It is being reported that Council President Rice has delayed the vote on proper protection for Ten Mile Creek as a result of business interest pressure. Post Coverage Here
The WPost article cites a petition on Change.org by the Clarksburg Chamber of Commerce. We heard about the petition a day earlier - from an email purportedly sent by the Chamber itself- pdf here - exceptthat there are a number of strange things about that email.
First, it was sent from the email address of the PR firm Pulte homes has engaged. Pulte is one of the developers seeking big development in the watershed of Ten Mile Creek- their proposed project is called...Ten Mile Creek. Meh.
Second, it is from the same account that has been used to send emails directly from Pulte, urging locals to support the project- like the one alleging that Ten Mile Creek is actually not a backup water supply.
Third, it seems to announce a new grassroots organization ostensibly formed by locals to look out for business interests in Clarksburg- but a quick check of the PO box provided shows that Give Clarksburg Its Due shares a PO Box with Pulte Homes in Rockville. What a coincidence!
Fourth- a click of the Montgomery County government site listings for the Clarksburg Chamber brings up a broken link- a website that has expired this month. On the Change.org petition, the Chamber has a brand new address- with a design scheme that looks very similar to "Give Clarksburg Its Due" Checks of the data for the website reveal a "server by proxy" designation- often used to keep owners of websites anonymous.
The Post article linked above quotes the Germantown-Gaithersburg Chamber President- "The final fate of Clarksburg should not be compressed into a very short time span with no community input." We agree, community input is important and that is why the overwhelming turnout of citizens at myriad public hearings, briefings and work sessions and thousands of emails/letters has been so heartening. But let's be sure that "community" means taxpayers and voters who live here and number among the 4.3 Million people that rely on these water resources- not companies masquerading as grassroots organizations.