Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Splendor in the Grass

Jen Richer, 630 WMAL News

Fairfax Co – The search for greener pastures may be clipped for Fairfax residents as they watch the grass grow chest high inside the medians of their thoroughfares.

With the grass growing as high as five feet in some spots, residents are putting pressure on county officials to hedge the medians. Yet the responsibility to tame the lawn lies with Virginia Department of Transportation.

“It’s really unacceptable; it not only looks bad, but it’s also dangerous.” Gerald E. Connolly (D), chairman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, told 630 WMAL News.

Wedged in the middle of budget crises, VDOT has curbed the maintenance to three times a year to conserve funds. “In the past two years or so, VDOT has been limited the amount of money it has available for maintenance.” Connolly explained.

Many residents are voicing their concern that the county then should step up to the landscaping responsibility.

Gearing up for reelection this fall, Connolly agrees that “something has to be done,” as he has initiated discussions with VDOT, headquartered in Richmond, Va. to resolve the unruly blades.

But when asked if the county should take over the task, Connolly noted, “I suppose the responsibility could be shifted, but again that is a question of money.”

He went on to say, “When it is a state responsibility, let’s make sure the state goes after that responsibility. We already send a lot of money to Richmond.”

But if the lawn is not clipped by September, it may be dangerous for the politicians as well, if the voters are unable to see the campaign posters.

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