A few weeks ago, David Jaindl reduced the intensity of parts of his massive one square mile development project in an attempt to address resident concerns. This resulted in 'Plan B'. For that I thank him. Still the intensity of warehousing is roughly the same, and remains my main concern since this generates far more tractor trailer traffic then any other comparable use including a quarry. For this reason I still have major concerns and will advocate to see that these concerns are addressed during the land development phase.
That being said I have no doubt in my mind that in the absence of the lawsuit construction would already have begun on 'Plan A' as originally negotiated by the Board of Commissioners. As we approach the end of litigation in light of Judge Varricchio's recent puzzling decision to force a bond it's clear the appellants and the community can no longer stop the injustice of overturning 23 years of agricultural protected farmland. But, in the end we did accomplish something significant. Reducing of portions of the development is a major improvement. Reductions in intensity, total number of housing units, landscaped berms, and moving the park to a better location are all improvements.
Plan 'B' is clearly better then plan 'A'. I'm proud of my association with the appellants and the "Friends" group. I'm proud these groups and those who supported them were able to get the residents voices heard.
Moving forward I plan to do everything in my power to ensure the voters know and understand that there were other options. We made the best of a crummy situation our Commissioners put us in. The Commissioners could have stood their ground and fought for 23 years of agricultural protection. They could have negotiated a better alternative in the first place. They could have allowed a small quarry instead of warehousing. Litigation and money spent fighting residents could have been avoided. Any of these options would have been a better alternative and more in tune with the what the community wanted.
At the end of the day these commissioners were completely out of touch with the public and totally responsible for this terrible situation. The May 21st contested Republican primary in the upcoming election will be a referendum on the development decisions made by Ron Eichenberg, Roger Reis and Ryan Conrad.