The Virginia Senate had neither voted nor debated Senate Bill 1355, that allows Greene County to withdraw from the Rapidan Service Authority (RSA) by press time. Instead, on Jan. 26, the bill was recommitted to the Committee on Local Government, which is next scheduled to meet on Monday, Feb. 1, at 9 a.m.
SB 1355, introduced by Sen. Emmett Hanger Jr., R-24th, would make it possible for a locality to withdraw from RSA. The bill was reported out of the senate Committee on Local Government on Monday, Jan. 18, with a vote of 14-0 with one abstention.
Neither Hanger nor RSA General Manager Tim Clemons return requests for comment.
RSA was created as a regional water and wastewater authority on June 17, 1969, by the counties of Greene, Orange and Madison. Sen. Hanger has requested the bill go by for the day during each session since Wednesday, Jan. 20.
SB 1355 comes after the RSA Board of Members voted 4-2 July 16, 2020, to end monthly facility fee billing to help fund the reservoir project in Greene. After that vote, the Greene County Board of Supervisors passed an ordinance requesting boards of supervisors in Orange and Madison allow Greene to withdraw from the service authority but both counties refused.
The Greene County supervisors filed a six-count lawsuit on Sept. 14, requesting more than $25 million for alleged contract breaches, alleged violations of fiduciary duty and alleged non-compliance with its duties to Greene County.
On Sept. 17, the RSA Board of Members voted 4-2—with Greene County’s representatives voting no—to prohibit Greene County representatives from participating in any business at meetings, including last month’s discussion about upgrading RSA’s water treatment plant in Greene County with membrane technology.