What, that’s the second or third time, right? It’s hard to keep track.
The Caroline County Board of Supervisors approved the rezoning of Belmont North 3–2 on Tuesday night. Supervisors Bobby Popowicz, Maxie Rozell, and Chairman Floyd Thomas voted to approve while Supervisors Wayne Acors and Jeff Sili voted against the rezoning.
Wayne Acors had his reasons (too much development in that area already); but Jeff Sili employed a logical fallacy (imagine that!) of a slippery slope argument stating that, “if we approve Belmont North, we have to also approve this 600 house subdivision working its way through the planning commission!”, instead of addressing Belmont North on its own merits.
As Chairman Floyd Thomas pointed out, the Code of Virginia requires that a rezoning/special exemption request or permit be accessed individually and on its own merits. To do otherwise is a violation of the Code of Virginia.
Here’s how The Free Lance–Fish Wrap wrote it up:
Supervisors Wayne Acors and Jeff Sili argued the board should not be creating more home sites when it has thousands of unbuilt residential lots and more development proposals in the pipeline.
Actually, Wayne Acors did not argue the second point. If you had paid attention, you would heard him say he thought there was too much development in that area already and not that were any other rezoning applicants coming forward.
He [Jeff Sili] also referenced another rezoning request by a different developer for more than 600 homes that is under review by the Planning Commission.
Sili noted that while he should consider the proposal based on its own merits, he was looking at the bigger picture, including other proposals.
“I don’t think we can fool ourselves by saying we are looking at one development,” he said.
[Chairman Floyd] Thomas [who represents the district the proposed rezoning is in] said he was going to look at the proposal individually. He noted tangible benefits to the county, such as the fire station.
“I can’t worry about what the next project or the next development is,” he said.
[Bobby] Popowicz said the Sealys went “above and beyond” to make their proposal attractive to the county.
To say the least.
The county’s stated proffer policy is $17,632.36 per house.
The Sealys proffered over $12,800,000 (if I remember the number correctly) for Belmont North which is a 530 home development. That’s over $24,150 per house. That’s 36% more than the county’s stated policy!
Included in that proffer is the land for, and the design and the construction of a new fire station that must been completed within 30 months.
There’s the 20 acres for the school at a mutually agreed upon location with the Sealys providing soil testing to the county for free.
Improvements to the roads in the area.
Berms and barriers next to existing land owners above and beyond the county’s stated policy on berms and barriers.
Prepayments to the county’s utility system that will pay for the borrowing on the infrastructure for the system for the next three years.
But that’s too technical for The Fish Wrap to mention, after all, they had to make space in that story for the important and pressing information that golf carts can now be used on public roads in the Caroline Pines subdivision.
Yeah, folks, that’s the hard news coming out of the Caroline County Board of Supervisors meeting this week.