Citizens for Balanced Growth

Category: Andrea Bailey

See What You, the People, Achieved: 4 for 4 … (+ Questions for BOCS Chair Ann Wheeler)

[Mass e-mail by Prince William Citizens for Balanced Growth]

All:   Good news.

Electoral Outcome — On 5 November, the four western and central county candidates whom you and we were able to directly support were all elected to the Prince William Board of County Supervisors (BOCS):  Yesli Vega (Coles), Jeanine Lawson (Brentsville), Kenny Boddye (Occoquan), and Peter Candland (Gainesville.)  We have deliberately chosen not to list their party affiliations this time because we don’t care.  We backed them only because they have chosen to publicly, clearly, and specifically support protecting the Rural Crescent and limiting residential development, which overcrowds our roads and schools and raises our taxes to pay for the resultant deteriorating public services — an indirect subsidy to residential developers.  Peter, Yesli, Kenny, and Jeanine’s four opponents all refused to make such promises — or any promises other than meaningless platitudes — and they all lost by big electoral margins (10-15%), with the exception of Kenny’s opponent, who lost narrowly because she was an incumbent and, as far as we know, not deeply unpopular. 

What You Achieved — This positive electoral outcome for the four candidates from the west- and mid-county happened because you took matters into your own hands as citizens — voting and, in many cases, before that actually campaigning with friends and neighbors for what you believe in and value, staying focused on the germane issues for BOCS candidates, land use and taxes, and not being distracted by irrelevancies, glittering generalities, red herrings, and disinformation from residential developers and their allies.  Well done.  (Remember that it takes a five-vote majority for the eight-member BOCS to pass anything.)  We take our hats off to you:  A virtuous and informed citizenry is the only defense against bad government and tyranny.  We must now hold our representatives to their promises and hold all BOCS supervisors accountable to deliver responsible government that serves the 98%, ordinary citizens, not primarily the 2%, residential developers, big landowners, and their allies.


Lessons Learned? — Let us hope that the county Democratic Party will never again choose to try to make protecting the Rural Crescent and limiting residential development a partisan issue supported only by Republicans.  Congratulations to the three new members of the BOCS from the southeast end of the county — Margaret Franklin (Woodbridge) and Victor Angry (Neabsco), who both ran unopposed in non-competitive districts, after wining earlier contests, and Andrea Bailey (Potomac), who won by a whopping 28%.  Let’s hope they can find common ground with the four BOCS members from west- and mid-county in serving all county citizens (not just residential developers) on the land use issues that matter most, creating the greatest possible good for the greatest possible number.

Let us also hope that the new Chairman of the BOCS Ann Wheeler will publicly, clearly, and specifically:  a) stop supporting breaking open the Rural Crescent to high-density development via the Bi-County Parkway and via the rigged, residential developer-driven Rural Crescent Study; b) accept serious limits on residential development, which overcrowds our roads and schools, damages the environment and property values, and raises our taxes; and c) stop listening virtually exclusively to unscrupulous residential developers on land use issues. 

We wonder what Ann meant when she told WTOP Radio on 6 Nov, right after the election:  “We are going to do a comprehensive review of land use … [Ann:  Does that include continuing the rigged, residential developer-driven Rural Crescent study?]  We’re going to make a plan for Prince William County for the next 20 years, so we know where we can grow.”  Both sentences, but particularly the last one sound to us like another big, juicy yet furtive kiss/promise from Ann to residential developers. 

Ann also stresses that the county needs more federal funding to fix the schools, through a process over which she has virtually no leverage: the 2020 federal census.  Ann: More importantly, how about stopping rather than encouraging out-of-control residential growth, especially tax-negative housing, which overcrowds our schools and roads and forces us to then subsidize through increased taxes the very thing (residential development/developers) that is tormenting us?  (For the full WTOP 6 Nov story, see: https://wtop.com/prince-william-county/2019/11/democrats-preview-coming-changes/ )

Ann:  We request that you read our following recent posts, which we think you’ll find helpful to better understand the full range of major land use issues:

https://pwcbg.org/2019/10/beware-preserving-rural-crescent-limits-on-residential-developers-no-longer-supported-by-both-parties-in-5-nov-elections/

https://pwcbg.org/2019/10/our-plea-to-you-re-5-nov-elections-implications-for-schools-roads-taxes-rural-crescent/

https://pwcbg.org/2019/10/stopping-the-many-headed-monster-of-out-of-control-residential-development/

https://pwcbg.org/2019/10/how-board-of-county-supervisors-land-use-decisions-affect-you-before-and-beyond-5-nov-elections/

https://pwcbg.org/2019/10/mr-bildmore-civic-groups-civic-virtue-disingenuous-partisanship/

https://pwcbg.org/2019/11/see-what-you-the-people-achieved-4-for-4-questions-for-annw/ (this post)

Again, to the people of the western and central parts of the county who supported Yesli, Jeanine, Kenny, and Peter:  Well done.  Bless you. You can make a difference.


Sincerely,

Ralph & Kathy Stephenson
Prince William Citizens for Balanced Growth

Only in the bright light of public scrutiny can the common good be secured,
While in darkness and obscurity the interests of the powerful and affluent prevail.

Stopping the Many-Headed Monster of Out-of-Control Residential Development

[Mass e-mail by Prince William Citizens for Balanced Growth]

As previously noted, working with many other civic groups and some Board of County Supervisors (BOCS) members, we’ve spent over 14 years, now almost 15 trying one-by-one to cut off the hydra heads of out-of-control residential development.  (As you may recall, the hydra was a dangerous and destructive monster in Greek mythology.  It sprouted two new heads for every one that was cut off by those trying to protect themselves and their communities from it.)

Fellow Prince William County citizens:

A prominent Prince William County Democrat who contacted us just this month described how the monster of out-of-control residential development has historically affected his/her party.  Here are excerpts of what he/she said:

“Thank you for compiling and disseminating this very useful research information.  … I want you to know that I feel your pain on a very personal level.”  “It was always a very lonely and frustrating thing [to be a balanced growth/] smart growth Democrat in … PW county…  The Democratic Party is supposed to be the party of forward-looking, fact-based policy dedicated to serving the interests of the general public.  The Prince William Democratic establishment ignored that memo then and they are evidently still ignoring it today.  As hard as we tried to enlighten them to the actual realities and consequences of sprawl, you might think I would be surprised that they still don’t get it. But in my heart I’m really not.  They were always too beholden to their deep-pocketed developer friends to be willing to change. And the pro-developer [Democratic Party] incumbents always had the power to call the shots and make most of the establishment (i.e. County Democratic Committee) fall in line with their will.

“Once a person has bought into the old school developer thinking of ‘all growth is good growth,’ it is very easy to convince them that smart growth principles are just a bunch of rural elitist self-serving nonsense.  They have already closed their minds to objective truths…”

He/she, after discussing some important past victories against out-of-control residential growth, then concluded, and this is particularly important: 

“Unfortunately, progress made during one election cycle can be quickly lost in the next. The main problem is that the developers and their profit motive never go away, and there’s a damn good reason for that: they own or are otherwise vested in massive real estate holdings in areas they have targeted for future growth.  So they just bide their time and then come at us again in the next election with their hand-picked stealth candidates, well coached on how to dodge the issues or misrepresent themselves just long enough to fool enough voters to get elected.  It’s a fight that never ends, and it doesn’t help that Virginia is a place where the laws on the books prioritize ‘personal’ property rights over almost any other consideration. Never mind that those laws were written in a time when sprawl wasn’t an issue and their original purpose was to protect the rights of individual citizen landowners, not corporate entities and land use changes on a modern scale that can and do negatively impact the lives of hundreds of thousands of people throughout the whole region.

“We need people like you to stay vigilant, and I deeply appreciate your efforts.” 

First  of all, it’s always nice to know that we’re not alone, after the volumes of hate mail and threats we and some of our friends have received from residential developers and their toadies over the years, particularly during and after hard-fought residential development battles.  The amusing thing about those battles, which we’ve almost always won, is that we’ve spent around $1,000 of our own money in almost 15 years, while our opponents have spent millions upon millions.

[By the way, here’s what we, Prince William Citizens for Balanced Growth (PWCBG), have always stood for:

https://pwcbg.org/about-us/ (Scroll down the page.)]

Second, the county has not come this far — finally ridding itself of rubber-stamp, pro-residential-developer Republicans like Corey Stewart, Marty Nohe, Wally Covington, and Democrats Hilda Barg and John Jenkins — only to have them now replaced by a platoon of Democrats, marching in lockstep behind Commandant (and BOCS at-large chairman candidate) Ann Wheeler to a thinly-disguised, yet more pro-residential-developer tune than ever.

See: 
https://pwcbg.org/2019/10/beware-preserving-rural-crescent-limits-on-residential-developers-no-longer-supported-by-both-parties-in-5-nov-elections/

and

https://pwcbg.org/2019/10/our-plea-to-you-re-5-nov-elections-implications-for-schools-roads-taxes-rural-crescent/

The voters of Prince William County have a unique opportunity on November 5 to vote for BOCS candidates who have promised to protect the Rural Crescent — Republicans Jeanine Lawson (Brentsville District), Peter Candland (Gainesville District), Yesli Vega (Coles District), Douglas Taggart (Potomac District), and John Gray (at-large chairman) — or for those who have not, i.e., the BOCS Democratic candidates.  This is the best way to stop the problem at its source.   Obviously, none of these candidates is perfect, perhaps especially John Gray, who recently apologized to the county for offensive and intemperate remarks made on his Twitter account.  But as another BOCS At-Large Chairman Candidate, Independent Muneer Baig, a well-spoken man, reminded us 8 October as we were discussing with him what happened seemingly very recently to the seemingly mild-mannered John Gray:  “Let him that is without sin among you cast the first stone.”  In other words, in our words, not necessarily Muneer’s, let political candidates be unforgiving if they have never supported a candidate who has said or done similar or worse things — including supporting leading Virginia elected officials who publicly support infanticide, wore blackface, and/or have allegedly committed multiple sexual assaults.  (We’ll see about how forgiving the voters will be in all of these cases.)  Otherwise, political candidates are just playing “gotcha” and being opportunistic and hypocritical.  Remember that land use policy, tax rates, and budget are the only major things over which the BOCS has power and jurisdiction.

More importantly, we believe that unequivocal and public willingness by BOCS candidates to protect the Rural Crescent — with no loopholes allowed for extremely opportunistic residential developers (i.e., the hydra) — is an excellent test of whether a BOCS candidate is willing to accept any serious limits on residential development.  A candidate who is unwilling to publicly, clearly, and specifically say so is already, by definition, part of the problem, not the solution.  Once in office, subjected to the never-ending lobbying and offers of big money and other temptations from residential developers, with no self-imposed ethical and policy restraints and without an extremely firm will, such a person will only become more and more corrupted over time.  At least that’s what we’ve seen happen over and over and over again over the last 15 years of being very involved in county land use issues.  No exceptions.

Another thing that is very interesting about Independent Chairman candidate Muneer Baig, besides some important and unique insights about county land use that we gained from talking to him, is that, as of 31 August, he has received/accepted virtually no developer funding.  See his website for more info.  Likewise, Democrat Kenny Boddye (Occoquan District), who says that he does not accept funding from residential developers.  We also realized when we met Kenny and were talking to him on 8 October that he was with us fighting yet another very unreasonable residential development plan a few months ago:  Ray’s Regarde.  While Kenny has not signed up to protect the Rural Crescent, neither has his opponent, Republican incumbent Ruth Anderson, who has received almost 40% of her campaign funding from developers. 

Kenny was also apparently the only Democratic BOCS candidate who had the courage to openly attend the 8 October 2019 news conference supporting preservation of the Rural Crescent, apparently despite disapproval from county Democratic Commandant Ann Wheeler.  And this does require courage, as one of our pro-Rural Crescent friends noticed after he/she recently questioned BOCS Democratic candidates directly on their Facebook sites about their positions on the Rural Crescent.  Here’s how he/she described what followed:  “I received a nastygram a few days ago, after having the audacity to post questions on a few [Democratic] candidates’ Facebook pages expecting a response to their position on [County Planning] Staff Recommendations [on the Rural Crescent.]  Who knew actually expecting candidates to articulate their position would be seen as adversarial.”  So much for freedom of speech and/or the public’s democratic right to know candidates’ positions; seems that this is an ongoing theme with some of the Democratic BOCS candidates this year, as noted previously.

The 8 Oct news conference mentioned in the paragraph above was hosted by current BOCS Supervisors Republicans Jeanine Lawson and Peter Candland and Democrat Frank Principi.  Following the news conference, the three supervisors introduced to the BOCS a resolution to preserve the Rural Crescent.  (See “Resolution to Suspend Rural Preservation Study Process” below.) The BOCS will vote on it next Tuesday, 15 October, at 7:30 pm at the McCoart building located at 1 County Complex Court, Woodbridge, VA, 22192.  Please attend and sign up at least 15 minutes before the meeting to speak in favor of the resolution.  Or at least send an email to the BOCS expressing your support:  BOCS@pwcgov.org … or individual BOCS supervisors (see cc addressees above.)  Or even better, do both, if you can.

Special thanks to those of you who are spreading the word via Facebook and other social media, e-mail, word-of-mouth, etc.  Please continue to do so.

Yours truly,

Ralph & Kathy Stephenson
Prince William Citizens for Balanced Growth

Only in the bright light of public scrutiny can the common good be secured, while in darkness and obscurity the interests of the powerful and affluent prevail.

**********************************************************

Resolution to Suspend Rural Preservation Study Process

Joint Resolution: Supervisor Peter Candland, Supervisor Jeanine Lawson and Supervisor Frank Principi

WHEREAS, the Rural Area in Prince William County covers approximately 117,000 acres, including MCB Quantico and two national parks;

WHEREAS, the Prince William Board of County Supervisors created the Rural Area, an Urban Growth Boundary, in 1998 with the adoption of a Comprehensive Plan that established a Rural Area and a Development Area;

WHEREAS, the Rural Area is intended to provide a tool to promote and protect agriculture, woodland, open space, and other rural land, and better control sprawl development;

WHEREAS, the Prince William Board of County Supervisors initiated a Rural Preservation Study in 2012 to review, evaluate, and make recommendations for policy revisions to better meet the County’s objectives;

WHEREAS, public input gathered throughout the study process revealed a strong consensus supporting the importance of maintaining an Urban Growth Boundary, Rural Area, in Prince William County;

WHEREAS, the Board of County Supervisors initiated further study of the options presented in the Rural Preservation Study on September of 2016;

WHEREAS, County Planning staff published draft policy revisions to the Comprehensive Plan regarding the rural area on September 17, 2019;

WHEREAS, the recent report of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG) calls for planned housing growth to be located near transit;

WHEREAS, all chapters and recommendations prepared by the Prince William Planning Department for the 2040 Comprehensive Plan must be consistent with implementation of the housing targets adopted by the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments on September 11, 2019.

WHEREAS, existing rural area policies have proven to be a successful policy protecting the rural area from suburban sprawl and thereby channeling taxpayer funding for services into the development area;

WHEREAS, the rural area has significant assets including over 40 miles of Virginia Scenic Byways recognizing the value of scenic countryside views;

WHEREAS, the Prince William County Board of Supervisors renews its commitment to smart growth policies and recognizes the need for a comprehensive review of County land use policies;

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Prince William County Board of Supervisors directs all County staff to suspend any and all efforts on the Rural Clustering and Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) programs, including any possible policy changes to the Rural Area/Urban Growth Boundary; removes from the Planning Commission’s work schedule the current Rural Area review work on the Rural Clustering and Transfer of Development Rights programs; and that County staff continues only the review of the Purchase of Development Rights (PDR) program with a focus on the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments’ adopted goals and recommendations.

Our Plea to You Re: 5 Nov Election’s Implications for Schools, Roads, Taxes, Rural Crescent

[Mass e-mail by Prince William Citizens for Balanced Growth]

Fellow Prince William County Citizens:

We and many other citizens groups have worked hard to bring limits to residential development in our county so that schools, roads, the environment, and the very limited commercial tax base can begin to recover from more than two decades of out-of-control residential development. (In recent decades, only ~15% of county real estate tax revenues have come from the county’s relatively small commercial tax base, with almost 85% coming from residential housing.)

But as we look over the political landscape of Prince William County going into the 5 Nov Board of County Supervisor (BOCS) elections, we are deeply concerned at what we see. Last weekend we wrote to you regarding how official bipartisan support for the Rural Crescent and limits on residential development have now, unfortunately, apparently become a thing of the past. That article is now posted on our pwcbg.org website — hyperlinked immediately below, it has some important additional info, added after the earlier version we sent you last weekend. Note that Prince William Citizens for Balanced Growth (PWCBG) is allied with Preserve the Rural Crescent and Friends of the Rural Crescent (PRC and FORCE), as well as other citizens groups, and wrote the article in collaboration with them:

https://pwcbg.org/2019/10/beware-preserving-rural-crescent-limits-on-residential-developers-no-longer-supported-by-both-parties-in-5-nov-elections/

We believe that the Prince William County Democratic Party’s lack of specific and unequivocal support for the Rural Crescent and limits on residential development, as noted in the article above, coinciding with big spending on Democratic BOCS campaigns from Democratic groups outside the county, residential developers, and big labor, portends something ominous for the county and its residents. We believe it means that the Democratic Party, which has already nailed down two uncontested seats on the eight-member BOCS, and is currently favored to win the at-large chairman’s seat, may need to win only two more of the remaining five seats to have a commanding 5-3 majority on the board. Once in power, then expect them to seek and receive even greater residential developer and allied campaign funding than they’re already getting, as they: a) support developer efforts to build even more high-density tax-negative residential housing than we’ve seen in recent years, b) make the overcrowding in county schools and on county roads even worse, c) raise taxes as county services decline, and d) then blame it all on someone/something else. This is a great leap backward, in the opposite direction of progress. It is also the Corey Stewart formula for holding onto power for 12 years as BOCS chairman. But Corey always struggled to find a BOCS majority before. Now there will be a permanent and pliable, bought-and-paid-for majority for residential developers and their allies. “Pliable” as evidenced by how all eight of the Democratic candidates have, in lockstep, refused to support the Rural Crescent pledge and limits on residential development.

We are in no way comforted by assiduously politically-correct language or assurances from Democratic candidates, received after our article above was sent out, appearing to issue vague support for balanced growth. For example, consider this one received 3 Oct via direct mail from Brentsville BOCS candidate Maggie Hansford, who was nowhere to be seen when we were fighting major land use battles for the last 14 years in Brentsville and elsewhere: “Maggie will fight to protect and preserve the rural crescent. She believes that development doesn’t have to come at a cost to our local farms, green spaces, and parks.” We hear virtually the same thing regularly from the very residential developers and big landowners who want to pave over the Rural Crescent — and any other cheap land they can get their hands on — with high-density residential development. In other words, “You can have it all (high-density and high-volume growth, in reality, and balanced growth and rural preservation, in name at least, all at the same time) without making any choices. And don’t worry, there won’t be increasingly overcrowded schools and roads and tax-negative development as a result this time.”

Our plea to you from PWCBG and other citizens groups is that you share all this information with as many of your Prince William County family members, friends, and neighbors as you can via Facebook, other social media, email, websites, etc. Ask them to support on 5 November the five (out of six) Republican candidates who have publicly and unequivocally pledged support for the Rural Crescent and limits on residential development: Jeanine Lawson (Brentsville), Peter Candland (Gainesville), Yesli Vega (Coles), Douglas Taggart (Potomac), and John Gray (at-large chairman).

Yours truly,

Ralph & Kathy Stephenson
Prince William Citizens for Balanced Growth

Only in the bright light of public scrutiny can the common good be secured,
while in darkness and obscurity the interests of the powerful and affluent prevail.

BEWARE: Preserving Rural Crescent, Limits on Residential Developers No Longer Supported by Both Parties in 5 Nov Elections

[Mass e-mail by Prince William Citizens for Balanced Growth]

Fellow Prince William County Citizens:

In our nearly 15 years of involvement in county land use issues and almost 20 years living here, pursuing balanced growth land use policies and protecting Prince William County’s Rural Crescent have always been bipartisan issues, including protecting citizens against tax-negative residential development that chokes our roads, overcrowds our schools, raises our taxes, lowers property values, and damages our environment.  Thank goodness for that. 

Specifically, regarding the Rural Crescent, thank county officials like Sharon Pandak, a Democrat and county lawyer who helped create the Rural Crescent in 1998, former politicians like Republican Supervisors John Stirrup and Mike May, current politicians like Democratic Supervisor Frank Principi and Republican Supervisors Jeanine Lawson, Peter Candland, and Maureen Caddigan, all of whom have frequently and consistently spoken out and voted in favor of the Rural Crescent.  They have done so against the wishes of unprincipled residential developers, big landowners, and allies on the Board of County Supervisors (Republican Supervisors Corey Stewart, Marty Nohe, and former Democratic Supervisor John Jenkins) who have had no qualms about sticking you with the most overcrowded roads and schools in Virginia and then raising your taxes to pay for the very things that are tormenting you.  Also thank the citizens groups, composed of both Republicans and Democrats, who, on their own time and pro bono, have applied pressure and kept attention focused on balanced growth land use and preserving the Rural Crescent.

But now, sadly and to our great disappointment, the bipartisanship has apparently ended.

As if they’ve received marching orders from a higher authority, none of the eight Democrats running for the Board of County Supervisors (BOCS) in the 5 November elections has agreed to sign the Preserve the Rural Crescent/Friends of the Rural Crescent (PRC/FORCE) pledge to protect the Rural Crescent or in any way unequivocally and publicly promised to support it.  On the other hand, five of the six Republican candidates running for the BOCS — John Gray (at-large, chairman), Yesli Vega (Coles District), Douglas Taggart (Potomac District), and incumbents Jeanine Lawson (Brentsville District) and Peter Candland (Gainesville District) — have publicly and clearly expressed support for preserving the Rural Crescent.

 

  • Democratic candidate for at-large chairman of the BOCS, Ann Wheeler, unapologetically supports the far-western north-south Bi-County Parkway (BCP), which:  runs right through the Rural Crescent to Dulles Airport and thus will be the end of any honest semblance of a rural preservation area, solves no known commuter or other traffic problem, and is a big juicy kiss to residential developers who wish to open up the Rural Crescent to high-density residential development.  Ann has raised $185K, three times that of her Republican opponent John Gray.  Over $103K (56%) of her money raised is from major Democratic donors, her family, organized labor, and developers.  (See http://vpap.org for more info.  All campaign finance figures above and below are as of 31 Aug 2019.)
  • Democratic BOCS Supervisor Frank Principi (Woodbridge District), who supports the Rural Crescent and limits on residential growth, was ousted by his own party.  It seems that the Democratic Party may have caught him off guard by running a quiet but well-organized primary campaign against him that succeeded by only 97 votes.  His replacement as the Democratic candidate, Margaret Franklin, will apparently run unopposed in the general election.  Margaret has raised $61K; just under $27K (44%) is from major Democratic donors, organized labor, and developers.
  • The Democratic candidate for Coles District Supervisor, Raheel Sheikh, when asked if he supported the Rural Crescent, not only refused to offer support, but also told PRC/FORCE:  “I represent everyone and feel no need to take sides on anything.”  In other words:  I refuse to tell you what I stand for so you can make an informed decision about me, but you should just vote for me anyway.  My policies and views are not your concern as a voter.  … It appears that Raheel is uninterested in the democratic process of being transparent and accountable to voters.  Interestingly, of Raheel’s campaign donations we were able to map, about 55% are from outside the county or state. Perhaps that’s why he seems to see himself as unaccountable to local voters.
  • The Democratic candidate for Gainesville District is Danny Funderburk, who works for one of the largest developers (construction site development) in northern Virginia, William A. Hazel, Inc.  It’s an understatement to say that electing a developer to the BOCS, which controls land use in the county, is like putting a fox in charge of guarding the hen house.   Danny has raised almost $14K, of which over $7.5K (54%) is from developers.
  • In addition to Ann Wheeler, Margaret Franklin, Raheel Sheikh, and Danny Funderburk noted above, the remaining four Democrats and one Republican candidate for the BOCS who have been unwilling to publicly support the Rural Crescent or significant limits on residential growth are:  Democrat Ken Boddye and the Republican incumbent Ruth Anderson (Occoquan), Democrat Victor Angry (Neabsco), who like Margaret Franklin in Woodbridge is apparently running unopposed, Democrat Maggie Hansford (Brentsville), and Democrat Andrea Bailey (Potomac).  Andrea Bailey has raised $120K, five times the amount of her Republican opponent Dennis Taggart; over $63K (53%) is from Democratic donors, organized labor, and developers.  Victor Angry has raised almost $27K; $24K from developers and Democratic donors.  Republican Ruth Anderson has raised $103K, of which $73K (71%) is from developers, Republican donors, and organized labor.  (Nothing special to report that we noticed about Ken Boddye or Maggie Hansford’s fundraising.)
  • It may also be of interest that although we live in Brentsville District and have been active in land use issues there and elsewhere in the county for 14 years, we had never heard of Maggie Hansford before this election campaign several months ago.  The opposite was true of her opponent Jeanine Lawson before she was elected Brentsville supervisor; Jeanine was in the trenches fighting on the right side of many land use battles for years before she was elected supervisor.  In other words, when it comes to land use and related issues — the BOCS’ main responsibility and area of influence — Maggie Hansford has been invisible.



If you think Prince William County is poorly governed, overtaxed, and underserved now — and to some extent we agree — wait until a Democratic majority takes control of the BOCS after 5 November, a Democratic majority that has no commitment whatsoever to the Rural Crescent, balanced growth land use policy, and limiting residential development, especially tax-negative residential development.  Then the most overcrowded school district in the state will become even more overcrowded at all levels, traffic-choked commuter roads will become even more congested, to the point of gridlock, and at the same time that the  government services for which you pay taxes are declining rapidly, your property taxes will increase rapidly.  This will be the new Prince William County that the official Democratic Party apparently supports:  More beholden than ever to big northern Virginia residential developers, who love to flush the high-density, high-volume, tax-negative residential development that no other northern Virginia localities want into Prince William County, our county, degrading the quality of life for everyone except developers, big landowners, and their political allies.


Ralph & Kathy Stephenson
Prince William Citizens for Balanced Growth

Only in the bright light of public scrutiny can the common good be secured,
while in darkness and obscurity the interests of the powerful and affluent prevail.

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