Loudoun County's new anti-growth Board of Supervisors made its first big decision on new housing, rejecting a development of 500 new homes.
"The winds have definitely shifted. This is a Board of Supervisors who promised to keep the focus on our existing communities," says Loudoun Supervisor Andrea McGimsey, one of eight supervisors to vote against the plan.
The developer who wanted to build the Braddock Village development in Arcola had offered $20 million to the county for schools, roads and other amenities.
McGimsey says the supervisors just don't want more housing in what is called the transition area, a buffer between the dense eastern and the rural western parts of the county.
What a change from December 2007, when the (then) Republican-controlled board acted like this:
Supervisors Stephen J. Snow (R-Dulles) and Eugene A. Delgaudio (R-Sterling) had sought to push through the project, called Braddock Village, even though county planners and lawyers had told the board that they did not have enough time to review the latest version of the development. Snow and Delgaudio later changed their minds, saying they favored voting on the project on another date to give county staff more time to study it.
During the discussion, Delgaudio asked county attorney John R. "Jack" Roberts whether it would be appropriate to vote for the project "subject to the attorney's review. Couldn't we do that?"
The request prompted a sharp response from Board Chairman Scott K. York (I), who was reelected last month.
"It concerns me that we just want to push this thing through," he said. "Doggone it. If you are going to approve a subdivision, make sure at least the county attorney has reviewed the document."
Fortunately, the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors is now under Democratic control, and is operating in the people's interests not just the powerful/wealthy. Hmmmm...you think this could apply to Congress as well? Hint: Farewell Frank!