Letters to the Editor

Posted: Sunday, September 01, 2002

Road ordinance doesn't properly consider poor

The Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly has narrowly passed a new ordinance regarding subdivisions that occur within 330 feet of borough- or state-maintained roads. Subdividers must now build all roads platted, and build them to borough standards.

The Peninsula Clarion praises the new ordinance loudly, stressing that money is saved by building a road right to begin with.

That may be. It is also cheaper to own your own home than to rent. Not everyone is wealthy, however, thus we have renters. Renters aren't stupid, just not wealthy.

The new ordinance will require subdividers to "front" the money for roads. Many will have to borrow until lots can be sold. That will be a burden for poor subdividers. The price of lots near developed areas will go up making it harder for poor people to purchase a lot in those areas.

Some subdividers already build quality roads and roll the expense into the lots they sell. Others subdivide on a shoestring.

Folks who buy their lots tend to do so on a tight budget. They want to take part in the American dream of owning their own home and escape the cost of renting. For them, life is about getting by. Roads can be improved later, even if it isn't the most financially efficient way.

Government that doesn't plan for their poor doesn't plan at all.

Brent Johnson

Clam Gulch

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