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Bed and Breakfast incompatible at best

By Staff | Jul 24, 2015

The Jefferson County BZA meeting on July 16 had on its agenda to hear neighbors’ concerns about a Conditional Use Permit (CUP) for a proposed Bed and Breakfast.

The board’s job was to listen and be open to our reasonable explanations as to why the B and B is INCOMPATIBLE in our private residential neighborhood, including concerns of safety as people come and go through a narrow by today’s standards) stone entrance.

The board did not appear to listen, and the zoning board president constantly interrupted, was argumentative, dismissive, rude and intimidating to several people. It appears the board had already decided before the meeting in favor of the b and b,. because they didn’t listen to our incomplete comments ( we were cut off), nor read our statements: how else could they have decided so quickly?

This most unpleasant meeting would not have been necessary had the property owners of the proposed B and B, demonstrated common courtesy towards their neighbors.

They should have talked with all the HOA members months before they started the CUP process. But they waited until only two weeks before the public hearing to tell us about this bombshell they had initiated.

It would have been prudent to bring all of us into their plans months ago. Had we been part of the discussion and able to voice our concerns/talk things over, we might have supported them.

No one can get to their house, from Morgan’s Grove Road, without driving on Falling Spring Road. I, and a few other neighbors, are concerned about the strangers who will be encouraged to come into our neighborhood which will no longer be private once it’s advertised to the world.

Since my home is one of the first houses and only 58 feet from the road, I am concerned/afraid of what sort of people will be driving by.

Having lived in the Falling Spring community since 1962, I have had experiences with tourists( and alleged Civil War re-enactors who want to search for relics);some are nice, but many have been nosey, rude, noisy and threatening. The only time the b and b can control or have authority over/with the tourists is when the tourists are inside the B and B.

The tourists are unaccountable to anyone once they are outside the B and B.

The recent claims “we want to preserve the lifestyle we all enjoy” and “we want to preserve and protect our neighborhood” are insincere since they are the ones who are drastically changing the ambience of our once-private neighborhood.

Diana Suttenfield