New Political Tactic: Deny Growth

Jeremy Borden notes a curious new political tactic among some Albemarle sprawl supporters: deny that growth is taking place in Albemarle. Rivanna Supervisor Ken Boyd says that the annual addition of ~1,000 new residents is so little as to be irrelevant, while Albemarle Republican Party vice chair Christian Schoenewald (you remember him for his proposal to remove all growth restrictions in order to preserve the rural character of Albemarle) echoes the sentiments, saying that our growth simply isn’t preventing a problem. CAAR CEO David Phillips picked up on this same theme a few days ago, fretting that we’re not growing fast enough. Did a memo go out?

For several years now there’s been an honest discussion taking place: growth opponents argue that quality of life and infrastructure problems trump some private property rights, while growth supporters argue the opposite. This new message from these candidates is, apparently, that we’re all just hallucinating. Remember when we ran out of water in 2002? Didn’t happen. You know how rough it is to drive up Emmett between 5pm-6pm? It’s not. Did you think that our rescue squad is the busiest in the nation? Myth. Though we needed $19M to expand the sewer capacity along 29? Think again.

We’ve had some really productive, informative discussions about growth here on in the past few years. We’ve even had one today. I’m glad we can stick to an honest dialog, even if our candidates can’t.

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