IOW resident wonders why supervisor balks at redistricting

Published 10:26 am Friday, August 30, 2013

To the Editor:

I have read with interest the recent articles on Supervisor [A-1] Casteen’s reluctance to move forward with the seven district plan for Isle of Wight County. I’ve tried to analyze his printed reasons for wanting to go slow, such as appoint another committee after a new supervisor is on the Board, the old seven district plan lacked details and included members of defeated board members.

The advantages to the seven district plan that the committee presented and recommended to the Board at that time have not changed. Mr. Casteen was one of the strongest advocates for seven districts at that time, and voted for the plan. It is pretty obvious that he was not waiting to see what some future supervisor may think of the plan, but rather voted his convictions as to what he thought was best for Isle of Wight County.

Also, if he personally had some reservations about some committee members, he endorsed their recommendations as well as what many citizens of the County were seeking.

Only Mr. Casteen knows the real reason he is having a change of mind, but it is my opinion that politics and influence are at the core of it.

During the tenure of the last Board, Mr. Casteen’s influence was limited. I’m not suggesting that was good or bad. With the current Board his sphere of influence is much greater and he does not want to see that diminished.

I hope Mr. Casteen will again look at what’s best for Isle of Wight County and support moving forward with seven districts with haste.

I supported the seven-district plan three years ago, which Mr. Casteen is well aware of, and I still support it. All of us are proud to be Isle of Wight residents; however, we do have “Communities of Interest” within the County and I feel the citizens can be best served with seven districts.

I urge the other four members of the Board of Supervisors to move forward with a seven district plan. If three members can keep it at five districts, three can make it seven.

Bobby Claud
Isle of Wight County