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Halifax County Supes asked to approve bid for trail extension

SoVaNow.com / November 04, 2019
The Halifax County Board of Supervisors will be asked to approve a $482,727 bid award for the lengthening of the Tobacco Heritage Trail when members meet tonight in Halifax.

The trail extension highlights an otherwise light agenda for supervisors ahead of an Election Day vote that will change of the makeup of the Board of Supervisors in 2020.

The regular monthly meeting is set to start at 6:30 p.m. at the Bethune Office Complex in Halifax, in the second floor meeting room.

Agenda items include:

» Supervisors will be asked to approve an award to White’s Construction, Inc. of Sutherlin, the low bidder on a project to expand the tobacco trail in South Boston from the current length of 2.5 miles to slightly more than four miles.

White’s Construction submitted the lowest bid among three companies vying for the project. Next lowest bidder was Virginia Carolina Paving, which offered to complete the job for $576,957.

The bids were opened Oct. 15, and supervisors are being asked to grant the contract to White’s Construction tonight. Construction work is expected to begin in a matter of weeks.

The expansion project, which is being funded by VDOT and the Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission, also known as the Virginia Tobacco Commission, will take the trail out from its current end point just past Berry Hill Resorts to Mirey Creek, some 1.6 miles west. The plan also calls for building a nature overlook north of the creek opening into the Dan River, providing a point of access for canoeists and kayakers on the river.

A second project phase, which has yet to be funded, will extend the trail past Mirey Creek for another 1.4 miles, entailing the construction of a footbridge. No timetable is set for phase two work.

The phase one extension to Mirey Creek is expected to be finished by May.

VDOT will contribute roughly $515,000 towards the cost of the Mirey Creek project with the tobacco commission adding another $200,000.

Eventually, the Roanoke River Rails-to-Trails board hopes to extend the trail out to Sutherlin, linking up with a separate trail in Pittsylvania County.

The longest stretch of the Tobacco Heritage Trail exists in eastern Mecklenburg and Brunswick counties, a 14-mile path between the towns of La Crosse and Lawrenceville.

» Supervisors also expected to hear about plans tonight for the replacement of electric transmission lines from Dominion Energy’s Buggs Island Substation in Mecklenburg to the Plywood Substation in Halifax County. The 25.8 mile transmission line infrastructure will be rebuilt using brown steel poles and H-frame structures on existing right of way.

Dominion anticipates that the project will be finished by early 2022. The existing power line is five decades old and has reached the end of its service life, according to the utility.

» Supervisors will be asked to approve $2,769.50 in tax relief for a local veteran, as provided for under the State Code of Virginia. Board action is required because the statute only allows the Commissioner of Revenue to authorize tax relief up to $2,500.

» Board members will hear an update on the status of renovations to the county courthouse, and they also will hear from Freda Holliday, director of Halifax Pittsylvania Court Services, on the pre-trial and probation services offered locally by her office.

Two members of board, J.T. Davis in ED-1 and Joey Rogers in ED-5, are not seeking re-election in Tuesday’s ballot, while three other supervisors, Dennis Witt in ED-4, Garland Ricketts in ED-7 and William Bryant Claiborne in ED-8, are seeking new terms.

Ricketts and Claiborne are running unopposed for re-election while Witt faces a challenge from Ronnie Duffey in ED-4.



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