STRASBURG – At a Monday night Town Council work session, Vice Mayor Scott Terndrup said the council will do “our very best” to keep business going as usual during the mayor’s absence.
Mayor Rich Orndorff Jr. was flown to INOVA Fairfax Hospital on Friday night with serious but non-life-threatening injuries following a vehicular crash.
A Monday news release from the state police states Orndorff was operating a recreational terrain vehicle that struck the Strasburg Community Library at 195 W. King St. at 10:46 p.m. Friday. Minimal damage was done to the library, the release states, and police are still investigating.
As of Monday, Orndorff was still being treated at INOVA, the release states.
Terndrup did not have any more information for about 10 community members who attended the work session, but he said council members’ thoughts are with Orndorff.
“Please bear with us,” he said. “We ask you to pray for us and we will do our very best to carry on.”
No community members spoke during the public comment session.
Council plans to vote on the fiscal 2020 budget at its next work session at 7 p.m. June 3.
On Monday, council members discussed concerns they had at an April work session when several members were hesitant to support the town’s part-time marketing and events coordinator position becoming a full-time community development manager position.
The position is intended to assist economic development and marketing manager Michelle Bixler, continuing the duties of marketing and event planning for the town while also including tourism, workforce development, project management, business retention and expansion, small business development and administration activities.
After hearing Town Manager Wyatt Pearson describe the job in greater detail and also getting more information over the last few weeks, two council members overcame their previous reservations about funding the full-time position.
“Well, yeah, you need some help,” Councilwoman Kim Bishop told Bixler, who attended Monday’s meeting. Bishop pointed out that the full-time community development manager will also take care of marketing outside the town limits, as needed.
“For myself, I have changed my position,” Bishop said.
Elaborating on how full-time positions don’t mean what they used to in requiring a full 40 hours a week, Bishop said she would support adding a few more hours to give the position the required number to make it full-time.
“I think people should know all the work that you do,” she told Bixler.
Councilwoman Jocelyn Vena also changed her position on the matter, saying that after getting more information she agrees Bixler needs a full-time employee to help.
Addressing the possibility that Orndorff will have to back out of some commitments around town, Terndrup joined Councilwoman Emily Reynolds in volunteering to cook the June 12 community dinner, which normally falls to the mayor.
Terndrup pointed out that Vena has volunteered to help with setup that day.
Council will consider other commitments that need to be reassigned as they come up.
“As things come up, you may be called upon to do things you don’t ordinarily do,” Terndrup said, promising to share information as it becomes available.
“We don’t know anything right now. But we do know that we care about this community. We’re going to govern as best we can. … We will be OK.”
The Strasburg Town Pool opens at 1 p.m. Thursday, barring any complications. The American Legion will host a Memorial Day ceremony at the Riverview Cemetery on S. Holliday St. at 11 a.m. Monday.
The next Town Council meeting will be at 7 p.m. June 11.