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Welaunee Comprehensive Plan amendments pass after months of discussion

Published: Nov. 11, 2020 at 9:02 AM EST
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Amendments to the comprehensive plan regarding the Welaunee property passed 6 to 1 in the County and 4 to 1 in the City.

City Commissioner Jeremy Matlow said in his comments he wanted the vote delayed, and was the single dissenting city vote; Commissioner Bill Proctor wanted a third-party, independent review of the process before a vote; he was the single dissenting county vote.

Commissioners who voted in favor of the amendments say there is a lot to be proud of and a lot to build on.

“Is this plan perfect? Not on your life. But it’s pretty good,” said County Commissioner Rick Minor.

“We should all be proud, I think, of what has ended up being great work,” said City Commissioner Elaine Bryant.

County Commissioner Mary Ann Lindley says the project shows a change and new focus in the community as a whole.

“We have always been a college town and a state capital; but this really emphasizes our love for the the outdoors, our recreation, our parks, our lakes, our streams,” said Commissioner Lindley.

Other Commissioners say the work done on the plan should be matched around the City.

“If we took half the energy and half the time that we’ve spent on this one thing, and delivered to the rest of our citizens, we’d be doing a real good job,” said Mayor Pro Tem Dianne Williams-Cox.

Multiple Commissioners took issue with some public commenters who criticized city staff.

“We have asked staff to go out and negotiate in a very, very, very tough environment. What they brought us is something that a community of different opinions have come together to say, is good enough to move forward,” said County Commissioner Nick Maddox.

“Everybody’s entitled to their own opinion, but not everybody is entitled to their own facts,” said County Commission Chair Bryan Desloge.

Commissioner Jeremy Matlow pushed for a delay, asking for the vote to be rescheduled for a December meeting, after three new Commissioners have taken office.

“In an election cycle where this became so contentious, letting them come in and affirm this decision would speak volumes to the public trust,” said Commissioner Matlow.

There is no development currently planned for the Welaunee area; you can learn more about the community’s response to the final amendments here.

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