Tuesday, March 1, 2011
Contact: Tony Howard, Loudoun County Chamber
Loudoun Chamber urges County to adopt Chesapeake Bay plan that protects economy and rural businesses from ineffective, costly rules
Chamber supports effective water quality protections, opposes Chesapeake Bay Protection rules that stifle commercial growth and hurt agricultural businesses
Lansdowne, VA– As Loudoun County considers stringent water quality rules for commercial development and agricultural businesses, the Loudoun County Chamber of Commerce is urging county leaders to protect Loudoun’s economy and unique rural heritage.
Though strongly supportive of effective water quality regulations, the Loudoun County Chamber is concerned the proposed Chesapeake Bay Protection Ordinances (CBPO) will stifle growth in two areas long targeted for economic development: the eastern commercial corridors of Route 28 and Loudoun County Parkway, and the rural agri-businesses of western Loudoun.
“As currently drafted, the Chesapeake Bay Protection Ordinances do not properly consider the critical importance ofLoudoun’s most important job centers and commercial property tax generators, the Route 28 and Loudoun County Parkway corridors. Just as importantly, these rules would raise the costs and limit the opportunities for farmers and other rural businesses in western Loudoun,” said Chamber President Tony Howard.
For several decades, much of Loudoun’s high value commercial development has been planned for the Route 28 and Loudoun County Parkway. Land owners in these corridors have invested time and money into their property according to those official County plans.
The Chamber is asking Supervisors to use the authority provided by state law to exempt properties along Route 28 and the Loudoun County Parkway from the CBPO, by declaring them Intensely Developed Areas. The Chamber also is advocating “grandfathering” provisions, like those effectively used by other jurisdictions, to protect the rights of property owners that have spent considerable amounts of money to comply with current water quality regulations.
In addition, the Chamber is advocating the careful analysis and understanding of the impacts that the proposed CBPO would have on Loudoun’s rural businesses and agricultural operations.
“The Board of Supervisors truly needs to understand the impacts of these complex new rules on Loudoun’s farms and rural businesses, and revise the CBPO to protect those small business owners that are preserving the unique rural heritage of our community” Howard added.
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