2006 Code of Virginia § 15.2-3907 - Hearing and decision by court
15.2-3907. Hearing and decision by court.
A. The special court shall order an election to determine if the voters ofthe county desire the General Assembly to grant the county a municipalcharter if, after hearing the evidence, it finds that:
1. The county possesses at the time of the filing of the petition a minimumpopulation of 20,000 persons and a density of population of at least 300persons per square mile, or a minimum population of 50,000 persons and adensity of population of at least 140 persons per square mile, based eitheron the latest United States census, on the latest estimates of the WeldonCooper Center for Public Service of the University of Virginia, or on aspecial census conducted under court supervision; and
2. The county has the fiscal capacity to function as an independent city andto provide appropriate services; and
3. After a consideration of the best interests of the parties, the interestof the Commonwealth in the county's compliance with and promotion ofapplicable State policies with respect to environmental protection, publicplanning, education, public transportation, housing and other State servicepolicies declared by the General Assembly, and the interest of theCommonwealth in promoting strong and viable units of government in the area,the county is eligible for city status.
B. An election held pursuant to this section shall comply with 24.2-682and 24.2-684. The order for election shall allow sufficient time for thepreparation of a charter as hereafter provided for in this chapter. Suchelection shall be held no earlier than 180 days and no later than 300 dayssubsequent to the entry of the order of election.
C. The court shall be limited in its decision to granting or denyingeligibility for city status and shall have no authority to impose terms orconditions with respect to such eligibility.
D. If a majority of the court is of the opinion that the criteria set out insubsection A have not been met, then eligibility for city status shall bedenied.
E. The court shall render a written opinion in every case brought under theprovisions of this chapter.
(1979, c. 85, 15.1-977.9; 1997, c. 587.)
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