Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Odds and ends

Another “smart growth” session will be held at the Company 3 Fire-Rescue station at 52 Broad Street Road in Centerville on Wednesday, April 27 from 7 to 9 p.m.

This program, the third on the Goochland Village series, will focus on balancing rural conservation and economic development as well as community design goals and processes.

Sponsored by the Partnership for Smarter Growth, the event will include remarks by Goochland County Administrator Rebecca Dickson; Dan Holmes, director of state policy for the Piedmont Environmental Council and Rachel Flynn, former director of planning and development for the City of Richmond and Lynchburg. Citizens Concerned with Goochland Growth; the Goochland Chamber of Commerce; The Capital Region Land Conservancy and the 35 Mile Drive Club collaborated on the presentation.

While “smart growth” is neither the panacea its supporters claim nor the evil plan for population control as seen by its detractors, it provides a useful platform for high density land use discussions.

The ink is barely dry on the county budget for 2011-12 and Goochland is advertising for an assistant county attorney and a director of human resources.

This may be part of the cryptic “county administrator’s reorganization plan” that had no impact on the county budget. It looks like action reallocated the cost of recently terminated employees and used it to fund other positions.

Norman Sales, Goochland’s legal counsel, does have a lot on his plate. Adding another lawyer to this county government function makes a lot of sense. However, on March 21 a presentation on the county attorney function was an eleventh hours addition to a supervisors’ budget workshop.

At that time, Sales’ department was planned to have three employees in the next fiscal year with a slightly smaller annual budget thanks to a decline in benefit costs.

It would be interesting to know why the addition of an assistant county attorney was handled under the radar and so soon after the budget vote?

The job description for the new position requires knowledge of land use issues. Could it be that the county is anticipating more rezoning and other land use activity, or just more lawsuits?

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