The Twisp Town Council appointed Mark Tesch to the town’s Planning Commission on Oct. 22.
Tesch will be sworn in this week to fill one of two vacancies on the five-member board. Sam Israel and Donna Keyser recently resigned from the commission.
Tesch and Michelle Jerome bought a house on Methow Street in 2018 and moved there from Chelan full time in May, only to watch their home be destroyed by a fire on Aug. 6. Tesch and Jerome are rebuilding on the same lot.
Tesch told the council at its Oct. 22 meeting that he was attracted to the Planning Commission position after spending time in Town Hall getting permits for his new house.
“I liked the spirit of things,” Tesch said.
Tesch served on the City of Chelan’s planning commission for five years, until 2012.
“Some of the things I learned in Chelan are repeating themselves here,” Tesch said, referring to a shortage of affordable housing, homelessness and addiction.
Tesch touted his “spirit of collaboration,” especially given that Twisp is split between “people who have been here forever, and people who are coming in here with their new ideas.”
“I guess I would add to that a willingness to compromise, not become too entrenched,” Tesch said. “It’s really not getting us anywhere.”
The Planning Commission reviews land-use decisions and makes recommendations to the Town Council for final approval. Most recently, the commission proposed changes to the town’s zoning code, to include minimum sizes for homes. The council is expected to deliberate on the zoning changes in November.
Anyone interested in serving on the Twisp Planning Commission should fill out an application, available at Town Hall, or send a letter of interest to the clerk/treasurer at 118 S. Glover St., PO Box 278, Twisp, WA 99856 or email@example.com. The position is strictly volunteer, with no compensation.
The town also seeks volunteers for seats on the Board of Adjustment, the Civil Service Commission, and the Parks and Recreation Commission. Applicants for all positions must be Twisp residents.