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I also should have specifically noted that the 2050 Plan has been whole-heartedly adopted by the County, every City, the School System, the Chamber, the Center for Preservation and Planning, the expert planning consultants retained to assist with the Plan, and the Water and Sewerage Authority. The Plan SPECIFICALLY concludes that continuation of the 1 and 2-acre minimums WILL result in urban sprawl -- 187,000.00 people in the rural and agricultural areas. However, under the Plan, that number is reduced to 48,000.00 in those areas.
To respond, I too believe in the protection of a water resources, and in fact, the 2050 Plan specifically addresses steps to provide for MORE protection of these resources (and other natural resources, such as trees). You can learn more about the Plan at CenterNewton.org. Also, I am on record stating emphatically that the 2050 Plan must be followed without exception. There will NOT be the type of dense development described by you in the Rural or Agricultural areas of the County, including District 1. The whole point of the Plan is to concentrate density in very limited areas so that the remaining areas can remain rural and agricultural, so that infrastructure expenses can be limited, so that sprawl can be prevented, so that our scenic corridors can be maintained, so that school construction and maintenance expenses can be reduced, and so that our natural resources can be protected. The Plan is an absolute work of art, and I really wish more people would actually go to the source -- the Plan itself. Finally, I have no intention of raising taxes.
Also, because the 2050 Plan is such a comprehensive plan, which focuses upon ALL aspects of our county and community, it is difficult to find selecy portions of the Plan that address development in isolation -- the Plan considers educational needs, water supply, sewerage, wastewater, infrastructure, travel times, etc. -- but the following is a "taste":
"For septic tanks to accommodate the amount of development projected for Newton County, thousands of 1-2 acre lots would be needed in the Rural and Conservation [Agricultural] Zones. Such unchecked development, even adhering to the current requirements for septic tanks on individual lots, would threaten to outstrip the collective capacity of the County's soils to drain sewage and dramatically reduce the County's tree canopy cover.
Compact communities, in both sewered and unsewered regions of Newton County, provide for an opportunity to preserve rural regions and protect valuable natural resources. For maximum effectiveness, regulatary measures should be paired with economic incentives. While some tools for compact growth are already available to Newton County, some adjustments and additions to the zoning ordinance would greatly bolster the County's ability to focus growth in appropriate areas."
I would ask that the voters (and perhaps, even the candidates, what a novel thought?) please Read the 2050 Plan. The following is from a summary page:
Concentrate higher density development in 50% of the County using existing infrastructure and services to:
-- Create compact communities, adequate services and open space
-- Create multi-use walkable town centers in each community.
The Hub Junction IS one such community.
It is described as follows:
Compact Communities Zone
5 compact communities [one of which includes the Hub] with urban services including gravity based public sewer
Last login: Saturday, July 21, 2012