Trees are good for the city, people and the planet
The article this week on the City Tree Advisory Board distressed me, as it suggested that the Board might not continue to exist. The Board should not be removed; rather it needs to get to work planting trees! There is a great need for trees in Seal Beach. Tree-lined streets not only provide shade and cooler temperatures, but give a certain lush look to a town. I think of Pasadena’s great canopy of greenery and wonder why Main Street, Old Town, and the Hill are not like that pretty enclave. About twenty years ago the city offered to plant trees in front of the homes on the Hill, but for whatever reason that was not followed up and today many streets are bare. I hope the City Tree Advisory Board remains, does its job, and considers the benefits of planting trees and makes that happen. It’s good for the city, good for the people, and good for the planet.
We could learn something from Dr. Suess
Thank you for keeping our town updated and informed. Your unbiased objectivity is a tribute to your trade. Here is my feedback to your posed question-
“Does Seal Beach need an active Tree Advisory Board?”
Once upon a time there was a-
Beautiful, thriving, little town-
Filled with cute, radiant, little creatures-
Surrounded by an abundance of vibrant and colorful nature-
The Once–lers began cutting down-
All the Truffula Trees…
Dr. Seuss’ prescient message in his book, The LORAX, was and still is relevant and poignant.
It is my belief that the power of the message lies in the momentum of the collective community…
“I am The Lorax, I speak for the trees, which you seem to be chopping as fast as you please.”
– Dr Suess
Maybe the city of Seal Beach should consider a LORAX Advisory BOARD?!
Why are local elected officials empowered to make decisions?
Our democratic republic was set up by the Founding Fathers so that voters elect representatives to support their individual and national best interests. The states and cities followed suit and established their city councils, county supervisors, and state representatives. If we voters approve of their decisions, we reelect these individuals; if we do not approve, we vote against them.
The article “Council Overrules County Airport Commission” (September 1, 2022) epitomizes what has become of our democratic republic. The article cites the City Council, the city’s Community Development Department, the county Airport Land Use Commission, Caltrans, and the California Department of Housing and Community Development all wrestling over one issue: the state government’s mandate that Seal Beach add 1,243 housing units.
Putting aside the absurdity that any state-level bureaucrat is more knowledgeable or wiser about what is best for Seal beach than the residents of Seal Beach, bureaucratic city, county, and state appointed commissions, committees, and boards usurp the people’s power of representation. Decisions too often are not made at the local level, and when they are made locally, often the decisions are made by unelected, unaccountable groups. No individuals are even named. It is simply the all-knowing and powerful bureaucracy that we voters cannot vote to support or remove. We have very little say in their decisions. We usually don’t even know their names; they are a faceless bureaucratic agency whose dictates we simply must obey.
Why don’t we work to eliminate the bureaucracies? Why aren’t our local elected representatives empowered to directly make these decisions?
In another article in the same issue of the Sun quoted City Manager Patrick Gallegos’s email stating “The City Council creates boards/committees/commissions at its discretion.” Please stop creating these boards, committees, and commissions and make the decisions yourselves. That is why you were elected. I only wish the County and State would follow suit. But the cynical side of me suspects shunning responsibility is precisely why many of these bureaucracies were established in the first place.
Our government is supposed to be of the people, by the people, and for the people. When mandates are handed down by unelected, nameless bureaucracies and not the locally elected and accountable representatives, we have drifted too far from the purpose of having a democratic republic.
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