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Controversy Brewing Over Recent Addition To Ventura County Planning Commision

There could be fireworks at this week’s Ventura County Board of Supervisors because a board member wants a Ventura County planning commissioner removed from his post.

First District County Supervisor Steve Bennett chose Bruce Smith for his district, who was then confirmed by the board in February. But, Fifth District Supervisor Peter Foy, who missed that meeting, is now objecting. In a letter to the board, Foy says the fact that Smith worked for the County Planning Division for more than 30 years is a conflict. Foy says in the letter says he doesn’t want to tarnish Smith’s solid record with the county before his retirement. But, the supervisor feels there could be a conflict if Smith has to vote on an issue involving rules he helped to draft.

Dozens of people have sent letters to the board defending Smith’s addition to the commission, saying his knowledge of planning matters should be considered an asset.

County Supervisors are scheduled to look at the issue when they meet Tuesday.