News from the county this week includes an upcoming public hearing on the contentious EO Zone at the next Planning Commission meeting; the announcement of a new Director of Housing and Community Development; and a heads up for folks interested in becoming Soil and Water Conservation District Directors.
Planning Commission to Hold Public Hearing on EO Zone
The Planning Commission will hold a public hearing on the Economic Opportunity District at its Aug. 3 meeting.
The EO zone is intended “to facilitate economic development, an increased nonresidential tax base, and the creation of jobs,” according to language in the proposed ordinance.
“The principal uses and development form should optimize the economic development potential of the area and encourage development types that have certain attributes, principally that they offer a positive fiscal contribution, provide quality jobs, enhance community values, are environmentally friendly, and support economic stability.”
The proposed EO zone, based roughly on the county’s mixed use ordinance, has become a point of contention among the Board of Supervisors.
Based on a previous board discussion of the zone, Republican supervisors find it attractive because it will bring jobs, offer a long-term development plan, limit by-right development and transfer costs for preserving rural land from the government’s pockets to those of developers. Democratic supervisors are concerned it will lead to more unchecked growth, will bring only limited revenues and doesn’t have a coherent strategic vision.
New Director of Housing and Community Development
Vaughn Poller has been hired as James City County’s new Director of Housing and Community Development.
Poller is a former County employee and is currently York County’s Manager of Housing and Neighborhood Revitalization. He begins in his position August 16, replacing Rick Hanson who recently retired. Poller worked in the department he will now manage as a Community Development Planner from 1995-2005.
“His background includes project management, grant writing, administration and research which are skills that will be needed as we work on our community’s future,” says Robert C. Middaugh, County Administrator. Poller administered $3.2 million annually in local, State, and Federal funds for rental assistance, housing rehabilitation and community development.
A long-term resident, Poller volunteered his time to lead the Citizen Participation Team that provided outreach and public engagement during the development of the 2009 Comprehensive Plan. “His involvement in the Comprehensive Plan process is a bonus for the County as it provides him with a deeper appreciation for the County’s desired future,” added Middaugh.
“I look forward to rejoining the County’s Office of Housing and Community Development,” says Poller. “This Office has a well earned reputation of being innovative and highly energetic.The people there deal with very complicated programs and are highly skilled. I can’t wait to get involved.”
Filing Deadline for Soil and Water Conservation District Directors
Folks interested in becoming directors for local Colonial Soil and Water Conservation Districts should file the necessary paperwork by the end of August.
An election of Directors for the Colonial Soil and Water Conservation District will be held in the general election on November 8. The District encompasses the City of Williamsburg, Virginia and the Counties of Charles City, James City, New Kent and York.
Candidates for elected directors must reside within the boundary of the city or counties that they will represent upon election. Two directors will be elected to represent all the citizens within each city and county.
People who wish to file as candidates for the office of district director must complete and file the nominating petition, statement of qualification, and declaration of candidacy with the general registrar of the city or county of residnece by 7:00 p.m. on August 23.
For further information contact your local registrar’s office, visit the Virginia State Board of Elections website or the Colonial Soil and Water Conservation District office in the Poplar Creek Business Center, 3402 Acorn Street, Suite 103, Williamsburg, or call 757-645-4895.