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Public meeting to discuss river, creek clean-up plan

A community meeting has been set for Thursday, Sept. 20, from 7 to 9 p.m. in room 201 at the Mary M. Bethune Complex, 1030 Cowford Road in Halifax.

The Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) will present a clean-up plan for the Lower Banister River, Polecat Creek and Sandy Creek. 

Currently, all of these streams have elevated concentrations of bacteria. This means people face a greater chance of illness or infection when they go swimming in the creeks, according to Heather Vereb of the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. 

Over the past 10 months, Department of Conservation and Recreation has been working with local citizens and officials to come up with strategies to reduce sources of pollution from agricultural, residential and urban lands. 

A series of public work group meetings have been held to develop a clean-up plan that reflects local opinions and ideas and, most importantly, outlines ways to reduce the amount of bacteria in Halifax and Pittsylvania County streams, Vereb said.

During the meeting, a summary of the draft plan will be presented to the public. Additionally, information will be provided for residents on how they can receive funds to improve septic systems and comply with sewage handling regulations, manage pastureland, provide clean and adequate water for livestock, install streamside buffers on cropland and manage pet waste.  

Department of Conservation and Recreation will collect public input and suggestions for improving the plan.  

Anyone interested in learning more about the issues facing the creeks and what local landowners can do to help the historical Banister River and its tributaries are asked to attend this community meeting.

For more information on the meeting, or this project in general, contact Vereb at 540-394-2586 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .