Prince William Can Lead On Immigration, But On Environmental Policy… We Gotta Wait For the Feds to Fix It?

The Board of County Supervisors has had no problem asserting its perspective on social issues that involve state/Federal responsibilities, including immigration and abortion.  County officials have already rejected the “wait for the Feds to fix it” philosophy.

However, the Northern Virginia Building Industry Association (NVBIA) is proposing in a November 29 letter that the county postpone a decision on the Environment Chapter.  The NVBIA recommends that the Board of County Supervisors abdicate its responsibility to set policy for new development.  NVBIA proposes that Prince William do nothing until the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and state agencies tell us exactly how to reduce locally-generated stormwater that pollutes our drinking water supplies and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay.

The supervisors know that the Comprehensive Plan is a big-picture policy document.   Why should the BOCS delay saying the Prince William values clean water, and that new development should protect our existing streams?   If we delay delay delay until the Feds finally impose mandatory controls so Prince William complies with the Clean Water Act, local officials will lose flexibility in making future land use decisions.

Developers benefit from the current “build anything, anywhere” policy.  However, if supervisors wait for that interest group to give the green light for environmental protection, they probably think people in Hades need ice skates.


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