Public statements by Pismo Beach Mayor Shelly Higginbotham and council members Kris Vardas and Mary Ann Reiss that they did not “approve” the Spanish Springs development take extreme liberties with the facts (“Perspectives on Price Canyon,” Sept. 19).
All three voted to approve the necessary general plan amendments and certify the project’s environmental impact report at the City Council meeting of June 18, 2013. As any land use attorney can tell you, that’s the ball game. That was the legal green light and starting gun for the project.
The fact that they didn’t get around to minor, after-the-fact administrative actions such as approving the development agreement is a very small fig leaf that the three candidates seem to be trying to huddle behind for electoral purposes.
If Pismo Beach residents hadn’t forced the City Council to roll back the general plan amendments and the Sierra Club hadn’t sued to revoke the defective EIR, Spanish Springs would be under construction in Price Canyon today. Higginbotham, Vardas and Reiss apparently want to rewrite that history, but our settlement agreement with the city remains in effect, and Spanish Springs remains unbuilt because of it.