Here’s a copy of my letter to the leadership at the Saddle Club, alerting them to the work I am doing on their behalf. I have been working hard the past six months on a variety of equestrian issues including permits for the Saddle Club.

These rules were adopted before I was elected to council last year and I have been working hard to get them fixed. Some members are personal friends with my opponent so they have not been forthcoming with the hard work I have been doing. But I guess that is politics. At any rate, I actually care about people and am working to help.

“Leo, thanks for all. After your email, I sent an email to the person I know at PUD to see if I can find a contact on any programs they have working right now.
>
> As an update, I spoke with the county manager this morning (monday) and Julie Olson about the equestrian code and the saddle club permits specifically. Over the weekend, I spoke with, you, Jason, Mr Olson, Haily for details about the permit issues and put an email together for the county manager yesterday.
>
> Based on my emails over the weekend, The county manager already had the questions sent to the director of permitting as to why the saddle club doesn’t have their permits, why the change on the 150 mile wind sheer requirement, the fact that there will not be 300 people inside the arena at a time etc. hopefully, getting the permits director involved will solve the impasse.
>
> Mr. Olson was also able to respond all on the email, so the manager has his contact information to get further information. Haily was also going to consolidate the main points in writing to summarize the issues with the permits, so I can advocate with the other councilors and manager. I also asked for an update From the manager on Mr Olson’s request to waive permit fees. I voiced my support of that.
>
>
> The manager owns the permitting process, but she has been well aware of the issues by me in general and now about the saddle club in particular. I am advocating that the permits be issued, that the 150 mile shear standard be dropped, that there is consideration given on permitting fees because of the county caused delays and inconsistencies.
>
> We discussed composting of manure at a central county facility or private facility, this is something the equestrian community could help with and weigh-in on for possible solutions for those who don’t have the space to compost or handle on site.
>
> I advocated that we take the equestrian code in chunks and move quickly on certain pieces, like sprinkler and soundproofing requirements etc. there are several aspects that I think the full council wants to eliminate and are in agreement, so let’s do it as quickly as we can. Staff has already not provided ANY justification for keeping that code that former commissioner Boldt had put into place ten years ago. I think there was agreement with Julie and the manager to take that approach, so we can make better progress during this Covid environment.
>
> I am advocating that we make full use of grandfathering and AG exempt for equestrian facilities, barns, hay storage, arenas etc. —- If the insurance carriers are satisfied with the structure, we should be satisfied.
>
> County staff and our policy advisor are collating all the input we just received in writing and with the public zoom meeting into each of the categories, like building code, operational impacts etc and then will present that to the council for direction for code amendment. I am also advocating that we continue with public engagement throughout this entire process.
>
> As an aside, I am advocating that we create horse trails at least, but better yet a public equestrian center at camp Bonneville. The parks director has already agreed this would be an appropriate park activity at camp Bonneville (we have 4000 acres there and the clean up is nearing completion). That will be another ask of the equestrian community that we are provided volunteers to design the trails, so we don’t have to hire a consultant…
>
> I think that is a pretty good summary as of this morning.
>
> All my best to you and the rest of the membership.”

Gary

Contact Us • Volunteer • Promote •  Retain