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Government

  • Council considers tax exempt request

        A public hearing on a request by Bedford’s Elks Lodge for real estate tax exempt status drew only one speaker. Tim Childress, a member of the Lodge who spoke in favor of it.
        Childress said the Lodge’s directors are not paid and no money goes to any members and the Lodge does not attempt to influence legislation.
        “The tax is significant to the the Lodge but is negligible to the town,” Childress said.

  • Supervisors grant pay raises

        The Bedford County Board of Supervisors voted pay raises for full time and part time county employees, effective Dec. 1.
        The raises are the result of a salary study that indicated that Bedford County salaries are substantially lower than those paid by surrounding localities. It will cost $900,000 to implement the pay raises for the rest of the current fiscal year, which will end on June 30.
        The raises range from 2 percent to 32 percent, depending on how a position ranked in the study.

  • Carson, Stanley move on from council

        When Bedford Town Council convenes for the first time next year, two men will no longer occupy one of the hot seats.

        Robert Carson and Beckham Stanley chose not to run and newcomers Bruce Johannessen and Bryan Schley picked up the vacant seats.
        Carson, who served on Council for four years, said he tends to be his own worst critic.
        “I just didn’t feel very effective,” he said.

  • Solar Power farm coming to Bedford

        The town of Bedford intends to enter into a solar franchise agreement with the North Carolina-based solar developer O2 emc to construct a utility scale solar farm within the town.
        The facility will be located off Draper Road adjacent to the old town landfill and will occupy approximately 20 acres.  O2 will lease the land from the town. 

  • Council doesn’t chicken out

        Bedford residents living in low density residential areas (R1) will now be able to keep chickens in their backyard.
        According to Assistant Town Manager Bart Warner, the new ordinance is based on the ordinances that Roanoke and Salem have and no roosters are allowed.
        Enforcement will  be complaint driving. Council adopted the ordinance by a 5-0 vote with Councilmen Beckham Stanley and Jim Vest absent.

  • Election drew high voter turnout

        Election day appeared to be drawing a heavy voter turnout. According to County Registrar Barbara Gunter, most precincts had recorded a 50 percent voter turnout by 3 p.m.  She noted that this is a high turnout.

        For complete results of Tuesday’s election visit www.bedfordbulletin.com Wednesday or see next week’s paper.

  • Few minorities work in local law enforcement

        Captain Timothy Hayden of the Bedford County Sheriff’s Office remembers well one of his first assignments as a new deputy for the county.

        There had been a robbery at a bank near the intersection of Route 24 and Va. 122 and the suspect had fled into the woods. Hayden, who had yet to go through the Police Academy, was given a shotgun and told to wait in the woods in case the suspect came back that way.

  • Ministry or homeless shelter?

        Bedford’s planning commission had  an item on its agenda, Thursday evening, about whether to issue a conditional use permit to allow Grace House Community Church to operate a homeless shelter. It didn’t quite go that way.
        The Rev. Joshua Ball, pastor of Grace House, argued that the homeless shelter is what his church does. He said Grace House started in 2011.
        “We found a need that was in the community,” he said.

  • Dittmar seeks 5th seat

        Jane Dittmar, the 5th District Democrats’ nominee for the 5th District House of Representatives seat being vacated by Congressman Robert Hurt, stopped by local Democratic headquarters in Bedford, Friday.

  • School Board looks for options on baseball field for LHS

    School Board Chairman Gary Hostutler spoke to Town Council last week, during the work session that preceded the regular 7 p.m meeting,  asking for improvements to the ball field at Liberty Lake Park that would allow the Liberty High School (LHS) baseball team to use it as a practice field.
        Hostutler said that the Liberty Lake ball field is a Plan B option. 
        “The ideal scenario is [for the baseball team] to play the 2017 season at  its current field and the 2018 season at the new field,” he said.