Edgefield County As It Happens
Edgefield County, South Carolina

August 17, 2005

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“PUD’s” and what they are not telling you


web posted August 17, 2005

PUD’s, or Planned Unit Developments, are a tool that local planners use to direct the use of property in the direction they have in mind, not that of local land owners. PUD’s are used to institute zoning in areas that otherwise would not readily accept it.

By using the classification of PUD’s local governments do what is otherwise illegal, spot zone to benefit developers.

Spot zoning is defined as zoning that is done to benefit one individual that is unconnected to a currently zoned area. So PUD’s were created because a development did not benefit a “single owner” (though in reality it does by virtue of sale price for lots or space) because many benefit from its creation as many owners purchase property in the area.

What could not be suggested by elected officials to benefit a single individual can, through a buffer of willing appointed commissioners, direct the implementation of zoning in an area that is against it.

With protections of local stand alone ordinances the value of certain property is, at minimum, tripled. This does not benefit the county other than a false creation of raised property values, it does not benefit the property owners who pay the taxes, it benefits one person; the developer who sells the property at an inflated price because of an bogus and self-serving ordinance.

Port Royal planners praised how the general public saw that they were “ahead” of the citizens because planning went their way. When you direct planning are there any doubts it will follow the direction planners lay out?  If you regulate by law what uses property can be used for and then claim others support you for following your laws it does not seem that the free enterprise is driving the use of property. Instead those who are not affected by their decisions are removing property rights to benefit a select few. Or in some cases one.

Nothing in life is fair, but some things go beyond being “fair” and get into the grey area of political manipulation. In non-politically correct terms twenty years ago the word corruption would be used in the matter. But we would never say there are corrupt people in our county government. We do not need to actually.

In fact, we do not even need to publish the names of the individuals involved because it is common knowledge.

What we ask is why it continues unabated when so many are so aware of the truth?

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