Save Crow’s Nest Voter Guide, 2007 Supervisor Election: Letter and Survey Letter October 8, 2007 Dear [Candidate], Save Crow’s Nest is a non-partisan, grassroots organization of nearly 1,000 members working to permanently protect the entire Crow’s Nest peninsula from development. We believe that the best and highest use for this particular area of land is as a natural use area with public access for low-impact recreational and educational activities. As a candidate for the Stafford County Board of Supervisors, our members are eager to better understand your actions, plans, and commitment to preserving all of Crow’s Nest. Although Save Crow’s Nest does not endorse political candidates, we strongly feel that good communication and access to information will help Stafford residents make informed choices during the coming election. We offer you, and all other candidates, the opportunity to complete a brief questionnaire to communicate your perspectives and goals about Crow’s Nest. Because many of the matters involving Crow’s Nest are highly technical, we will be assisting interested voters in understanding candidate responses by “grading” the responses based on consistency with positions of Save Crow’s Nest. (We encourage you to visit our website at savecrowsnest.org if you would like more information on the issues important to Save Crow’s Nest.) Our “grades” will be represented by either a positive blue heron or a negative bulldozer. A copy of our questionnaire is attached. We will release the collected questionnaires and our “grades” to the general public, local press and post your responses online at www.savecrowsnest.org. To be included in our educational materials your questionnaire must be received no later than 5:00 pm on Friday, October 19th. Thank you for taking the time to help Stafford citizens understand your goals for Crow’s Nest and your commitment to a better Stafford. We wish you the best of luck in the coming election and look forward to hearing from you. Sincerely, Ranjit Singh Survey CANDIDATE NAME: DISTRICT: INCUMBENT (yes/no): PARTY AFFILIATION: WEBSITE: Word limit: 150 words per question Due date: Friday, October 19, 2005 Submit by mail: Save Crow’s Nest, Box 78 , Brooke , VA 22430 Submit electronically: email@example.com 1. Previously, the State of Virginia has offered a low-interest conservation loan in the amount of $30 million to Stafford County for the purpose of purchasing Crow’s Nest. The debt service costs of this loan are much lower than a bond. The Board of Supervisors did not vote to accept the loan in the amount of $30 million. If elected, will you vote in favor of Stafford County accepting the entire $30 million low-interest loan if that opportunity again becomes available? 2. In the 1970’s, a large portion of Crow’s Nest was rezoned to an A-2 designation, which allows one house per acre. This land use designation is for transitional areas of the County that are served by either public water or public sewer. None of the properties on Crow’s Nest are served by public water or public sewer, and almost all of the properties on and surrounding the peninsula are zoned A-1, which requires 3 acres per house. If elected, will you vote in favor of “right zoning” land on the Crow’s Nest peninsula to A-1 agricultural land use? 3. Creeks surrounded by steep slopes and highly erodible soils are dominant on Crow’s Nest. These landscape conditions necessitate the use of cut-and-fill development practices and have significant negative impacts on water quality. Although prevention is considerably more economical than mitigation, this year the Board of Supervisors voted to kill Water Resource Overlay legislation. This ordinance would have protected sensitive water resources such as those on Crow’s Nest. If elected, will you vote in favor of the Water Resource Overlay ordinance, and vote in favor of designating all of the land on the peninsula east of Brooke Road a water resource overlay district? 4. There are many historical and cultural resources on the Crow’s Nest peninsula. For example, an October 2005 archaeological survey of only a small portion (450 acres) of Crow’s Nest identified 47 new archaeological sites, 14 of which meet the criteria for listing on the National Registrar of Historic Places. The County has an existing ordinance, the Historical Resource District Overlay, which could be used to facilitate protection of these resources, but so far has not designated any part of Crow’s Nest as an historical district. If elected, will you vote in favor of designating all of the land on the peninsula east of Brooke Road as an historical district? 5. Crow’s Nest provides an extraordinary habitat for a variety of animals and plants, in part due to the contiguous nature of the property. There have been some suggestions that a cluster development, which would increase the building density on one part of the property and leave a portion of the property in open space, is one solution to Crow’s Nest. This would fragment the property and destroy wildlife habitat. If elected, will you vote in favor of a plan for a cluster development on Crow’s Nest? The Crow’s Nest Harbour is an area of almost 1,000 acres that was subdivided into lots in the 1970’s. There is a deed restriction on the lots in Crow’s Nest Harbour which prohibits the use of well water. Currently, there are not any plans to extend public water or sewer to the Crow’s Nest peninsula. 6. If elected, will you vote in favor of extending public water to the Crow’s Nest area? 7. If elected, will you vote in favor of lifting the deed restriction? 8. The current Board of Supervisors has at various times voted in favor of road projects that will facilitate development of Crow’s Nest. These projects include the reconstruction of Courthouse (almost completed) and Andrew Chapel Roads, the reconstruction of the bridge on Courthouse Road, the hard surfacing of Rt 609/Raven Rd (the road that runs through Crow’s Nest), and a proposal to rebuild the bridge on Raven Rd at the entrance of Crow’s Nest. If elected, will you vote in favor of removing the Andrew Chapel, bridge replacement and Raven Road projects from all transportation plans? 9. The current Board of Supervisors passed the “Traditional Neighborhood Development” ordinance, which allows dense residential development. One project submitted under this ordinance, Stafford Town Station, proposes to place up to 2,250 housing units on land currently approved for 145 homes, and in exchange, provide money from cash proffers that might be used to assist in the purchase of Crow’s Nest. Another developer has had an option to purchase portions of Crow’s Nest and has actually purchased lots in Crow’s Nest Harbour. That developer has suggested at various times an exchange of protected property on Crow’s Nest for dense residential development—up to 12,000 housing units–on Widewater. Both these proposals would create more housing units than can be built on Crow’s Nest. If elected, will you vote in favor of rezonings for dense residential development in exchange for the protection of a portion of Crow’s Nest if those rezonings will create more housing units than can be built on Crow’s Nest? What else would you like the members of Save Crow’s Nest and other voters to know about your position on Crow’s Nest?