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Morris resigns town post

Cindy Morris, the Town of Farmville’s planner, will soon resign her post.

Cindy Morris

She said her last day with the town will be Oct. 6.

“I’m grateful for the job the town provided me almost 13 years ago, and I’ve enjoyed working for the town. I’m leaving on good terms,” she said.

According to the town, Morris was hired by the town in December 2004.

“Farmville is such a delightful place, and I’m going to miss working with the wonderful residents and the businesses and the dedicated employees,” she said. “I mean, I’m kind of sad about leaving. It just seems like now is a good time, the circumstances and the resources the town has and personnel … I’m going to leave next Friday, Oct. 6, (which) will be my last day.”

“We worked on various projects — road projects, infrastructure, water, wastewater — it’s been a number of projects that we’ve worked on,” said Town Manager Gerald Spates regarding Morris’ resignation.

Gerald Spates

“Even looking at The Manor Golf Course, we worked on that through the Tobacco Commission, so we’ve gotten a lot of grants, and it has been a lot of projects that have been undertaken,” he noted, all of which he cited were positive for the town.

He acknowledged Morris was integral in the Hotel Weyanoke Project “as far as getting the money in here to reinvest back into the project.”

In March, the Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) and state leaders pledged support for the hotel’s renovation and restoration project — one that’s slated to create 76 new jobs and spur more than $7 million for the economy of the town.

The $12.2 million project will receive support through the VTC’s Tourism Development Financing Program (TDFP), a gap financing program for larger-scale tourism development projects, geared toward fostering partnerships with developers, localities, financial institutions, the Virginia Resources Authority and VTC, according to state officials.

“The project reflects a projected tax benefit of over $500,000 in its first full year of operation. The hotel is slated to open in the spring of 2018,” officials said.

“I think that is certainly one of the town’s … most exciting projects where you’re taking an old building that used to be a hotel, then it was a lot of things in between, from a retirement home to student housing, now it’s going back to a hotel,” Morris said of the project. “And that was a group effort. That project was made possible by just a lot of people working together. We created the tourism zone, at that point, and they (got) the debt financing and tobacco commission funds and enterprise zone funds and historic tax credits. I mean, it’s a lot of different funding sources that went into that project to make it take off.”

When asked if Morris’ position would be advertised, Spates pointed to the hiring of Dr. Scott Davis, who’ll start next week in his role of assistant town manager, who Spates said “has a background in planning and dealing with zoning issues, so Scott’s going to take over a lot of those responsibilities, in addition to some other things. And then we’ll spread around some of the other duties.”

He noted filling the vacancy would be a decision made by the town council.

“I’m excited he’s coming,” Morris said of Davis’ arrival.

Morris said Farmville is “an awesome place … Farmville’s a good place to live and work and visit, just like my (resignation) letter said.”