BGI Statement Regarding Comprehensive Plan Fallout

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BGI Statement Regarding Comprehensive Plan Fallout

La Plata, MD - 3/7/2012

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By Charles McPherson on behalf of the Balanced Growth Initiative

The proposed comprehensive plan scenario.
The proposed comprehensive plan scenario.
The following statement was submitted to the Charles County Board of Commissioners on March 6, 2012.
I have hoped this day would not come. I have tried to keep it from occurring. However, I can no longer sit in silence.
I represent the Balanced Growth Initiative otherwise known as BGI. Everyone keeps asking who we are. Truthfully, it doesn’t matter, just answer the questions. However, our group is made up of developers, farmers, business folks that are not related to development, realtors and just plain citizens.
I will not rehash the last Planning Commission meeting in its totality. However, we had approximately 300 people there that had two major things to say.
1.If you want to preserve land in the rural areas, do not confiscate our land – it is unfair.
2.Who is behind silencing our voice? Who tried to keep 567 voices out of the public record? This is America and we have a right to be heard even if you disagree.
This action was further proven by the actions of the Chairman of the Planning Commission last Monday night, and by his letter to the editor last Friday. We want an answer.
The Chairman of the Planning Commission serves at the pleasure of the commissioners. Based upon his actions, he has proven that he is biased and lacks the ability to be impartial. It is painfully clear that he is unable to run the planning commission meetings and should be removed as chair.
BGI has additional questions:
1.Who authorized Commissioner Kelly to represent this board at a recent Chamber of Commerce meeting? At that meeting, it is my understanding that she requested they revoke our endorsement which stated “we endorse the BGI in the education of our members on the issues of the proposed comprehensive plan.”
  • What? 
  • Why is this board attempting to silence our voice?
  • We are not going away quietly.
  • We ALL stand behind the Chamber for telling her or you NO. The threat to pull her organizations from the chamber is noted – very interesting.
  • I will remind you that BGI had approximately 250 to 300 people last week supporting our position at a public meeting. THIS IS ABSURD AND IT IS TIME TO RESTORE ORDER.
2.I would like to know the truth on why Commissioner Kelly spoke on behalf of Senate Bill 236, otherwise known as the “septic ban bill”. This will basically disallow septic systems in the rural area. This simply is a back door approach to confiscate rural property, and it takes away local zoning authority by giving MDE authority over all rural subdivisions.
  • Did the Board authorize this? If so, why? Was there a vote?
  • Did we have a public hearing on the matter?
There seems to be confusion. Saturday night in front of 300 people Commissioner Kelly denied speaking on behalf of this bill. She stated she spoke for Plan Maryland (that’s a whole other issue).
The realtors association apparently asked the same question and received three different answers. The realtors are not in support of this bill nor are we.
I submit for the record a list of speakers who spoke in Annapolis regarding SB236. The list identifies Candice Kelly, County Commissioner, Charles County as favoring this bill.
NO MORE MISREPRESENTATIONS, such as the current explanations on the proposed PPA.
This Board ran on a platform for transparency of Government and these actions fly in the face of that transparency.
As a note, we do agree that there needs to be additional studies completed. However, get them done on the proposed Planning Committee timeline. We understand the frustration of four of the Planning Commission members, but would ask them to rise above the others.
My final question – Are these the actions of the entire Board?

Charles McPherson is the Chief Operating Officer of the Facchina Group of Companies, LLC.

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