Spotsylvania News

Jeff Branscome writes about Spotsylvania County.

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More on overcrowding…and some other stuff

Due to a tight deadline last night, I couldn’t find out why planning commissioner Hugh Montgomery recommended supervisors reduce the definition of “family” to any blood relatives (this includes adopted or foster children) and three unrelated people per home.

Staff recommended four unrelated people per home. Keep in mind, supervisors last month adopted portions of the International Property Maintenance Code that dictates how many people can stay in a room. For example, one person can stay in a 70-square-foot room. Any additional person requires an additional 50 square feet. That’s a 10×12 bedroom for two people.

So, the definition doesn’t necessarily mean three unrelated people can stay in a 10×12 room. The international code still comes into play.

On the phone today, Montgomery said he thought it was reasonable to use the same standard that Fredericksburg uses, which is three unrelated people. Staff members said they used four because that’s the definition in Fairfax.

There’s the scoop on that.

Secondly, planning commissioner Kevin Leahy said one reason so many homes are overcrowded is because there aren’t enough affordable homes in the county.

Supervisor Hap Connors told me yesterday that he has asked county staff to  bring the affordable housing element to the Comprehensive Plan to the August agenda for review and possible adoption.

Supervisors tabled the proposal earlier this year and they haven’t seen it back in months. I am sure it doesn’t help that the former planning director, Ric Goss, left in March for a new job in Florida. He had presented the Comprehensive Plan amendment to supervisors earlier.

“I think it’s time to adopt it,” Connors said. “It may not be perfect, but it shows the development community that the county is serious about it.”

The largest rezoning the county has ever had is on the horizon. Summit Crossing is expected to be filed soon and Tricord says it will contain affordable units.

But who will determine what’s affordable?

I think I am going off on a tangent. Sorry.