I’ve never been a person to necessarily take something at face value, nor have I ever been a person who thinks anything in this world is free. I’ve learned the hard way that I just need to make the time to dig in, do my own research and whenever possible, go straight to the horse’s mouth with questions so I can make an informed decision for myself. Which of course takes time and energy, two things that, especially this day in age, there never seems to be enough of.
Saving land saves money. That is a fact. Actually, we make money when we save land because our property values increase. Not to mention the rewards of land preservation contribute significantly to our well being. But don’t take my word for it, please read for yourselves from the Chester County Planning Commission and the return on environment brochure:
For a more in-depth explanation, here is the full monty:
To donate to the preservation of Crebilly Farm via Natural Lands, please visit:
If Crebilly Farm is not preserved, at some point, it will be developed. It’s as simple as that. And if you think because you live on the east side of 202 in Westtown Township that a development on Crebilly Farm will not affect your life, I’d think again. To support an inevitable mass development on Crebilly Farm if the land is not preserved, will incur significant cost to the township from the growing infrastructure that will be necessary to support it. Additional building of grocery stores, medical facilities, schools, police, fire, EMT, etc. drives taxes up and property values down. And let us not forget what seems to be most everyone’s biggest issue, especially throughout the threat of the Toll development- traffic. More vehicles, more school buses, more delivery trucks, more garbage trucks- all passing through our favorite intersection of 926 and 202. Or instead, taking shortcuts through your quiet neighborhoods where your children are playing outside.
After almost six long years of a drawn out legal battle with Toll Brothers, it is remarkable that the community has a choice in the fate of Crebilly Farm, at least for now. Thanks to the land owners of Crebilly Farm, they are willing to give Natural Lands and Westtown Township a year to secure funding to purchase this iconic land. Part of that financial equation means an Open Space tax for Westtown residents. The township supervisors, at the May 16th BOS meeting, have proposed an additional 0.08% Earned Income Tax and a 0.42% Township Tax to be used for open space funding. Based upon your household earned income and property assessment, on a loose average, this could be somewhere between $150-$250 per year. Break that down again and roughly, that’s about $3 a week. (If you think of donating one cup of Starbucks coffee each week, you could not only save Crebilly Farm but also pocket some change). These numbers are slated to be finalized Monday, June 20th at the next Westtown Township Board of Supervisors meeting and voted upon by residents in November. Please allow me to acknowledge I truly realize no one wants another tax of any kind. I respect the value of a hard earned dollar and I would never assume the depth of another’s bank account. I hope these numbers help to begin to put this in perspective. This is a work in progress and there will be more information to follow.
Someday, Westtown Township could actually own most of Crebilly Farm. Someday, your children’s children could come to know the land and historic treasure of Crebilly Farm. Crebilly Farm could soon be a shared place for each and everyone of us… to take a walk, a bike ride, a horseback ride… a place to take your kids… your dog… a place to go have a picnic, read a book, photograph, paint… a place to watch and listen to the birds… the peepers… play your guitar… a peaceful place to just be. Nature heals us like nothing else can. That is what Crebilly Farm gives back to the rest of us and it is invaluable. No matter the path of Crebilly Farm, there will be a price to pay. I pray it is the price for preservation.
If not you, then who?