Cumberland, 'All Hope Is Not Lost'

Published 4:30 pm Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Editor, The Herald:

Congratulations Cumberland County!!!!

Your augmentation reservoir was approved by a unanimous vote of the Henrico County Board of Supervisors. The only question asked by a Board member was to make certain that Henrico would not be liable for any claims attributable to the mudflats the reservoir creates. An augmentation reservoir is not really a “lake” with endless recreational activities, even though your supervisors insisted it was. Your supervisors also told you that the reservoir would not cost Cumberland County a dime and then spent over $2 million of your money on it. Our assessed property value increased in excess of 15%, in a severe recession, and our taxes will increase again in the near future. The culprit is uncontrolled spending. In the end, I believe your supervisors sold you down the river. They had to settle, in my opinion, for a bad deal because they placed you and your county in a sea of debt. You should have been at the Henrico meeting last week to see the celebration Henrico had at your expense.

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There is one simple reason Henrico fought so valiantly for the reservoir in Cumberland County-they know exactly what an augmentation reservoir looks and smells like and they did not want it in Henrico County, at any cost. This reservoir could take up to two or more years to fill. When it is frequently drained, for that is its purpose, it could take another two or more years to refill. Your Cumberland County Board of Supervisors finally admitted it was an augmentation reservoir, not a lake, at a public meeting a week or so ago, but they then proceeded to vote for it anyway.

All hope is not lost. You can help right this unfortunate wrong by taking two easy steps for yourself and your fellow Cumberland County citizens. Vote in next year's November election to remove each and every Cumberland County Board member who drowned your county in a boatload of debt, caused your taxes to be increased in a severe recession and created this untenable situation. If you are then called as a juror to determine compensation for your fellow citizens for the taking of their properties in a condemnation proceeding, listen carefully to the facts and make an award that compensates the landowners for the full replacement value of their properties, as well as for any damages for which they are entitled. Such active participation in your county government will not increase your taxes one dime and could help send a clear message to Henrico County. Henrico may have won the battle of the supervisors but they have yet to fight the war of fair and adequate compensation.

Bob Nolda

Cumberland County taxpayer