O’Brien questions MORPC’s agenda

By Dustin Ensinger

August 8, 2014

By Dustin Ensinger

The Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC) is too City of Columbus and Franklin County-centric, according to Delaware County Commissioner Ken O’Brien.

O’Brien, who made the comments during a discussion about filling four open seats on the organization’s board, said MORPC’s agenda favors Delaware County’s neighbors to the south.

“MORPC wants to make Delaware County a water tank for the City of Columbus,” he said. “Everything limits the development in Delaware County, and it doesn’t seem to limit it in the City of Columbus.”

O’Brien pointed specifically to the organization’s watershed and complete streets plan, both of which he said are incompatible with the type of development Delaware County has grown accustomed to.

“I have great concerns about MORPC’s agenda,” he said.

O’Brien also took issue with the way in which the commissioners plan to fill the open seats. Rather than post the openings, a handful of county officials have been tasked to come up with a list of nominees. He said the positions should be posted and open to all Delaware County residents.

“We need to have representation that is not blessed by the current Franklin County and Columbus dominated MORPC,” he said.

Commissioners Gary Merrell and Dennis Stapleton both disagreed that MORPC is trying to impose its will on Delaware County.

“No one is trying to exclude anyone from the process,” Merrell said.

Dustin Ensinger can be reached at 740-413-0902 or on Twitter @EnsingerDG.