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Commissioners gut Compact Communities Ordinance

By James A. McGurk
Posted Tuesday, April 20, 2004

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To The Editor:

I had to laugh at the assertion by Chatham County Commissioner and former businessman Tommy Emerson that the recently approved Compact Communities Ordinance will "prove good...for the quality of life" for local citizens.

It's too bad the Board of Commissioners completely ignored the input from these same citizens during the public hearing phase. It's also too bad the ordinance did not even consider traffic flow issues in relation to the number of units to be built, nor did they adequately examine the ultimate cost of such developments to taxpayers.

And what about the long term plans of the developer? The president of the company has been quoted in the press as saying they plan to sell off new developments 'within five years' of completion. Sounds great for taxpayers still here, huh? When the traffic jam and water quality problems come, we'll all know just who to thank.

Now some of the commissioners are attempting to take the moral high ground in this debate? Give me a break. Their motives are as transparent as they come. They have been sent by the business community to rubberstamp every development that comes down the pike, and then they have the guts to complain about the 'contentious' complaints of their neighbors?

Since they have nothing to hide, I would love for them to open all their communications records to the public for review, so we can all see just where this support is coming from. Something tells me there may be a lot of e-mails from San Diego.

James A. McGurk
Chapel Hill

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