To the Editor,
Thank you for your two recent news items regarding pending case in Scott Circuit Court, Stephen Price v. Town of Georgetown. As your news items make clear, Town of Georgetown does not tolerate home recycling (which can largely obviate trash hauling and landfilling); roof water capture (safe source for unpolluted, untreated drinking/ household water); home management of excreta for crop-fertilizers; or absence of home electricity (generation, because of coal it burns and its highly toxic coalash byproduct, and transmission of which are major environmental, health and safety hazards.)
Since publishing those two news items, you more recently published items about Town of Georgetown’s hiring of high-pay consultants to advise on storm water management and on expansion of town’s municipal water and sewer services.
By continuing to enforce former 10-inch height limits on lawn grass and all other vegetation, which limit was repealed in 2006 (see Georgetown Ordinance 06-027), Georgetown code enforcement office, as directed by town council and town hall, causes excessive storm water and consequent flooding.
Most obvious and useful lesson made clear by our “great outdoors” is that vegetation reduces and slows flow of water. The more there is of vegetation, the less movement and pooling of storm water can cause flooding.
Obviously unaware of that fact, Town of Georgetown continues to order that all vegetation taller than 10 inches must be “cut and destroyed” to comply with so-called International Property Maintenance Code. Consequent devegetation causes flooding.
So our town is paying, probably big money, to the consultants, so-called International Code Council, for use of their so-called IPMC; and at same time voting to pay big monies ($69,000) to consultants Strand Associates, for advice on flooding caused by advice of other consultants, Code Council, to “cut and destroy” vegetation.
International Code Council, producers of so-called International Property Maintenance Code, was founded and long operated in Alexandria, Virginia, suburb of Washington, D.C. Ironically, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, located in Washington, D.C., has published the Green Acres Program, a massive collection of advice and opinions on landscape management. It’s dominant message and underlying theme is, “Vegetation is beneficial, especially to storm water management. Do not damage or destroy vegetation.”
While forbidding dry home management of septic waste for crop fertilizer, our town has voted to pay big money for consultants’ advice on getting septic waste from local water closets (flush toilets) to our despised landfill via road-hazardous heavy motor trucks. (See KRS 224.43-010, and KRS 189.670)
And while requiring treated, piped, pressurized water in every inhabited structure in Georgetown, sold by the town’s water company to hapless consumers forced by ordinance to buy it, our town ignores the fact that every home roof in Georgetown sheds sky-clean, untreated, very potable water in amount that equals some 85 percent of piped water consumed beneath that roof. With conservation effort, that average 85 percent could soon become 100 percent, as at my house it long ago became 100 percent.
Conclusion: most, if not all, of the problems for which our town government pays our tax money to consultants to get advice, are problems our town government’s personnel, created long ago, and that they perpetuate by forsaking the “great outdoors” and crop work. Our Georgetown leaders, and the consultants upon whom they rely, lack “common sense” of the outdoorsman and of the outdoors woman, because they have turned their attention and dependency to money, and away from nature and the raw elements which are the source of all we need.