After reading the two recent columns by Allan Vought, which in my opinion were outstanding, I am inspired to offer the following commentary.
Continuing along the topic of zoning and out administration, a few weeks ago or story ran in The Aegis concerning the availability of information in the Realtors offices at developments detailing or rather the lack of information as to what the surrounding area is zoned for future development.
The person was upset, to say the least, because after buying and moving in they later found out the surrounding development was not to their liking. It almost sounded like had they known what the plans were perhaps they would not have purchased in that area.
The answer from the administration: All they had to do was go to the zoning office and they see the maps which detail the zoning approvals for the county. It's readily available and very easy. I moved to Harford County a little over 40 years ago and that same question has been asked many times over that time and the same stock answer was offered by every administration over those 40 years.
And yet each administration professes to have as its goal a more transparent function. Everything open and above board. Then why hasn't any administration ever put up a requirement for the developer of a site to include at the sales office a detailed map of the zoning for the area they are working in? Since the same question is asked over and over, perhaps the information is not as readily available. Or maybe the politicians think that the people are too stupid.
Obvious answer, people coming in and seeing what the zoning approvals are may decide to not purchase. This may make for a happier buyer but not a happy developer and that is what the core of the issue is in the county. What the developer wants, the developer gets. It's been that way for 40 years. No matter who we elect it still ends up with the developers getting their way.
Mr. Vought's column really points this out by noting that the bill was introduced but not one of the supporters would second it so it died.
I hope that the voters make a special note on their calendars for the next election.
August J. "AJ" Nicastro