Thursday, August 2, 2007

Tick … Tick … Secrecy and “Closed Doors”

Here’s the latest information we have regarding the “Countryside Development.” This is the response given to Valerie this morning to a probing email she sent looking for the information on whether or not the developer responded to the city by the August 1 deadline. (FOIA stands for “Freedom of Information Act”)

From: <>
To: Valerie
Sent: Thursday, August 02, 2007 10:49 AM
Subject: Re: August 1st Deadline – Countryside Property – FOIA
The developer responded with a modified concept plan before the August 1 deadline. The next step is to share the new development concept with City Council this Monday in closed session.
Regarding your request for communication with the development team, we will respond to the FOIA within the time frame* provided by law. [* See “B” below and link to the Virignia Coalition for Open Government. ]

Chris Chittum, AICP, Planning Administrator Planning Building and Economic Development
215 Church Ave., SW, Room 166 Roanoke, VA 24011

Here is what the developer should have responded to:

1) Details of how the land would be conveyed, details of the developer’s obligations in terms of providing infrastructure improvements and other amenities, and responsibility for studies such as environmental and traffic studies.

2) Proposed lot layouts and street patterns

3) Proposed land use mix

4) Managing development impacts such as stormwater and screening of nonresidential uses.

* B. A request for public records shall identify the requested records with reasonable specificity. The request need not make reference to this chapter in order to invoke the provisions of this chapter or to impose the time limits for response by a public body. Any public body that is subject to this chapter and that is the custodian of the requested records shall promptly, but in all cases within five working days of receiving a request, provide the requested records to the requester or make one of the following responses in writing:

Posted By Valerie Garner

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