The DP has a nice summary this morning of last night’s Crozet Community Association meeting.
It was an interesting meeting, attended some of Crozet’s leaders, Dennis Rooker, David Wyant and approximately 300 people, most of whom may fit directly into the NIMBY category.
The current debate is about about numbers, goals and miscommunications. Apparently the initial goal was to have the population of Crozet ultimately be in the neighborhood of 12,500. Now that goal has changed to 24,000. How did this happen?
The County has created this Master Plan, in essence asking for the public’s trust. One citizen expressed the following opinion, one with which I am inclined to agree: This is a different situation – it is imperative to coordinate infrastructure and growth. The argument against building the infrastructure – roads/schools/etc. before the growth seems to hold less weight and value when the County is currently planning for that growth. The growth is neither unexpected nor in doubt; Crozet is a targeted growth area. Why continue on in “crisis mode” and build the infrastructure after it is desperately needed?
Dennis Rooker played the role of politician extremely well. It is no surprise that he was re-elected last year. Three interesting points – Mr. Rooker actively campaigned for APF legislation, stated that he is trying to move the BoS more in line with the beliefs and philosophy of ASAP – whose website is stopgrowthasap.org – no confusion there where Rooker’s intentions lie, and expressed his opposition to the County’s joining TJPED. If he truly believed in this, he would have voted against all growth all along – Rob Schilling (in the City) votes his convictions, and his record shows it. As someone who has been so deeply involved in the Planning process for so long, he certainly has had the opportunity.
When Tom Loach asked the attendees – “How many people want Crozet to be half the population of Charlottesville?” Not one hand was raised.
Crozet is a growth area. It is going to grow. How it grows and at what pace are the questions. I have said it before and I will say it again – the County has a credibility problem with the people, and the developers for that matter.
Finally, perhaps the best question of the night was raised by a WAHS student. Without knowing exactly what the state law is to which he was referring, I cannot cite it. I would love to know more about it, though.
Side note: if it truly costs $12k per student in the Albemarle County School system, I would like the option to take part of that and put it to a private school – vote with my dollars, so to speak.
Update: Good story on our education system, and how “there actually isn’t a link between spending and student achievement.”
I agree with you on this. However I think the answer to your question is that spending in crisis mode is a politician’s trick, it allows them to spend without consequences.
Okay now I’m curious what question did he raise?
Regarding his question: as soon as I get confirmation, I’ll post it. Whether his point had any veracity, I don’t yet know. He was greeted with applause when he closed with a typical class-warfare statement of “scheme for the rich to get richer.”