From Rock My Car Dot Com link
It’s not about money
Ecke proponents dodge the real issues
October 28th, 2005
“I’m not going to sell my assets to save this business,” Paul Ecke III told the Union-Tribune recently. “It would be foolish to do that.”
If it would be foolish for Ecke to sell assets to save his poinsettia ranch, then it’s insane for the city to give up its assets to do the same. If he won’t, then neither should we.
Ecke and his crew pushing Proposition A — which asks the city to rezone half of his land to make room for 101 houses — have said opponents are hung up on the load of cash the Ecke family has amassed over the years. “To grade me on how much in assets I have is ridiculous,” Ecke said. “It’s frightening that a successful businessman is being attacked.”
The Union-Tribune, in yet another display that the paper has no grasp on what happens north of Highway 52, joined the fray in an editorial — accusing the “No on A” crowd of being envious and attempting to bilk Ecke Ranch for more than the proposed 8-acre park. Where did they get that?
The opposition to Prop. A is not about Ecke’s bank account. It’s not really about the flowers, either. We’re not after any more from Ecke or his ranch, and we’re not attacking him because of his success.
It’s about preserving one of the last pieces of agriculturally zoned land in the city for something other than houses. Most of the nursery and farming facilities in Encinitas are operating on land already zoned for residential. Some day very soon those greenhouses will be homes.
In an area overrun by sprawl, the remaining land zoned for agriculture is a jewel, an asset to the city. In fact, Ecke agreed to keep that land as agricultural in 1994.
Ecke says he needs the profits from the housing development to modernize his farm. Opponents have asked him to prove it — and rightly so.
When college students apply for government loans, they have to prove their need. The same is true for people who apply for Medicare, welfare or any other government subsidy.
That’s the only reason money is in this debate. We don’t fault Ecke for his success. But he is asking the residents of Encinitas to give up a city asset to “save” his business. It’s only right that we should ask him to verify his need.
The attempt by the Union-Tribune, Ecke and the “Yes on A” folks to obfuscate the real issues surrounding Proposition A is shameless, and you shouldn’t be fooled.
They’re only trying to distract attention from the fact that the ranch won’t show us that it really needs to develop the land to remain competitive. They’re dodging the fact that Ecke refuses to use his own assets.
After all, if Ecke won’t use his resources to “save” his business, then why should we?