Henrico County VA
Government

Henricopolis SWCD honors its stars at Assemblage


A century or so ago, Henrico County was known as the Dairy County of Virginia, and one of the largest dairy operations was centered at the Dorey family's barn in Varina.

On Jan. 7, the barn – now the site of the Dorey Park Recreation Center – was transformed into an art gallery, and its rafters hung with colorful student art work depicting nature scenes.

Governor-elect vows ethics reforms

Gov.-elect Terry McAuliffe said Wednesday that he would push for greater transparency and ethics reforms in state government.

McAuliffe spoke to a roomful of journalists after a panel discussion on political journalism ethics and political finance and gift-disclosure organized by the Associated Press.

The Northern Virginia businessman said he “would be inclined” to “issue an executive order” to waive the fees currently charged to citizens and journalists requesting government documents under the state’s Freedom of Information Act.

County proposes sale of Best Plaza complex

UPDATE: Dec. 10, 6:35 P.M. – Henrico County officials are proposing that the county sell a prominent 93-acre site adjacent to I-95 that it purchased for $6.2 million just two years ago.

County Manager John Vithoulkas is recommending the sale of Best Plaza, which sits at the interchange of Parham Road and I-95 in northern Henrico.

When the county bought the property in December 2011, officials envisioned it as the future home for many of Henrico's key governmental agencies, which would relocate from the western government center on Parham Road and allow the courts complex to undergo a much-needed expansion there.

County asks state to share VRS liabilities

Henrico County officials aren't making any formal requests this year to the county's General Assembly delegation, but informally they're encouraging the Henrico delegation to support an accounting change that could help preserve the county's sterling triple AAA bond rating.

The issue involves the pension payments made into the Virginia Retirement System for Henrico teachers by the county and state. The state and each Virginia locality share the funding responsibility for the VRS, which makes retirement payments to eligible former teachers and other retired state and local employees.

New Varina Library scheduled to open in 2016


Varina's long-anticipated new library will step closer to reality Dec. 10, when the Board of Supervisors is expected to approve a plan of development for the facility.

Construction of the 42,333-square-foot Varina Area Library, which will be located on Route 5, adjacent to the Pocahontas Parkway, is expected to begin by May and be completed by November 2015. The facility's targeted opening date is March 1, 2016.

Meals tax expected to begin May 1

Henrico County officials hope to implement the county's new meals tax by May 1, 2014, pending Board of Supervisors approval of a new ordinance outlining the tax. Voters authorized the tax in a Nov. 5 vote. The Citizen first reported the May 1 date on Nov. 6.

The board is expected to receive a proposed ordinance establishing the parameters for what purchases would be taxed and hold a public hearing in the coming weeks.

Henrico earns fifth Go Green Award from Va. Assoc. of Counties

Henrico County received a 2013 Go Green Award from the Virginia Association of Counties (VACo) for demonstrating a commitment to environmentally friendly practices and sustainability in government operations.

VACo honored Henrico and six other counties Nov. 10, during the association’s 79th annual conference in Bath County. Henrico also earned awards under the Go Green Virginia program in 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2012.

Henrico Fire receives $8k donation

BB&T Insurance Services and Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company recently awarded an $8,000 grant to the Henrico Division of Fire to fund fire prevention materials and nozzles to help improve community and firefighter safety. The grant will fund the purchase of two new oscillating nozzles, which allow firefighters to apply a large supply of water where needed, without the need to continually operate the nozzles. The division also will use the funds to purchase printed fire prevention materials to be distributed at events throughout the community.

Henrico awaits recount instructions in AG race

Mark Herring (left)
and Mark Obenshain
UPDATED: NOV. 27, 1:15 P.M. – The closest statewide election in the history of Virginia politics is headed for a recount, and Henrico County officials are preparing to play their part.

The State Board of Elections Nov. 25 certified Democrat Mark Herring as the winner of the election, by a mere 165 votes over Republican Mark Obenshain – about seven one-thousands of one percent among the more than 2.2 million votes cast.

Today, Obenshain petitioned the Richmond Circuit Court for a recount, beginning a process that last was utilized in Virginia eight years ago in another race for attorney general. In that election, Democrat Creigh Deeds petitioned for a recount after losing to Republican Bob McDonnell by 323 votes, but the recount concluded that McDonnell had actually won by 360 votes.

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