First off, a disclaimer - the writer of this piece is not a professional planner.
But as the county moves toward adopting our new, 400-page Maui Island Plan, a couple of general fallacies and truisms should be kept in mind:
Fallacy No. 1: More Planning = Better Planning. The most prolific planners of the last century were the Soviets. Their elaborate central plans resulted in economic gridlock and eventual oblivion.
Fallacy No. 2: Time = Wisdom. One hears the argument over and over, "We have to pass this plan the way it is because so many people spent so much time on it." By this line of reasoning, Harold Stassen should have been president of the United States. After all, he spent more time running for the office than anyone - that must have made him the most qualified, right?
And, finally, one simple truism:
There is never a shortage of people who want to tell other people what to do. Make no mistake about it, passage of this plan will result in the codifying of Things You Can't Do With Your Property.
County Planning Director Will Spence has suggested the plan be a little bit more general, leave some of the details to community plans. He has come under sharp criticism for doing so.
One comment Spence made recently stuck with us. Spence noted that most politicians he heard in the last election spoke about simplifying government and "streamlining the process. This plan is 180 degrees removed from that."
So, apparently, the populace of Maui is about to receive a 400-page gift from their government - festively wrapped in red tape.
* Editorials reflect the opinion of the publisher.