the word. None of those pull-my-finger or naughty limerick jokes for him, the old coot.

No, with this appeal Faust definitely employs the stodgier ironic form–on multiple levels and to breathtaking effect.

We begin with the obvious: Faust, who works as an environmental attorney, is asking the Coastal Commission to prevent the cleanup of a contaminated former railyard from which toxins flow persistently into Humboldt Bay.

Then there’s the Coastal Commission itself, which was Faust’s employer for more than 20 years. He rose to the rank of chief counsel before a brief but memorably disreputable stint as Humboldt’s interim county counsel.

Handing him that gig on a golden platter was none other than Bonnie Neely, who now chairs the same organization to which Faust is appealing.

Which brings us to Faust’s self-righteous statements to his fellow planning commissioners just one week ago about recusing himself from discussion of three Arkley projects. Faust insisted he had always treated Arkley right but was selflessly stepping back from the projects to save the county time and money.

What a guy! Six days later he appealed the Eureka City Council’s approval of the interim cleanup which, if successful, would grind Arkley’s Marina Center development to a halt.

Have we left anything out?

Maybe just this: Faust, the man who purports to save Eurekans from the horrors of a nontoxic waterfront, carpetbagged his angry inch up here from San Francisco fewer than three years ago. He does not live–and in fact he has never lived–in or even near the city of Eureka.

Awesome!!

Meaningless Update 1: Today’s Times-Standard contains a longer list of appellants in a story we would link to if we could find it online.
Meaningless Update 2: Bastards finally put the story up online this afternoon. Read your merry ass off here.