By. Bryan Rothamel, Field Officer
On January 20th, the Fluvanna County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved the special use permit for the James River Water Authority (JRWA). The permit allows the JRWA to construct an intake facility and pump raw water to a location near Route 6.
The permit was a resubmitted request from December 2nd when the board voted 2-2 (resulting in a non approval). The difference in approved version was the facility moved to the adjacent property. Previously it was in a wooded area, now it is strip of trees of a field.
The other main difference, and probably the reason it passed, was the filed lawsuit Louisa County, Louisa County Water Authority (LCWA) and the JRWA filed (but not served) after the first permit failed.
“It breaks my heart that we have been checkmated,” said Patricia Eager (Palmyra District).
Eager and Don Weaver (Cunningham District) noted before the vote that the county asked outside counsel about the basis of the pending legal action. Weaver noted the lawyers gave ‘strong worded’ counsel.
“The decision here tonight was made two years ago,” Weaver said, referencing the October 2013 vote of the inter-jurisdictional agreement. It passed on a 3-1 vote, Weaver voting against it.
During the public hearing fourteen speakers spoke against the JRWA permit. Seven spoke in favor and one did not state an outright opinion.
One resident threatened possible legal action if the permit passed. He also said he would stand in front of any bulldozer to stop any action.
Weaver said before casting his vote, “I will make a decision that in my opinion would do less damage to the county.”
The second special use permit on January 20th was for the LCWA to construct a pipeline from Route 6, along the eastern portion of the county to Louisa County line. It passed unanimously.
The public hearings were held jointly with the Planning Commission. Both permits were recommended for approval by the commission unanimously.
Chairman Mike Sheridan (Columbia District) was not at the meeting because of health reasons. He is expected to be back starting in February. He may attend portions of the supervisors’ scheduled retreat on January 30th.
That retreat was previously scheduled for January 23 but postponed because of weather. It is planned to be at the Fork Union Community Center.
The next regular supervisors’ meeting is February 3rd at 4 p.m.
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Photo Credits: Fluvanna County