Begin a sensible winery development policy
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Bill Hocker | Aug 26, 2014

In a blog post response to the third Raymond Winery Hearing Eric Vaughn, aka Crosscountrykid, laid out what should to be one of many solutions to rein the transfer of an agricultural to a tourist economy in Napa county. I don't know how to link to a particular post so I will just copy it here:

    Cueing off dzynur's idea for a good database and a comment from Spvsr. Luce cited in the 8/19 NVR about the WDO and winery capacity, let me naively ask:
    Why not use the county's total grape growing capacity as the main criterion for approving a new permit or a change to an existing permit? Let harvest figures be the self-limiting cap, regardless of a winery's chosen business model.
    This means creating a good reliable database, but the focus can be on one item: the amount of available grapes. The county would have to oversee and more closely enforce permits, but again, concentrating on the amount of available fruit. Permit applicants would need to clearly identify the source of their grapes. Simply put, when a permit is reviewed, no grapes or insufficient grapes, no permit. Wineries that actually grow their own grapes can decide to keep their grapes or sell part of them to someone else. Etcetera.
    My apologies if this rough outline only reveals my ignorance.
    Eric Vaughan

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