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There's Hope for Good Government
November 1, 2006
by Jack Lynch
We’re about to witness a watershed election in Frederick County, one that will determine the future of our growth, development and environment. All the money of developer interests cannot hold back the rising tide of the public realization that they do not hold the best interests of the people and actively seek to overpower our interests as a community.
Likewise, the partisanship of many will be rocked by the vote for the greater community good over the narrow interests and self serving misrepresentations of the few. Blind allegiance to a partisan agenda is another threat to the greater common good.
Development interests poured over $46,000 into the Real Republicans PAC attempting to defeat advocates of sound and slower growth policies. A little ad with an animated bulldozer set the record straight.
The last gasp of the developer grip over the county is trying to play itself out, once again in New Market. The Smith Cline development proposal, having been rejected by the Frederick County Planning Commission, the Frederick County Planning staff having recommended denial of the rezoning, has moved the battle to the town for an annexation request.
Approximately 1,200 acres of open space and farmland contiguous to conservation parcels would be transmuted into 3,500 homes with an additional 10,000 residents. At six hundred residents to day, that’s like going zero to sixty in four seconds – it’s just too fast and no one can predict a successful outcome. Count a two hundred fifty year old town down the tubes if this proceeds. Infrastructure could not meet the capacity at a reasonable pace to keep up. The proposed bypass would not alleviate town traffic. It is likely that the costs will be borne by increased town taxes on existing and new residents.
The annexation has been proposed in order to make an end run around the county and the new state law governing the municipal annexation process.
A letter to the town signed by over 110 residents opposes the swift annexation.
Commissioner Cady, whether in the wrong, as with the sock puppets, or the hat incident, or the changed vote on the downtown health inspections, or simply portrayed as being wronged, always plays the victim. It is his least appealing side. Recent campaign mailers supporting Cady are rumored to be the result of a trade off of his supporting vote for the Walkersville Region plan. If true, a quid pro quo could be not only an ethical violation, but illegal. It gets much worse than pumpkin head ads even begin to show in Frederick County!
Scare tactics abound in Frederick County – claims that 1,600 new homes per year are needed to pay off school debts, claims that David Gray is a developer, claims that the New Market Regional Plan does not contain 14,000 new homes or develops less land – shame on Jim Gugel for backing that diatribe-, claims that a new Board will have to raise taxes, will face a deficit, and will hurt senior’s interests – probably even kill embryos…it never ends, the same old myths from the same old networks of local power brokers and manipulators.
There are many reasons to go to the polls in Frederick County next Tuesday – have your vote counted.