Sussex must adhere to comprehensive plan

January 11, 2014

I am writing regarding my opposition to the proposed plans for the Love Creek RV Resort and Campground, requiring rezoning conditional-use approvals to allow for an RV resort and campground to be located south of Ward Road near Cedar Grove Road in Sussex County. Growth shall be appropriate and the surrounding development must be considered. This proposed park is inconsistent with the surrounding area which is populated with residential homes.

The Sussex County Comprehensive Plan, updated August 2013, identifies that a significant portion of this property is located in an area slated for mixed residential use with an environmentally sensitive developing overlay. Rezoning of this property is in direct conflict with the Future Land Use Map of the Comprehensive Plan, specifically, there is no exception for downzonings to a less intense designation for the purpose of trying to obtain a conditional use.

Second, the designation of an environmentally sensitive developing area as a growth area requires consideration of the implications by council members. Intended use does matter. Allowing any type of growth undermines the integrity of the entire zoning process and regulations. Finally, the plan states that if the rezoning decision does not correspond with the Sussex County Comprehensive Plan, then it must be denied.

The projected overdevelopment in the areas along routes 1 and 24 must be addressed by the council members now since the comprehensive plan, among other things, serves as the standard for how development will proceed and how land use will be governed over the course of the next five years.

Such plans are used by local governments to not only establish land-use policies and identify growth areas, but also to give consideration to various other community concerns, such as affordable housing availabilty, agriculture preservation, open space protection, historic preservation, economic development and transportation mobility (reference: Sussex County Comprehensive Plan website). The concerns raised by the many constituents regarding the proposed Love Creek RV Resort and Campground require a no vote and also for time for the county council to reevaluate the direction of development in the county.

The prudent course of action for the county council is to stop, assess, evaluate, and note that the framework of the plan is not upheld if the Love Creek RV Resort and Campground is approved. The county council is bound by the plan and legally must uphold its tenets for the benefit of everyone.

D. M. Torma

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