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Tag: City Council

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Hburg officials add climate change goal as they revisit city’s long-term vision

City leaders added a commitment to address “climate change challenges” as one of it’s short- and long-term goals during their biannual retreat over the weekend. And their debate over that — as well as a discussion over the city’s diversity — revealed the challenge of crafting lofty priorities to be specific but not exclusionary.

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Council approves some businesses’ requests, but denies junkyard permit

Several local businesses, including a food truck and a townhome developer, got green lights for special use permits or rezoning, but the city council on Tuesday also denied a permit request for a junkyard.

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Council approves 4-cent property tax increase for new high school; Mayor says MRRJ expansion is ‘off the table’

The Harrisonburg City Council on Tuesday approved a four-cent increase on the real estate tax rate, which will help restart construction of the new high school — all part of the final version of the city’s nearly $295 million Fiscal Year 2022 budget. Also in Tuesday’s meeting, Mayor Deanna Reed announced why a proposed expansion of Middle River Regional Jail is a no-go.

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As an employer, Harrisonburg is close to living wage certification. What’s holding it back?

Leading up to the 2020 city council election, Ramona Saunders, leader of the Harrisonburg-Rockingham Living Wage Campaign, began working with Democratic candidates to try to move Harrisonburg’s city government toward certification as a living wage employer.

School board, residents urge city council to ‘get on board’ with new school construction

After discussing the addition of more mobile units in Harrisonburg High School’s parking lot to ease overcrowding, several school board members on Tuesday called on the city council to more fully commit to re-starting the new high school’s construction.

City and school division bank on federal funds to restart high school project, make up for revenue decline

Money that Congress approved last month to help local communities in the wake of the pandemic could help restart construction on the new Harrisonburg high school soon and is expected to fill revenue holes in the city’s budget. Money from the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act, which President Joe Biden signed into law in March, could reach Harrisonburg in the coming weeks in time to resume building the high school even before the city approves its budget for the coming year, said Harrisonburg City Public Schools Superintendent Michael Richards.

Hburg council offers chilly reception to jail expansion plan

Members of the Harrisonburg City Council expressed concerns about and, in some cases, outright opposition to a proposed expansion of the Middle River Regional Jail as the jail’s leader made his pitch Tuesday night. While the council didn’t take any vote on the issue, the discussion signaled that jail officials might have an uphill climb to convince Harrisonburg to kick as much as $1.2 million more a year for the city’s share of a nearly $40 million expansion.

Just what is a housing trust fund and how might it work in Hburg?

As city leaders, organizations and advocates have debated ways to address Harrisonburg’s housing crunch, the concept of establishing a housing trust fund kept popping up. Here’s a guide to how a housing trust fund works, what other localities use one and how it might affect Harrisonburg’s affordable housing crunch.

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