Jay Fergusonjay@deepcreekvacations.com301-501-0420

Citizens already have shown opposition to this proposal

To the Editor: Cumberland Times-News

Please accept this correspondence in formal opposition to the draft of Zoning Ordinance: Garrett County Land Management Ordinance that has been proposed and shared for public comment.

After last year’s in-depth discussions concerning amending the comprehensive plan and after the overwhelming majority of public commentary, at that time, being opposed to this measure, we are deeply concerned that this issue has resurfaced.

In our opinion, the proposed zoning draft will have a negative impact on Garrett County. County-wide zoning is an issue that has been discussed and defeated many times in the past.

Our residents’ relative freedom in land use is a virtue that should be embraced and expanded upon. Zoning laws dictate how owners may and may not use their property. Zoning seeks to virtually control every aspect of a property’s use.

It is justifiable that zoning be criticized. Restrictions of zoning impose infringement upon and violate property owners’ rights to develop, use and maintain their land in the way they see fit. It easily strips property owner’s rights to unencumbered use of their land.

Zoning in this form is counterproductive to economic benefit and hinders development in our free economy.

This zoning draft is not limited to construction and development. It controls the smallest details and nuances of an owner’s use of his or her property. Where zoning is imposed, a property owner’s neighbors can have a greater say over a property than the owner! Zoning has a direct impact on everyone.

In limiting development opportunities, property owners are denied the right to lease their land for economic benefit. Thus, if zoning restrictions are enacted, property owners should rightfully be provided the compensation lost.

Maryland encompasses strict environmental controls and promotes green energy. The draft zoning ordinance seeks to undermine our state’s policies. Garrett County must be realistic about the volume of fiscal challenges ahead.

Our county has already realized economic benefit from the wind farm projects. With that said, it would not be fiscally or environmentally responsible for Garrett County to limit or stifle future development prospects.

We appreciate the opportunity to submit written comments. The majority of your constituents are not receptive to any further governmental intrusion.

Robert Spangler

Frostburg Road

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