Windsor votes yes on poultry, new utility truck

Published 10:58 am Friday, September 16, 2016


The Windsor Town Council unanimously approved a motion to allow residents to raise poultry within the town’s corporate limits during its monthly meeting on Tuesday.

Additional topics discussed included: the proposed purchase of a new utility cart and truck; a proposal to raise Windsor’s machinery and tools tax to keep pace with Isle of Wight County’s proposed changes to its method for assessing equipment values; proposed updates to Windsor’s Town Code; and renovation proposals for Windsor’s municipal building and town center.

The debate on the issue of raising chickens and other poultry within town limits centered on wording in the Code of Virginia, signed into law in 1995, which prohibits towns and counties from unreasonably restricting farming or poultry raising practices in a predominantly agricultural area. Prior to the meeting, Windsor’s land ordinances did not permit poultry raising in any district.

“I talked to some of my neighbors prior to the meeting; everyone was in favor of having chickens. I was surprised,” said Councilwoman Patti Flemming.

Following the debate over the chickens, the council also voted unanimously to purchase a new Dodge utility truck to replace its current 2003 truck, which is in need of repairs. The council briefly debated whether to keep the existing truck or sell it as surplus upon receipt of the new model.

In response to the Isle of Wight County Board of Supervisors’ proposed new method for assessing the value of equipment and machinery for tax purposes, the Windsor Town Council debated whether to raise its machinery tax rate to $0.25 per $100 to remain revenue neutral using the County’s new, lower-assessed values. The council ultimately decided to wait until the County formally signed any tax changes into law.

Local representatives from a Girl Scout troop based in the Southside Chesapeake area were present to receive an award from Candice George, a member of the Silver Sisters of Seven Cities, for completing over 50 hours of community service. Representatives included Claire and Katie Anderson, Keri Barton and Madison Stubbs.

Several council members proposed changes to Windsor’s Town Code to give the town manager the authority to revoke parade permits if necessary for traffic control, establish quiet hours between the hours of 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. to give the chief of police more leverage to address noise complaints from residents, and a change to section 100 to designate the planning and zoning administrator and the chief of police as having the authority to inspect reported inoperable vehicles.

The final topic on the agenda was a proposal for further renovation to the town’s Windsor Town Center, as well as plans for a potential new Municipal building.

The council has $80,000 available for the Windsor Town Center, most of which will be used to add a new HVAC system to the building.

“Other than the Smithfield Center, there’s nothing in our county for people to hold a large meeting so that’s one of the upsides,” said Mayor Carita J. Richardson about one of the Town Center’s benefits.

The vote on the proposal was 4-1 with one abstention.