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Commission approves waivers on second look


   Following a second look by the Jefferson County Board of Commissioners, two Measure 37 waiver claims sailed through their process July 12.
   Charles and Kay Simmelink of Madras sought approval to divide a 38-acre parcel of farm land, located on Highway 361 and Southwest Bear Drive, into one-acre parcels with a dwelling on each, and another 14 acres, on Highway 361, south of Colfax Lane, into two-acre lots with a dwelling on each.
   The Simmelinks acquired the larger parcel in 1967, and the smaller one in 1989.
   Measure 37, passed statewide by voters in 2004, allows property owners to seek a waiver from all regulations which affect the value of the property -- provided that the regulations were passed after they acquired the property.
   At the June 28 meeting of the commission, two separate motions to approve the waivers -- by commissioners Bill Bellamy and Mary Zemke -- died for lack of a second. Neither liked the wording of the other's motion; Chairman Walt Ponsford was against approval of either because the applications had been deemed incomplete by the planning department.
   Since that date, the Simmelinks, who attended the latter meeting, completed their applications, which were unanimously approved by the commission.
   "The Simmelinks were advised not to come (to the meeting)," said County Counsel Jacki Haggerty. "I'm concerned that other people may be directed not to come. Claimants and applicants need to know that if they want to appear before the board, they have every right to do so."