A group of Warren County residents rallied Tuesday to support a neighbor’s plan to rent a house to tourists.

The Board of Supervisors unanimously sided with the supporters and approved a conditional-use permit as requested by 2 Mexico LLC and B. Allen Richards LLC for a short-term tourist rental at 1115 Riverview Shores Drive, in the Shenandoah Shores subdivision.

Business partners Richard Butcher and Jillian Greenfield spoke about the request before a public hearing. They provided copies of their property management plan and 13 letters of support from neighbors on Riverview Shores Drive.

Shenandoah Shores resident Juan Pasquale said he plans to rent his property while he travels after retirement, and voiced support of short-term tourist rentals in general.

Eric Samms lives near the applicants’ property and said the community needs short-term rentals to attract tourists.

“It just opens another door to keep the money in town and everybody can profit off of it,” he said.

Katherine Fedoryka, a Shenandoah Shores property owner, said she appreciates “the beautification that these applicants have made to our neighborhood and I anticipate that it will continue to benefit our neighborhood to have them so intimately involved in life there.”

Several speakers said tourist rentals likely receive more frequent attention than long-term rental properties.

Also at the meeting, supervisors voted to:

Accept a grant from the Department of Criminal Justice Services for a school resource/security officer.

Approve the appointment of a director of human resources, effective Oct. 4 at a salary of $89,460.

Authorize the creation of a countywide firefighter personal protective equipment program and to allow the fire chief to use $160,000 of Virginia Department of Fire Programs Aid to Localities funds to buy the equipment. The items to be purchased include structural firefighting coats, pants, suspenders, boots, helmets and two pairs each of gloves and hoods. The county Department of Fire and Rescue Services receives approximately $88,000 annually from the Aid to Localities Program.

Approve an agreement between the county and the Virginia Municipal League/Virginia Association of Counties on an as-needed basis for pre-audit and accounting services, at a cost of $105 per hour and not expected to exceed $30,000 without further authorization.

Pay a $50 bounty to William A. Atwood for killing one coyote.

Modify a conditional-use permit for a boarding kennel at 797 Fairground Road in the North River Magisterial District issued in 2008 to Amy Cavalier. Cavalier requested that the county modify the permit to reflect new business hours, allow the grooming of dogs on site but not boarded and to let additional canines use three outside run areas. No one spoke at the public hearing on the matter.

Approve a conditional-use permit requested by Hilda Keister for a short-term tourist rental at 7610 Strasburg Road, historically known as Signal Knob Retreat Center Buttonwood Lodge. The Keister family established the retreat center in the early 1980s on the farm for use by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America which leased it to the Caroline Furnace Lutheran Camp and Retreat Center until 2020. The property’s 10 bedrooms and 6.5 bathrooms allow up to 20 occupants. The applicants requested they be allowed the maximum of 10 occupants in accordance with the county regulations and approval by the Virginia Department of Health. No one spoke at the public hearing on the request.

Approve a conditional-use permit requested by Rachelle Hill and Don Beavers for a short-term tourist rental at 153 Rocky Spring. No one spoke at the public hearing on the request.

Approve a conditional-use permit requested by George and Michele Kopcsak for a short-term tourist rental at 3609 Buck Mountain Road. No one spoke at the public hearing.

Approve a conditional-use permit requested by Jesse McClain for a short-term tourist rental at 894 Blue Mountain Road.

The board met in closed session before the regular meeting to consult with legal counsel about actual or probable litigation concerning the Virginia Opioid Abatement Fund, and to seek advice on the Front Royal-Warren County Economic Development Authority.

– Contact Alex Bridges at abridges@nvdaily.com