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2023 Op. Va. Att'y Gen. 1 (2023)

handle is hein.sag/sagva0150 and id is 1 raw text is: 

                          COMMONWEALTH of VIRGINIA

                                           Office of the Attorney General
Jason S. Miyares                                                                                  202 North Ninth Street
Attorney General                                                                                Richmond, Virginia 23219
                                                                                                     Fax 804-786-1991
                                                                                                 Virginia Relay Services
                                                 January 12, 2023                                             7-1-1

        Kemper  M. Beasley III, Esquire
        Attorney for Cumberland County
        Post Office Box 36
        Farmville, Virginia 23901

        Dear Mr. Beasley;

               I am responding to your request for an official advisory opinion in accordance with § 2.2-505 of
       the Code of Virginia.

                                                 Issue Presented

               You ask whether the offering of short-term rental accommodations at an operating farm, where the
       short-term rental occupants are offered the opportunity to participate in farming activities during their stay
       at the property, constitutes agritourism activity under Virgnia Code § 15.2-2288.6, such that the locality
       is prohibited from regulating such use of the property through its zoning ordinances.

                                         Applicable Law  and  Discussion

               The General Assembly  has delegated to localities the authority to control land use within their
       boundaries through zoning.' This delegation of authority ... is a delegation of the Commonwealth's police
       power to legislate in the area of land use.2 Although localities have broad discretion in the enactment of
       zoning ordinances, their zoning powers are limited.3 Adopted ordinances must be consistent with the laws
       of the Commonwealth[,]4   and [w]hen  a statute enacted by the General Assembly  conflicts with an
       ordinance enacted by a local governing body, the statute must prevail.

          1 VA. CODE ANN. § 15.2-2280 (2018).
          2 2013  Op. Va. Att'y Gen.  222, 225; see also 2022 Op.  Va. Att'y Gen. No.  22-027, available at
       https://www. oag. state.va.us/citizen-resources/opinions/official-opinion s/30-resource/opinions/2247-2022-official-
          12022 Op. Va. Att'y Gen. No. 22-027.
          4 W. Lewinsville Heights Citizens Ass'n v. Bd. of Sup'rs of Fairfax Cnty., 270 Va. 259, 265 (2005).
          Rowland  v. Town Council of Warrenton, 298 Va. 703, 713 (2020) (quoting Sinclair v. New Cingular Wireless
       PCS, LLC, 283 Va. 567, 576 (2012)).

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