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Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Guest Commentary: Supervisor Mariko Yamada Responds To Vanguard

By Mariko Yamada, Yolo County Supervisor, District 4

Let me begin first by thanking the Vanguard for this opportunity to respond to the flurry of news regarding the conceptual proposal for a stem cell research facility in Yolo County.

The commentary, “Who Is Left to Defend Yolo County Farmland?” questions my record concerning land use decisions. My record, both public and private, is clear and consistent on the issues of protecting agriculture and open space, and fostering a safe and sustainable environment:
  • Conaway Ranch Eminent Domain – YES
  • Cache Creek Wild – YES
  • City of Davis Measure X – NO
  • City of Davis Target – NO
  • Southeast Quadrant - NO
  • The Old Sugar Mill – Sole NO vote on development in the Primary Zone of the Delta and behind uncertified levees in Clarksburg
  • The White Subdivision– NO vote on development behind an uncertified levee in Knight’s Landing
  • Yolo County Parks and Grasslands Regional Park Master Plans - YES
  • Measures H and I, SMUD Yes! – Campaign Chair
  • Yolo County Oak Woodlands Master Plan - YES
  • Inclusion of Dunnigan Hills in agricultural district program - NO
  • Williamson Act – YES, and I organized an unprecedented nine-signature Board of Supervisors letter opposing the Governor that included the Yolo County Farm Bureau, Sierra Club Yolano Chapter and the Yolo County Taxpayers Association
  • Department of Fish & Game In-Lieu Taxes – YES, and I am currently organizing a coalition of public safety and taxpayer groups to fight for back taxes owed to the County by the State since 2001 (an unacceptable DFG practice that places local fire districts – and farm acreage – in jeopardy)
  • Yolo Basin Foundation Board of Directors – 2004 to present
On March 27, 2007, I joined in a unanimous vote of the Board of Supervisors in choosing a general plan preferred land use alternative that balances rural sustainability with strategic joint study areas to be considered for potential economic development. The County remains hopeful that joint discussions will occur.

The idea of a stem cell research facility in Yolo County is conceptual; there is no specific proposal to be considered at this time. At present, I am keeping an open mind about the research, educational, and life-saving potential such a facility might bring to the region.

Consistent with my deliberative style, I do not make a decision on an issue until I have all the facts before me and have taken input from all sides. I am not a “one-size-fits-all” representative, nor do I place the threat of political liability above the soundness of good public policy.

I am proud to represent the second-largest agricultural and open space acreage in Yolo County and consistent with my record I will continue to engage in principled, informed, and deliberative decision-making on behalf of my constituents.

Thank you very much for this opportunity to share my views.

Mariko Yamada represents the Fourth District on the Yolo County Board of Supervisors which includes most of the eastern half of the City of Davis. She currently Chairs the BOS. She is presently running for the Democratic Nomination for the 8th Assembly District of California.