Speaking of quaint mayhem …

Prince Georgians may be riled up …

Utility rates raised at the last Board of Supervisors meeting:

The Board of Supervisors raised utility rates by 5% on water and 7.5% on wastewater.  The purpose is to continue to the renovation of existing infrastructure and plan for expansion of county services in certain areas.  This follows on the heels of a rather sizeable increase in price the year before.

Most Prince George residents are on well and septic,  so only those limited areas with county services will be affected and the projection is that it will only raise the average user’s bill by $1.24.

Real Estate increase in the future?

The BOS will hold a public hearing on April 24th to consider raising the real property rate by as much as 5 cents on the hundred with the express purpose to devote that increase towards the building of one or two new elementary schools to replace LL Beazley and Walton.  The County originally agreed to replace one school at this time at a cost of 7 to 9 million dollars.  Subsequent discussion revealed that there was no site selected and obviously no engineering or architectural studies at this point.


Beazley Dictionaries
Prince George Rotarians with The Readers at LL Beazley Elementary School 2017



Tensions may run a tad high in this otherwise sedate rural county.

Less Drama at Next Board of Supervisors Meeting

 Xena just received her agenda for the next BOS meeting on April 3rd.  It doesn’t portend the same dramatic possibilities as the last meeting.

The Work Session will be at 5:00 p.m, during which the Supervisors will discuss the Old Carson School Master Plan, the Yancey Tract Hunting Lease, and Possible Changes to County Place Names.  Actually all three topics sound interesting to this come-hither.  Work sessions are public meetings.  Yes, they are open to the public.  You might want to stop off on your way home from work, hear what they are talking about and decide whether you want to return for the grand show later.

At 6:00 p.m. the BOS goes into Executive Session.  This is when they discuss certain matters which may be exempted from open meeting requirements .  Everyone except those invited by the Board must leave.  At the end of the Executive Session someone will stick his or head out the door and let people know that the Executive Session is over and those “hanging” around may come back into the room.  There will be a public motion and certification that the BOS discussed only those matters (broad categories, really, “personnel matter”, “legal advice”, “land or contract negotiation”, etc.) specified were discussed.  The Executive Session is also when the Supervisors eat their box suppers.  Wonder what they usually have on the menu?

The Business Meeting (public) then begins at 7:00 p.m.  There are the usual lead-ins with the third item being the “Public Comment” period during which any citizen may address any topic of concern Later, after the formalities, foreplay and litany of usual tidbits the fun begins.

Tomorrow night after the Supervisors and County Administrators Comments there will be two reports, one of wich is a report on the “Presidential Visit Expense Summary.”  I am looking forward to that.   How much did all of that security cost and who pays for it.  Worth every penny, farthing, and …er…Euro in my view.

The public hearings are regarding 1) truck restrictions on upper Bull Hill Road, 2) a plat vacation of a portion of a right-of-way linked to Sassafras Avenue, off Summitt Lane (oh, be still my beating heart,  3) conveyance of two recreation lots in the Meadows Subdivision and 4) the Annual Fiscal Plan (Budget)  for Fiscal Year 2012-2013.  The last item should be fascinating.  As of 10:00 a.m. there was no state budget.  Maybe something actually happened in Richmond today.  Of course, the County has to advertise these public hearings a certain period of time prior to the public hearing, but I am curious what will happen.  Possibly the BOS can hold the public hearing and then make their decision at a later public meeting.  One thing we know … the Board can plug-in that $330,000+ tax revenue increase they enacted at the last meeting.

See you at the meeting tomorrow night.  I plan to bring my water bottle and a package of nabs.

Xena Attends Board of Supervisors Meeting …High Drama and Low Expectations

Until three years ago Xena frequently attended the Prince George County Board of Supervisors (BOS) meetings.  The meetings were often boring or highly charged emotionally … or both.

The March 27, 2012, meeting was much of the same.  She expected that the character of the meetings would have changed with a newly elected Supervisor, and different County Attorney and County Administrator.

Three of the five Board members have been on the panel for many years with the Chair having served for over thirty years. One member is just beginning his second term and the other was elected in November to his first term.

The meeting began with the carefully orchestrated order of invocation, pledge of allegiance, adoption of consent agenda, awards, recognitions, commendations and little self-deprecating jokettes.  The pleasantries soon ended, however, when the pubic hearings began.

One, a rezoning application, had packed the meeting room with unfamiliar faces from other localities and a purported NAACP firebrand from Richmond.  Included in the mix was a large extended family who would benefit financially from the proposed development because the property in question is landlocked and the family holds the acces to his property.

Not spoken … the elephant in the room … was that the Board was all white.  The developer and the extended family were black.  The opposition to the project were all white (well mostly so …one young man of color spoke in opposition to the rezoning  but didn’t appear to have much conviction behind his prose.)

You know the outcome.  The rezoning was denied… 4 to 1 … because of traffic safety concerns and the articulation by the Chair that the BOS was inclined to give preference to the wishes of the “neighborhood.”   Hmmmmm.

Xena had found herself among and admidst the members of the extended family who, while behaving in a perfectly dignified manner, whispered all sorts of juicy gossip, allegationss and sardonic retorts under their breaths. 

The applicant’s second request for special exception became moot when the rezoning request fell to the traffic safety and neighborhood concerns of the BOS.

Xena was surprised that Reid Foster, recently defeated Board member, spoke about his concerns for traffic safety.  Is he attempting a come-back in four years?  He did it once before.  Just asking.

The public hearing on the personal  property tax rate increase was anticlimatic.  No member of the public spoke pro or con, though the undercurrents in the exchanges among the BOS members was palpable.  Motion carried …4 to 1.