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“It’s a growing issue in the sense that many people feel the pendulum may have swung too far in not requiring that kind of thing,” said Patrick Lacefield, Montgomery County spokesman. “We use [proffers] quite a bit.”

Economic development planners say proffers are successful only in places where developers want to build. They also are only a partial solution to infrastructure needs.

After the infrastructure is built, local governments usually take over the operation and maintenance, placing another burden on their budgets.

“You still end up with gaps in your infrastructure,” said Robyn Bailey, Loudoun County Department of Economic Development spokeswoman.

Property Lines runs on Thursdays. Call Tom Ramstack at 202/636-3180 or e-mail tramstack@washingtontimes.com.