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Aug. 7, 1985-March 1986

Posted 2019-05-09

    (Old news items in this and the next three editions will be republished from issues of The Free Press over the four decades since its founding, beginning in 1985.)


Aug. 7, 1985

    The Shenandoah Free Press, a free distribution newspaper serving Shenandoah and Northern Rockingham counties, is being issued for the first time this week.

    Shenandoah Publications, Inc., a new stock corporation, will publish the newspaper.

    Stoney Creek Utilities Corporation owner and original developer of Bryce Resort Paul B. (Pete) Bryce has been allowed “a reasonable time” to pay more than $200,000 in delinquent real estate taxes dating back to 1977. The Shenandoah County Board of Supervisors approved the deal. A deed of trust was filed Aug. 6 at the Shenandoah County Court Clerk’s Office listing nine parcels of property, all owned by Stony Creek Utilities Corporation as security for a loan of $159,127. That deed is secured by a note negotiated by the utility and the county’s supervisors.

    Shenandoah County attorney A. G. Lambiotte said the proposition was suggested by the utility’s attorney about three months ago and that supervisors had discussed it behind closed doors since that time. Lambiotte indicated the loan had been discussed more than once.


September 1985

    With no money to build Woodstock’s proposed sewage treatment plant the town council voted last week to attempt to finance the project by selling municipal bonds. Mayor O. L. Burkett told the council of the town’s dilemma and proposed a meeting with representatives of the Virginia Resources Authority which sells revenue bonds. The project, which Burkett estimated would cost $2.4 million to $3 million must be completed by July 1988.

    Strasburg Town Manager Vince Poling will resign that position to become Shenandoah County’s first county planner. Poling’s terse letter of resignation was prepared Monday and distributed to members of the town council later that day. Two Strasburg Town Council members, both of whom requested anonymity, said Poling’s decision to resign was linked to mingling in administrative affairs by council member Garland Miller and Mayor Arthur Artz. Specifically, they said council infighting about overtime pay to the town’s police force may have driven Poling to take the planner’s job.


October 1985    

    Acting under threat that its municipal liability insurance coverage will be canceled, the Mt. Jackson Town Council Friday enacted an emergency measure that prohibits the town from collecting trash.

    A Woodstock man is missing and seven others were rescued from the raging water of the Shenandoah River Tuesday in the wake of one of the most devastating rainstorms in recent history.


December 1985

    Since the school board approved the Family Life curriculum, a euphemism for sex education, earlier this year the administration has been treading lightly to avoid potential public criticism.

    “We’re trying to move ahead cautiously,” said assistant superintendent Arthur White, “because we know this is a controversial situation and we don’t want to offend anyone or do anything wrong for our children.”

    A $3 million airport is at the top of a six-year “wish list” compiled by Shenandoah County officials. “I’m convinced it can benefit,” said Supervisor William Ortts. “I’m just not convinced we need it.”


January 1986

    Near consensus opposition has been voiced against a plan to consolidate the county’s three high schools in a telephone survey conducted by The Free Press.

    Shenandoah County supervisor C. Thomas Sollenberger implored his colleagues Thursday to oppose a mandated statewide 10 percent pay increase for school teachers. Sollenberger lobbied during General Assembly budget sessions last week against Gov. Gerald Baliles’ plan to boost teacher pay.


March 1986

    The proposal to build an $18.3 million consolidated high school for Shenandoah County will be discussed at the public meeting March 26 in Woodstock.