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The following is presented as part of The Columbian’s Opinion content, which offers a point of view in order to provoke thought and debate of civic issues. Opinions represent the viewpoint of the author. Unsigned editorials represent the consensus opinion of The Columbian’s editorial board, which operates independently of the news department.
News / Opinion / Letters to the Editor

Letter: State should protect Bi-Zi Farms

By Maureen Lang, VANCOUVER
Published: October 7, 2023, 6:00am

The mission statement of the Washington Department of Ecology is to “protect, preserve, and enhance Washington’s environment for current and future generations.” If Bi-Zi Farms closes, the land will likely be repurposed for another large-scale multifamily development. Doesn’t our Department of Ecology see the hypocrisy of forcing a productive 106-year-old, 105-acre farm to close and be replaced by packed together three-story flats surrounded by cement walkways and asphalt parking spaces?

Bi-Zi Farms is a year-round operation. They grow and sell seasonal produce, nursery vegetables and herbs, produce items like jam and honey, and offer a pumpkin patch in October.

The big developers receive large, long-term tax breaks and make enormous profits. In exchange they claim to provide much needed affordable housing, set aside a paltry number of affordable units, make a mural or plaza (whatever that is). The development/real estate industry should set aside land for greenways and parks, pay taxes like responsible individuals and businesses, and cover Bi-Zi and other farms’ legal fees and water bills.

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