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Growth beyond Jefferson's control

November 20, 2005|By Craig Ricketts

To the editor:/

It seems to be an epidemic of grand proportions on the mountain. I have watched over the last year - so many trees wiped out so that homebuilders can make a quick profit.

When will this destruction end? Shannondale, W.Va., used to be such a nice peaceful area, full of birds and other wildlife. Now it is becoming a crowded, overbuilt hodgepodge of vinyl-sided boxes. I am for property rights, but to totally wipe out a forest is criminal.

Has there been any environmental study on the effect of this stripping of the mountain? Do we have any idea of the long-term effect this will have not only on the mountain, but on the Shenandoah and Potomac rivers?

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Are the Jefferson County Commission and the Planning and Zoning Commission just so clueless that they let this continue without any plans for control and management of the building on the mountain?

I cannot imagine that this area can safely accept too many more wells and septic tanks. It will be only a matter of time before we have a well-water contamination problem of massive proportions.

What will happen when the current 3,000-plus homes on the mountain do not have safe drinking water? Where will the property values be then?

I realize growth is inevitable, but this is out-of-control growth, with absolutely no oversight. The Jefferson County government is clueless; it has no control over anything that is going on.

This is not a small, rural county in West Virginia anymore, it is D.C. sprawl. And if the County Commission continues to sit on its hands and pretend we are still in Mayberry, then things will spiral out of control to the point it will never recover.

The trees are a vital part of our lives, and to continue to let these home builders remove them without any regulations is just disgusting, and the County Commissioners should be held directly responsible.

It is criminal and it is morally reprehensible. We do not have adequate roads, trash removal, police and fire protection, or any other services to sustain this growth, but they keep building.

The County Commission does not seem to have any plan to deal with this or any plans to make a plan. They all should be removed for gross incompetence.

Craig Ricketts
Shannondale W.Va.

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