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Residents to pay new garbage disposal fee in Halifax County

County residents who pay personal property taxes will be paying an additional $48 this December for an annual garbage disposal fee that goes into effect July 1.

Halifax County Board of Supervisors approved the new $4 per month fee after holding a public hearing Monday night during a meeting that was moved up a week earlier than usual.

 The regular monthly July meeting would have fallen during the week of the July 4 holiday when many people are on vacation, so the meeting was rescheduled for Monday. 

ED-1 Supervisor J. T. Davis was absent from the meeting.

In a 7-0 vote, supervisors approved articles of incorporation for the Halifax County Solid Waste Disposal Authority required before the $4 per month user fee can be charged for waste disposal.

The unanimous vote came after a public hearing when no one spoke.

The creation of a solid waste disposal authority will provide the county with a means of recovering part of the cost of disposing of solid waste by assessing a fee on residential property owners.

The proposal calls for an annual household fee of $48, or $4 per month, to be charged for garbage disposal at area convenience center green boxes.

County officials said the most practical means of collecting the fee is to bill it on residential users’ personal property taxes that are paid once a year in December.

The other three public hearings were held Monday evening involving one rezoning application and two conditional use permits, all for properties located in ED-6.

Supervisors approved each of the three requests following hearings.

One hearing was on a rezoning application from David Barksdale who is seeking to rezone 1.31 acres from B-1 to B-2 to locate an ATV sales and service center at 4226 Philpott Road on the north side of Philpott Road, approximately .53 of a mile east of its intersection with Humps Trail (State Route 929.)

Barksdale, who has worked for the past 18 ½ years at Ed’s Honda, spoke at the hearing telling board members he is “looking to do something to pay for my future.”

Also speaking in support of Barksdale’s request was James Gulley, owner of the “red barn” property on Highway 58 where the ATV sales and service center will be located.

Another hearing was held on a conditional use permit application from Anthony Welch who wants to build an automotive garage on a site adjacent to 9218 Philpott Road, approximately .10 of a mile east of its intersection with Solomon Trail (State Route 747).

Welch, who formerly worked at Crowell Motor Company and operated Bridgeview Exxon in South Boston for six years, told supervisors he wishes to open the automotive garage to help people in the community and to have a business for himself that will provide for his family.

“I’m looking to bring something to this community that is badly needed,” Welch said.

His mother-in-law, Violet Satterfield, owns the property and has given Welch permission to build the garage, according to Planning/Zoning Administrator Robbie Love.

The final hearing of the evening was on a conditional use application from Dr. Lucy E. Williams to operate a bed and breakfast at 1202 Williamson Road approximately 1.5 miles east of its intersection with Calvary Road (State Route 119).

Williams, who has lived in the county for the past five and a half years, told supervisors she wishes to open “VillaCathedral,” a destination bed and breakfast that caters to the motorsports industry.

She said she has stepped into the role of preserving her family farm, keeping it intact, nurturing it back to a vibrant state of health and preparing the next generation to continue traditions.

“The intention is for this land to remain the family farm for many generations to come,” she added.

She described VillaCathedral as a country bed and breakfast “where for all who come, the body, soul and spirit can be nurtured and rejuvenated.”

Also speaking in support of Williams’ request was Linda Williamson Zuniga who operated Breezy Oaks FarmHouse Bed and Breakfast in Alton.

“Breezy Oaks FarmHouse Bed and Breakfast would like to support the continued growth of lodging to meet the needs of Virginia International Raceway and the motorsports community and associated industry,” Zuniga said. 

Racers, visitors and seasonal or part-time employees of these industries frequently go to neighboring counties for lodging due to the current limited availability in the southwest end of the county, she explained.

Additional bed and breakfast lodging will increase the tax revenue base, she added.

“The agricultural history of the VillaCathedral property, previously a tobacco farm, also lends its to growth into the agritourism industry,” Zuniga told supervisors.

In other county business Monday night, supervisors took the following actions:

w Presented a resolution of commendation to the Halifax County Heritage Foundation recognizing contributions the foundation has made to educating and building sustained support for agriculture that has been the basic building block in the development of Halifax County since 1752 and for hosting the Halifax County Heritage Festival which attracted over 5,000 people to the fairgrounds the first weekend in May;

w Presented a framed resolution of commendation to outgoing County Administrator George Nester recognizing his three years of service to the county;

w Heard a monthly status report about ongoing Virginia Department of Transportation projects including completion of the Route 360 bridge replacement and Route 724 bridge that are now open;

w Approved a request from Mid-Atlantic Broadband to support a wireless test-bed pilot project in the Town of Halifax to test the effectiveness of new technology from India that will expand rural wireless broadband in the region;

w Approved a joint resolution between the county and Town of South Boston to contribute $312,686 for a higher education grant for the Southern Virginia Higher Education Center to be divided over three years to match the $625,372 offered by the tobacco commission;

Three appropriations of $104,229 will be paid out in 2013 through 2016.

Before approving payment in a 6-1 vote, County Administrator George Nester told supervisors the Southern Virginia Higher Education Center is a significant asset to the county and continues to display its worth by developing the workforce skills and the educational opportunities for all residents of Halifax County and adjoining communities.

The funding will be used to support the foundation of the center so the economic makeup of Southside Virginia can be positively impacted through education, innovation and collaboration sustained by a core belief that education is the prime catalyst for positive change, Nester said.

ED-5 Supervisor Barry Bank opposed the appropriation.

w Received an update on increasing the size of the Williams Natural Gas Pipeline from the Chatham Natural Gas Compressor Station eastward to Brunswick County and were informed Williams will hold a meeting Wednesday, July 18, at 6 p.m. at the Fairfield Inn to explain this project to the public;

w Heard from Finance Director Stephanie Jackson that central purchasing for county departments and agencies will go into effect July 1; and

w In unfinished business, supervisors appointed Sheriff Fred Clark to serve on the Virginia Alcohol Safety Action Program, Brenda Tune Fuller to serve on Southside Virginia Community College and reappointed Lisa Crews and Heidi Dawson to serve on the library board.