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Crematorium rezoning request moves forward in South Boston

Plans for the first-ever crematorium in South Boston moved forward at Monday’s town council work session, with South Boston Town Council setting a public hearing for its July 9 meeting to receive comments on a recommendation from the planning commission to rezone two parcels along Broad Street for the establishment of a crematorium by Powell Funeral Home.

The planning commission had recommended rezoning two parcels at 1354 Broad Street from R-1 Low Density Residential to B-2 General Business District to allow the operation of the crematorium following a public hearing at its June meeting.

Les Powell III and Robert Powell of Powell Funeral Home spoke at the public hearing and said their plans include a 28-foot-by-32-foot building to house a retort, a chamber used in the cremation process.

Plans call for the crematorium to maintain a wooded appearance with a private driveway to the funeral home, a head stone display set in the trees with a walking path, and for the retort building to be set in the trees with low impact colors.


Budget adopted  

Council convened as a whole during Monday’s work session and unanimously approved an appropriation resolution adopting the 2012-2013 budget on its second reading.

South Boston Town Council, with Councilman Morris Bryant absent, adopted the $11,002,893 2012-13 budget  on its first reading at its June meeting, following a second public hearing where no one spoke either for or against the budget.

The $11,002,893 includes $600,000 in Community Development Block Grant funding expenditures for the dental clinic project.

The budget contains no new taxes or fees and is based on a real estate tax of 19 cents per $100 of assessed value.

It includes $379,000 from prior year surplus, along with $275,521 in total revenue changes and $139,341 in total expenditure changes.

Additions to the revenue include $11,000 for Main Street program reimbursements for labor costs for its events; $14,000 in principal repayment from a loan for the Visitor Center; $8,337 in interest payment from a loan toward the Visitor Center; $7,184 for a South Boston Police Department taser grant; $200,000 in loan proceeds for the Washington-Coleman project; and $35,000 in fly ash revenue.

Total expenditure changes include $1,500 for repairs to recreation department buildings; $11,000 for street maintenance and overtime; $1,000 for the police department K-9 unit; $7,184 for the taser grant (mentioned in revenues); $2,500 for the police department/South Boston-Halifax County Drug Task Force contribution; and $116,157 for payroll expense increases (5 percent salary increase – VRS).



Town council convened as a whole and unanimously approved Christopher Davis to a term on the South Boston Planning Commission.

Davis, a therapeutic assistant for Halifax Regional Health System, is a member of the Halifax County Public Schools Education Foundation and serves as treasurer and board member for the United Way of Halifax County.

Council also appointed South Boston resident Beverly Crowder to the Community Arts Center Foundation (The Prizery).

Crowder, currently the principal at Halifax County Middle School, also serves on the South Boston Planning Commission.


Financial statement

Finance Officer Erle Scott told council adjusted budget revenues reflected a total of $10,257,274 as of May 31, and adjusted budget expenditures stood at $9,109,116, also as of May 31.

With one month remaining before the new fiscal year (July 1), revenues were 102.5 percent of budget, and expenditures were 91 percent of budget.

Year-to-date categorical aid revenues were $1,733,602 (82.7 percent of budget); real estate tax collections $876,148 (101.9 percent); personal property tax collections $456,137 (107.3 percent); personal property tax relief collections $295,432 (100 percent); local tax collections $399,372 (106.5 percent); occupancy tax collections $135,083 (117.5 percent); meals tax collections $998,048 (99.8 percent); and business license tax collections $515,927 (108.6 percent).

Local sales tax ($399,372), consumer utility tax ($390,016), occupancy tax ($135,083) and meals tax collections ($998,048) all already beyond budgeted amounts, Scott told council, with telecom tax collections ($548,481) standing at 97.2 percent of budget.

The town has collected a total of $175,327.68 in delinquent taxes as of June 14, Scott reported.

The cash operating general fund had a balance of (-) $936,893, reflecting a grant anticipation note in the amount of $1,000,728.40 that was never fulfilled and not transferred to the Halifax County Service Authority after it assumed water and sewer line items from the town in 2007.


Out with the old, in with the new

Tina Wyatt Younger and Bob Hughes and incumbent Connie Manning were officially sworn in by Halifax Circuit Court Judge Joel Cunningham Monday for four-year terms on South Boston Town Council, while council honored out-going councilmen Morris Bryant and Mark Morris.

Younger and Hughes, both newcomers to council, were elected in May from a five-candidate field, while Manning, originally appointed to fill the unexpired term of Sandra Thompson, was first elected to council in a November 2011 special election.