Board of Supervisors Chairman Ken Boyd has invoked the nuclear option in city/county relations, suggesting that Albemarle cease sharing revenue with Charlottesville, Jeremy Borden writes in today’s Progress. Boyd’s threat is hollow: Albemarle can’t simply stop paying — a court would certainly order the county to adhere to the contract.
The 1982 deal was struck between the two entities to end the city’s long-standing habit of occasionally expanding its borders, which is how Charlottesville grew from its original one square mile to its current ten. As 29N began to expand economically, the city threatened to grow north to encompass it, with Fashion Square Mall being the target. Albemarle, tired of expanding its revenue base only to have it seized by the city, agreed to share a chunk of its real estate tax with Charlottesville if Charlottesville would stop annexing land. It was put to a referendum, and county citizens overwhelmingly agreed.
The General Assembly put a temporary hold on annexation in 1987, and has extended that temporary hold ever since. It’s due to expire in 2010. Del. Matt Lohr’s HB1979, introduced last year, would have extended it to 2020, but it was vetoed by Governor Tim Kaine. Sen. Emmett Hanger got SB742 through the legislature last week, though it’s not clear whether it will meet the same fate as Lohr’s bill.
To hear Boyd’s comments and read more about the BoS meeting in question, see Sean Tubbs’ report for Charlottesville Tomorrow.