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Dear Editor

Dear Editor:

Re:  Local Government Obstructing Permits for the Botanical Garden

On behalf of our board of directors, I address all friends and members of El Charco del Ingenio, and especially the donors of the remodeling project for the Botanical Garden’s reception area and the creation of a new interpretative center. The more than 40 donors, as well as San Miguel Community Foundation, deserve an explanation for the work’s delay.

In order to be within the rules, we applied for the land-use permit at the Urban Development Department (Desarrollo Urbano) in 2017. We have complied with all legal specifications, making our final application in August 2018. However, without any explanation, the Desarrollo Urbano director (who also served in the past administration) did not process our request and, to date, has refused to give attention to the permit—or even to meet with us in his office.

How to read this unfortunate situation? It is obvious that the moratorium on land-use permits decreed by the San Miguel de Allende City Council last October—whose purpose is to stop environmental and urban impacts—cannot be applied to El Charco, much less backdated. The Botanical Garden has been devoted for 27 years to nature conservation, with no possible change according to its bylaws. It is a nuclear part of the municipal Ecological Preservation Zone and since 2015 has a Protected Natural Area status from the federal government. There is, then, no legal reason to deny the land-use and subsequent permits for the remodeling project.

We still hope the municipal government reassesses this unwarranted obstruction against El

Charco del Ingenio, saving undesirable further actions. And to the members of the community who have given us their support, we appreciate your patient understanding.

Cesar Arias de la Canal

President of the Board of Directors


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