Sherman R. Frederick
Judy Arnold, Novato’s elected official on the Marin County Board of Supervisors, came out today against the proposal to turn Inn Marin into a homeless facility.
In a letter to her fellow supervisors and Novato City councilmembers, she wrote:
“I attended the Novato City Council meeting last night to hear the discussion of the Inn Marin proposal for the homeless.
One woman toward the end of the meeting said how she worried about the homeless and their children, and wished Novato could help but knew the opposition was too strong, and ended her comments with: “Sometimes we just have to give up a good thing.”
That sentence was like a commandment to me.
This past week there was anger and angst over Inn Marin being accepted by the State to convert their 70 rooms into places for the homeless.
This morning at the Board meeting the public got to voice their opposition to the Supervisors, and tonight there was the same sentiment before the City Council., who is not supportive of going ahead because of the lack of transparency.
I, who made the motion at the Board meeting to take the project to the next level so that there would more time for public meetings, have concluded that in the midst of the pandemic and what it is doing to businesses and family budgets, we cannot tolerate this project.
Had there been the time to follow the usual procedures in dealing with the proposed project, it might have been a different outcome, but it cannot be approved now because the angst is not just because of the project itself, but also because there is widespread belief that this was purposely done to keep it from the neighbors. When that occurs, it is time to withdraw and say:
“Sometimes we just have to give up a good thing.” — Judy”
Supervisor Arnold’s opposition to buying Inn Marin as part of the Homekey program is significant in that the proposal is in her district. It is customary for other supervisors to defer to the supervisor who represents the district. But, the Board of Supervisors could outvote her.
No everyone is opposed to the Inn Marin idea. Geri Ryan wrote the Novato Advance that she, for one, supports it.
“I am a proud 44 year resident of Novato and I support the purchase and conversion of 250 Entrada Dr.
Novato has always been a close and inclusive community that values our families and children. How many of our neighbors are living at InnMarin now? How many of the children attending our Novato schools are homeless now?
We have a one time chance to house 35 families now. This is a safe place that will help us care for those who have been affected by the pandemic and have no other resources.
Please encourage Novato to work with the County and purchase 250 Entrada Drive.”
The City of Novato is preparing a lawsuit to oppose the project. You can see that story here.
And you can find more information on the proposal here.
(Novato residents may subscribe for home delivery by calling 415-898-0784) You can reach Novato Advance editor Sherman R. Frederick at firstname.lastname@example.org.)