Greene County BOS Adopts Resolution Opposing Storm Water Regs

By. Kara Reese Pennella, Greene County Field Officer

Action Summary:

  • RZ 09-001 Public hearing regarding a request from Wexford Subdivision, LLC to amend proffers – Approved
  • Public hearing regarding proposed amendments to Greene County’s Ordinances to include utility lots – Approved
  • Resolution opposing storm water management regulations 4 VAC 50-60– Approved

The Greene County Board of Supervisors adopted a resolution opposing the new storm water regulations at their regular meeting on August 11, 2009. In addition to discussing the regulations, the Board heard a request to amend proffers from Wexford LLC. Amendments to both the zoning ordinance and subdivision ordinance were also considered. The Board then heard a request from the Greene County Combined District Court staff fore an additional $840 in funds for the current fiscal year.

Storm Water Management

           The Board of Supervisors addressed the new storm water regulations not as an agenda item but under other matters from the Board. The issue was initially raised by S. Catalano who proposed the resolution. He noted that the regulations would have huge economic repercussions as well as possibly infringe on the county’s rights. Under the new rules the county would either have to administer the program locally and collect fees that would likely be insufficient to cover the costs of the program or give up some local controls and allow the state to administer the program. S. Catalano proposed a resolution which focused on the unfunded mandate portions of the regulations. C. Schmitt countered with another resolution which had a much less aggressive tone. The second resolution also contained a recommendation that the state administer the regulations for a trial period of 2 -3 years so that localities could see the real cost of the program before deciding whether they want to administer the regulations.  The Board chose to adopt C. Schmitt’s proposed version of the resolution.

Wexford Subdivision

           Wexford Subdivision requested an amendment to their proffers. First, they requested that a proffered volleyball court by changed to a general sports field. Second, they sought to lower the minimum square footage on homes in the subdivision from 2400 square feet to 1600 square feet. The county will receive $5780 for each home that is built under 2400 square feet. The planning commission recommended approval of the amendments by a 3-2 vote. 

Applicant addressed the Board noting that the market had changed since 2005 when the proffers were made.  Applicant noted that reducing the size requirement may help them sell lots and be more competitive in this market. 

Lee Estes was the only member of the public to speak at the meeting. He noted that he lives nearby and believes that this is a good subdivision.  He noted that this is a good idea to help move some homes in the area.

In discussion from the Board, J. Allen observed that proffers are intended to offset the impact of a project. She felt that 600 square feet would have little impact on the community and that the additional cash proffer would compensate the county for the changes. S. Catalano noted that he had some reservations about renegotiating proffers in general, but felt in this instance that the county was being compensated for the change. J. Allen move to approve amended proffers. The motion was passed by a unanimous vote.

Utility Lots

            The Board also considered and approved revisions to both the Greene County Zoning Ordinance and the Subdivision Ordinance to include utility lots. These changes will allow for lower cost acquisition of small plots of land that house utilities such as wells or a radio tower. The utility lots will not include larger utility projects such as a water or sewage treatment plant.  In order to reduce the costs of acquiring the smaller utility lots, landowners will no longer use one of their division rights in order to sell a small lot of land for a utility.  The amendments to the ordinances were approved by a unanimous vote.

Greene Co. Combined District Courts

            Finally, the Board heard the first reading of a request from Greene combined District Court for the additional allocation for $840.00 for the current fiscal year. The Court needs the additional funds to pay for court appointed attorneys in cases charged under the Greene County Code where the right to counsel attaches.

The Clerk of Court explained that the State was cracking down on these fees. There are some crimes that are included in both the State Code and the County Code. If officers write the County Code Section on the Summons the County is responsible for paying the court appointed attorney.  The Clerk noted that a few officers still charge defendants under the County Code instead of the State Code. In the past, the Clerk admitted she has changed the code section under which a defendant is charged from the County Code to the State Code to avoid the fees, but she noted that she has been told she can no longer do this.  The Board of Supervisors will hold the second reading of this request and vote on it at their next regular meeting.

            The Board will meet two more times in the month of August. The will meet with the School Board on Saturday, August 15, 2009 at 8:30 am at the Best Western Hotel. They will also hold their regular meeting on Tuesday, August 25, 2009 at 7:30 pm.

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