James City County Supervisors on Tuesday night deferred action on approving the comprehensive plan for the county, which outlines long-term strategy for county planning.
Supervisors delayed discussion and vote out of deference to longtime board member Jim Kennedy, who was out of town during the meeting.
The decision to continue the public hearing pushed back several hot-button land-use designation applications, including one from BASF Corp., which is vying to change its current designation from General Industry to Mixed Use.
If successful, BASF Corp. is hoping to sell a parcel of land on the James River to a developer that would construct a waterfront resort. The property has sat vacant for nearly 21 years. Last week, a group led by Petra Nadal, who is running for the School Board, hosted a meeting with BASF Corp. representatives to discuss the land-use designation at a meeting in Grove.
Two members of the Board of Supervisors -- Jim Kennedy and John McGlennon -- previously questioned whether or not there were political motivations for the meeting as a slate of Republican candidates for the board, including Heather Cordasco and Sue Sadler, were on hand, in addition to other political operatives.
But Sadler pushed back against the accusations Tuesday evening. "To set the record straight, there was not one thing political about this meeting," Sadler said. "It was not meant for the Board of Supervisors, it was meant for the public." While she did not live in Grove, she showed up out of support for Nadal, who she said has strived to keep the community informed.
"The Board of Supervisors doesn’t need to be invited to every community meeting," Sadler said. "The last I checked we live in a free society."
McGlennon said at the board meeting he felt the need to "correct the record" after being informed by a number of citizens that he was attacked at the meeting.
"I received multiple reports from Grove residents who did attend the event that a number of partisan politicians made reference to the absence of politicians at that event."
McGlennon's absence was referenced indirectly at the meeting by some attendees Thursday night, but none of the candidates for office mentioned him.
Dozens of speakers had signed up to address the Board of Supervisors at Tuesday night's meeting, but many deferred, seeking instead to speak at the board's next full meeting later this month. Vernon M. Geddy III, an attorney representing BASF Corp., also declined to speak until the next meeting.
Bogues can be reached by phone at 757-345-2346.