Board of Supervisors : 9.8.09


Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Present: Mr. Allen Hale, Ms. Connie Brennan, Mr. Tommy Harvey and Mr. Joe
Dan Johnson
Absent: Mr. Tommy Bruguiere

JAUNT ANNUAL REPORT – Ms. Donna Shaunesey presented the organizations report
noting a slight decrease in Nelson ridership – 15,183 in FY09 vs. 16,018 in
FY 08. She reported that intracounty trips increased by 17% due in part to
grant funding to provide additional transportation services for seniors. A
new route began in July to transport employees from Charlottesville to

BRMC PLANNING GRANT AUTHORIZATIONS – Supervisors voted 4-0 to authorize
acceptance of $25,000 in Virginia Community Development Block Grant funding
on behalf of the Blue Ridge Medical Center for preliminary planning for a
project to expand the Center.

HIGH TOP TOWER LEASE AUTHORIZATION – Supervisors voted 4-0 to authorize
staff to execute an agreement between the County, Central Virginia Electric
Cooperative and the Virginia State Police for a 160-foot tower on High Top.

COUNTY ADMINISTRATOR’S REPORT – Mr. Carter reported on the following:

– Piney River III – in administrative closeout;
– Cove Valley Collection Site – will be advertised through
September 10th with sealed bids due September 30th;
– Closed Schuyler collection site – testing results have been
received with no additional cleanup or remediation work needed; and
– Virginia Department of Health (VDH) relocation – Wiley Wilson
will conduct a feasibility study to determine whether finishing the third
floor of the Region Ten building will meet the requirements of VDH.

APPOINTMENTS – Supervisors voted 4-0 to appoint Mr. Donald Gray as the North
District representative to the Nelson County Social Services Board.

EVENING SESSION (Note: All Supervisors present for evening session)

DISPOSITION OF COUNTY OWNED PROPERTY – Supervisors are considering the sale
of the former Rockfish Valley Elementary School to the Rockfish Valley
Community Center for $1.00.

MS. SARAH JANE STEWART, President, RVCC Board of Directors reported that
RVCC has operated as a community center since 2000 and currently has a
membership of about 300 members while operating three major programs – The
Hamner Theater; the Treasure Chest Thrift Store; and the Seniors Group. She
noted that the group’s balance sheet shows $102,000 in improvements and
equipment/furniture. Ms. Stewart reviewed the group’s work to upgrade and
improve the property, noting that the group has proven itself responsible
stewards of the property. She said that the group now sees the value of
owning the property in order to petition foundations and individuals for
grants for the needed work on major renovations and upgrades. Ms. Stewart
reviewed the many programs and facilities available for public use and noted
the fundraising efforts and volunteer work that have sustained RVCC. She
asked the Board to allow RVCC to own the building and continue their service
to the community.

During the Public Hearing, MR. PETER COY, Co-Artistic Director of The Hamner
Theater, said that the Theater employs 2 full-time and 1 part-time staff.
Since 2005, more than 100 volunteers have donated 34,000 hours on theater
projects and ticket sales and fundraisers have brought more than $350,000
into the county. He said that the Theater must be able to raise money to
improve and maintain the space and RVCC needs to own the building to do
MS. DONNA SMALL, presented a petition with 116 names opposing the sale of
the building for $1.00. She noted that the building is assessed at $815,000
and the sale would not be fair to the other organizations in the county. She
said that the fees charged for activities make it more like a business than
a community center.
MS. KELLY MESSER, Afton, said the county should not give away a valuable
piece of real estate and that it should be sold at fair market value or the
sale should be opened to the public. She said that the property should be
saved for future development as our children need recreational
MR. DUDLEY CAMPBELL, Roseland, said that as a past president of the
Ruritans, RVCC has been a great neighbor but that it is a valuable piece of
property and could be sold even at just land value. He said that the county
needs a rainy-day fund.
MR. BO ZIRKLE, Afton, said that if the county should have taken all seven
schools and sold them at a fair price instead of giving them away. He said
that now the land is gone with nothing to show for it. He said that the
county is now giving away another three-quarter of a million.
MS. MARY CUNNINGHAM, Afton, said that she has worked as a volunteer since
the beginning to try to save this school, which has been in great disrepair.
She said that RVCC has worked hard to take care of the building and provide
for the needs of the community. She said that the Board of the Community
Center is very open to hearing what the community needs.
MR. RANDY CAMPBELL, Afton, said that he would like to hear more details
about the sale.
MS. MARGARET CLAIR, Faber, said that RVCC provides space and recreational
activities. She said that it is a membership organization and that members
have a vote and a say in what happens at the Center. Ms. Clair said that the
Center depends on volunteers and that the Board of Directors are volunteers.
She noted that last year’s survey clearly showed that RVCC is wanted and
needed in the community. She said that RVCC needs to own the building to
take the Center to the next level.
MS. MARY COY, Faber, said that RVCC has done many good works for the
community. She said that if the county made money from the sale of the
building, it would never be able to replace the skate park, fields,
playground, available space and programs for what it could sell the building
MS. AGNES SCHRIDER, Afton, said that she spent a lot of time taking her 6
and 8 year-olds to parks and programs in Waynesboro which led to her
interest in developing programs for children here in Nelson. She said that
was the reason she is working to bring a Boys and Girls Club to RVCC.

Following the Public Hearing, Mr. Bruguiere said that the school buildings
should have all been auctioned off as soon as they were given back to the
county but that they weren’t. He said that he does not see anyone paying the
assessed value. He said that he applauds RVCC for their hard work and
intends to support them in their endeavor to obtain the building.

Ms. Brennan said that she has had several meetings with the RVCC Board to
talk about plans and hopes and it is clear that this will be a successful
venture to benefit many people. She said that there is a lot of work to do
on the Center but that the only way to get grand funding for that work is
for them to own the building. Ms. Brennan said that the Community Center is
an asset to the community and that she is excited about the future of the
building. She noted that if RVCC cannot make a go of it, the building
reverts back to the county.

Mr. Harvey said that one of the reasons that the Center had been operated
under a lease for nine years is that the county recognized the value of the
property and wanted to be sure that the organization could handle
responsibility for the property. He said that RVCC has proven they can
handle it and that he feels he has to support the sale given the fundraising
and planning that has been done. He said that ownership of the building
would allow RVCC access to money and that he is very proud of the group and
the asset they are to the community.

Mr. Johnson said that selling the property for $1 million would result in
$0.01 on the tax rate for four years. He said that providing the same
services would cost the county more than that. He said that all of the
community centers provide significant services to the county and that he
would support the sale to RVCC for $1.00.

Mr. Hale thanked everyone for their input and the Board tabled a decision
for future consideration.

CLASS II COMMUNICATION TOWER/AT&T – The Planning Commission voted
unanimously on August 26th to approve the applicant’s application for a
95-foot steel painted pole and associated equipment on property located on
Stage Road in Colleen (off Cooperative Way). The Commission recommended
approval of the requested exception to Section 20-7-2a to reduce the minimum
distance of 125% of the tower height to the nearest property line in order
to locate the tower closer to the tallest trees on the property. Mr. Boger
noted that an engineer had provided a letter regarding the tower collapsing
upon itself. With no public comment, Supervisors unanimously granted the

applied for a permit for an existing cabin on their property located on
North Fork Road (Rt. 687) in Tyro to be used occasionally for a weekend
getaway. The cabin will have electricity but no water or septic system. The
Health Department has approved a privy site on the property. With no public
comment, Supervisors voted 5-0 to approve the permit with the condition that
the required restrictive covenant is in place before a building permit is

CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT/MS. BONNIE LANG – The applicant has applied for a
permit to build a 20×20 family-recreation cabin on property located on Eagle
Mountain Drive (Rt. 648) in Shipman. The cabin will have electricity but no
water at this time. With no public comment, Supervisors voted 5-0 to approve
the permit with the condition that the required restrictive covenant is in
place before a building permit is issued.

Supervisors voted unanimously to approve an amendment to the section
regarding the Board of Zoning Appeals’ consideration of variances to remove
the phrase “approaching confiscation” as part of the standard for
demonstrable hardship in order to bring this section into compliance with
the Virginia State Code.

Supervisors voted 5-0 to approve an amendment to remove the numbering scheme
to facilitate a more efficient way of adding future definitions

Supervisors voted 5-0 to approve an amendment to Section 14-1 Board of
Zoning Appeals to add one alternate to the membership and to allow for
compensation for Board members as may be authorized by the governing body
(Board of Supervisors).

Meeting adjourned.

Copyright 2000-2009 by Rural Nelson, Inc. All rights reserved. Reports may
be reprinted or excerpted with attribution.


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