Chatham, VA - It's back to the beginning in Pittsylvania County. The Board of Supervisors voted to not send a resolution to Governor McDonnell, asking him to maintain the moratorium on uranium mining. Three voted in favor of the resolution, three opposed it and one had no opinion at all.
But it's that resolution that has caused controversy, and heated discussion in Pittsylvania County, the county with potentially the largest uranium deposit in the nation.
Marshall Ecker; he's perhaps Pittsylvania County's most memorable Supervisor. At the October 1st board meeting he presented his resolution to the community and to his colleagues; a resolution that would leave this county and this board in complete disagreement.
"The board as a whole needs to work on this come up with a good resolution that protects the citizens of the county. And we have resolutions forthcoming," said Tim Barber, the Chairman of the board, who voted in opposition of the resolution.
"We've had eight studies, and they want to wait on the uranium working group's report which will not decide a thing," said Ecker.
Ecker claims waiting to send a resolution to maintain the moratorium won't be considered as valuable as one sent today, "The longer we wait, it shows our inaction to take action, and sends a message to the other counties in the state and in the northeast, and the world, that Pittsylvania County does not care," he said.
Ecker, who lives just six miles from the proposed mining site, sites in his resolution that the primary goal of county supervisors, is to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the citizens.
When asked who the supervisors had in mind when they voted on the resolution, county resident, Lori Bidgood replied,"Some do. I know that there are three that do, but the other four, I can't tell you what they have in mind, but I don't think it's our best interests."
Barber disagreed, saying the citizens were forefront, "The citizens. But like I said, I think we should compile as much as we can, to back up our reasoning when we send a resolution."
The board members in opposition of Ecker's resolution agreed that they would rather have one sent to Richmond that had the approval of the entire board, saying that would hold more value than one approved by just four of the board's members.