YEAR IN REVIEW: August

Chesterfield dries up

The Appomattox River basin has been hit particularly hard by drought. The area started seeing the affects of the drought in August when Chesterfield County issued an earlier than usual mandatory water restriction. “The state has said that central Virginia is suffering the worse drought since 1969,” said James J.L. Stegmaeir, Chesterfield County administrator. “And as a result, we have seen some decline in our reservoirs particularly in Lake Chesdin.” On Aug. 24 the reservoir was measured as 57 inches down from its normal level. The water level at Lake Chesdin is with one percent of historic low levels. Four months later, the mandatory water restrictions are still in place and fines are enforced on violators.

Gov. Jindal speaks in Chester

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal was the first of the Romney campaign’s national surrogates to stop in Chester during the campaign season. He addressed a crowd of about 60 Romney supporters at the Romney Chesterfield South Victory Office at Festival Park in the Village Green. Also, Senate hopeful George Allen made several sops in Chester.

Proffers debate begins

If you bought a new home within the last several years, in fact going back to 1990, approximately one-third of new homes permitted paid a cash proffer. A proffer is a sort of promise, more directly: proffers involve making an offer prior to any formal negotiations or before a rezoning case is considered by Chesterfield’s Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors. Proffers can be anything from a developer planting trees and shrubs on the property, building a turning lane for transportation or transferring property for a park. The cash piece of the proffer, currently $18,966 in Chesterfield pays for part of county’s infrastructure and developers began a campaign to do away with cash proffers in Chesterfield. But the dilemma comes in the questions of who will pay for the strains on infrastructure that new development causes. The story will continue well into 2013.

CBC dominate BIB tournament

In the 55th addition of the Boys Invitational Baseball (BIB) tournament, the CBC Nationals defeated Newport News 8-4 to secure the tournament crown, becoming the second CBC team to win the BIB in as many years and the third CBC team to win since 2008. Not only did they win the tournament, they did it in dominant fashion. In the first round, CBC National defeated the Virginia Diamonds 14-0 in four innings by mercy rule, and then handed Staunton an 11-0 defeat in the second round. Leading the way in these games was the BIB tournament’s Most Valuable Player in pitcher Grant Squyars, who allowed just two hits over the first two games, both of which didn’t leave the infield. In the semi-finals, CBC National put up another 11 runs to defeat Dinwiddie National 11-6. Squyars finished the tournament allowing five runs over 19 innings while striking out 29 batters. In addition, he was the winning pitcher in three of the four games. Squyars also had a .500 batting average and drove in three runs on offense.

Building permits on the rise

While large construction like Amazon and the Kroger Supermarket at Chippenham and Hull Street were in the news concerning commercial building, residential building was languished in the background. Although residential permits were not making headlines, they began gaining some ground. As early as January of this year building COs (Certificates of Occupancy) were beginning to increase. Tracked in comparison to 2011, the story is in the numbers. Through July the inspection department has written 757 building permits for residential units, almost twice as many as those issued to date last year – 453.

Notables

  • All Chesterfield County comprehensive schools are fully accredited for the 2012-13 school year, according to student achievement data. The Virginia Department of Education establishes accreditation status each year based on student achievement on Standards of Learning tests taken during the previous school year.
  • Ironbridge Corner development was approved for construction of 100 apartments at the corner of Iron Bridge Parkway and Iron Bridge Road. The case was argued by School Board representative Carrie Coyner and sought to reduce school proffers because the project would have less impact on schools.
  • Chesterfield County ruled to raze a historic log cabin in Chester behind Sibley’s Bar-B-Q because of safety issues. Its roof had collapsed and the structure was unsecure. The log cabin was home to Chesterfield’s first library and was later used by numerous clubs as a meeting hall.
  • Bensley resident Brandon Raub was detained by federal authorities, assisted by Chesterfield County Police Department, because they believed he was suffering from PTSD and posed as a threat to society. He was taken to John Randolph Medical Center for further evaluation. A wave of support came out for Raub and with the help of some civil liberties organizations he was later released.
  • Chesterfield County Fair Association held its 99th annual County Fair. Savannah Morgan Lane, was crowned Miss Chesterfield County Fair 2012.

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