Town Council holds hearings on upcoming changes

Published 8:00 am Thursday, May 19, 2022

The Farmville Town Council met for their monthly meeting on Wednesday, May 11 to hold numerous public hearings.

There was a public hearing held for the fiscal year 2022 to 2023 Town budget that the Farmville Town Council will vote on in the June 8 meeting.

Two concerned citizens spoke out about one major part of the budget, the closing of the Farmville Municipal Golf Course on June 30. According to Town Manager Dr. Scott Davis, the golf course will close due to the course not breaking even financially. Davis plans to use the $217,224 to run the golf course to fund raises for employees and new equipment that will benefit the entire town.

“I believe yes, it is something that people who play golf enjoy; however, it’s not a core service for every resident in the Town of Farmville,” said Davis in his budget presentation at the April meeting. “We’ve been having a loss of anywhere between $200,000 and $250,000 a year. I think that this is a time where we need to take that off the table so that we can begin to put money into core services.”

Emma Lewis spoke against the closing of the golf course as someone who found her love of the sport on that course and hopes that it stays open for others to find their love of the sport. She discovered her love five years ago and has earned many accomplishments, including a recent letter from the Harvard College Golf Program.

“Farmville Municipal Golf Course never fails to make me feel good about myself and happy,” she said. “It never fails to bring me joy and show me that I am a good golfer and demonstrate to me that I matter and push me to do better.”

Monroe Preston also spoke as he has run the youth golf program for 16 years at the course. He argued that the golf course brings revenue to the town with tournaments that it holds as families bring their children to participate and spend money in the town.

“We have had tournaments where it would be anywhere from 50 to 60 kids playing,” he said. “Those parents spend money in the Town of Farmville. You know, so it does benefit Farmville.”

He also noted that many more people have come to the course now that they have learned it might close.

The Council voted at its work session on May 4 to get the course appraised as some have expressed interest in buying it. The Council will vote on the budget in the June meeting.

IN OTHER BUSINESS:

• Prince Edward County Administrator Doug Stanley was present for a county update. The County is making progress in needed areas, including funding for repairs at Prince Edward Elementary School, a new chiller in the courthouse and Kinex bringing broadband to unreached areas.

• The Town Council held multiple public hearings on topics. The first was on Ordinance 209 for redistricting. No one signed up to speak. The redistricting was approved unanimously.

• Public hearings were held for Ordinances 210 and 211 which will raise sanitation and water and sewer rates by $1. These water and sewer rates have not increased since 2018 and the sanitation rates have never increased. The ordinances were adopted unanimously and will go into effect on July 1.

• The last public hearing was held on Resolution 2022-05-01 amendment to the fiscal year 2021 to 2022 budget in regards to the Street Maintenance Fund in the amount of $357,178.08. Tom Dennison of Grove Street spoke about some safety issues he’s noticed that he sees the funds could be used to fix. The adoption passed unanimously.

• Council Member Brian Vincent announced that the Fourth of July fireworks will take place on Saturday, July 2, and more details will come about bands and other components of the event.

• Greg Cole announced he will not seek re-election in November after eight years in light of his health.