County sets road priorities in state program

FRONT ROYAL – Warren County will ask the state for $1.77 million to help fund another half-dozen road projects.

But limited local funds means the county shouldn’t expect all the money right away.

The Board of Supervisors adopted a resolution Tuesday supporting the county’s application to the Virginia Department of Transportation’s revenue-sharing program for fiscal 2017. The county is requesting up to $1.77 million through the program.

The resolution lists the following priorities:

• Va. 638 or the Blue Mountain Road Rural Rustic Project, listed as priority No. 3 in the Secondary Six-Year Plan at a cost of $330,000
• Lake Front Drive rural addition project in the Lake Front Royal subdivision at a cost of $700,000
• Hatcher Drive rural addition project in the Highland Park subdivision at a cost of $52,000
• Va. 705 or Fishnet Boulevard for asphalt overlay at a cost of $150,000
• Tomahawk Way Phase II rural addition project in the Blue Mountain Sanitary District at a cost of $280,000
• Farm View Road rural addition project in the Shenandoah Farms Sanitary District at a cost of $260,000.

The county must provide 50 percent of the funds required for the Blue Mountain Road and Fishnet Boulevard projects and 25 percent for the Lake Front Road, Hatcher Drive, Tomahawk Way and Farm View Road projects. Lake Front Royal, Highland Park, Shenandoah Farms Sanitary District and Blue Mount Sanitary District must cover the remaining 25 percent of the projects in those subdivisions. Tomahawk Way will be split 75 percent Shenandoah Farms and 25 percent Blue Mountain.

VDOT will provide a dollar-for-dollar match up to $10 million for any locality. The county’s fiscal 2016 budget includes $250,000 required to fund cost-sharing projects approved last year. The county anticipates increasing the amount to $300,000 in the proposed, fiscal 2017 budget. The county must provide a match of $563,000 to receive the state money. The county’s budgets for fiscal 2017 and 2018 would cover the match.

By starting the projects now, the county can start the design and utility relocation work. County staff will spread the construction based on available funds over the next two fiscal years.

The county approved five cost-sharing projects last year, including paving on Blue Mountain Road and improvements to Copenhaver Road and Western Lane in the Shenandoah Farms Sanitary District as well as on Shangri-La Road in the Shangri-La subdivision. The extension of Crooked Run Boulevard also was approved last year.

Also at the meeting, supervisors:
• Approved a motion to exercise an option to buy 14.6 acres of land adjacent to the Warren County Airport from Picture Perfect Properties for $166,000. The Federal Aviation Administration and the Virginia Department of Aviation will reimburse the county for 98 percent of the purchase price, or $164,340 once the Airport Layout Plan is amended to include the property as part of the facility. County Attorney Blair Mitchell said that if the county resold the property then the county would need to pay back the money provided by the state and federal agencies.
• Approved two requests by Bobby W. Baker for conditional-use permits for private-use camping. The permits are for two properties Baker owns off Burma Road in the Man-Da-Lay subdivision in the North River Magisterial District. Baker requested the permits after he was issued a notice in June for unauthorized parking of a pop-up camper and recreation vehicle in the residential zoning district and in the special flood hazard area, according to information from the county. Baker indicated he wasn’t aware of the permit requirement but he wants to camp on his property and comply with the ordinance. Baker plans to install a driveway for more reliable access. No one spoke during the public hearing held on the permit requests.
• Approved a request by Connie A. Bailey for a conditional-use permit for private-use camping. Bailey also owns property off Burma Road that he wants to use for camping. The county also issued Bailey a violation notice in June. No one spoke during the public hearing on the request.
• Approved a request by Megan Lanterman for a conditional-use permit to operate a nonprofit, commercial kennel at 396 Rolling Mountain Road in the South River Magisterial District. Lanterman offered to limit the number of dogs to 12 given that the lot size of between 5 and 10 acres. Lanterman plans to start a small, canine rescue facility. Lanterman spoke during the public hearing on the matter.

Contact staff writer Alex Bridges at 540-465-5137 ext. 125, or abridges@nvdaily.com