Opening Remarks on January 6, 2010

The chair’s role is to speak last, but I would like to be the first to welcome the newly elected members to the board. I know they are both ready to work hard for their districts and for the county as a whole.

I will give my remarks after other supervisors have spoken. …

It is an honor to represent the residents of the White Hall district and to be elected chair for 2010. I view the chair’s role as that of a facilitator for open and effective government, where all speakers, from all perspectives, are equally respected and invited to participate.

We face serious challenges in the coming year, and only through concerted cooperative effort on everyone’s part, supervisors, citizens, and staff, will we achieve success. Albemarle County residents want us focused on their issues and using all of our combined skills. They want local government that is proactive rather than reactive, planning ahead for efficient delivery of services.

We all want the same outcome, a county where citizens have an opportunity for success in their chosen endeavors; a county where we protect the quality of life in all its facets and where we protect the healthy environment our residents have come to expect or have moved here to enjoy.

We want improved growth of our locally-owned businesses and job creation, with the help of the Piedmont Workforce Network, as businesses rely more on the One-Stop Center for employee hiring and training. We want local jobs for the more than ten thousand county residents who commute out of the county to work every day.

We want our agricultural and rural economies to thrive. Buyers will have easy access to local products and our rural residents will have vital businesses. In addition, farms and forests provide scenic and environmental benefits to us all.

The County is facing new state and federal regulations for stormwater runoff; we should join with our partner governments and non-profits in the Rivanna watershed to develop a local response watershed model for our daily pollution diet or total maximum daily load (TMDL). A meeting on this effort will be held at 10 am this Friday, January 8, in Rm 241, for any who are interested.

We have seen many achievements in the last year: implementation of the revalidation process for participation in the land use tax program, adoption of stormwater regulations which retain more sediment through replanting of graded sites, and adoption of more recommendations of the Development Review Task Force, to name a few.  We have seen increased efficiencies in local government operations, cross training of employees, and recognize our staff who have been flexible and willing to undertake new roles to deliver service to the citizens at reduced cost.

I call upon all residents to participate in your government, to share your ideas and your passion for particular issues. Remind your representative of your concerns. When you write to the entire board at, please provide your district, in order for your supervisor to better respond, while sharing your concern with us all.

Winter is here and we have much to do. Thank you.

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