In a recent letter to the editor, County Council member Philip Dacey wrote that he considers the recently passed Livable Frederick master plan (LF) a “comprehensive plan on steroids.”

Livable Frederick was never intended to be only a land-use and zoning plan. In fact, LF does include several separate, but associated land-use plans. There’s nothing inherently wrong with the decision to develop a more comprehensive or overarching master plan, considering a diverse range of factors that affect and shape our community and its future.

Livable Frederick is not a brief document, and for those who are interested, the county has provided a shorter synopsis online at

Mr. Dacey seems to be particularly concerned about topics such as promoting new construction materials, construction of greener homes and public buildings, environmental review of county purchases, protecting wildlife, and the environmental impact of routing and construction of roads. He asserts that all these goals would require increased taxes and fees for Frederick County residents, without ever considering the possibility that many will reduce costs.

Generally, it also seems that Mr. Dacey thinks policies that protect or improve the environment will automatically add to the cost of county government, or infringe on property rights, or take funding from other important concerns, such as affordable housing and economic development. The experiences of many other local governments that have adopted environmentally friendly policies demonstrate that is an incorrect assumption, and even that such measures can significantly reduce costs.

Finally, we get to the nub of Mr. Dacey’s objections to LF, namely the inclusion of the words “climate crisis” (his quotation marks) in the document. Mr. Dacey, of course, was one of the council members who voted against including these words in the plan. I’ll remind Mr. Dacey and anyone else who feels that our climate crisis is some kind of liberal/progressive hoax that the evidence of man-made global warming has reached a “gold standard” level of certainty, and it would be environmentally and economically irresponsible to ignore the science.

The scientific debate is settled, and the threat is real, despite the political debate that continues.

I would like to hear Mr. Dacey and others answer a very simple question: Are you really willing to risk the future of your children and grandchildren on a vanishingly small chance that the conclusions of the overwhelming majority of climate scientists are wrong? You might not be here when the worst of the crisis hits, but your grandchildren and your children likely will be. I don’t know about you, but that would break my heart.

Robert Brenneman


(14) comments


Mr Brenneman is sure there is a climate 'crisis' but nowhere does he tells us what that crisis consists of. A couple of degrees higher average temperatures a few decades off? Some shorelines moved a bit inland. A few worse storms. Exactly what is it that we can't adjust to as it happens, if it happens. Please spell it out.


Mr. Dacey is the mouthpiece for the developer community and as such, should be viewed as the neo-Blaine Young. Bob Lewis




You people just can't help yourselves but to spout my name every chance you get. Come up with a new strategy someday and think of an original argument.

That guy is gone, I was never there, and you should move on.


Sorry dude, you earned it and then some.


But really... I'm not him!

Whatever you mean in that he earned it doesn't account for people's inability to let go and move forward. If he decides to engage politically again then he's fair game. Otherwise he is just another resident and your kind needs to move forward.

I'm just tired of seeing my name cast out every time people can't make an intelligent argument.


Since you aren't the person in question, no one is talking about you or casting "your" name about.


OK so your not the past president of the BOCC and former city alderman. You have the unfortunate burden of sharing a name with that other individual. That individual has been attempting to reappear into Frederick City politics and therefore the comments. My apologies that you are caught in the crossfire.


Sometimes it’s necessary to invoke your name to make a comparison. Nothing personal. You can’t erase yourself from the History of Frederick City/County.


When people do genealogical research, they are thrilled to find something unique or memorable in their history. Will people in the future even have the leisure to do this, or will they be preoccupied with ducking the next crisis or surviving the present one? How will they find themselves connected to it if they do research, and how will they feel about that? Maybe everyone else at the table in the research library will get up and move away by one chair? The pariahs of future generations have to come from somewhere.


Fantastic letter. I wrote to Dacey last week and expressed very similar concerns and asked him for specifics on why he denies this reality. Of course he hasn’t replied, but I really wasn’t expecting him too. You see, it’s easy for these people in denial just to say climate change isn’t happening, but when you ask them what their scientific basis is, they have no response. It’s ignorant, and yes, irresponsible.


[thumbup] Dacey is out for one thing, himself and his political climb. He accomplished nothing as city alderman and beyond all reason the electorate gave him a promotion onto the County Council. That he has not responded to a constituent is not surprising, he just regarded it as a momentary stirring from an otherwise restful sleep. Go back to bed Phil, until 2022.


He certainly seems to have delusions of grandeur. Probably because Hough...pumps him up.


[thumbup][thumbup][thumbup] Matt!

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