Rappahannock County was well represented at the conference held in Richmond last Friday under the sponsorship of the Conservation Council of Virginia, with assistance from the Central Atlantic Environment Center. Attending sessions on the topic — “Virginia’s Land: Exploitation or Conservation?” — were Roger Batchelder of Amissville, Fanning Baumgardner of the county zoning office and Mrs. Eileen Day of the Rappahannock League for Environmental Protection.
The three-room Amissville school house has been razed to make way for the dual-laning of U.S. 211. The building, on the property acquired by the state for the arterial road system, was burned during the weekend and the debris will be cleared away. Rappahannock Fire Association secured permission to use the structure for training during the weekend fire schol. Practical experience was gained by the firemen as techniques in structural fires were applied as the school burned. Along with the building go many memories by some of the elderly citizens of the area who learned their three R’s there.
The highway department still hasn’t decided what it is going to do about highway improvements in the Sperryville area — whether to bypass the town or build a planned four lane road through the center of town. D.B. Hope, district engineer, appeared before the Rappahannock supervisors at their meeting last Thursday, in response to a request for specific road information. “We have a sewer plant problem there,” explained chairman Newbill Miller, “and they want to know what the highway department is going to do before and if they put in the plant. If you’re going through downtown and take half of the houses, maybe we won’t need a plant.”
In a letter dated July 26, Sursum Corda Building Fund chairwoman Elizabeth Blubaugh told county supervisors and Washington Town Council members that the school and day care center had decided not to apply for state fund. The letter came after Sursum Corda representatives had appeared at county and town meetings to tell government officials of their intent to apply for Virginia block grant funds as soon as the regulations were released.
The Washington Volunteer Fire Department’s Ladies Auxiliary announces that there is now a coupon exchange box at the Thrift Shop, located at the Town Hall in Washington. Shoppers who use coupons for cents-off values or refund offers can exchange their extras at the box during business hours. The Thrift Shop is open Wednesday and Friday from 10 until 4.
A selected few Rappahannock County adults who need some degree of assistance during the course of a normal day may soon have an alternative to nursing home care. Rappahannock is one of the five counties that will conduct a pilot program placing elderly or disabled adults in foster care. The qualifications of the foster care home will be reviewed by county social workers and training will be provided by local agencies. Sylvia Kreitler, superintendent of the Rappahannock Welfare Department, said that Rappahannock will have three of the 21 adults who will receive the state funds designated for the foster care project.
For Rappahannock’s two mail order houses, a U.S. Supreme Court decision last week was welcome news indeed. In a case involving the state of North Dakota and a business supply catalog business in Nebraska, the Supreme Court ruled 8-1 that states could not require mail order companies in other states to collect their sales taxes. The court did leave the door open for Congress to pass legislation on sales taxes and direct marketers. Martin Woodward of the Faith Mountain Company said, “This decision is the best thing that could happen to the catalog industry.” He noted that not only are there 50 states wanting to have mail order companies collect sales taxes, but also some jurisdictions within these states want their taxes collected. He said that there are about 6,500 taxing jurisdictions all hoping to collect taxes from mail order companies.
Michelle Early, James Roy, Sherron Boddie and Amy Kellert got top awards at last Wednesday’s athletic banquet at the high school. This was the first year for the Neil Burke Memorial Award. Mr. Burke, who died last month in a traffic accident, graduated front the high school in 1987.
Commonwealth’s Attorney Peter Luke told the board of supervisors at Monday’s meeting that he had received an “informal” opinion from the Attorney General’s office that the county did have to adopt a machinery and tools tax and either a merchants’ capital tax or business licenses. Mr. Luke said that the Attorney General’s office did not want to issue a formal opinion that would become a part of the record, but he did get a two page letter from Roger Wiley, senior assistant attorney general, saying that there was nothing in law allowing counties to exempt such property from taxation. “What happens if we don’t impose the tax?” Piedmont district representative Charles K. “Pete” Estes asked. Mr. Luke answered, “I can’t find anything in the code that imposes a penalty or indicates the state can take it out of other funds, but it could come back to haunt you.”