In the upcoming election to fill two Sebastopol City Council seats, the defining issue is the CVS Pharmacy-Chase bank branch project at Highway 12 and Petaluma Avenue, one of the city’s most prominent and busiest intersections.
The controversial CVS Pharmacy and Chase Bank branch development and its approval by the City Council emerged as the defining campaign issue during a candidates’ forum Thursday night.
The Sebastopol City Council is expected tonight to give final approval to the controversial CVS Pharmacy project but not before giving opponents a platform for a last-minute effort to try to derail the proposal.
After two years, 25 public meetings, hours of sometimes acrimonious debate and under a cloud of potential lawsuits, the Sebastopol City Council on Tuesday is expected to make a final decision on the controversial CVS Pharmacy project.
A fourth candidate has entered the race for two seats on the Sebastopol City Council.
Robert Jacob, founder and executive director of two medical marijuana dispensaries, is running for the City Council in Sebastopol, where a pot business hardly raises an eyebrow. Running the dispensaries might even be a positive, Jacob said.
The contentious debate over the CVS Pharmacy project in Sebastopol is tinged with complaints of bias and free speech violations. Opponents sought to have Sebastopol City Councilwoman Kathleen Shaffer disqualified from the vote, contending that a misdirected email showed that she was biased in favor of the project. And they complained the mayor violated their rights to free speech by barring a slide show.
After three hours of sometimes bitter debate about whether radio frequencies cause health problems, the Sebastopol City Council Tuesday allowed additional antennas to be added to an existing telecommunications tower behind City Hall. The council in a 2-2 vote denied the appeal of the EMF Safety Network, a Sebastopol group that has vociferously fought PG&E’s SmartMeters, downtown Sebastopol Wi-Fi and cellphone antennas.