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Weekly Meeting Roundup 4/10: We sit through hours of meetings, you get info in minutes

County government really likes meetings, they have LOTS of meetings. But who can attend them all? BTW will spend hours a week at meetings so you can spend minutes getting only the important details. We want to make it easy for the public to stay abreast of what is happening in our county.

Joint Schools Working Committee Meeting 4/10: The best thing about this meeting is that is happened at all. It was fantastic to see our School Board and Board of Supervisors come together to discuss how the Capital Improvement Plans of each can be merged together. At this meeting, our new County Administrator Tom Foley presented a draft of the Joint Capital Improvement Plan Process. Basically, this document outlines exactly how to go about setting up the new joint CIP, what types of projects will be included and how they should be prioritized. If you would like to look at the draft, it is posted in the important documents section on BTW.

Much of the focus of the meeting involved determining the prioritization of various projects. Below is a clip from the draft outlining the potential areas of consideration.

"All submitted or proposed Capital Improvement Projects will be subject to ranking in accordance with the criteria and scoring system below. Areas of emphasis will include the following 10 categories:

1) Health and Safety (15%)

2) Education (15%)

3) Regulatory Compliance (10%)

4) Quality of Life (10%)

5) Infrastructure (10%)

6) Sustainability/Energy Efficiency (10%)

7) Economic/Community Development (10%)

8) Special Considerations (10%)

9) Impact on Operational Budget (5%)

10) Timing/Location (5%)

Each project will be evaluated against each area of emphasis and scored on a scale of 1 through 4 based on the degree to which the project addresses the attributes of the particular area of emphasis."

It is important to note that the order of these categories are not final, the committee wanted a rework of some of the categories and the weight attributed to them so this list will change. A new draft will be submitted to the committee at the next meeting on May 22. But just the fact that there are objective, transparent criteria being discussed is a huge step in the right direction. I am so excited to watch how this process develops.

School Board Meeting 4/11: Unfortunately, I wasn't able to be at the meeting this week and SCPS doesn't currently live stream them. I did get get in touch with Sherrie Johnson, the SCPS Communications Director, regarding the issue. She assured me that after some upgrades to the Closed Captioning system, the meetings will be back to live streaming in the fall. I will cover this meeting in next week's wrap-up.

Planning Commission Meeting 4/12: The Planning Commission review all of the development plans that are in the approval process, then make recommendations to the Board of Supervisors. This group is among the first to know what new growth and businesses are coming to Stafford.

- Stafford Nursing Home off of Berea Church Road: The PC heard from the developer to request a reduction in the number of Independent Living dwellings and a increase in Assisted Living dwellings, along with an accompanying reduction in proffers expected. This change could affect the demand on fire and rescue services, as well as road infrastructure problems. The PC pushed any further decision on this project to the May 10th meeting.

-Steak and Shake on Garrisonville Road: This project is proposed to go on Garrisonville road next to Valero, across from Barton and Williams Dance Studio. The lot of the drive-through restaurant does have a wooded area on its northern end which will be remain in place however, the owner of the property would like to develop it for small retail in the future. The PC voted to approve this application.

- Town Center at Aquia Restaurant: This request refers to a vacant lot next to Ruby Tuesday's in the Aquia Towne Center. The owner of the property would like to establish a drive-through restaurant TBD, potentially a coffee shop or doughnut/breakfast restaurant. There was some concern expressed by the PC regarding the hours of the establishment and potentially noise issues for the apartment residents next door. The PC voted to approve the application.