Elk Grove City Council Confirms Appointments For Historic, Diversity & City Planning Committee; 3 Commissioners Taken Off Planning Commission
On February 24, 2021, members of the City Council confirmed several people for various committees for the City of Elk Grove. Two of the committees had many qualified applicants. Additionally, it took a great deal of discussion for the decisions to be made. In total, one person was appointed to be a voting member of the Historic Preservation Committee, one person for the Diversity and Inclusion Committee, and two for the Planning Commission.
Historic Preservation Committee
The Historic Preservation Committee is responsible for protecting Elk Grove’s past to give residents a “shared past.” Also, the committee is responsible for documenting “significant themes” in the construction of Elk Grove as a city. The documentation goes as far back as the 1960s. Furthermore, the committee assesses landmarks and properties that have significance to the city’s history. Then the committee drafts up a document detailing what would happen if the landmark or property were to disappear.
There was one vacancy for this committee.
You can read more about what the committee does through this link.
Who Was Appointed To Historic Preservation Committee?
The City Council unanimously decided to appoint Nadiya Mendoza (?) to be part of the Historic Preservation Committee. Mendoza’s family has resided in Elk Grove since 1989. She has a Bachelor’s in Architecture from Berkley, and has worked on numerous projects in family housing.
Diversity & Inclusion Committee
The Diversity & Inclusion Committee’s statement is “No Place For Hate.” This committee operates on this mantra, but also on three principles. These three principles are Education/Promotion, being Ambassadors, and giving feedback to the City Council. Additionally, the committee looks at the differences in humanity, whether it be gender, sexuality, race/ethnicity, religion, and socioeconomic backgrounds. Then the committee uses this information to create meaningful connections within the City of Elk Grove.
You can read more about the committee through this link.
There was also one vacancy for this committee.
Who Was Appointed To Diversity & Inclusion Committee?
Tina Lee-Vogt was appointed to the committee due to her years of experience. She fought against hatred and discrimination. Also, the City Council wanted to consider geographic representation and Lee-Vogt was in District 3. For transparency’s sake, Council Member Kevin Spease did state that Lee-Vogt worked for his father years ago.
The discussion about who to appoint for this commission was long and filled with amicable debate. Indeed, there were many qualified applicants for all teams. Alas, the Planning Commission is an integral part of the City of Elk Grove because the commission looks at zoning and planning applications. Basically, the commission helps City Council decide on what gets built in Elk Grove.
You can read about the Planning Commission here.
It should be noted that Singh-Allen wanted to evaluate the committees and City Planning Commission as one of the first things she did when entering office. Three City Commissioners were removed from the post: Mackenzie Wieser, Andrew Schuck, and Tony Lin.
Who Was Appointed To Planning Commission?
Mayor Singh-Allen wished to discuss the reappointment of the current City Commissioners. These people were George Murphy, Sergio Robles, and Mackenzie Wieser. Ultimately, the City Council voted to retain Planning Commissioner Murphy and Robles but not Planning Commissioner Mackenzie Wieser. Also, the City Council paid specific attention to the location of the City Commissioners, as three of the previous City Commissioners lived within a mile of each other. Mayor Singh-Allen and a couple of other City Council members mirrored the desire to have more geographical representation in the commission.
It should be noted that Mayor Bobbie Singh-Allen moved to retain Planning Commissioner Mackenzie Wieser. However, not one other City Council Member moved to second the motion. Even Kevin Spease, who has served with Wieser on the Planning Commission did not move to second the motion. Spease’s silence is the most confusing. Clearly, the seasoned City Council members, Vice Mayor Stephanie Nguyen, City Council Member Darren Suen, and City Council Member Pat Hume, do not like some of the decisions made by Planning Commissioner Mackenzie Wieser in the past. However, by taking off Wieser the Planning Commission in this fashion, it will almost certainly affect politics in the future. It seems like the City Council members are retaliating against Mackenzie Wieser for speaking out against the City Council.
The three individuals who have been appointed to the Planning Commission are Sandra Poole, Suman Singha, and Juan Fernandez.
In conclusion, Hume wanted to discuss in the future about terms or term limits for City Commissioners. He mentions every time there is a vacancy for City Commissioner, the City Council is hit with a heavy amount of applicants. Consequently, Mayor Singh-Allen agreed and would like to have a future discussion about the issue.