Planning-meeting

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Something is wrong when the chairman of the Planning Commission deliberately, maliciously and with forethought excludes three members of the commission from a meeting and thereby disenfranchises 3/5’s of county residents in order to further his own political/philosophical views. 

Something is wrong when an attorney who has sued the county government multiple times, often frivolously, is blithely appointed to positions of influence in the county government.

Something is wrong when the chairman of the Planning Commission, using the imprimatur of the county, abrogates established lines of authority to go around the commission’s chief FOIA officer. He argued minor points with state FOIA officials in order to gin up a rationale prohibiting members of the commission from participating electronically in a meeting during a pandemic. This disrespect for the established chain of command caused the chief FOIA officer to resign.

Something is wrong when the chairman of the Planning Commission, in a public forum, harangues, belittles and denigrates the county administrator during a period of unusual stress. The county administrator released a report on COVID-19 data and the chairman went into a long rant about how the data is meaningless. He then suggested the county administrator should spend his time crafting an anti-masturbation ordinance instead of reporting important information to the public. It would be funny if it wasn’t so pathetic.

I believe it is incumbent upon the Rappahannock Board of Supervisors to recognize the inappropriate actions by the chair of the Planning Commission and take three important actions.

  1. The county administrator reports to the Board of Supervisors. When one of their employees is attacked, they must stand up for the employee. The board should pass a resolution expressing a vote of confidence in the county administrator.

  2. The Board of Supervisors must appoint an independent third party as the chief FOIA officer for the Planning Commission and notify the state FOIA resources this person is to be their only point of contact with the Planning Commission.

  3. The Board of Supervisors must pass a resolution requesting that the Circuit Court appoint a replacement for the current chairman of the Planning Commission as quickly as possible.

I believe there have been too many transgressions by the current chairman of the Planning Commission over the last several years. These problems should not be swept under the rug again. It is time for the Board of Supervisors to take decisive action.

— The writer lives in FT Valley