10 years later, the city of Culpeper is expanding the borders to growth areas | company

A decade after its last boundary adjustment, the city of Culpeper will again physically grow this summer, this time by 136.6 acres, at locations contiguous to its current boundaries.

The expansion into two separate areas will include approximately 43 existing businesses along Brandy Road and Lovers Lane, notably Culpeper Wood Preservers at the north end and Hampton Inn at the south.

Many are connected to, or have access to, the community water and sanitation system.

Another nine apartments in the Brandy Road corridor would become part of the city. According to Town Manager Chris Hively, the change would take effect on July 1 at the earliest.

During a January 27 retreat, the Culpeper City Council directed Hively to proceed to inform the Borough of the city’s intention to expand its boundaries in some of the future water and sanitation areas included in the 2012 Borough Council Agreement are fixed.

Under this agreement, the city expanded its boundaries by 302 acres, less than a half mile, particularly at the north end of the county, to include various then-new shopping malls beyond Walmart on Bus. 29. The acquisition also included the Madison Grove housing development behind Lowe’s, SWIFT southeast of town and Lake Pelham/Clore Farm to the southwest.

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The approved agreement, in turn, designated water and sanitation areas in growth centers around city limits and provided service in those areas along with other city services at the lower inner-city rate.

It took nearly two decades for elected city and county officials to work out the minutest details of the past agreement that saw the city grow for the first time since 1969.

The 2012 agreement, signed after an unprecedented period of high growth throughout Culpeper, also allows the city to expand countywide water and sanitation services at will. In addition, it contained three other provisions – once every 10 years – to adjust the city limits in the growth areas.

These prospective areas, located north, east and south of the city’s current corporate boundaries, comprise approximately 4,913 acres.

The 2012 agreement also committed the city to extending a sewer line to Eastern View High School, a $2 million project. The agreement also reserved 1.5 million gallons of municipal water and sewerage capacity for county growth.

Ten years later, this latest expansion is expected to be much more routine, since the municipalities have already signed the overall plan to let the city grow in growth areas and in return have access to water and sewerage at municipal rates. The city also provides garbage collection, policing, road maintenance, planning and zoning, snow removal, and street lighting.

The current process gives the county 60 days to respond and present its agreement or disagreement on whether the growth areas meet eligibility requirements under the 2012 agreement, Hively said. That clock started on Feb. 8, when the city sent a letter notifying the county of the boundary line change.

Hively’s letter to Borough Administrator John Egertson said the areas meet density thresholds and are in the water and sanitation service area contiguous to the city.

According to a presentation Hively made to Culpeper City Council, the city and county or a special court would resolve any disputes in expanding the 22 boundary line.

The city estimates annual property tax receipts at $148,425 from the southern area and $33,850 from the northern expansion.

Revenue projections for city meals, lodging, property and property taxes are estimated at this time because the city says the city does not have access to these county records.

However, these additional city taxes can be relatively high for various dealerships in the new areas, including Kubota of Culpeper, Cycle Center, American Truck and Trailer.

The city also collects machine and tool taxes, as well as business, professional, and professional license fees—or BPOL.

With the 2012 agreement, the city reduced overall BPOL rates citywide by 20 percent, and rates remained at that reduced rate.

Faulconer Construction, Culpeper Petroleum, Virginia Dept. of Emergency Management Area 2, Culpeper Hearing Center, Keys Academy, Culpeper Kids Dentistry, 84 Lumber, Integrity Automotive, Trigon Homes, Tobacco Hut, Ron’s Used Tires, Culpeper Sport & Fitness, Braggs Corner Halal Meats and Rusty’s Towing are also located in the new areas the city plans to conquer this summer.

Egertson said the county will analyze the areas to confirm they meet eligibility requirements under the 2012 agreement. The topic will be discussed in the board meeting on March 1st at 10 am.

Failure to meet eligibility requirements is the only basis for objections under the 2012 agreement, he said.

Only one of the seven current members of the Board of Supervisors — Brad Rosenberger of Jefferson District — was on the Board of Directors when the 2012 agreement was adopted.

Current City Council members were Frank Reaves, Mike Olinger and Billy Yowell when the agreement was approved 10 years ago.

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