Bemused by promises
I am bemused by the promises that out-of-state developers are giving to Morgan County taxpayers suggesting that jobs and prosperity will come with major housing projects. Foremost of the great promises comes from the Freeman Corporation, which is responsible for closing down one of the county’s leading employers (Coolfont Recreation) in 2007.
How ironic that the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection granted Freeman Corporation a permit to degrade Sir Johns Run based on social and economic justifications when Freeman Corporation created those social and economic needs by closing down Coolfont. What is even more aggravating is that these developers are being allowed to secure subdivision permits before a legitimate zoning ordinance can be developed and implemented.
The American Farmland Trust calculates the average cost of development in rural Appalachian counties as $1.20 for every tax dollar raised with some counties experiencing costs as high as $1.60 per dollar raised. With the potential of considerable population growth due to these new development projects, what will be the true cost to Morgan County taxpayers verses the profits pocketed by out-of-state developers?
With the current state of the economy, Freeman Corporation, progenitor of one of the biggest promises, won’t start construction until economic conditions get better. Can you say triple dip recession?
Why are county leaders granting subdivision permits for projects that won’t be realized for years? Something seems a miss about granting permission for huge housing projects by out-of-state developers in exchange for promises of undetermined benefits later, especially ones that will cost Morgan County taxpayers.