VOF expands public comment period for Nov. 6 board meeting

The Virginia Outdoors Foundation will be expanding the public comment period at its Board of Trustees meeting on Thursday, November 6, 2014 in Richmond in order to accommodate growing interest in several agenda items.

Details about the meeting can be found here. The full agenda and background materials will be posted by close of business on Monday, November 3.

Among the topics expected to be addressed at the meeting are two dozen new land conservation projects, as well as stewardship-related requests from Washington and Lee University, Loudoun County, and a Fauquier County landowner.

Fauquier County landowner Piedmont Agriculture Academy LLC, represented by owner Martha Boneta of Paris, Va., and legal counsel William Hurd, will make a 20-minute presentation requesting that VOF consider accepting a voluntary assignment of a conservation easement that is currently co-held with the Piedmont Environmental Council (PEC), a private land trust based in Warrenton. Ms. Boneta and Mr. Hurd will explain the reasons for the request, and PEC will be given 20 minutes to provide its own information.

Supporters of Ms. Boneta are planning to hold a rally prior to the board meeting, and VOF has been told that many of these supporters may wish to speak during the public comment period about the issue. Normally, the public comment period is less than 10 minutes, but because of the increased interest and desire to accommodate the public, the period is being expanded to 20 minutes. Individual speakers will be limited to three minutes.

Anyone who would like to submit written comments may email them to bcabibbo@vofonline.org or mail them to VOF’s Warrenton office. Comments must include your name, address, and daytime phone number for verification purposes, or they will not be accepted as part of the official meeting record. Comments received before 5pm on October 31, 2014 will be provided to the trustees in advance of the meeting.

“As a public agency with public board meetings, VOF strives to accommodate public input,” says VOF Executive Director Brett Glymph. “As an organization whose work is primarily based in partnerships with private landowners and other governmental and nongovernmental agencies, it’s also very important to our trustees that when an issue arises that merits special attention, our landowners and partners are given the opportunities they need to find a resolution.”

Jason McGarvey is VOF's communications and outreach manager. He is based in the Richmond office.