SOUTH BEND — The Pacific County Commissioners on Tuesday, April 23, voted unanimously to reject the New Visions application for a group home in Seaview.

Chairwoman Lisa Ayers (Dist. 3) said: “In reviewing the whole ordinance, I feel the New Visions proposed use appears to be most similar in nature to a group home, which is specifically listed under the definition of health and social rehabilitation centers. That use is included as a conditional use in R1, R2 rural lands and mixed use as well as in special use in R3. Because it’s specifically included elsewhere in the ordinance, I think its absence in the commercial zone was purposely omitted and not intended as an allowed use in the community commercial zone. So my opinion is that I feel that the special use in this situation is not applicable for this application.”

Commissioner Steve Rogers (Dist. 1) agreed with the assessment.

“I certainly do agree with that,” he said. “It’s pretty clear in my opinion.”

Commissioner Frank Wolfe (Dist. 2) echoed his agreement and moved to approve the appeal by Seaview resident Nansen Malin.

New Visions filed its own appeal after hearing examiner Mike Turner rejected the company’s plan for the group home.

The board voted on Tuesday to find the New Visions appeal moot because of the finding that the home was not allowed in the community commercial zone.

The 3-0 vote resulted in light applause from neighbors of the proposed group home at the Lion’s Paw at 3310 Pacific Way.

County prosecutor David Burke pointed out that the decision won’t be finalized until May when the board signs the findings of fact and conclusions of law in the appeal. He also pointed out that there is a 21-day appeal period after the documents are signed.

The board will sign the documents on May 14.

Malin said after the meeting she was happy the commissioners upheld the ordinance.

“It’s a win for the community,” she said.

Quarry Owner Complaint

During the public comment period, Michael Runyon, owner of Hawk’s Superior Rock in Raymond, leveled accusations of harassment, discrimination and, at times, intimidation against the Department of Public Works.

Runyon said he had experienced ongoing problems dealing with the department over the quality of his product. He also said taxpayers had paid more for rock from quarries that charge higher prices.

He said he had experienced what he called a poor attempt at intimidation.

On one occasion he said he was told by a DPW supervisor that, “Quote, if I find one rock at the stockpile area that you’re hauling out to the Red & White (grocery store in Raymond) that does not meet the specification, you will haul it back at your expense.”

Runyon said he has had many other issues that have occurred that he wanted to discuss with the board.

“I don’t think there’s any need for it,” he said. “I’ve got quality material; I keep my prices competitive. I want to keep my guys working. I really don’t want to have to deal with the attempted intimidation any more.”

He said he’s tried to work with previous boards in the past, but nothing has ever been resolved.

Ayers encouraged Runyon to set up a workshop with the commissioners to address his concerns.

Hot Wheels

The board approved a Sheriff’s Office request to buy two 2012 Dodge Chargers for $35,237.76 each.

Ayers pointed out that with depreciation and accumulated capital the replacements add up to about $11,000.

Wolfe added, “I think we should also point out that the sheriff didn’t have anything in the 2013 budget and we kind of knew we’d have to get him something to drive around in, and this looked like a good opportunity.”

Tourism Vouchers

The commissioners approved tourism development claims vouchers for the Northwest Carriage Museum, $1,250; the Columbia Pacific Heritage Museum, $1,666; Sunday Afternoon Live, $1,764.25; and the Long Beach Peninsula Visitors Bureau, $10,308.33 by a vote of 2-0. Rogers abstained because he is a member of the Northwest Carriage Museum.

The board approved vouchers for the Ocean Park Area Chamber of Commerce for $3,200 by a vote of 2-0; Wolfe abstained because he is a member of the Chamber.

Service Awards

The board honored: Tia Channell for her five years with the Department of Community Development; Tamra Gunderson at North District Court and Warren Anderson at the Department of Public Works for 10 years of service; and Jim Noren at Juvenile Court Services for 25 years of service.

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