By. Brent Wilson, Field Officer
The Greene County Planning Commission held a final review of the revised Comprehensive Plan at their July 20th meeting. The Planning Commission has held public hearings to have their input into the revised document.
Per Virginia State Code Comprehensive Plans are to be updated every 5 years.
§ 15.2-2223. Comprehensive plan to be prepared and adopted; scope and purpose.
A. The local planning commission shall prepare and recommend a comprehensive plan for the physical development of the territory within its jurisdiction and every governing body shall adopt a comprehensive plan for the territory under its jurisdiction.
In the preparation of a comprehensive plan, the commission shall make careful and comprehensive surveys and studies of the existing conditions and trends of growth, and of the probable future requirements of its territory and inhabitants. The comprehensive plan shall be made with the purpose of guiding and accomplishing a coordinated, adjusted and harmonious development of the territory which will, in accordance with present and probable future needs and resources, best promote the health, safety, morals, order, convenience, prosperity and general welfare of the inhabitants, including the elderly and persons with disabilities.
The comprehensive plan shall be general in nature, in that it shall designate the general or approximate location, character, and extent of each feature, including any road improvement and any transportation improvement, shown on the plan and shall indicate where existing lands or facilities are proposed to be extended, widened, removed, relocated, vacated, narrowed, abandoned, or changed in use as the case may be.
Chairman Jay Willer asked the Commission if they had any revisions to add to the Comprehensive Plan. Commissioner Frank Morris would have like to have seen more language to slow down housing growth in the county. But he indicated that he was happy with the draft as it was presented.
When it is recommended for approval by the Planning Commission it will be added to the county website.
Willer had the only suggested change to the draft – he asked that the last sentence on page 8 which states there were no farms in the property that became the Shenandoah National Park be eliminated since there were in fact farms on that property. With that being the only change, the revised Comprehensive Plan was unanimously approved.
Willer explained that the Board of Supervisors will have at least one public hearing related the Comprehensive Plan. In addition, Willer presented two additional documents to also be forwarded to the Board of Supervisors. One was a formal resolution to forward the Comprehensive Plan to the Board of Supervisors and the second one was a transmittal letter with suggestions of how to change/enhance the process the next time the Comprehensive Plan is revised. Below are the six items being suggested to the Board of Supervisors:
· Better documentation, schedules and controls for the county’s fiscal management, both for anticipating revenue streams and accommodating future service growth and capital funding needs;
· Attention to the rigorous planning being enacted by the Board of Education and by the county’s emergency services functions to adequately incorporate future county needs, including funding possibilities and locational decisions;
· Assessment of county infrastructure and policies necessary for supporting continued growth and job creation in the designated growth areas, with funding strategies to support those needs;
· Strengthen the county’s health infrastructure, including both medical and emotional needs, particularly in light of steady increases in the number of aging residents;
· Review of the county’s needs for broadband communication, both for county services and for individual homes and businesses, evaluating county ordinances and emerging technologies that might leverage better access for all county residents; and
· Strategies for more consistent enforcement and oversight of county ordinances.
Both of these were approved 5-0.
The Comprehensive Plan will now be forwarded to the Greene County Board of Supervisors for their review and approval.
Brent Wilson is the Greene County Field Officer for the Free Enterprise Forum a privately funded public policy organization. The Free Enterprise Forum Field Officer program is funded by a generous grant from the Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS® (CAAR) and by readers like you. To support this important work please donate online at www.freeenterpriseforum.org