Grottoes appoints its first vice mayor

The Valley Banner

GROTTOES – The town of Grottoes has its first vice mayor.

Following a closed session on April 11, the council unanimously voted to appoint current Councilwoman Emily Holloway vice mayor.

The move followed a change in the town’s charter to include the position of vice mayor, Town Manager Jeff Nicely said.

Holloway’s four-year council term is up this year, but she is currently gathering signatures for mayor, Nicely said.

The council seats of Holloway, John Funk and Mark Keeler are up for election in November, along with that of Mayor Berton Austin.

Jen Frederick, an employee of the Rockingham County registrar’s office, said Funk has submitted signatures to get on the ballot. Nicely said that Keeler is also gathering signatures for re-election.

Nicely was not aware of any other prospective candidates.

This is the first year that council candidates in Grottoes must gather the state-mandated 125 signatures to get on the ballot. The process is required as a result of the town now having more than 1,500 registered voters.

Candidates have until 7 p.m. on June 14 to submit the required signatures, but Frederick said candidates can submit them early to make sure enough are valid.

Odds and ends
In other news, council voted unanimously to table the second reading of an ordinance that would allow residents to drive utility terrain vehicles in town.

The action came after a citizen requested that the wording of the ordinance be tweaked to allow UTVs to be operated during inclement weather.

The town’s current golf cart ordinance, which would be amended under the proposal, does not allow golf carts to be driven when it’s snowing or sleeting, Nicely said.

He noted that UTVs are typically used to plow snow, for example. Council will consider the issue again on May 9.

Council approved an expenditure of $1,350 for materials to repair a Grand Caverns billboard on Third Street.

The sign was recently damaged in a windstorm, Nicely said.

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