Emory named to Planning Commission

Commissioner Emory

Bill Emory is possibly the only person appointed to the Planning Commission who's ever sued the city. The Woolen Mills shutterbug and gadfly found out he'd been named to the Charlottesville Planning Commission Monday night as he watched the City Council meeting on public access channel 10. "I didn't even get interviewed," he says, although he concedes that he tried twice before to get on the advisory body.

Earlier this year, Emory withdrew his lawsuit against the city for a clerical error that removed a historically protected designation off most of a parcel in Woolen Mills, a botched rezoning case that came to be known as "taking by typo."

Long an activist in Woolen Mills, he also was instrumental in getting the composting of sewage at the nearby Moore's Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant, which he called "the mother of all outhouses," moved. Earlier this year, he got the Rivanna Water & Sewer Authority to commit an additional $5.2 million to contain the stink. Emory quietly supported the breaching of the Woolen Mills dam, and worked to get the old mill community listed in the National Register of Historic Places and the Virginia Landmarks Register.

Now Emory will be sitting on the other side of the table. "I really feel like it's where the rubber meets the road," he says, vowing to be guided by "good zoning principles."

He takes the seat of Hosea Williams, and his four-year term starts September 1. "I go to all the meetings anyway," says Emory. "I have a lot of respect for the people on there. I travel all over on a bike. I love this town. Charlottesville is a unique and wonderful place and could certainly use some planning."


"Charlottesville is a unique and wonderful place and could certainly use some planning."

Amen to that...

Was Emory the only applicant that wasn't interviewed?

Great appointment, despite what Cville Eye may have to say about it.

Arthur, learn to read. I didn't say anything about the appointment. I was talking about the process.

Bill Emory did interview for a seat on the Planning Commission, not once but twice. On his third try for appointment, he was going to be out of town on the day we conducted the interviews and there was mutual agreement that he didn't need to interview a third time since he'd already answered essentially the same questions twice. While it does help to get one's blood flowing to one's vital parts to think of City Council as a group that operates under a constant cloud of conspiracy and collusion, sadly the reality is almost always much more mundane.

Thank you, Mr. Ambassador. And can you explain why the deadline was extended. Perhaps if it hadn't been extended, Mr. Emory could have been interviewed this year in front of this year's public who attended this year's process. BTW, where is the record of previous year's public interviews kept? Did Mr. Taliaferro and Mrs. Edwards have a chance to interview last year when they weren't on the council?

Taliaferro has been on the Council since 2006. I think you mean Huja. He's the one with the turban. All 5 sitting Councilors had a chance to interview Mr. Emory earlier this year for a prior opening. I'm sorry that your theories just don't hold up under the slightest of scrutiny. More importantly, I'm sorry that you seem so determined to cast a pall over every piece of good news that comes out of City Hall. But, that is absolutely your right.

Thanks for reminding me it's Mr. Huja's first term on council, not Mr. Taliaferro's. Judging from the amount of comments that each has made since January, I would have thought the reverse was true. And, again, why was the deadline extended? It certainly is taking a lot for transparency in government to function.

While waiting for Ambassador Norris to provide the mundane reason for the extension of the application process, I found this link at Charlottesville Tomorrow: Charlottesville city council applicants for planning commission 2008&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=4&gl=us . It seems in January it was announced that there were two openings on the PC due to William Lucy's and Hosea Williams' departure. On March 3 Council appoints Dan Rosenweig out of a field of seven to replace Mr. Lucy. None of the remaining six was appointed at that time to replace Mr. Williams. On June 24 (Rosenweign took his seat on March 18), CT anounced that there's a new deadline of July 3 for the replacement of Mr. Williams and that ¢Ã¢â??¬Ã?â??As soon as Council is satisfied there is a sufficient pool of applicants, City Council Clerk Jeanne Cox will schedule a special meeting to interview each one.¢Ã¢â??¬ On August 19, council appoints Mr. Emory, who, apparently was a part of the original pool of seven (he had been interviewed earlier this year). Assuming that Mr. Emory was a member of the remaining six and was chosen, why wasn't he chosen back in March rather than ask other people to apply. What is meant by "a sufficient pool of applicants?" Did anybody else apply in June? Why did it take from January to August to appoint two people to the PC, when both had applied and been interviewed by March? What was the process extended five months?

To quote Dave Norris:

"I think you mean Huja. He’s the one with the turban."

Thanks for the clarification. I always thought maybe the old white guy was Satyendra Huja. So now I know.

Is this the real Dave Norris posting or just someone trying to make him look like a dimwit?

Chill, dude. The mayor seems to be employing a bit o' gentle sarcasm there. Read the last line of the post before his for context.

Keep it sane, I, too, took it for humorous criticism.

Why are you all even having this debate? If someone is in place by the original date of September 1st who cares how long it took them to pick someone? If CvilleEye is implying that because William Emory had a tenuous past history with the City and that is the reason Council was reluctant to hire him the first time around why did they appoint him now? And if only a few people applied for a very important position why not extend the deadline to make sure you have the right candidate, that's just good governing.