Do not support a building permit moratorium
This petition had 1,419 supporters
Boulder - Happy, Healthy, Not Broken
We do not agree with Councilman Weaver that a building permit moratorium is warranted. This is a step in the wrong direction in trying to create an inclusive community for families, workers and seniors.
1. A moratorium declares that our community is broken and we believe that it is not.
2. There are better tools available to address community issues.
3. Process and democracy are important to this community.
4. An overreaction will have both short-term and long-term economic consequences.
5. We continue to alienate our families, workers and seniors.
Boulder is consistently and deservedly voted one of the happiest, healthiest places to live in our country. This is not by accident. Our plans, policies, and broad-minded thinking have, from the beginning, created a place that is craved by many and inhabited by few. We pride ourselves on being inclusive, progressive and collaborative. The proposed moratorium does not reflect our community values, nor does it represent a large majority of us made up of families, workers and seniors. We believe that the forces of change and growth are healthy, sustainable and vital to keeping our community attainable and dynamic. We don’t believe the system is broken. An alienating, aggressive approach, such as being proposed, will erode many of the community values that we all believe in and hold constant in our daily lives, and it will further divide us.
1. A moratorium declares that our community is broken and we believe that it is not. There couldn’t be anything further from the truth. Boulder is a vibrant city with residents ready for a more walkable, diverse, and connected community. We are proud of where our city is headed to provide mass transit to and from and around town, bike paths for children to get to and from school, and finally some housing for the middle class. We have made significant community-wide investments to get here and to change our plans midstream will have consequences to the infrastructure that we have spent millions on.
2. There are better tools available to address community issues. New buildings definitely could have better architecture, but that’s no reason to shut the city down. We should fully understand any real problems before taking extraordinary measures. We have the tools, such as the upcoming Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan update on city council’s work plan this December to discuss, study, and codify any repairs; we just approved a Transportation Master Plan update; and are in the middle of a Comprehensive Housing Strategy – the tools are already in place for community conversation.
3. Process and democracy are important to this community. For as much thought that has gone into creating the building codes and area plans that govern our development activity, it would seem contradictory to our values and original intent for a select few to suddenly render the voices of so many null and void with a moratorium action. Our code, area plans, and strategies are the product of hundreds of hours of community involvement – a great example being the Transit Village Area Plan that was a 7-year process! For our leaders to scrap these plans at their whim will undoubtedly tarnish future outreach processes as “disposable” when the political winds blow. This could hurt future citizen participation in other outreach and further divide our community.
4. An overreaction will have both short-term and long-term economic consequences. A short-sighted reaction does not consider an important consequence, which is the resulting impact on the City’s budget in both the short term (construction use taxes, excise taxes paid by permits) and long term – erosion of our much respected and nationally recognized business community, including our start-ups and entrepreneurs. There will also be impacts to the design and construction trades. There will be jobs lost and lives forever altered in the name of more process. This is an avoidable situation.
5. We don't want to continue to alienate our families, workers and seniors. Our ever-evolving decades of land use codes and plans, despite their flaws, are poised to finally create some middle and low income housing, community amenities, and access to transit and the FastTracks system. Do we really need to exercise emergency governmental powers to study this and reach the same conclusion while families, workers, and seniors wait on the sidelines?
We should continue to evolve the conversation about growth, density, affordability and placemaking, question what isn’t working, and strengthen the tools we already have in place to create better outcomes.
We believe in an authentic, inclusive process - a moratorium is an option of last resort and should only be used when the consequences are so dire and immediate that it appears to be the only option.
We do not agree that a moratorium is warranted and want our voices heard.
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