As the primary sponsor of County Council Bill 20-14, I would just like to briefly respond to letters written by Lisa and Earl Bell concerning this bill, which extends riparian (waterbody) buffers.
1. All this bill does is return us to the water protections we had before the last Board of County Commissioners reduced them in 2014. It does not take a person’s property.
2. Restrictions only happen if land is subdivided, which means when a farmer stops growing crops and sells the land so a developer can start building houses. This should explain objections to this bill by some developers, some realtors, and a few farmers who are interested in turning their farms into subdivisions.
3. Wider buffers are better at filtering pollutants. The cleaner the water is that we take into our water system, the less chemistry we have to do to make it drinkable.
Cleaner water is in everyone’s interest. Nobody owns streams and rivers, they belong to us all.
Jerry Donald is a member of the Frederick County Council, representing District 1.