The New Castle Record

New speed limits apply to unpaved roads, bluegrass festival approved

– By Gwen Johnson



VDOT representative Raymond Lowe apprised Craig County supervisors at their monthly meeting July 10 that new guidelines of 35 mph would apply to unpaved roads unless otherwise indicated by a sign, effective July 1.

The change was brought about through a revision of Virginia State Code. Previously, a maximum statutory speed limit of 55 mph was applied on these roads.

Following a public hearing, supervisors voted unanimously to approve an application for a Special Exception Permit from Adam Gentry to hold an outdoor bluegrass festival at the Country Campground on Rt. 311, 3 miles south of New Castle. The event is scheduled for Aug. 23 at 2 p.m.

The Craig County Planning Commission previously approved the application, following a public hearing June 7, and passed their decision to the board of supervisors.

A large sign invites Craig County residents and music lovers to the recently approved New Castle Bluegrass Festival.
A large sign invites Craig County residents and music lovers to the recently approved New Castle Bluegrass Festival.

Jacob Dellinger, who presented the proposal to the board on behalf of Gentry, said he worked for VDOT and has the traffic engineer volunteering to help with traffic control. Chairman Fred Craft said he had been in touch with emergency services and there were no issues as far as they were concerned.

However, Emergency Services Coordinator Jim Cady said that he was “a little nervous about the whole thing,” but the campground was the best place they could have chosen for the event, which could draw between 3,000 and 5,000 people. Cady also said he had spoken with Roanoke, and they are prepared to assist if needed.

During hearing input from the public, the question came up about the amount of traffic crossing the creek to the campground. Dellinger explained there is a single-car bridge, and traffic would not be using the creek as a path to cross over. “There are fields of over 15 acres for parking on the campground after crossing the bridge, and there is a total of 60 acres for the campground.”

County Administrator Richard Flora explained that because of a new resolution passed at the July meeting, organizations sponsoring events in the county would have to pay a fee to provide standby services at the event. The fee would include any necessary volunteer rescue squads and volunteer fire departments.

At a second public hearing, supervisors voted unanimously to grant a Special Exception Permit to Eugene Bradfield/USCOC of Virginia RSA #3, Inc., to allow for the construction and maintenance of a telecommunications facility (primarily for cell phone communication) on a parcel of land located at 1211 Little Mountain Road on the northwestern side of Route 624, approximately 1.5 miles from Route 42.

The planning commission previously voted to approve the request, and forwarded the decision to the board of supervisors to make a final decision.

As the result of a public hearing by request of Craig County Public Schools to amend the fiscal year 2013-2014 budget to include revenues in the amount of $429,027.41, which were received and not budgeted originally, supervisors voted to appropriate the funds into the aforementioned budget year.

Additionally, supervisors voted to amend the FY 2014-2015 budget for certain stated designated uses requested by departments with funds that were unexpended as of June 30, 2014.

Supervisors passed a resolution selecting Mid-Atlantic Waste Systems/Marathon as the sole source for containers for the updated Solid Waste Transfer Station. Up to four of the compaction containers, at a cost of $9,900 per container, were approved for purchase. Supervisors had determined in 2010 that the Solid Waste Transfer Station on Route 42 needed renovations.

Larry Willis, a Sinking Creek resident, thanked the board for the support they had given to the Route 42 convenience station construction. Willis, who works for the Department of Environmental Quality, said that when communities don’t provide easy trash disposal they have illegal dumping and communities end up paying for it one way or the other through lower property values or in cleaning up the mess.

Following the business meeting of the board of supervisors, a follow-up work session was held concerning the personnel policy for county employees. As a result, a new personnel policy was adopted concerning employee sick leave.

The next Craig County Board of Supervisors meeting will be held Aug. 7 at 5:30 p.m. at the Craig County Courthouse.

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