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K.G. community wants golf carts

Residents of Potomac Landing subdivision want to be able to drive golf carts through their neighborhood, just like nearby residents of Fairview Beach.

They pitched their case to King George County officials last week, and members of the Board of Supervisors said the community sounded like the perfect place for slow-moving carts.

“It’s probably ideal for your community because of the way it’s laid out,” said Supervisor Joe Grzeika, adding he was skeptical about the golf-cart issue in the past, but it’s worked out well at Fairview Beach.

King George put together a golf-cart ordinance in 2007 after requests from Fairview Beach residents. That waterside community is the only one in the county where golf carts currently are allowed. In order for Potomac Landing subdivision to join the club, the two homeowners’ associations in the community must apply for permits, county officials said. Each association would be responsible for posting signs about the golf carts.

There won’t be a public hearing because an ordinance allowing golf carts already is in place.

Potomac Landing is adjacent—and similar—to Fairview Beach and meets the criteria spelled out in the ordinance, according to supervisors. There’s one road into and out of the development; the speed limit is 25 mph and there’s no through-traffic. “This is a small and quiet community,” said resident John Marlowe, who estimates the average age of homeowners is between 50 and 60. “Drivers are already used to driving slowly.”

‘A LOT OF GREAT FEATURES’

Emergency service vehicles and sheriff’s cars in King George are equipped with new mapping software. Steve Lynd, captain of King George Fire, Rescue and Emergency Services, demonstrated the impressive capability of the mobile data terminals last week.

The terminals are on 17 ambulances and fire trucks and all 20 vehicles used by the Sheriff’s Office. Instead of relying on Internet access—because coverage is spotty in the rural county—all the information is loaded into the terminals.

At the touch of a screen, responders can get directions to an address where there’s a fire or accident, see an aerial view of the place and locate nearby hydrants. Eventually, floor plans, contact numbers and other relevant information for public buildings will be downloaded into the terminals, Lynd said. The software cost $28,000 and was paid for by a grant from the Virginia Department of Emergency Management. County officials will be able to add new information whenever they desire, Lynd said.

“We’re very happy with this,” he added. “It has a lot of great features.”

MARKET AT SHILOH PARK?

The King George Farmers Market is looking for a permanent site for its seasonal market, but said “no thanks” to the county’s offer to plant roots on U.S. 301.

The county is renovating a former auto auction site and will operate a vehicle maintenance facility there. Twice in recent months, Brooks suggested the 48-acre property—which is in his district—might be a good place for a permanent market.

Jane Van Valzah, president of the market’s board of directors, thanked the board for the offer. She said the site doesn’t fit the market’s purpose because it isn’t centrally located.

She would like to look into locating at the new Shiloh Park, off State Route 205 where the old landfill used to operate.

COURTHOUSE SECURITY

After judges told the Board of Supervisors in August that the new security system in the renovated courthouse is worthless without people to operate it, supervisors last week found money to hire two more people. The new hires will start on Jan. 1, and their positions will cost $60,000 for six months, said County Administrator Travis Quesenberry.

The county spent about $200,000 to renovate the courthouse after the Sheriff’s Office moved to its new headquarters in the Government Complex off State Route 3. As part of the courthouse renovation, various accesses to the building were eliminated, leaving only one door for the public to enter—and that access was to be monitored by a surveillance system.

King George spent $42,000 on equipment but supervisors said they couldn’t afford the cost of the workers when they put this year’s budget together. They changed their minds after judges and other court officials wrote, saying security of the facility was vital.

Supervisor Cedell Brooks Jr. seemed to voice the sentiments of the entire board when he said: “When it comes from a judge like this, we really don’t have much choice.”

Cathy Dyson: 540/374-5425

cdyson@freelancestar.com

 

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