Community Update: Gainesville Supervisor Cites Coalition Work, Unified Community

Board of County Supervisors Vice-Chairman, Pete Candland (Gainesville) called out the Coalition for “outstanding efforts” and making a “real difference in this fight.” Candland praised the SCC Staff Report as “devastating” to Dominion Power for pointing out that Dominion wants a route opposed by the vast majority of the community, while simultaneously using rate payer dollars to fund speculative development projects for corporate clients. Candland cites two examples where Dominion’s corporate clients walked away from projects, leaving rate payers on the hook for nearly $100 million.

Candland thanked Supervisor Lawson and Chairman Stewart for their support. The Coalition agrees, and would add Supervisors Anderson, Caddigan, Jenkins, and Principi – and Planning Director Chris Price – for steadfast opposition and help in reforming flawed zoning policies and infrastructure siting policies.

The Coalition looks forward to the supervisors‘ and staff’s continued stewardship of county resources. Last August, the board unanimously expressed support for the Rural Crescent. As Candland noted during the recent supervisors meeting, because of Dominion’s threats and other discussions taking place, residents of the rural parts of the county feel “constantly under attack” from inconsistent zoning and improper location of infrastructure. We remind our supervisors: not all threats to the county are external.

Residents county-wide express support for rural preservation – and oppose policy changes that increase sprawl and taxes for everyone. We appreciate Candland’s commitment to be “very skeptical”– and Supervisor Principi’s bi-partisan expression of “getting cold feet” – about contemplating any changes to rural zoning and infrastructure siting. These policy tools protect citizens county-wide, both environmentally and economically.

To Coalition supporters and the community at large, we add our thanks to Candland’s for your historic efforts that provide, “a powerful affirmation that citizens can be heard when we are unified.” Dominion, its regulators, and our elected officials felt the force of that unity. While this phase of the Dominion battle is drawing to a close, your unified voice will remain essential to expose and oppose other threats originating closer to home.