A zoning board in Loudoun County deferred action last night on a controversial proposal by a group related to right-wing political figure Lyndon H. LaRouche Jr. to operate a summer camp in the county, prolonging a dispute that for months has been one of the most bitter political disputes in Loudoun history.
The Loudoun Board of Zoning Appeals said it will decide next month whether to allow Campaigner Publications Inc., which publishes pro-LaRouche political journals and pamphlets, to operate a camp for its employes on a 64-acre lot in a rural areas of western Loudoun. Critics have said they believe that LaRouche may run a paramilitary camp or youth indoctrination center at the site.
In October, the Loudoun Planning Commission recommended that the camp bid be rejected.
At a public hearing before the Board of Zoning Appeals in Leesburg last night, debate centered on whether the activities of LaRouche and related organizations should be taken into account when ruling on the camp.
Dean S. Worcester Jr., attorney for Campaigner Publications, said the camp was a simple zoning decision and could not be fairly rejected. But camp opponents -- citing armed guards that surround LaRouche's estate near Leesburg and the attacks on local residents that have appeared in LaRouche publications -- said the camp would be part of a larger threat to the county.
Supervisor Frank Raflo drew loud applause from the standing-room-only audience when he hurled a bag of small stones on to the floor in front of the speaker's podium. "Can you take one little stone and say that's the mess, Raflo asked, pointing to the scattered stones. "No," he added, "that's the mess -- all of it,"