New advisory council gets a name, applications coming this month
The results are in – the new nine-member community advisory body being formed by First District Supervisor Susan Gorin in northern Sonoma Valley will be called the “North Valley MAC.” After tallying the results of the survey distributed at a June 18 community meeting in Kenwood, and sent out over email, “North Valley MAC” emerged as the consensus pick. “Valley of the Moon MAC was the most popular, but there are concerns from Supervisor Gorin and County Administrator Staff about that being too close to Valley of the Moon Alliance,” wrote Arielle Kubu-Jones in an email. “North Valley MAC” edged out “EKG MAC” for second place and some folks expressed strong feelings against “EKG MAC.” Those interested can review the survey data at links.sonoma-county.org/icLat7mkp3Q/.
A MAC (Municipal Advisory Council) is a group of citizens appointed by a supervisor to provide recommendations on matters of local concern. The MAC’s scope will largely be defined by the supervisor forming the MAC, as it functions as a feedback mechanism for that supervisor.
The MAC will be made up of seven community members (plus two at-large members) who apply and are appointed by Supervisor Gorin. It will craft its own mission, bylaws and two or three strategic goals where members think they can have the greatest impact. The new MAC will be the second in Sonoma Valley, joining the nascent Springs MAC in Boyes Hot Springs.
Public input gathered at the June meeting clearly favored larger, more inclusive boundaries. The boundaries of the North Valley MAC will extend along the south side of Highway 12 approximately from Hoff Road to Eldridge (to Madrone Road), although it will also include parts of Adobe Canyon Road and Egg Farm Road on the north side of the highway in Kenwood. You can view the map at links.sonoma-county.org/Z72xwulaKOU/.
There was discussion about the scope of the MAC at the meeting, including a focus on traffic issues, fire and preparedness, and housing. The MAC’s advisory topics will focus on:
• Prioritization of transportation, transit, traffic calming, bicycle and pedestrian improvements
• Health and human safety-net services, including homelessness and housing
• Community projects such as art, clean ups and vegetation planting
• Fire services and community preparedness
• Additional topics as requested by the District Supervisor
Bylaw details are available at links.sonoma-county.org/1W_qdNZCBo8/.
The MAC will be a nine-person body, and is seeking representatives from the following interest groups:
Kenwood-area community (two reps), Glen Ellen/Eldridge area community (two reps); business or nonprofit community (one rep); Sonoma Valley Citizen’s Advisory Commission (one rep); family/school community (household with school age children, teacher or school staff, school board, etc.) (one rep); two at-large representatives.
The formation of the North Valley MAC is set to go before the Board of Supervisors on Sept. 17. Applications will be released in September. Supervisor Gorin and a small committee of community members who are not applying for the MAC will review the applications in October. MAC members will be appointed by the Board of Supervisors in November. Training and commencement of meetings will begin in January 2020 (skipping December due to holidays).
The county website will be updated this month to reflect all of these developments at sonomacounty.ca.gov/North-Valley-Municipal-Advisory-Council/Materials-and-Resources.