Editor: The Zoning Ordinance Rewrite is a critical process in which our county has engaged for many months. The resulting document is replete with changes described in highly technical language dependent on frequent use of acronyms and verbal and numeric codes requiring close attention to detail to ensure comprehension.
Recently, as a volunteer working with other volunteers and Chamber of Commerce staff to evaluate the document to offer input, I spent hours trying to develop enough comprehension of the two sections on which I was focused to feel confident the input I would provide reflected a thorough understanding of the implications of the issues on which I think I’d like to comment. I am certain other individuals representing many different perspectives have the same concerns. We want to participate in the process, but we don’t want to risk making faulty recommendations.
When the draft document was released, I knew it would be dense. What I didn’t understand until I heard from others more closely involved with reviewing it was the time is it taking to evaluate the changes. We all know how critical this document is for the future of the county and we want to do a responsible job. For most of us, this job relies on talking through the changes with one another, getting feedback from those more educated on the specific issues, and familiarizing ourselves with the language of the document. This is in addition to our day jobs.
I understand our elected officials are hesitant to extend the process. I respect their desire to wrap up this process before election craziness ensues. For that reason, I am only asking for a small number of additional weeks. Pushing pause for this short period of time will result in better informed comments and, ostensibly, to a better overall document when ultimately adopted. Let’s honor the work that has already gone into it by ensuring this critical step in the process allows for the most effective collection of opinions and perspectives.
Kirsten Langhorne, Leesburg