Local Politicians vote “to Take” Use of Forested Parcels: No Compensation Expected

Posted on Freedom Advocates on May 4th 2007

Most property owners affected by the Board of Supervisor’s future vote (May 22, 2007) to eliminate timbering on smaller (80 acre and less) forest lands have not been notified by Santa Cruz County of the plan to downzone their properties. This ordinance takes away current and future economic “use” of their properties, and also increases the risk of fire danger in the mountains.

On Tuesday May 1, 2007, the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors considered an ordinance that would prohibit owners of small (80 acres or less) forested parcels from ever being able to harvest trees from their tree farms. After many eloquent people from the public spoke on the issue, the Supervisors decided to slightly delay their decision. An advertisement in the classified section of the Santa Cruz Sentiinel newspaper says the Supervisors will resume the topic on Tuesday May 22nd (May 15th Supervisors meeting relates to clean-up language for Timber Production Zone litigation issues).

Sustainable Development agents, including local Sierra Club representatives, have proposed that small tree farm owners be prohibited from selectively harvesting their own trees. Often, timber harvesting is the only economic use “allowed” on many of these lands.

Tree farmers and land managers also state that the proposed rules will increase fire risk and decrease forest health including plant and animal diversity, because the forest will not be allowed to be responsibly thinned.

Most of the property owners affected have NOT been notified by the County and are unaware that the “use” of their property is being obliterated.

Michael Shaw, President of Freedom Advocates and an Abundance Ecologist, said, “The agenda here is accelerating; the attack on forest land ownership is in its final stage. People need to understand the nature of Sustainable Development and its effects on private property. Increasing numbers of Americans are experiencing an accelerating attack on the ideals of private property and freedom. Now is the time to come to the aid of Liberty.”

Attend the May 22nd Board of Supervisors meeting and forward this information to others.

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