This is the first year that Charlottesville has elected members of the Thomas Jefferson Soil and Water Conservation District Board of Directors.  Charlottesville joined the District last year, and is entitled to name two members of the Board.  Rich Collins and John Conover were appointed by City Council.  Now the seats are up for election, and there are three candidates — Conover, a former Democratic vice mayor; Collins, a former Democratic House of Delegates candidate; and John Pfaltz, a former Republican City Council candidate.  Although all of the candidates have political histories, the election is non-partisan, and neither party has nominated or endorsed any candidate(s).

The District has long consisted of Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa and Nelson counties; it is a subdivision of state government created in the 1930’s with a charge to reduce soil erosion, which at the time was caused primarily by poor farming practices. […]