Perhaps you’ve heard the term red herring? Its origin is from the training of hunting dogs, where a bait fish is used to distract the dogs and send them in a different direction. A red herring is a distracting, usually emotional argument thrown out during a discourse that sends the listener down a rabbit hole, blurring the facts and obscuring the truth. We’ve got a red herring in this Double Gate ATV matter. We’re calling it out, and directing your attention to the developer behind the curtain.
At the June 17th Board of County Commissioners Hearing, the Commissioners will consider a Land Use Change, Zoning Change and Special Use Permit Application for 240 acres of property in the Farmland Preservation Area, owned by Blitch Plantation (Rudianyn), and intended to be sold to or used by Double Gate ATV Park. It is no secret that we oppose the application along with hundreds of other members of the community who have written in saying so.
Just the fact that this location requires:
- a Land Use Change;
- a Zoning Change; and
- a Special Use Permit;
shows that this location has 3 strikes against it and is not appropriate for the activity.
Double Gate ATV Park is a business that its owner is calling a movement. At Wednesday’s meeting, supporters of this movement will bring a petition filled with names of people from near and far who say that they will come to Double Gate. Some will show up at the Hearing in t-shirts printed for this purpose. Their message is a good one – “At Double Gate, we don’t care about race, color or creed. We all love ATVs. Let us Ride.” Double Gate describes their for-profit business as “safe, legal fun” and an opportunity to enjoy nature. Who can argue against that?
The good news is that nobody has to argue against it.
Double Gate ATV is NOT the applicant. The applicant is Blitch Plantation/Rudianyn – a prominent real estate developer. If Rudianyn obtains the Land Use Change and Special Use Permit, Double Gate will set up shop through some sort of lease or purchase arrangement.
Double Gate is not locked in to the Blitch Plantation location. It is free to find another piece of property outside the Farmland Preservation Area once Rudianyn’s application is denied. This means that you can support the idea of an ATV Park as a valid business and legal family fun AND oppose the location.
So you can say, let them ride – in an ATV-friendly location. There are lots of them all over the County, as we blogged yesterday. You do not need to be against Double Gate ATV Park in order to be against this application for its impacts on the village of Flemington and the Farmland Preservation Area. Your opposition is not a vote against Double Gate, it just tells the Rudianyn organization that it needs to find a more compatible use for the property.
We Need You to Help Keep the Hearing Focused!
We have heard from hundreds of you who don’t want this application to be approved.
What matters most is that the County Commissioners hear your voices and see your faces at the Hearing on June 17th, 2pm.
There will be a distraction. The way to fight it is to keep stating the truth – it’s not the activity, it’s the location.
We know that daytime meetings are difficult to manage for many, so please write in or attend virtually (scroll to bottom of page to see instructions), or both.
If you can make it to the meeting, don’t be alarmed by the t-shirts or the testimonies advocating for the Double Gate movement. It is a red herring. You can choose to hear and affirm the idea of the Double Gate ATV business. You can applaud a resident for wanting to do something that he sees as good for the youth of the community.