Napa Vision 2050 is visionary
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Eve Kahn | Apr 18, 2022

This letter is in response to Igor Sill piece. ("Napa Vision 2050 is misguided," April 4, 2022)

Napa Vision 2050 humbly walks in the footsteps of the many “misguided” heroes in Napa Valley. A brief history of the visionaries (whom many at the time labeled misguided) follows:

In 1968 Warren Winiarski led the effort that established an Ag Preserve to stave off commercial growth in Napa Valley. Many pushed back as they felt this was an unwanted turn toward socialism. This deeply controversial issue increased the minimum parcel size from 1 acre to 30 (and ultimately 40 acres.) Warren was successful in selling the idea that vineyards and wineries are good for the valley. The Board of Supervisors agreed and voted 4-0 to approve.

Twenty years later, Volker Eisele saw the destruction of orchards in Santa Clara and wisely stepped forward to create Measure J (extended as Measure P). This initiative moved the decision power from the Board to the voters when developers wanted to re-designate ag land for commercial uses within the Ag Preserve. Measure J passed and prevailed during two court cases.

Ginny Simms, Diane Dillon, and others successfully challenged a developer’s desire to build 1700 homes on the hills above the Southern Crossing (highways 121/29). Measures X and Y gathered 80+% of the votes. Get a Grip on Growth was born and next turned its focus on preventing an 800-home subdivision at Stanly Ranch. Two major gateways were preserved!

Moira Johnston Block, Harry Price, and numerous other community leaders joined forces to challenge the US Army Core of Engineers’ plans for a cemented channel through the city of Napa. The Napa community’s plan was built upon a set of “living river” principles. An unprecedented countywide coalition of political and community leaders, private industry, natural resource agencies, non-profit groups, and private citizens, agreed on a plan providing flood protection in part by connecting the Napa River to its historical floodplain and restoration of over 600 acres to tidal wetland.

Residents throughout the valley strongly supported Measure A to provide additional funding. And the rest is history.

Without these “misguided” heroes, who relied upon appropriate science, facts, and strong intuition, the Napa Valley would not be the world-renowned destination it is today. And where will we be without present-day visionaries who rely upon the democratic process to preserve and protect the land, the water, and the environment during a climate emergency and severe drought?

Napa Vision 2050’s goal is to shine a light on any action that threatens the delicate balance between commerce and quality of life.

Eve Kahn
Napa Vision 2050

LTE Version in NV Register 4/18/22: Napa Vision 2050 is visionary, not misguided

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