‘If you fail to make the wise choices, Rappahannock will go the way of its neighbors’
In a letter Saturday to the Rappahannock County Board of Supervisors, Planning Commission Chair David Konick thanked the board, summarized his work with the county and reported on the planners’ efforts for November/December and the year 2020.
“It has been a privilege and honor to serve as a member of the Planning Commission this past year,” Konick wrote, “and even more so that my colleagues saw fit to elect me Chairman. I thank each one of you for granting me the opportunity to serve the community in this way, and to give something back to Rappahannock County, Virginia.”
Konick was appointed last year to the planning commission as a representative of the Board of Zoning Appeals. Konick’s five-year term expired on Dec. 3, 2019, but because the coronavirus outbreak forced the judiciary to postpone non-essential proceedings, the circuit court delayed the BZA appointments. Konick was not reappointed, but by previous agreement, he remained on the planning commission serving as its chair for the remainder of the year.
Among the accomplishments of the planning commission in the past year Konick cited finalizing the county’s comprehensive plan: “The work on the Comprehensive Plan, which was supposed to be reviewed and amended in 2009 was finally completed. The revised Comp Plan, as you know, contains significant revisions concerning wireless communications and renewable energy, along with a host of other revisions.”
After four-and-a-half years, significant amendments to the county’s zoning ordinance were presented at a public hearing and sent to the supervisors for their consideration. The amendments include clarifying food processing, combining definitions of family apartments and efficiency apartments, and making some changes to short term rentals.
After completing work on the comp plan and the zoning amendments, the planners began work on amendments to the sign ordinance.
“The Commission unanimously voted to recommend amendments to the Flood Plain Overlay District and adoption of the amended Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) flood-plain maps,” Konick wrote.
The planners held a preliminary review and public hearing for Tom Taylor’s application for rezoning of a 35-acre tract just west of Sperryville from RR-5 to R-2.
Despite the accomplishments of the commission in 2020, there is still much to do, he said, including: revisions to the sign ordinance; comprehensive review of the 1986 zoning ordinance, including amendments to carry provisions in the recently approved comp plan into effect; and comprehensive review of the subdivision ordinance.
In closing, Konick wrote, “I cannot leave without making the observation that if any of you are actually serious about preserving this County and truly honoring [recently deceased champion of the county’s environmental legacy] Phil Irwin’s memory, your work is cut out for you. This is not going to happen by paying mere lip service to Phil’s advice or without the ongoing, dedicated efforts of everyone on both the Board and the Commission. Much needed work has been neglected for decades and the recent passage of a Comprehensive Plan — with all its faults and shortcomings — is merely a beginning, not an end in itself….
“If you fail to make the wise choices, Rappahannock will go the way of its neighbors. Her future is in your hands; I pray G-d will imbue each of you with the wisdom to do what is needed and what is in the best interest of Rappahannock County.”