It was refreshing to see two Republican Loudoun County supervisors, Lori Waters (Broad Run) and Jim Clem (Leesburg), vote to curb the out-of-control growth in the county [front page, July 21]. Unfortunately, Jack Shockey, an advocate of dense development and president of Citizens for Property Rights, is quoted as saying, "I think these Republicans have forgotten that they are Republicans."

As a lifelong, conservative Republican who values rural America, I take offense at this notion that it is somehow not Republican to favor smart growth.

What is conservative about paving over and subdividing Virginia's rolling hills and putting up high-density housing so that a few wealthy developers can line their pockets? The result is long commutes that cut into family time, traffic-induced waste of limited energy resources, higher taxes and a rapidly disappearing rural lifestyle. Not one of those outcomes fosters conservative values.

Ms. Waters and Mr. Clem are true conservatives and thoughtful Republicans. As for Mr. Shockey, if he is really concerned about property rights, he might review the recent Supreme Court decision that allows government to take private property and give it to developers.

DAVID JENKINS

Government Affairs Director

Republicans for Environmental Protection

Annandale