Woodmont Wilderness & RSA 91-A

If you put ten dollars on the table and by a simple majority vote it could be turned into one hundred dollars, you would come to the table as often as required to collect your windfall.

Woodmont has invested ten million dollars and wants our Planning Board to vote to change it into one hundred million dollars. Fine by me, if there were no downside to our town, but these things don’t work that way.

When the first bulldozer hits the orchards and apple trees hit the ground, those dozing at home during planning board dronings will be up in arms crying foul, the fix is in, everyone is on the take, corruption, and who knew what by when?

The simple truth will be that those that put their money on the table and then hired attorneys to go to the table and watch it month after month will have legally gained the right to bulldoze all the apple trees and as much of Londonderry as they would like.

Unless you show up and stand up for your rights, you forfeit the right to take pot shots at one and all for what has transpired. If we have to vote “the bums out!” so be it. If town staff and professional town management have not served us well, others can be hired who are more attuned to the community they serve.

Woodmont is that big a deal. It is a game changer for every resident of Londonderry. Your investment in your home and property is on the line. If you live in Londonderry everything will change and it will just begin with your taxes. Your land and property values will change dramatically over the next ten years. It has yet to be shown what benefit each of us will gain when the value of the orchard land goes through the roof by breaking the towns one acre zoning laws which we all abide by and have invested our treasure in. Hundreds of acres will be zoned for six dwellings per acre with no restrictions on immediate sale to others in any chunks the market will bear. There are no hundred acre limits on resale of rezoned land!

All these facts and issues are on the table now. Your fellow taxpayers and citizens volunteering to represent you on the Planning Board and town council cannot do so in a vacuum or in a half filled room.  We all have to serve as well, by being there.

Nothing much is said to be on the table tomorrow night. I’ll be there! Will you? You can bet the paid Woodmont attorneys will be there. I reported on my of site meeting with our town staff for our walk in the woods and Woodmont(November 22, 2011). I would like to raise the issue tomorrow night of the meetings town staff has had with Woodmont in preparing and presenting its master plan for the PUD. I would hope they would bring minutes and dates of those non public meetings. We the people have a right to know about those meetings. New Hampshire’s Right-to-Know Law (RSA 91-A) See you ALL tomorrow, December 14, 2011.

“Jack Falvey Et al:” provides a hometown analysis of Woodmont Commons. Since attending the design charrette offered by the developers of the project Jack has been asking questions, you too have been asking questions, many to Jack himself. He has provided thoughtful analysis from his point of view and shared it back to the questioner and a growing list of Londonderry residents wanting of more information.

As they become available we will provide these questions to our readers and the search engines. We hope to provide a broader view of the project through the eyes of someone that came to town in the 1960′s. Jack raised a family here, volunteered in local government and founded his company “Making the Numbers” after a career at Gillette. As a motivational speaker and a prolific writer with major media outlets his views on the project may take you by surprise!

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  1. Vote -1 Vote +1III

    Jack
    I was out of town on business and was unable to attend the PB meeting. What was the result of the woodmont issue

    1. Vote -1 Vote +1admin

      After some time reviewing the option to hire a consultant for the town to evaluate the PUD master plan submitted, the applicant asked that it be accepted as complete.

      The PB ultimately did not accept the plan, and will have a meeting before the end of Jan 2012 as it relates to accepting the PUD master plan as complete.

      Jack has a column set for Friday Morning, we will have full length on demand video of the meeting as soon as it is available.

  2. I am grateful that the PB did not cave and accept the plan until it can be reviewed by a consultant. Too many questions. Too much is at stake for the residents of Londonderry, who have little to gain and so much to lose when this monstrosity is begun. Is there a way to be put on an e-mail list to be notified when the new meeting will be set and how we can support Mr. Falvey’s efforts to see that Woodmont’s neighbors will be able to bear living in their homes post-development.

  3. +2 Vote -1 Vote +1vickie

    I for one would like to see the plan be “accepted” so that the town and Planning Board can start commenting/reviewing/changing it. I wonder if people realize that by “accepting” the plan it only means that the application is complete; doesn’t mean anything is approved. We can’t begin the public review of the plan until the application is “accepted”. It’s an administrative step. If these things drag on forever, then the energized people interested in the outcome will begin to get tired and lose interest.

  4. +1 Vote -1 Vote +1Brian

    I for one am deeply disappointed in the lack of progress with this project. From my research, and please correct me if I am wrong, once they start working on this project it changes the classification of the property from agricultural to whatever will be on that property. With this change should be an increase in tax revenue and a decrease in the burden upon the town departments that keep having to cut their budgets and services to us the taxpayers. I hope that all of the people that are either for or against this project realize that Londonderry is no longer the small town that you believe it is. Londonderry borders a major city and is considered a suburb of Boston. With only those two things there are certain standards that the taxpayers and business expect which we aren’t getting with our current tax rate. Instead of praising the planning board for holding off on accepting their application we should be encouraging them to encourage development in our town so that we can improve all of those things that we pay for as taxpayers. The planning board should be encouraged to help this process along as much as possible so that our community can begin to benefit from all that is promised. I would have to have these developers and investors scared away because we keep listening to only those that complain and don’t look at the big picture of what this can do for our town.

    1. +1 Vote -1 Vote +1Mac

      The developers have come out and said that this project will probably be tax negative. They started by saying it would be on the positive and create revenue but changed their tune to say they couple only promise it to be tax neutral. They have since moved to the negative side.

      This development will require large increases in resources from the town. So it’s going to hit every wallet in town, not just the wallet of the tenement dwellers in Woodmont.

      Think about it… All the business development in town was supposed to ease the burden on taxpayers but that hasn’t happened. Why would it happen with this housing project?

  5. Vote -1 Vote +1Martin Srugis

    With all the misleading information out there, I doubt the average person would know that, IMO.

  6. Vote -1 Vote +1Jim Pratt

    At the initial charette in sept. 2010, Andrus Duany described the Woodmont project as being ” tax neutral “. That term suggests to me that it will not require any town revenue to provide the necessary municpal services: but neither will it provide any tax revenue.

    The financial advantage will go to the developer and the various contractors. The tax payers will get new neighbors but nothing else.

    1. Vote -1 Vote +1Mac

      At a later date the developer stated that the project would probably not be tax neutral but most likely would be tax negative. I would have to spend some time to find the exact quote but it was reported in the local news.

      I find it hard to believe that the expense in services (fire, police, trash, snow removal, schools, etc.) will not rise drastically to support the 3000+ new people coming to town.

      Most of these speculations are smoke and mirrors. It’s more about marketing the project than reality. Like I said earlier, how much tax relief have we seen from all the business development in town?

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