What’s the hardship?


The Islamic Center of Culpeper (ICC) got a spot on the Board of Supervisor’s March 1 agenda to request a permanent pump and haul (p & h) permit with a rather sketchy application. The supervisors were wise to postpone their decision for 30 days.

Policy adopted by the Board of Supervisors on July 3, 2012 “and shall replace any previously adopted policy regarding pump and haul permitting” states the following:

“The County of Culpeper reserves the right to deny any request and will only authorize a pump and haul operation for a private individual or entity where it is shown that a unique, temporary situation exists which goes beyond simple hardship conditions.”

Reportedly, the ICC’s application claims it owns 14434 Rixeyville Road but they haven’t purchased the property. Can you claim a hardship for land you don’t own?

A county document dated March 1 states that the ICC plans to rehabilitate the existing abandoned 1,761 square foot house on the property. The ICC’s spokesman told the Culpeper Star Exponent the same day that they plan to tear down the house and build a new structure. This sounds like a business and development plan, not a hardship.

If new construction is planned how much sewage will be generated? The applicant failed to disclose gallons per day output. Policy adopted in 2012 says it’s a requirement for a permit. Why was an incomplete application sent to the Board? It’s in the county government’s best interest to know how much sewage will be hauled before issuing a permit since they are responsible for citizens’ health, safety and welfare.

The ICC did not fully disclose its intent or meet the basic permitting requirements. Nothing proves even a simple hardship. Why should our supervisors seriously consider this application or approve it?

Melanie Chambers