New member joining county planning panel |

New member joining county planning panel

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George Rebane says he is proud to drive through the Simi Valley and see his handiwork as a planning commissioner back in the 1970s.

“It’s not San Fernando Valley over the pass,” said Rebane.

Rebane will get another shot at steering development as a Nevada County planning commissioner. He was appointed to the post Tuesday by Supervisor Drew Bedwell.

This time, Rebane wants to ward off development pressures that some fear could turn this area into another Roseville.

“(I’m) interested in the general planning process, so we don’t become an extension of Roseville basically.”

Rebane, a 62-year-old technology manager with a Ph.D in engineering, said he wants to maintain the area’s quality of life in the face of development pressure caused by proximity to Interstate 80.

“My long-term interest is if Nevada County stays as a place where families can grow and work, and tourists still want to come and visit us for our cultural and scenic beauties,” said Rebane.

Rebane moved to Grass Valley last summer from the Malibu area. He rents a house, and owns a four-acre, undeveloped parcel of land. Rebane said he has no financial interests in developments. He is concerned that outside development interests will use high density development as an investment vehicle.

Bedwell said he met Rebane while campaigning.

Rebane was picked for his life experiences, his capabilities, and things he will bring to the table in discussions, Bedwell said.

Rebane was a planning commissioner on the city of Simi Valley Planning Commission from 1970 to 1971. During that time, he helped author a general plan for the city and worked on a compromise on a high-density development to set aside open space.

Rebane also served as inaugural chairman of the Simi Valley Neighborhood Council, described as a grass roots advisory body to the city council.

One thing Rebane said he would avoid is nitpicking the projects that come before him.

“The big thing is not to get the Planning Commission diverted into people’s hair and not getting the planters rearranged in the parking lot,” said Rebane.

Rebane is one of two planning commissioner appointments to be made by incoming supervisors. He replaces Sharon Boivin on the commission.

Supervisor Robin Sutherland didn’t throw out any hints on who she would pick. Sutherland said she will interview candidates this week and is expected to make a decision by Monday.

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