There is no problem with development. No one wants to hurt small business and everyone wants to create jobs and boost local tax revenue. Private property rights are important and must be protected. The problem with the proposed CVS/Chase project is that it is something that will affect the whole community, for the worse, in a number of ways. This is not an issue of whether
Sebastopolhas overregulated small business, or whether or not the Pellini family should be allowed to sell their land. The land should be developed and put to use, and small business should be allowed to flourish.
The development of the Pellini Chevrolet property by CVS/Chase must be stopped by the council. It must be stopped because it will harm the entire community, it will harm and irreparably change
. It will cause severe traffic problems to one of the worst intersections in town, set at the crossroads of two highways. Traffic in Western Sonoma County Sebastopolis already an increasingly problematic issue with many drivers using side streets to avoid backed-up intersections. This creates hazards for pedestrians, while idling cars add to air pollution and lower the quality of our air. If the proposed CVS and Chase buildings are built they will attract cars to the worst intersection in town, slowing traffic and impeding travel. The Pellini Chevrolet property should be developed in a way that will support and add to the down town of . Whatever kind of business that is put there should not be one that is based on a high volume of customers driving in and out. Sebastopol
I urge the city council to deny the appeal filed on behalf of CVS and Chase bank. They have been provided ample tools to do so by the design review board and the planning commission. The council must take this action on behalf of the community and their constituents. CVS and Chase are two of the worst corporations in
. Chase was instrumental in the 2008 financial collapse, and CVS is the largest pill distributer in the America Both corporations have great locations in our town already, located on the edge of town, as big box stores traditionally are, to mitigate traffic problems. U.S.
Apart from the many traffic related concerns, there are other serious ways that this project will harm
Sebastopol. First, moving the stores downtown will create blight at the Gravenstein Highwayshopping center. We will have two vacancies in that shopping center and the other businesses will suffer for it. Jobs and long term tax gain to the city will not happen because the proposed CVS is actually smaller and will employ fewer people. The downtown area businesses will suffer due to competition against CVS. The Rite Aid and Safeway pharmacies will also lose business. This project is not good for the citizens, or small business, of Sebastopol. It is only good for CVS, Chase, and Armstrong development.
This project is nothing more than the worst bankster, and the biggest drug dealer in the country, attempting to muscle in on the most profitable corner in our town, so that they can efficiently extract money from our community. If the Sebastopol City Council does not deny this appeal, it will be typical of the lack of representation that this country faces. It has become commonplace for elected officials to work for corporate, moneyed interests, instead of their constituents. I thought it was sad that city council member Kathleen Shaffer acted as a lobbyist and community organizer for CVS/Chase, sending out a mass email stating that she was “working under the radar” to build support for the project. This was a possible Brown Act violation, and regardless, one would not want a congressman on the armed services committee to be a lobbyist for Halliburton, or a judge in a Wal-Mart class action lawsuit, to be under the employ of that company. This is a perfect example of a conflict of interest, and whether or not she has violated the Brown Act, if Kathleen Shaffer is an honest official who represents her constituents, she will recuse herself from the February 7th vote. I ask those in the community who feel this way to contact Shaffer and the city and make your opinion known.
Sebastopolwill hold a protest and demonstration on Saturday, February 4th in opposition to the CVS/Chase project. We will meet in the town plaza at 12 noon to mass and make signs. Those willing will then march to Chase bank and CVS where they will meet those incapable of walking the long distance. OS calls on the community to come join us for an afternoon of protest. Now is the time to act. Stand up to corporate power.