Farmville town council unanimously approves budget

Published 12:39 am Tuesday, May 14, 2024

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

The Town of Farmville now has a budget set for the coming fiscal year. During their Wednesday, May 8 meeting, the Farmville town council unanimously voted to approve the proposal, which comes in at a total of $25.472 million. 

That’s just slightly over this current year’s $25.278 million. The real estate tax rate, meanwhile, will remain at 13 cents per $100 of assessed value. 

With fewer projects scheduled this year, you see a smaller budget for the water fund, sewer fund, transport and airport funds. The water fund will be $3 million, down from $3.827 million. Sewer funding will drop from $2.727 million to $2.55 million in the new budget, while transportation funds will drop from $1.164 million to $925,000. As for the airport fund, that will also drop from $1.28 million to $1.14 million.
Now there are a couple places in the budget that are climbing this time around. First is the General Fund, which goes up from $14.39 million to $15.485 million and the Street Maintenance Fund, which rises from $1.886 million to $2.35 million.

What did Farmville town council add?

Email newsletter signup

So there are a few changes that will affect residents. First off, let’s talk about the impact for town employees. There will be a $3,000 raise across the board for all full-time employees and a $1 an hour raise for part-time town employees. 

The new budget also includes funding for one extra full-time firefighter, $246,000 for new 911 call handling equipment, $234,000 for new police cars, along with money for a new garbage truck, a new pickup truck for the Street Maintenance Department and a new EMS vehicle for the fire department. 

In the budget, there’s $144,000 for a prefab changing station and bathroom at the splashpad, which is set to open in June, and money for one additional full-time recreational position. That person will be in charge of managing the splashpad. 

Funds will also be used for the first phase of the Town Hall getting painted. The first floor will be done this year, with the second floor in next year’s plans. The Farmville Train Station will see more renovations done this year and Public Works will get a mini excavator. 

A couple of the expenses in the budget involve work in the downtown area, including a $47,000 expense to redo planters. That means replacing all of the black box planters with the Farmville logo sitting up and down Main Street.
Also, some tree islands are being put in the town parking lot behind the courthouse. In 2022, Hampden-Sydney College was one of 11 schools whose researchers worked together on a “Virginia Heat Watch” report. The report flagged Farmville as one of several Virginia communities that need “heat mitigation” efforts in their downtown. Basically, the idea is that through things like tree islands, street vegetation and reflective roofs, you can reduce heat in places like downtown areas.
The town put in for a grant through the Department of Forestry and they’ll use that funding to create tree islands in the parking lot.

Retreat funding

And finally, there’s money set aside in the budget for another retreat. When Farmville Mayor Brian Vincent was sworn in, he outlined a specific goal. He planned to get the Farmville town council together for a retreat, to understand each other’s objectives. That meeting happened in February 2023 and the council signed off on a strategic plan built from those sessions.
This next retreat would be scheduled for sometime in Spring 2025. That’ll give the council time to revisit their strategic plan and goals.