Members of the Halifax County Board of Supervisors are set to consider a recommendation from its finance committee to allocate the maximum borrowing of $135 million for the Halifax County School Board when they meet at 6:30 p.m. Monday in the Mary Bethune Office Complex in Halifax.

Of that $135 million, the finance committee is recommending $105 million go toward a new Halifax County High School, $25 million be put toward elementary schools’ renovations and then $5 million being held by supervisors for contingency.

The 1% sales tax increase is set to generate $100 million, and supervisors have been considering using funding from debt service to pay for the high school.

The county currently has approximately $23 million in school debt that is set to expire in 2027.

Their plan, according to finance committee chair Jeff Francisco, is to reserve $2.5 million in case of the closure of the Dominion Power Plant, save $400,000 for future projects, and contribute some of the monies to the school system’s high school and elementary school projects.

At the recent finance committee meeting, ED-8 supervisor William Bryant Claiborne made a motion to recommend the $135 million for school projects, with $105 million set for the high school and $25 million used for elementary school renovations. The motion was seconded by vice chairman Garland Ricketts and was approved with a 3-to-1 vote with ED-1 supervisor Ricky Short casting the sole dissenting vote.

Supervisors also are set to consider another recommendation from the finance committee when they meet Monday.

Also as part of the high school project, supervisors are slated to consider authorizing appropriation of $380,000 for the school board to purchase Powell property, which is located near Gas House.

The finance committee recommended the implementation of the revised school system compensation plan with adjustments to teacher’s salaries beginning Feb. 1 and adjustments to support staff beginning Jan. 1.

At a recent joint meeting between supervisors and the school board, the school board requested the use of their $3.2 million in carryover capital funding to implement new salary scales for all employees.

However, members of the finance committee are recommending they implement the scales for all employees at the beginning of the new year, except for administration.

Under the new approved scale, a first year and second year teacher will make $42,752, and a third year and fourth year teacher will make $42,875.

A fifth year teacher will now make $43,016, an increase of $265, and a 10th year teacher will now make $45,124, an increase of $2,249.

With the new plan, an aid would see an increase of $5,386, raising their salary to $22,943 and a custodian would see an increase of $2,532 raising their salary to $22,917.

Other issues

Other recommendations from the finance committee that supervisors are set to consider are new hours for the animal shelter; a recommendation to refer a request from Care in the Community Association for food giveaway funds to the COVID Distribution Committee; and approval of the FY2023 budget calendar.

In other action, supervisors are set to consider a conditional use permit that would allow Jason Forlines to operate 360 Rentals at 5097 James D. Hagood Highway in Scottsburg.

It would be a small construction rental business.

A public hearing was previously held for supervisors and the Halifax County Planning Commission, and no one spoke in support or opposition for the issuance of the permit.

Supervisors also are slated to consider changing to the solar ordinance.

Recommended changes to the solar ordinance include increasing the right of way setback from 75 feet to 150 feet, increasing the setback from adjoining property owners from 25 feet to a minimum of 100 feet or a maximum of 300 feet if there’s no existing vegetation on the property, a green privacy fence will need to be installed

The planning commission recommended implementing these solar ordinance changes following a joint public hearing in which no one spoke in support or opposition.

Supervisors also are expected to consider an ordinance that would allow townhouses in a M-1, industrial zoning district with a conditional use permit.

Zoning administrator Detrick Easley explained at a joint public hearing with planning commission and supervisors that this change would allow for growth in the county.

One person, Glenn Williamson, spoke in opposition of the ordinance change because of how it’s relates to Virginia International Raceway. The change in the ordinance would allow for VIR to build more villas on their property, but Williamson is concerned that they may not have the appropriate water supply to supplement more villas.

An agreement with the Southside Health District also is slated to go before supervisors for consideration. The proposed agreement for July 1, 2021, to June 30, 2022 includes local funds of $249,199. Also included is $13,902.89 for shingles vaccines.

Also included on Monday’s agenda are the following:

Recognition of Francisco for his time serving on the board of supervisors;

Recognition of Larry Roller, current tiebreaker who was elected to fill Francisco’s seat;

Presentation from Petrina Carter with Tri-County Community Action Agency;

Consideration of filling the tiebreaker position; and

Consideration of appointments to a committee to decide allocation of American Rescue Plan Act funding.