No one speaks at Kenbridge budget public hearing

Published 12:31 pm Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Kenbridge Town Council held a public hearing on the town’s 2016-17 proposed budget on last week and no one showed up. Council ended the meeting after waiting 15 minutes.

Council was expected to adopt the budget at its Tuesday meeting.

The budget does not call for a tax increase, and estimates $997,674.33 in general fund revenues and expenditures.

Vice Mayor Ken Blackburn has said highlights of the proposed budget include money for a rainy day fund, a modest salary increase for the town’s employees and money to teardown blighted properties. The issue of blighted, abandoned properties continues to vex Kenbridge town council.

Meanwhile, the council held a public hearing on snow removal policy and discussed possible changes to its noise ordinance on Tuesday, June 21.

Council met at 5:45 p.m. to discuss possible changes to the town’s noise ordinance after the county developed its own ordinance and asked the Kenbridge and Victoria to consider adopting it. The ordinance calls for meters to measure noise levels.

Victoria has said it is content with its ordinance, which does not call for the use of meters.

However, Kenbridge officials said they may adopt some elements of the county’s noise ordinance.

“You want a basic ordinance but also you want an enforceable ordinance,” Raymond Hite, the town’s police chief and a member of the council said.

The use of noise meters would do just that, he said.

Council also held a 6:30 p.m. public hearing on a snow removal policy.

The policy affects the downtown district, and Town Attorney Cal Spencer told the council last month that penalties and enforcement provisions would have to be included.

Board member Cathy Gilley said she likes the simplicity of the policy, but that the town will have to make a point of notifying the downtown merchants of it and its particulars.