Herald News Briefs — Affordable housing project goes up in Farmville

Published 4:25 pm Thursday, November 3, 2022

FARMVILLE – The lots have been cleared on Andrews Drive. Now construction can begin on the four homes funded as part of a joint project between the Piedmont Habitat for Humanity and the Commonwealth Regional Council (CRC). Earlier this year, Virginia Housing gave $40 million to planning districts across the state, to address affordable housing concerns. The CRC received $2 million, money that will help build 20 homes in Prince Edward, Charlotte and Nottoway counties.

Out of that number, as we reported in September, four will be built in Prince Edward County. The CRC says by the end of October, sediment and erosion control had been handled and all three properties on Andrews Drive had been cleared. Now the manufactured homes can be brought in. All three manufactured homes are expected to be delivered by Jan. 31, 2023.

“While the homes are scheduled to be delivered in January, there will still be work to be completed by Habitat construction staff and volunteers,” said Sam Rabon with Piedmont Habitat for Humanity. “(That includes) finish carpentry, cabinets, porches, and landscaping.”

In order to meet the deadline, Habitat is partnering with Cardinal Homes out of Charlotte County to get the work done, Rabon said.

Schools out early in Farmville and around Prince Edward

On Monday, Nov. 7 and Tuesday, Nov. 8, all Prince Edward County schools will release students early. Each day, classes will be let out at 12:30 p.m. That’s due to Teacher Professional Development Day on Monday and a scheduled Teacher Workday on Tuesday.

Classes will go back to regular schedule on Wednesday, Nov. 9.

Farmville makes garbage changes

If you live in Farmville, your garbage schedule will be changing a bit over the next week. That’s due to a couple holidays, both state and federal, with Tuesday, Nov. 8 being Election Day and Friday, Nov. 11 being Veterans Day. In 2020, then-Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam made Election Day a state holiday in the Commonwealth. 

That means no residential garbage pickup on Tuesday. Instead, that route will get picked up the following day, Wednesday, Nov. 9. Everything else shifts forward as a result, with Wednesday’s routes getting picked up on Thursday, Nov. 10. There will also be no garbage pickup on Friday, Nov. 11, with business garbage and cardboard only getting picked up on Monday and Thursday.

Everything will be back to a regular schedule by Monday, Nov. 14.

Work continues on Prince Edward Access Road

There’s a start and end date in place for work on the planned Prince Edward County Access Road. The plan is to build an economic development access road from Commerce Road to a proposed cul-de-sac within the business park near Route 628. An estimated 1,500 feet of two-lane road will be constructed, with J.R. Caskey Inc. winning the contract with a $1.99 million bid in October. Work is now scheduled to start on the project in the spring of 2023, with everything finished by Aug. 15, 2023.

Election Security project moves forward

Work on this region’s Election Security Project will be finished by early next year. That was the word from the Commonwealth Regional Council (CRC). Two years ago, the CRC received a State Homeland Security Program grant. They used the money to focus on cyber security improvements for the election systems in Amelia, Buckingham, Charlotte, Cumberland, Lunenburg and Prince Edward counties.

The idea was to update each county’s election systems in order to bring them into compliance with Virginia House Bill (HB) 2178. Signed into law by former Gov. Ralph Northam in 2019, the bill requires counties to update their election security technology, develop security plans and procedures. As we reported in early October, if a city or county doesn’t keep up to date with all three, the Virginia Department of Elections would be authorized to limit their access to the Commonwealth’s voter registration system. 

The work isn’t finished yet because of a nine-month delay in getting the CRC under contract for the grant. A press release from the Virginia Department of Emergency Measures (VDEM) dated Sept. 16, 2020 shows FEMA placed a hold on funding for projects that met one of four national priority investment areas, including Enhancing Cyber Security which this grant fell under. The document doesn’t say why funding was put on hold at the time and CRC officials can’t answer that either. This delay pushed back the grant agreement to July 2021.

As of late October, the CRC’s consultant was working with each county on threat and vulnerability monitoring, setting up periodic reporting and security awareness training. The CRC expects to finish that work by the end of January 2023.

Help needed for Lights at the Lake

Officials at Bear Creek Lake State Park are putting out a call for help. They want businesses, clubs, church groups, sororities, fraternities and other volunteers to set up light displays at the park, located at 22 Bear Creek Lake Road in Cumberland.

Each group receives a campsite to decorate. The theme is up to them to decide. Park officials do, of course, remind everyone this is a Christmas celebration and a family friendly event, so keep that in mind when designing your campsite. Why are we mentioning this now? Because residents started decorating on Nov. 1 and can continue until Dec. 2. The top three light displays receive prizes. People are asked to register for a site and you can do that by calling (804) 492-4410.

 

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