Council delays closure of golf course – Farmville

City Council voted Wednesday, June 8 to delay the closure of the Farmville Municipal Golf Course, which was scheduled to close at the end of the month.

During the vote on the city’s budget for 2023 at the regular monthly council meeting, Councilman Daniel Dwyer kicked off a discussion about the golf course. His fear is that since the course has yet to be rated for sale, it would be basically doomed due to lack of greens maintenance.

“I personally would like to see one of two things, at least have the land maintained until we can determine if there is a potential buyer for a golf course, or second, we can keep the land golf course open for a while and still allow us to determine if it could be marketed as a golf course,” Dwyer said.

Councilman Brian Vincent noted that this issue has been discussed a lot and that if the city temporarily keeps it open, council needs to set a timeline. Other members noted that it would be difficult to set a timeline since no one knows when an evaluation will take place and how long it will take.

City Manager Scott Davis said the city was having trouble finding someone to appraise the property.

“We put it up for competition and got none in the first round,” Davis said. “We have changed the date and so far have still not found anyone able or willing … to appraise this property.”

It was mentioned that the current real estate market may make the appraisal process longer than usual. In order not to interfere with the budget, the money to keep the course open will come from provident funds.

The golf course will remain open until the end of October, when the council will reassess what is best for the town. This change in the future of the golf course passed 5-2 with Vincent and Councilor Sallie Amos voting against.

In other cases:
• Council voted unanimously to adopt the town’s compensation/classification plan. This plan provides for salary adjustments within the ranges of the plan to be consistent with salary increases for the year. This classification plan sets an annual minimum, middle and maximum as well as an hourly minimum, middle and maximum for the salaries of each grade of City employees.
• Council voted unanimously to adopt the Capital Improvement Plan for the 2023-2027 fiscal year, which outlines and defines planned capital improvement expenditures for all City departments for the next five years. years.
• The board voted to adopt the budget for the 2022-23 fiscal year. This budget will begin the process of setting up a fire department combining paid workers and volunteers. With the removal of Farmville Municipal Golf Course from the budget, there is now additional funding for increases and equipment upgrades for basic services to the town. The main cost increase for residents was a $1 increase in the cost of water and sanitation.

• Council allocated an additional $15,000 to the Farmville Downtown Partnership. The partnership requested $45,000 even though there was only $30,000 in the budget. Additional funding will come from federal funds from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA).

• Council continued its discussion at a previous business meeting on a requested utility bill adjustment at 203 S. Virginia St. According to Davis, the owner received the original bill before the first adjustment was made. carried out. The original utility bill was $2,961.16 and the first adjustment brought it down to $1,500.97. The average bill for this place was around $50 but was higher due to a water leak. After discussion, Councilman Greg Cole asked the owners to pay only 10% of the initial bill, or about $300. It passed unanimously.

• Council voted to close Longwood Avenue from Vaughan to Holly Street for a June 19 celebration on June 25. He also agreed to shut down part of Hill Street for the Farmville All-Star Baseball Team’s annual reunion barbecue.

• The Personnel Committee recommended reappointing John Miller and Jayne Johnson and appointing Rhett Weiss to the Planning Commission. The board approved unanimously.

• The board voted to refund the remainder of the business licenses for former NAPA owners of Farmville and The Woodland.

• The board authorized Davis to sign an agreement with The Berkley Group for human resources consulting.

• Central Virginia Regional Library Director Rick Ewing provided an update during public comments. The library is still handing out free COVID-19 test kits and will be offering free lunches at public schools in Prince Edward County from noon to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday, June 13-30, excluding Juneteenth on June 20. June.

Michael C. Ford