An already important race for San Luis Obispo City Council just became more critical.
Last week, the existing council deadlocked 3-2 on whether to override the Airport Land Use Commission and adopt the city’s new General Plan. (At least four votes are needed for the override.)
The decision will likely be left to the new City Council.
As we wrote this past week, we believe the city is following the right approach in looking to undeveloped land at the southern end of the city for growth — a position that conflicts with the Airport Land Use Commission.
Never miss a local story.
Most of the candidates for the council are on record in support of the override. All three candidates endorsed by The Tribune Editorial Board — Mayor Jan Marx, Councilwoman Carlyn Christianson and Dan Rivoire — support it.
We, too, believe that’s the right move for the city.
As we said this past week, the city has exercised an abundance of caution in proposing to allow development at the south end of the city. It hired an expert in airport planning to advise it on safety and noise concerns, and it proposes maintaining ample open space around the airport.
What’s more, the city of San Luis Obispo has a welldeser ved reputation for stringent development standards and we don’t believe the city would negligently allow rampant development to impinge on the airport.
Keep in mind, too, that even with an override, negotiations with the Airport Land Use Commission could continue. Indeed, as reported by Tribune writer AnnMarie Cornejo, three airport land use commissioners encouraged the council to move ahead with the override, noting that the door to working on a compromise would still be open.
As important as the airport override is to the community, we don’t advise basing a voting decision on a single issue. Nor do we use that as a basis for our endorsements.
We want candidates who are smart, experienced, thoughtful, respectful and responsive to their constituents. We also want candidates who can set aside personal animosities and work with their colleagues — even when they don’t agree with them.
We believe all three candidates we’ve endorsed fill that bill.
We also believe they will act reasonably and in the best interests of both the city and the airport on issues of growth.
Again, that isn’t the only issue at stake, but it is an important one that will shape the city’s future for decades to come.
The Tribune reiterates its strong support for Jan Marx for mayor and Carlyn Christianson and Dan Rivoire for City Council.