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Senate Acts on Nominees, Zoning Requests

The V.I. Legislature unanimously confirmed four nominees to the V.I. Parole Board and governing boards of the Water and Power Authority, the Port Authority and University of the Virgin Islands during the 30th Legislature’s first legislative session Tuesday.
The Senate confirmed Curtis Williams for the V.I. Parole Board; Elizabeth Armstrong to the WAPA board; Gwendolyn Adams Norton for the UVI board; and Yvonne Thraen for another term on the Port Authority governing board, where she currently serves.
A lifelong St. Croix resident, Williams graduated from St. Patrick’s High School in 1959 and, that same year, started working at the Merwin Hardware Store, where he prepared payroll. He received a bachelor’s degree from UVI in 1977 when it was still called the College of the Virgin Islands.
Williams has worked for the V.I. government for 36 years, with the last 14 in a supervisory position with the V.I. Police Department, where he served as an administrative hearing officer.
Williams worked in several government departments over the years, beginning with the Department of Health, followed by the Municipal Court of the Virgin Islands, the V.I. Department of Labor and finally the VIPD, where he worked from 1980 until his retirement in 1994. Williams also taught adult students at UVI from 1979-1987.
A V.I. native, Norton received a bachelor’s degree in Urban Studies from the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Va., in 1979, and she was an Advanced Leadership Initiative Fellow at Harvard University in 2010.
Norton was senior vice president of Wachovia Bank, with responsibility in the area of community development finance in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut from 1999-2004. Before that, she worked at Banco Popular from 1997-1999.
She served as V.I. Finance Commissioner from 1995-1997.
Norton is a trustee to Spelman College in Atlanta and a trustee with the Visiting Nursing Service of New York, a $1 billion nonprofit organization.
Armstrong, owner and manager of The Buccaneer hotel and resort, grew up on St. Croix, attending Good Hope School from kindergarten until graduation. She received a bachelor’s degree from the Gallatin School of New York University in 1989.
Armstrong has been in management at The Buccaneer since 1989. She was president of the St. Croix Hotel and Tourism Association from 1995-1998, and she has been involved in several nonprofit organizations.
Thraen was born on St. Thomas, graduating from Sts. Peter and Paul High School and earning a bachelor’s degree from Catholic University of Puerto Rico in 1968, a Master’s of Social Work degree from Howard University in 1973, and a doctorate in social welfare from Brandeis University in 1977.
Thraen has served as an intern in Congress and has worked in several V.I. government positions. She began as a case worker in the department that later became Human Services, and she taught at the then-called College of the Virgin Islands.
In 1987 Gov. Alexander Farrelly appointed Thraen to be an assistant to the governor through 1995 and Gov. Roy L. Schneider appointed her to the same position serving from 1995 to 1997. From 2002 to 2007, Thraen was a liaison between the territory and several federal agencies for selected federally funded projects.
She is retired from government and a member of several boards, committees and nonprofit organizations, including the UVI Board of Trustees. Thraen has served on the VIPA governing board since 2006.
Along with several changes to territorial law, which are discussed elsewhere in the Source Wednesday, the Legislature approved numerous zoning changes and voted one zoning change down. The Legislature unanimously approved:
– Hugo Roller’s request to rezone 15 acres on St. John from A-2 Agriculture to B-3 Business Scattered to allow the development of an "eco resort" on three separate parcels (Map SJZ-3, nos. 8-4-1-A, 80401-B and 8-4-1 Remainder) adjacent to King Hill Rd.;
– George Rogers’ and Colette Rogers Anthony’s request to rezone parcel no. 41-5-2 in Estate Frydenhoj on St. Thomas from R-2 residential low density to B-4 business-residential to allow a storage business, restaurant and retail or office space;
– a use variant for plot no. 211, Estate Golden Rock, Company Quarter, St. Croix, from the R-3 zoning designation to consolidate and relocate the operation of the owner’s yacht manufacturing business;
– Little Oak Ventures’ request to rezone no. 6A New Quarter, St. Thomas, from R-5 residential-high density to B-2 business secondary neighborhood to construct a two-story office building and parking;
– a zoning variance for Jannie Daniel for Plot No. 51 of Parcel No. 15 V.I. Corporation Land, Prince Quarter, St. Croix, to allow for the operation of a tutoring center;
– Dvergsten Company’s request for a use variance on parcels nos. 2-2 Remainder, 2-2-3 and
2-2-4 Estate Bovoni (Eastern Part) nos. 1 and 2 Frenchman’s Bay Quarter, St. Thomas, to build a warehouse with office and storage space on the property, which is zoned B-2 business;
– Courtyard Land Co.’s request to rezone parcels 40A and 40B, Estate Smith Bay, St. Thomas, from B-4 business residential to C commercial to bring the pre-existing, nonconforming self-storage business o the site into zoning conformity;
– Cassi Land Co.’s request to rezone parcels 20-37 Estate Smith Bay, 14-2, 14 Remainder and 13AB Estate Frydendahl, St. Thomas, from B-4 business residential to B-2 Business Secondary Neighborhood to allow current uses to continue;
-rezoning Plot No. 232-D Estate Glynn, Queen Quarter, St. Croix from A-2 (Agricultural) to R-2 (Residential-Low Density);
– rezoning Parcel Nos. 40A and 40B Estate Smith Bay, St. Thomas, from B-4 (Business-Residential Areas) to C (Commercial);
– rezoning Parcel No.18A Estate Smith Bay, St. Thomas, from R-3 (Residential Medium Density) to B-2 (Business-Secondary/ Neighborhood);
– a variance to Plot No. 75, Estate Boetzberg, East End Quarter “A”, St. Croix, from the uses permitted in the B-2 Business-Secondary Neighborhood Zoning District to allow Hussam Rahhal, proprietor of the East End Service Station, to manufacture ice.
The Legislature approved a use variance for Gold Coast Yachts Inc. owner Richard Difede for Plot No. 211, Estate Golden Rock, Company Quarter, St. Croix, from the R-3 zoning designation to consolidate and relocate the operation of the owner’s yacht manufacturing business. The vote was 14-1, with Sen. Craig Barshinger voting nay. Barshinger said he was voting no because there were neighbors who objected to the change.
The Legislature voted against approving David and Kay Lineham’s request for a use variance to allow them to park their mobile food truck permanently on a residential property in La Grande Princesse at Plot No. 32-K Estate La Grande Princess, Company Quarter, St. Croix, from the R-3 zoning designation for Blues Barbecue.
Opponents argued that some neighbors were in opposition and that mobile food trucks were too often operating like permanent, fixed restaurants.
Voting for the variance were Sens. Judi Buckley, Donald Cole, Kenneth Gittens, Alicia "Chucky" Hansen, Terrence "Positive" Nelson, Nereida "Nellie" Rivera-O’Reilly and Sammuel Sanes. Voting nay were Barshinger, Sens. Diane Capehart, Clifford Graham, Myron Jackson, Shawn-Michael Malone, Clarence Payne, Tregenza Roach and Janette Millin Young.
Editor’s Note: The vote count on this last measure was initially incorrect. It has been corrected.

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The V.I. Legislature unanimously confirmed four nominees to the V.I. Parole Board and governing boards of the Water and Power Authority, the Port Authority and University of the Virgin Islands during the 30th Legislature's first legislative session Tuesday.
The Senate confirmed Curtis Williams for the V.I. Parole Board; Elizabeth Armstrong to the WAPA board; Gwendolyn Adams Norton for the UVI board; and Yvonne Thraen for another term on the Port Authority governing board, where she currently serves.
A lifelong St. Croix resident, Williams graduated from St. Patrick's High School in 1959 and, that same year, started working at the Merwin Hardware Store, where he prepared payroll. He received a bachelor's degree from UVI in 1977 when it was still called the College of the Virgin Islands.
Williams has worked for the V.I. government for 36 years, with the last 14 in a supervisory position with the V.I. Police Department, where he served as an administrative hearing officer.
Williams worked in several government departments over the years, beginning with the Department of Health, followed by the Municipal Court of the Virgin Islands, the V.I. Department of Labor and finally the VIPD, where he worked from 1980 until his retirement in 1994. Williams also taught adult students at UVI from 1979-1987.
A V.I. native, Norton received a bachelor's degree in Urban Studies from the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Va., in 1979, and she was an Advanced Leadership Initiative Fellow at Harvard University in 2010.
Norton was senior vice president of Wachovia Bank, with responsibility in the area of community development finance in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut from 1999-2004. Before that, she worked at Banco Popular from 1997-1999.
She served as V.I. Finance Commissioner from 1995-1997.
Norton is a trustee to Spelman College in Atlanta and a trustee with the Visiting Nursing Service of New York, a $1 billion nonprofit organization.
Armstrong, owner and manager of The Buccaneer hotel and resort, grew up on St. Croix, attending Good Hope School from kindergarten until graduation. She received a bachelor's degree from the Gallatin School of New York University in 1989.
Armstrong has been in management at The Buccaneer since 1989. She was president of the St. Croix Hotel and Tourism Association from 1995-1998, and she has been involved in several nonprofit organizations.
Thraen was born on St. Thomas, graduating from Sts. Peter and Paul High School and earning a bachelor's degree from Catholic University of Puerto Rico in 1968, a Master's of Social Work degree from Howard University in 1973, and a doctorate in social welfare from Brandeis University in 1977.
Thraen has served as an intern in Congress and has worked in several V.I. government positions. She began as a case worker in the department that later became Human Services, and she taught at the then-called College of the Virgin Islands.
In 1987 Gov. Alexander Farrelly appointed Thraen to be an assistant to the governor through 1995 and Gov. Roy L. Schneider appointed her to the same position serving from 1995 to 1997. From 2002 to 2007, Thraen was a liaison between the territory and several federal agencies for selected federally funded projects.
She is retired from government and a member of several boards, committees and nonprofit organizations, including the UVI Board of Trustees. Thraen has served on the VIPA governing board since 2006.
Along with several changes to territorial law, which are discussed elsewhere in the Source Wednesday, the Legislature approved numerous zoning changes and voted one zoning change down. The Legislature unanimously approved:
- Hugo Roller's request to rezone 15 acres on St. John from A-2 Agriculture to B-3 Business Scattered to allow the development of an "eco resort" on three separate parcels (Map SJZ-3, nos. 8-4-1-A, 80401-B and 8-4-1 Remainder) adjacent to King Hill Rd.;
- George Rogers’ and Colette Rogers Anthony’s request to rezone parcel no. 41-5-2 in Estate Frydenhoj on St. Thomas from R-2 residential low density to B-4 business-residential to allow a storage business, restaurant and retail or office space;
- a use variant for plot no. 211, Estate Golden Rock, Company Quarter, St. Croix, from the R-3 zoning designation to consolidate and relocate the operation of the owner’s yacht manufacturing business;
- Little Oak Ventures' request to rezone no. 6A New Quarter, St. Thomas, from R-5 residential-high density to B-2 business secondary neighborhood to construct a two-story office building and parking;
- a zoning variance for Jannie Daniel for Plot No. 51 of Parcel No. 15 V.I. Corporation Land, Prince Quarter, St. Croix, to allow for the operation of a tutoring center;
- Dvergsten Company's request for a use variance on parcels nos. 2-2 Remainder, 2-2-3 and
2-2-4 Estate Bovoni (Eastern Part) nos. 1 and 2 Frenchman’s Bay Quarter, St. Thomas, to build a warehouse with office and storage space on the property, which is zoned B-2 business;
- Courtyard Land Co.'s request to rezone parcels 40A and 40B, Estate Smith Bay, St. Thomas, from B-4 business residential to C commercial to bring the pre-existing, nonconforming self-storage business o the site into zoning conformity;
- Cassi Land Co.'s request to rezone parcels 20-37 Estate Smith Bay, 14-2, 14 Remainder and 13AB Estate Frydendahl, St. Thomas, from B-4 business residential to B-2 Business Secondary Neighborhood to allow current uses to continue;
-rezoning Plot No. 232-D Estate Glynn, Queen Quarter, St. Croix from A-2 (Agricultural) to R-2 (Residential-Low Density);
- rezoning Parcel Nos. 40A and 40B Estate Smith Bay, St. Thomas, from B-4 (Business-Residential Areas) to C (Commercial);
- rezoning Parcel No.18A Estate Smith Bay, St. Thomas, from R-3 (Residential Medium Density) to B-2 (Business-Secondary/ Neighborhood);
- a variance to Plot No. 75, Estate Boetzberg, East End Quarter “A”, St. Croix, from the uses permitted in the B-2 Business-Secondary Neighborhood Zoning District to allow Hussam Rahhal, proprietor of the East End Service Station, to manufacture ice.
The Legislature approved a use variance for Gold Coast Yachts Inc. owner Richard Difede for Plot No. 211, Estate Golden Rock, Company Quarter, St. Croix, from the R-3 zoning designation to consolidate and relocate the operation of the owner’s yacht manufacturing business. The vote was 14-1, with Sen. Craig Barshinger voting nay. Barshinger said he was voting no because there were neighbors who objected to the change.
The Legislature voted against approving David and Kay Lineham's request for a use variance to allow them to park their mobile food truck permanently on a residential property in La Grande Princesse at Plot No. 32-K Estate La Grande Princess, Company Quarter, St. Croix, from the R-3 zoning designation for Blues Barbecue.
Opponents argued that some neighbors were in opposition and that mobile food trucks were too often operating like permanent, fixed restaurants.
Voting for the variance were Sens. Judi Buckley, Donald Cole, Kenneth Gittens, Alicia "Chucky" Hansen, Terrence "Positive" Nelson, Nereida "Nellie" Rivera-O'Reilly and Sammuel Sanes. Voting nay were Barshinger, Sens. Diane Capehart, Clifford Graham, Myron Jackson, Shawn-Michael Malone, Clarence Payne, Tregenza Roach and Janette Millin Young.
Editor's Note: The vote count on this last measure was initially incorrect. It has been corrected.