Letters to the Editor: April 24 – 30, 2014
Stormwater Questions Met With ‘Attitude’ from City
Dealing with some of the Falls Church employees regarding the stormwater fee makes one question if these people know where the money comes for their salaries and just how they were hired. The arrogance and rudeness is uncalled for.
Several of us in the neighborhood questioned our stormwater fee, disagreeing with its calculations. Some were obvious reasons: sidewalks and driveways not present where indicated and pervious material used for driveways instead of impervious. When questioning why large trees that absorb so much water were not included as a credit, the answer I received was “we could not figure out how to do that. So we did not.“ Also when asked if large lots should receive some kind of credit, the answer was “we decided not to do that.” You pay for your impervious area. You cannot get a tax credit for having a large yard that acts as an area of stormwater run-off.
Part of the problem is all the building on small lots. If there were more land required around large homes, there would be more area for the storm water to be absorbed into the soil. Shouldn’t the City be trying to manage this problem at the planning and zoning level?
It only seems logical that those who have very large properties be considered for a credit for this fee. A simple formula could calculate the ratio of the impervious area in comparison to the pervious. Large properties actually help the problem of stormwater run-off. If a property contains large trees it could be calculated at a higher credit percentage. I was told “this was not considered and is not a consideration.”
When I received the letter with my new “slightly adjusted” amount after disputing it, the letter showed this “attitude.” It states that I had removed part of my driveway! A neighbor’s letter said she had “removed a sidewalk.” Really? The attitudes could be a lot better. What would have been wrong with “readjusted” or “miscalculated”?
I’ve lived in the City more than 60 years. I have not seen such attitudes before. In the past, the City has done its part in putting its citizens first.
I think City employees should listen to its citizens’ suggestions and work with us instead of insulting us.
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