SOLVANG, Calif. - It's been one of the most talked about issues in the Santa Ynez Valley. The Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians revealed what they plan to do with nearly 1,400 acres of land at their meeting tonight in Solvang.
The Chumash Tribe's intent tonight was to show the public the preliminary plans for the housing development and to get some feedback. But many concerns are still there for those living in the Santa Ynez Valley.
Tribal Chairman Vincent Armenta said at the meeting, "the purpose of purchasing Camp 4 was for tribal housing. We've said that years ago, and when we bought
it we said the exact same thing."
Armenta led off the meeting by making it clear the Camp 4 land will be used for
tribal housing. The 1,400 acres of land was
purchased by the tribe in 2010, and sits on the northeastern corner of highways
154 and 246.
There's been concern that if the tribe
is able to transfer the land into its sovereign nation, it can do whatever it
wants to with the land...even build another casino. But in a video presentation by the
tribe, they made it clear that there are no plans on building another
Preliminary housing development plans
were laid out and the public was given a chance to ask questions. Many in the audience brought forward
concerns saying if the tribe just wanted to build houses, why wouldn't they
apply for permits like everyone else rather than have the land adopted as part
of their sovereign nation.
One person who attended the meeting, James Marino, said, "the people would not be
concerned as long as they knew the tribe had to do that just like everyone else
has to do that wants to put in a subdivision or put in approval for a
Armenta stopped the meeting short when
things got heated. But he says the tribe's intention of
getting the public involved with the development process was a
"There was a few people who say
the same thing all the time," said Armenta. "But there were individuals here with genuine concerns
and they want to have a dialogue with us. So we accomplished what we wanted."
And Armenta said the tribe is going to take a look at the comments that were given at the meeting and work on incorporating them into the next meeting they'll have.
Wednesday, June 5 2013 5:40 PM EDT2013-06-05 21:40:27 GMT
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Photo Courtesy: Cinda Price
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