It has been brought to my attention by my friends and neighbors that some of what I cherish at Oysterville is in jeopardy. I wanted to make clear my feelings on the subject of the issuance of the building permit in the Oysterville Historic District without participation in the due process, which has been in place since July 1976.
It is easy to overlook rules and regulations, like Section 20, Land Use Ordinance of Pacific County, in the name of change and development. I live in Southern California and it is done every day here, which is one reason I am proud of being from the Northwest where people take time to enjoy and protect their environment. The creation of the historic district was done to safeguard this area and its historical importance.
Since my great-grandfather built our house in 1871 someone in the family has been entrusted with its care. It stands today and is cherished by his great-great-great-grandchildren. This is a wonderful legacy and example to our country and this National Historic Register has preserved many wonderful places all over our country. Preservation of this type is important to maintain.
For those of us who have homes and property there, the Design Review Board is a necessary part of renovation or building within this district and its buffer areas. The community agreed to police itself by this review method to preserve the integrity of the historic area for future generations to see and enjoy. It can be a pain and it can be expensive to comply but it is necessary for the good of the order.
Allowing a structure into the area without the due process that is set in place, is negligence. It may be easier but it is the wrong thing to do. Some reasonable mitigation may be in order, but to change the law for one dwelling is totally out of line and especially short sided.
Environmental concerns are crucial, too. The wetlands need to be guarded; somehow this was overlooked. Twenty years ago we owned property south of this particular site, and we had to make costly adjustments to the septic site in order to comply with these regulations. Other people did also. It is not equitable to make some people comply and not others.
County officials are trusted to be the stewards of the laws that are in place. Please be accountable for this responsibility.
Leslie K. Rittenour
R.H. Espy's great-granddaughter
Oysterville and Los Angeles