On April 3, 2018 the Gloucester County Board of Supervisors will hold a public hearing on changes to the previously approved high-end golf course, residential and commercial development known as The Villages of Gloucester. (Previously submitted under the project name, The Barrens)
The following is an email I sent to the Board of Supervisors. Take a few minutes to send the Board an email asking them to deny The Villages’ proposal. We have provided the Supervisors' email addresses and the link to the public hearing information at the end of this article.Kenny Hogge, Sr.
Greetings Board Members,
The proffer statement contained in The Villages of Gloucester’s proposal is lacking to say the least. Once again, we have a developer who boldly expects Gloucester taxpayers and utility customers to foot the bill for future infrastructure and services upgrades that will be a direct result of the proposed development. This road has already been traveled two times in the past.
When The Villages of Gloucester was first proposed it was called The Barrens. That proposal was denied by the sitting board of that time for, among other reasons, not offering reasonable proffers to offset impacts on the community. One such example was the developers offer to build a 350,000 water tower instead of a one million gallon tower. (A one million gallon tower that would be turned over to Utilities was later approved when the proposal was resubmitted under the new name.) The developers initial offer to build the smaller tower would have been acceptable if Utilities only provided metered water to the tower and the development retained possession of the tower and associated distribution systems within the development. That would mean the development would have to retrofit their tower to be compatible with Gloucester’s distribution system; not Gloucester retrofitting our system to be compatible with the development. They would also maintain, repair and replace their tower and distribution system, read meters and bill and accept payments for water usage within the development. Under such a scenario there would be little to no impact on Gloucester’s public water system.
Unfortunately, the current proffer statement eliminates the construction of a water tower all together. A piece of land that must be claimed by the County within five years is all that is offered; therefore, when buildout of The Villages reaches a certain point, the burden of funding the construction of a new tower and associated piping will fall completely on Utilities’ water customers and Gloucester’s taxpayers, while the developer walks away with a fat profit. That is not how free enterprise is supposed to work.
There are several other items contained, or not contained, in the new proffer statement that will result in future costly impacts on Gloucester taxpayers. The developer claims the project will be cost prohibitive if the proffers contained in the previously approved proffer statement are required to gain approval of their current submissions. Then maybe Gloucester is not the right place for such a development or the developer is not the right fit for Gloucester.
Just because the developer’s project did not come to fruition during the time since it was initially approved is no excuse for not providing reasonable proffers in their current proposals; nor is it a valid excuse for the developer to expect Gloucester taxpayers and utility customers to enhance their profit margin or reduce their losses, whichever may apply.
The Villages proposal should not be accepted as being reasonable on numerous levels. Please deny the proposal.
Kenneth E. Hogge, Sr.
Chris Hutson firstname.lastname@example.org
Mike Winebarger email@example.com
Andy James firstname.lastname@example.org
Robert Orth email@example.com
Ashley Chriscoe firstname.lastname@example.org
Kevin Smith email@example.com
Phillip Bazzani firstname.lastname@example.org
Link to public hearing information: http://gloucester.granicus.com/DocumentViewer.php?file=gloucester_e2bbe333f33513aa14c4f9877bcd4564.pdf&view=1