BERRYVILLE — Town Council will vote next month on whether to annex roughly 130 adjoining acres from Clarke County into Berryville.
In September, the Clarke County Board of Supervisors voted to allow the boundary expansion.
Only two people spoke Tuesday night during a joint public hearing of the council and the Berryville Planning Commission concerning the proposed annexation. The speakers just asked a few questions.
The largest area targeted for annexation is about 111 acres near Battletown Drive and Bel Voi Drive. The properties, designated for residential and agricultural use, are being marketed by Friant Enterprises. One lot already is connected to Berryville’s water/sewer system.
Other areas marked to become part of the town include approximately 10 acres in the 300 block of First Street and nine acres at Berryville’s public works facility on Tom Whitacre Circle near Clarke County High School.
The boundary expansion is allowable under an agreement between the town and county — dating to the late 1980s — defining Berryville’s future annexation rights.
During the hearing, Cathy Mills Mann mentioned the owners of affected properties will be “having to pay taxes in two places.” Berryville residents must pay both town and county taxes annually.
Mann asked what the owners will get in return. Mayor Jay Arnold indicated the town hasn’t determined how soon utilities, such as water and sewer, can be furnished to the properties.
Councilwoman Kara Rodriguez asked if the utilities have enough capacity to serve the sites. Community Development Director Christy Dunkle said they do.
The historic Audley Farm is near one of the areas to be annexed. Turner Kobayashi, the farm’s general manager, inquired about how many new homes eventually will be built nearby. Arnold replied that town officials don’t yet know.
Members of the planning commission, which provides the council recommendations on land-use issues, had no questions.
The commission will discuss the proposed annexation further, then make a recommendation on whether it should proceed, when it meets at 7 p.m. Oct. 26.
Taking that recommendation into account, the council will vote on the proposal during its next regular meeting at 7 p.m. Nov. 9, Arnold said.
If the council approves it, the annexation will become effective on Jan. 1.
Also Tuesday night, the council scheduled a public hearing for Nov. 9 on whether to renew Berryville Main Street’s lease of the town-owned building at 23 E. Main St.
Berryville Main Street is a nonprofit organization promoting the downtown business district.
In addition, the council:
Reappointed John Hudson to the Berryville Area Development Authority. His new three-year term will expire in December 2024.
Reappointed Tom Parker to the planning commission. His new four-year term will expire in September 2025.
Appointed Kelly Wood-Brondstater to the Berryville Tree Board. She will serve a four-year term.
Voted to recommend that Clarke County Circuit Court appoint Gerald Dodson to the Berryville Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA). If he’s appointed, Dodson will serve a five-year term.
Because the BZA is a quasi-judicial board, the court is responsible for making appointments to it.
All of the council’s votes were unanimous among members present. Councilwoman Donna Marie McDonald was absent.