Chesco mayors urge lawmakers to protect ‘Dreamers’

Kennett Square Mayor Matt Fetick

In an article in the Daily Local News Last week about the building boom in Kennett Square, I stated that while the census shows less than 7,000 residents it's actually closer to 12,000 undocumented residents.

I want to be clear that when I was referring to "undocumented" residents, I was referring to anyone undocumented by the census.I was not referring to undocumented or illegal immigrants. Even though our census has not shown a significant increase in population, we still see and feel a significant increase in people and traffic.

That is because the census is not an actual reflection of many people who call Kennett Square home on a temporary basis while either working in the area or awaiting permanent housing. For example, my own short term rental through AirBnB has 4 occupants and 2 cars. These residents would not be accounted for in the census, yet they live and work here at the moment and use our infrastructure and support the local economy.

Many of these folks want to live here permanently but have not yet found a place to call home.

At no time during our discussion on growth, housing, and infrastructure did we ever discuss immigration, illegal immigrants or having any type of immigration problem. Our entire discussion was on balancing the desire for builders to build, people who want to live here and the impact that has on our infrastructure and traffic.

Again, to clarify, my use of the term "undocumented" meant undocumented by the census. It had absolutely nothing to do with undocumented immigrants. A better choice of words would have been temporary residents. I simply was referring to how our census numbers don't reflect the growth that we actually see and feel based on construction and traffic.

Matt Fetick
Mayor, Kennett Square
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