Local Events

IMPORTANT EMERGENCY INFORMATION Be Aware of Scams Associated With COVID-19

During this time of crisis, scammers are taking every possible opportunity to gain at others’ expense. Gloucester Sheriff Darrell Warren said there are several “latest and greatest” scams associated with the COVID-19 pandemic that he is encouraging local residents to be aware of.  
 
First, is the Treatment Scam. Warren said scammers are offering to sell fake cures, vaccines and advice on unproven treatments for the coronavirus.
 
Next, there is the Supply Scam. This is when scammers call, e-mail or place advertisements saying they have medical products in stock.
 
Warren said there is also the Provider Scam. Scammers are contacting people pretending to be doctors and hospitals that have treated a friend or relative for coronavirus and demand payments for their treatment.
 
Then, there is the Charity Scam. With this one, scammers are soliciting donations for individuals, groups and areas affected by the coronavirus. He urges residents to only donate to a reputable organization that they are familiar with.
 
A fifth scam Warren pointed out is the Phishing Scam. This means scammers are posing as health authorities from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) are sending phishing e-mails designed to trick recipients into downloading malware or providing personal identifying and financial information.
 
There is also an App Scam. With the App Scam, scammers are creating and manipulating mobile apps designed to track the spread of the coronavirus to insert malware that will compromise users’ devices and personal information.
 
Finally, there is the Investment Scam. With this one, scammers are offering online promotions to get you to buy stocks, claiming that the products or services of publicly-traded companies can prevent, detect, or cure the coronavirus, and that the stock of these companies will dramatically increase in value as a result.
 
For more information, or if you suspect you are being scammed, call the Gloucester Sheriff’s Office non-emergency line at 804-693-3890.

Gloucester County Important Emergency Information

 

IMPORTANT EMERGENCY INFORMATION County Government Announces Operational Changes due to COVID-19

 

On Monday, March 30th, Governor Northam issued a statewide Stay at Home Order as part of the Commonwealth's ongoing aggressive response to COVID-19.  
Gloucester leaders are following suit, urging all residents to adhere to the Governor’s order. “Though our numbers may seem low at this time, the only way to keep them from drastically increasing is to isolate yourself from others,” said Brent Fedors, Gloucester’s County Administrator. “Our story is not told yet,” Fedors added. “As residents, you can determine the outcome. Let’s work together, adhere to the experts’ advice and stay home.”
The Governor’s order will remain in place until June 10th, unless amended or rescinded by a further executive order. Compliance with this order is essential in flattening the curve and stopping the spread of COVID-19. Gloucester County officials continue to work with the Virginia Department of Health and the Virginia Department of Emergency Management and will remain in close contact with those entities through this evolving situation.  
“I would strongly suggest that, anytime you go out, you have the mindset that someone around you has come in contact with this virus,” Fedors said.  
The order directs all Virginians to stay home at all times, except in extremely limited circumstances such as seeking medical attention, going to work, caring for family, obtaining goods and services like groceries, prescriptions, or engaging in isolated outdoor activities that meet the strict social distancing requirements.
Richard Williams MD MPH, Director of Three Rivers Health District, has been issuing similar advice to local governments. “The COVID-19 virus is present in our jurisdictions and community-based transmission is occurring,” Williams said. “I do not believe the current confirmed case counts reflect the
true extent of disease in our communities.  I am sure the number of people with COVID-19 currently is much higher.”  
According to Williams, the virus causes a wide range of disease expression, from no symptoms, to mild bad cold symptoms, to severe pneumonia and death.  Milder cases may never be tested, and those people may never isolate themselves.  Also, the accuracy of the COVID 19 test is not known.   
Williams said it is crucial that residents immediately take the following steps:
1.  Stay at home as much as possible and comply with the Governor’s stay at home order.
2. If you must go out on essential business, practice strict social isolation.  Stay 6 feet away from
others, wash your hands frequently, sanitize surfaces you touch as best you can.
3. If you get sick, stay home, contact your health care provider and follow their advice.  Most cases
of this disease will self-limit.  If you become more ill, especially if you have difficulty breathing,
seek health care immediately.
4. Check in with your elderly family and neighbors by phone.  Try to avoid as much contact as
possible with others.  
5. Beaches and private campgrounds (short-term stays) are closed, in addition to the previous
business directives that were ordered last week. He has also made a request for Major
Presidential Disaster Declaration to receive more resources for our state's response.”  
“We can work together by adhering to these guidelines, and save lives,” Williams added. “We still have a chance to limit the impact of this virus on our lives here in rural Virginia.  If we fail to take this seriously, if we allow the virus more chances to spread, it will do so, and more lives will be lost.  Each of us has a duty to act right now to try to save ourselves, our families, and our neighbors.”

 

On 4/3/2020 Richard Williams, MD MPH, Three Rivers Health District Director gave the following   update on COVID-19.  
“The COVID-19 pandemic continues to accelerate domestically and worldwide.  The US is leading in case counts now, due to disease spread and the fact that we are finding more cases with increased testing capacity.  World mortality rate is about 5%.  Our overall mortality rate in the US thus far is about 2.5 %.  Italy, where the health care system has been overwhelmed, has about a 12% mortality rate.  In Virginia our mortality rate is less than 2%.  US Hospitalization data are confirming age and underlying conditions as risk factors for severe disease, with diabetes, chronic lung disease and cardiovascular disease most commonly reported.   There are many younger folks hospitalized with more serious disease, though.  Locally we have 18 cases in the Three Rivers Health District thus far, with no deaths.
Social distancing appears to be having a positive effect in countries where it was employed early and aggressively.  
The virus is very insidious and infectious.  Virus shedding and transmission is being observed 48 hours prior to beginning of symptoms, and we have adjusted our contact investigations to accommodate this data.  Testing has been a great challenge.  Rapid point of care testing are becoming available and antibody tests are being developed but locally we remain limited to state lab and commercial lab testing with nasopharyngeal swabbing.  Test result turn around time is improving.  We are very concerned that the true burden of disease is much greater than testing indicates.  Many minimally symptomatic patients are not tested or tracked, and the false negative rate of currently employed tests might be much higher than expected.   This means the risk of exposure in our communities is high and getting higher.
In the health department, we are still doing case and contact identification, isolation, and quarantine in an attempt to reduce the infection rate.  We will shift to disease tracking when case loads exceed our capacity to continue mitigation efforts.  Hospitals are preparing surge capability in anticipation of peak case loads between late April and late May.  PPE supplies remain critically short, and most health care facilities are employing PPE conservation and re-use measures.
We are very pleased that Governor Northam issued the stay at home order. We are seeing varying compliance; we think compliance will improve with stronger risk messaging as the cases increase.  Social distancing, and denying the virus the chance to spread from one of us to another, is at present our best and only defense against this disease.  Staying at home as much as possible and minimizing the time we spend in large shopping venues, is vitally important.  If anyone becomes sick, stay at home and contact your health care provider.  If anyone gets short of breath, seek medical care quickly.  STAY HOME, STAY SAFE!” 


 For health-related information, contact the Gloucester Health Department by calling 804-693-2445 or 1-877-ASK-VDH3 or visit the Virginia Health Department’s special website on Coronavirus at http://www.vdh.virginia.gov/surveillance-and-investigation/novel-coronavirus/.

 

Due to the continuing concerns of the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and recommendations by state and national government to limit exposure to others, public access to all Gloucester County offices and buildings will remain suspended until further notice. Gloucester County continues to operate under a Local Emergency declaration. This is a precautionary security measure, which allows for the full powers of government to deal effectively with emergencies or hazardous weather conditions.
During this time, County staff is committed to continuing services to the public to every extent possible. The following information is the latest as to how various County departments and constitutional offices are continuing to operate over the coming weeks:  
 
BOARD OF SUPERVISORS
Due to the continuing concerns over COVID-19 (Coronavirus), and the Governor’s temporary ban of gatherings with 10 or more people, the following changes to the Gloucester County Board of Supervisors’ meeting schedule have been made:  
• The public hearing on the proposed fiscal year 2021 budget and the public hearing on the calendar year 2020 tax rates, both of which were originally scheduled for March 25, were cancelled. The public hearings will be rescheduled to a later date, which will be advertised in local media outlets and announced through the County’s website and social media.  
• The Board’s budget work session, which was tentatively scheduled for April 1, will not be held. Dates for additional budget work sessions will be determined during the coming weeks. Those dates will also be advertised in local media outlets and announced through the County’s website and social media.  
On April 7th, the regularly scheduled BOS meeting will take place via electronic means, and the topics to be contemplated by BOS will be directly related to the emergency situation at hand. The meeting will be broadcast live through the County website meeting portal at: https://www.gloucesterva.info/640/Meeting-Portal and on Cox channel 48.   
Due to the limited scope of the agenda relating to matters only associated with the current COVID-19 Emergency Situation, and the Board’s ability to complete essential business this meeting will not include citizen comment. Future meeting instructions will be posted on how citizens can engage in public comment by alternate means including electronic forms, voicemail or US mail. Guidance on how the public can submit comment for future meetings will be forthcoming in a future PSA and included in the advertisement for public meetings on outlets.  
The Chair of the Gloucester County Board of Supervisors, in consultation with the County Administrator, County Attorney, and the County’s Director of Emergency Management, indicates that these changes are necessary to allow additional action toward facilitation of the Board’s ability to have meetings electronically in the coming weeks. During this time, the County Attorney and County Administrator will continue to work together, with staff, to establish a timeline and appropriate tools/mechanisms for moving both the budget and other essential County business forward in a legal and compliant fashion.  
For more information, contact the County Administrator’s office at 804-693-4042 or e-mail county.administrator@gloucesterva.info.  
 
COMMISSIONER OF THE REVENUE
Those with questions regarding Business Licenses, Business Tangible Personal Property or Excise forms, can call 804-693-1319 for assistance. Those needing to submit forms and/or payments, the Commissioner of the Revenue’s office will continue to process them by e-mail, mail, or in person by using the Treasurer’s Office drop box in the median of Justice Drive between County Office Buildings 1 and 2.
Elderly and Disabled Tax Relief Affidavits have been mailed out. Those with questions regarding affidavits or what documents need to be submitted with the affidavits can call 804-693-3046 for assistance. The Commissioner of the Revenue’s office will continue to accept and process these applications during this period by mail, the Treasurer’s Office drop box, or e-mail until May 1, 2020.
The Commissioner of the Revenue’s office can accept Virginia State Income taxes by mail or by using the Treasurer’s Office drop box. Those with questions about this process can call 804-693- 1320.  
Those using the Treasurer’s Office drop box are encouraged to label the envelopes for the correct office so that they will be delivered to the correct department. That drop box will be checked periodically throughout the workday.
For more information, visit http://www.gloucesterva.info call 804-693-3451 during normal business hours.
 
 
DEPARTMENTS OF PLANNING, ZONING AND ENVIRONMENTAL PROGRAMS, BUILDING INSPECTIONS AND COMMERCIAL SITE PLANS
While the county is closed to the public, we are still open for business!  We want you to be safe, so please stay home and conduct your business with us remotely if possible.  If not, please follow the protocol for social distancing, hand washing and sanitization.  
Staff will be holding paper permits and plans for up to 72 hours before processing to reduce the chance of spreading the virus by surface contact transmission.   Where possible, we highly encourage electronic submission of permit requests and phone calls to help expedite service delivery.
 
PLANNING AND ZONING
You can phone our office at 804-693-1224 and we will help you with whatever your questions or concerns are and walk you through how to submit an application either by email or by regular mail (see information for each type of applications below).  Our fillable forms are available on our website under forms and policies:  https://www.gloucesterva.info/362/Planning-Zoning.
For payment, you can:
1. Pay on-line at www.officialpayments.com  (a convenience fee will apply);

2. Mail your check with your application (Planning and Zoning, 6489 Main Street, Gloucester, VA 23061); or 

3. Mail in your check after you’ve emailed your application and we’ve provided you an application number so the fee can be applied to the correct application. Please include the application # on the check!
4. Put your check in the treasurer’s drop box located on Justice Drive with the application # on the check so that your fee will be credited to the application.
If you need to drop off applications or plans, we developed a system where you can bring your materials to the back door (parking lot side) of County Building 2 (6489 Main Street) and call to have a staff member pick up your documents from a drop-off location.  We have a table for you to place documents and staff will wait for you to leave before coming out and picking up the material.  This will avoid any direct contact with each other while still allowing you to drop off necessary items.   
Please be patient with us if we don’t reply right away as the phone lines will be used more heavily than normal. We will all be monitoring the phone lines to cover when other staff are on the phone.
Once approved, staff will return permits, applications or plans to you by one of the following pre-arranged methods:  
1. We can email you the scanned permit;

2. We can mail you the permit or plans;

3. You can arrange to pick up the permit, plans, materials at the lobby interface;

4. You can provide a pre-paid package for larger plans or plats.
 

Zoning Permits:
Zoning permit applications are available on our website - please fill out the application as completely as possible and if you have any questions, please give us a call so we can help you over the phone the same way we would help you if you came in the office. Please make sure that you fill in the application completely and that the name and phone number are legible so that we can call with any questions and not hold up your approval.  
Zoning Permits for construction will need to be submitted with a scaled plot plan showing the existing structures (if any) and proposed construction. If you need help with creating a scaled plot plan, please call us at 804-693-1224 and we will do our best to help you to locate a plat or plan in our office that could be used for the plot plan. If we don’t have a plan available, you may need to go to the Clerk’s office or draw a plot plan using graph paper (available for free on the internet).  Again, give us a call if you have any questions.
Please email any zoning permit applications to ZoningStaff@gloucesterva.info.  This email goes to multiple staff members so that your application is taken care of regardless of who is in the office to receive it.
Minor Subdivisions Plats, Family Transfers, Property Line Vacations, or Boundary Line Adjustments:
We will do our best to review electronic submittals by email, but this may be difficult for some plats and plans which may be better submitted by mail or dropped off in the back lobby using the procedure outlined above.  This process will be especially important for final plats that will need to be signed by the subdivision agent.  Please make sure that the name and phone number of a contact person are included on the application and are legible so that we can call with any questions and not hold up your review or approval. Please email any electronic applications to PlanningStaff@gloucesterva.info. This email goes to multiple staff members so that your application is taken care of regardless of who is in the office to receive it.
Rezoning, Conditional Use Permits or Board of Zoning Appeals Applications:
These applications all require public hearings by different Boards and Commissions.  They also require a mandatory pre-application. We are currently exploring ways to have online meetings or consider conducting the meetings via conference call.  Those details have not been determined at this time; however, we would be happy discuss your application with you by phone and provide you with similar feedback as we would during a preapplication conference. Please call 804-693-1224 and explain what you are looking to do, and we will make sure we connect you with the appropriate staff member.  You can also email PlanningStaff@gloucesterva.info. This email goes to multiple staff members so that your question is taken care of regardless of who is in the office to receive it.
For preapplication conferences conducted over the phone, please submit the preapplication request form by mail, e-mail, or dropped off in the back lobby using the procedure outlined above and staff will contact the applicant to determine a time and date to conduct the phone conference.
We are still determining whether the County Boards and Commissions will be meeting over the next few months to better provide guidance on these types of applications.  More information to come.
Major Subdivisions (4 or more lots or any subdivision with a new road other than a private road serving 3 or few lots):  
Major Subdivisions greater than 50 lots require review and preliminary approval from the Planning Commission. Due to the size of the plans, the plans will need to be submitted through the drop off procedure outlines above, but the application and fees could be submitted electronically or by mail.  Application fees for major subdivisions reviewed by the Planning Commission must be paid prior to staff scheduling a date for the Planning Commission’s review of the application. However, you can email draft plats or plans and ask questions for us to review prior to submittal.  Email PlanningStaff@gloucesterva.info with any questions about major subdivisions.  This email goes to multiple staff members so that your application is taken care of regardless of who is in the office to receive it.
Major Subdivision under 50 lots do not require preliminary approval from the Planning Commission. Prior to final plat approval of a major subdivision, development plans for the subdivision need to be approved by the site plan committee.  Applications for development
plans for major subdivisions are submitted to the Community Development office for review and approval prior to final plat approval.  Procedures for submittal to that office are outlined separately.   
 
ENVIRONMENTAL PROGRAMS
You can phone our office at 804-693-1217 and we will help you with whatever your questions or concerns are and walk you through how to submit an application either by email EnvironmentalStaff@gloucesterva.info or by regular mail (Environmental Programs, 6489 Main Street, Gloucester, VA 23061).  Our fillable forms are available on our website under forms and policies:  https://www.gloucesterva.info/565/Forms.
For payment, you can:
1. Pay on-line at www.officialpayments.com  (a convenience fee will apply);

2. Mail your check with your application (Environmental Programs, 6489 Main Street, Gloucester, VA 23061); or 

3. Mail in your check after you’ve emailed your application and we’ve provided you an application number so the fee can be applied to the correct application. Please include the application # on the check!

4. Put your check in the treasurer’s drop box located on Justice Drive with the application # on the check so that your fee will be credited to the application.
If you need to drop off applications or plans, we developed a system where you can bring your materials to the back door (parking lot side) of County Building 2 (6489 Main Street) and call to have a staff member pick up your documents from a drop-off location.  We have a table for you to place documents and staff will wait for you to leave before coming out and picking up the material.  This will avoid any direct contact with each other while still allowing you to drop off necessary items.   
Please be patient with us if we don’t reply right away as the phone lines will be used more heavily than normal. We will all be monitoring the phone lines to cover when other staff are on the phone.
Once approved, staff will return permits, applications or plans to you by one of the following pre-arranged methods:  
1. We can email you the scanned permit;

2. We can mail you the permit or plans;

3. You can arrange to pick up the permit, plans, materials at the lobby interface;

4. You can provide a pre-paid package for larger plans or plats.
 
CHESAPEAKE BAY PRESERVATION AND WETLANDS
Chesapeake Bay Exception Applications for accessory structures or additions to existing structures in the RPA and Chesapeake Bay Waiver applications for activities in the landward 50’ of the RPA must be submitted through the above process.  Please call 804-693-1217 with any questions or email rowens@gloucesterva.info.  
Joint Permit Applications, requiring a public hearing through the Gloucester County Wetlands Board and are submitted to the Virginia Marine Resources Commission (VMRC). Please visit the VMRC website to get information regarding them directly: https://www.mrc.virginia.gov/
Army Corps Pre -Applications are available on our web page and sent to the Army Corps directly.
We are still determining whether the County Boards and Commissions will be meeting over the next few months to better provide guidance on these types of applications.  More information to come.
The Gloucester County Wetlands Board and Chesapeake Bay Preservation and Erosion Commission will not be meeting in April.
 
 
SITE PLAN SUBMITTALS
You can phone our office at 804-824-2458 and we will help you with whatever your questions or concerns are and walk you through how to submit site plan by drop off or by regular mail (see information for each type of applications below).  Our applications are available on our website under forms and policies:  https://www.gloucesterva.info/253/Commercial-PlanDevelopment-Site-Plans.
For payment, you can:
1. Pay on-line at www.officialpayments.com  (a convenience fee will apply);

2. Mail your check with your application (County Administration-Third Floor, Attention: Christina Grover, 6489 Main Street, Gloucester, VA 23061); or  
If you need to drop off plans, we developed a system where you can bring your materials to the back door (parking lot side) of County Building 2 (6489 Main Street) and call 804-693-4042 to have a staff member pick up your documents from a drop-off location.  We have a table for you to place documents and staff will wait for you to leave before coming out and picking up the material.  This will avoid any direct contact with each other while still allowing you to drop off necessary items.   
Please be patient with us if we don’t reply right away as the phone lines will be used more heavily than normal. We will all be monitoring the phone lines to cover when other staff are on the phone.
Once approved, staff will return plans to you by one of the following pre-arranged methods:  
1. You can arrange to pick up the permit, plans, materials at the lobby interface;

2. You can provide a pre-paid package for mailing plans back to applicant.
 
BUILDING PERMITS AND INSPECTIONS
You can phone our office at 804-693-2744 and we will help you with whatever your questions or concerns are and walk you through how to submit an application either by email or by regular mail (see information for each type of applications below).  Our fillable forms are available on our website under forms and policies:  https://www.gloucesterva.info/172/Building-Inspection.
For payment, you can:
1. Pay on-line at www.officialpayments.com  (a convenience fee will apply);

2. Mail your check with your application (Building Inspections, 6489 Main Street, Gloucester, VA 23061); or 

3. Mail in your check after you’ve emailed your application and we’ve provided you an application number so the fee can be applied to the correct application. Please include the application # on the check!

4. Put your check in the treasurer’s drop box located on Justice Drive with the application # on the check so that your fee will be credited to the application.
If you need to drop off applications or plans, we developed a system where you can bring your materials to the back door (parking lot side) of County Building 2 (6489 Main Street) and call 804-693-2744 to have a staff member pick up your documents from a drop-off location.  We have a table for you to place documents and staff will wait for you to leave before coming out and picking up the material.  This will avoid any direct contact with each other while still allowing you to drop off necessary items.   
Please be patient with us if we don’t reply right away as the phone lines will be used more heavily than normal. We will all be monitoring the phone lines to cover when other staff are on the phone.
Once approved, staff will return permits, applications or plans to you by one of the following pre-arranged methods:  
1. We can email you the scanned permit;

2. We can mail you the permit or plans;
3. You can arrange to pick up the permit, plans, materials at the lobby interface;

4. You can provide a pre-paid package for larger plans or plats.
 

Building/Trade Permits:
Building/Trade permit applications are available on our website - please fill out the application as completely as possible and if you have any questions, please give us a call so we can help you over the phone the same way we would help you if you came in the office. Please make sure that you fill in the application completely and that the name and phone number are legible so that we can call with any questions and not hold up your approval.  
Request for Building/Trade Inspections:
Please contact the Building Inspections office at 804-693-2744 to request inspections. The request for next day inspections must be received by 4 p.m. the day prior to the requested inspection and is based upon availability.
 
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
The Economic Development staff has been working in conjunction with the Small Business Development Administration and the Virginia Employment Commission to provide the most up to date information on resources available for small businesses. A form to  capture and report financial losses and employment changes was emailed out yesterday and is also on our website at www.gloucesterva.info/econ. Please contact our Business Recovery Coordinator, Sherry Spring at 804-693-1414 or email sspring@gloucesterva.info for more information, or visit https://www.gloucesterva.info/1189/COVID-19-BUSINESS-RESOURCES.  
 
GENERAL DISTRICT COURT
Through April 6, 2020, all civil, traffic and criminal matters in the Gloucester General District Court, except for emergency matters, will be postponed. Emergency matters include, but are not limited to, petitions for isolation, inmate arraignments, bail reviews, protective order cases, civil commitment hearings. For specific information, call 804-693-4860.
 
LIBRARY
The Gloucester County Public Library, in compliance with Gloucester County Emergency Protocols regarding the COVID-19 virus, have suspended all programs and outreach until further notice. Also, all AARP Tax-Aide services that have traditionally operated out of the Library have been suspended.  
Library staff will be available via phone to answer any questions at 804-693-2998 or via e-mail at library.questions@gloucesterva.info. Beginning April 1, book drops will be closed until further notice. Overdue fines will not accrue during the days libraries are closed.
Book donations cannot be received at this time.
The Library’s public Wi-fi connection equipment has been positioned to best support access from the parking lot.  Those wishing to use the public Wi-Fi from the parking lot at either the Main or Gloucester Point branches can do so by using the password “hellopatron.”  Please be sure to practice effective social distancing if you get out of your car to do so.
Beginning April 1, an Information Phone Line for the Library will be available Mondays through Fridays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 804-693-2998.  
The Library is always open online at www.gloucesterva.info/publiclibrary.  
 
PARKS, RECREATION, AND TOURISM
All regularly scheduled programming and structured activities remain cancelled at this time.  In compliance with Federal and State directives due to COVID-19, playgrounds at all County parks are closed until further notice.  While the restrooms at Beaverdam Park are currently remaining open, rental equipment (batteries, jon boats, canoes, kayaks, paddles, life vests, etc.) and bait sales will not be available at Beaverdam Park. Reservations for shelters and the Whitcomb Lodge have been cancelled through March, and private league play at parks has been suspended indefinitely.  
All County Parks are open in a limited capacity for passive recreation and people are asked to observe the rules such as practicing social distancing, staying off playgrounds and no group gatherings or group sports. Disregarding these rules may result in park closures.  
 
PUBLIC SCHOOLS
Gloucester County Public Schools will remain closed for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. For more information, visit https://gets.gc.k12.va.us/.  
 
PUBLIC UTILITIES
Customers can pay Gloucester water and sewer bills as follows: 

• By mail to: 6489 Main Street, Gloucester, VA 23061. 

• In person using the Treasurer’s drop box in the median of Justice Drive between County Office Buildings 1 and 2.  Checks and money orders will be accepted. Cash payments,
while typically discouraged, will also be accepted through the drop box. Any overpayment will be credited to your next bill.  Please be sure to include the payment portion of the bill in an envelope with your payment. 

• Online, by visiting the Public Utilities page on www.gloucesterva.info using a credit/debit card ($3.95 fee) or by electronic check ($2.50 fee).  Account numbers will be required to ensure payment is applied to the correct account – please ensure that you include your account number on your check or on a separate piece of paper if paying by cash.
 
Applications for service are available by visiting https://www.gloucesterva.info/DocumentCenter/View/1428/Application-for-Water-and-orSewer-Service-PDF. Completed/signed applications can be submitted by e-mail to (ADurham@gloucesterva.info), by fax, 804-693-4664, or by dropping it off in the Justice Drive drop box. Deposits or transfer fees can be paid through Official Payments. Contact customer service at 804-693-4044 to coordinate payments.  
Payments for March bills are due by March 31, 2020. Late Penalties will be added to outstanding bills after the due date. Utilities staff will not be scheduling disconnection of service for delinquent accounts at this time.  
Utilities staff will be reading meters starting March 23 and will finish by March 31. April bills will be mailed April 1, 2020.  
As toilet paper runs short, many citizens may turn to alternatives such as "flushable" wipes and sanitizing wipes. These poor substitutes can cause problems for the nation's (and our local) sewers that could include backups into homes and malfunctioning treatment equipment.  
In other news, the water tower at the former Page Middle School site is back in service so pressures and flows are back to normal without the water plant running 24-hours per day.  
Citizens will still notice some residual activity around the site. Utilities staff had to replace a failed pressure sensor used to monitor the water level in the tank and there may still be site cleanup this week.
 
 
REAL ESTATE ASSESSMENT
Due to the continuing concerns over COVID-19, Gloucester’s Board of Equalization appeal hearings have been cancelled. Appellants will be notified of the cancellation. Hearings will be rescheduled to a later date, which will be advertised in the local newspaper, at the courthouse, and at each library. For more information, contact the Real Estate Assessment Department at 804-693-1325.  
The Real Estate Assessment Department remains available by e-mail at assessment@gloucesterva.info or by phone at 804-693-1325 to assist citizens with any assessment-related questions while County offices are closed to the public. Also, assessment data can be found on the Real Estate Assessment Department’s website at https://www.gloucesterva.info/455/Assessment-Data.  
 
Assessment review applications and other related forms can be found by visiting https://www.gloucesterva.info/453/Documents-Forms. These forms may be submitted by email, fax (804-824-2446), or mailed to: Real Estate Assessment Department, 6489 Main Street, Gloucester, VA 23061.  
 
The Real Estate Assessment Department is continually working on assessment related projects. You may see our appraisers in your neighborhood performing physical inspections of property for the purposes of reassessment, new construction, and property transfers. For your safety, please maintain your distance and avoid direct contact with our appraisers. If you have any concerns about anyone in your neighborhood, please call our office to verify that our appraisers are in your neighborhood.
 
SOCIAL SERVICES
The Virginia Department of Social Services will issue emergency benefits to most households currently receiving SNAP benefits. These emergency benefits will be provided for the months of March and April 2020 and will increase the household’s current monthly allotment to the maximum monthly allotment for a household of that size.  Current SNAP households that already receive the maximum monthly allotment for their household size are not eligible for emergency benefits. March emergency allotments were issued on March 25, 2020. April’s emergency allotment will be issued on April 16, 2020. Regular SNAP benefits for April will be issued in accordance to the regular staggering schedule, which occurs on the 1st, 4th, and 7th of each month.   
 
Customers who currently have already-scheduled appointments for new applications or recertification for SNAP, TANF and childcare will have their appointment completed by phone. If you have recently changed your phone number and failed to report it to social services, contact the agency at 804-693-2671 to provide your current phone number.
If you do not have access to a phone to contact the agency, there are directions posted on the front door of the Social Services office with instructions on how to proceed. For more information, contact the Department of Social Services at 804-693-2671. To apply for benefits, contact Virginia Commonhelp at 855-242-8282.
 
TREASURER’S OFFICE
The Treasurer’s Office is available by e-mail (treasurer@gloucesterva.info) or telephone (804693-2141) to assist citizens while County offices are closed to the public. To make a payment, use the drive by drop box, located in the median of Justice Drive, between County Office Buildings 1 and 2. The drop box will be checked first thing in the morning and every few hours throughout the workday. Payments should be made by check or money order – cash payments will also be accepted, although typically discouraged.  Please be sure to include a payment voucher and/or other identifying information, along with your name and phone number, to ensure that your payment is credited properly.
 
Customers are also able to pay online or by telephone through credit/debit card or by electronic check (convenience fee will apply).  
Online – www.officialpayments.com
Telephone (jurisdiction code 1087) – 1-800-2-PAYTAX (800-272-9829)
 
Finally, the office will continue to receive any payments or other information sent to the office via U.S. Mail.  
 
For those who have a hold on their registration with the DMV, call the Treasurer’s Office at 804693-2141 for the current balance due on the account. The balance can be paid online, by telephone or by putting a payment in the drop box. Those paying online or by telephone can call the office with their confirmation number to have the hold released as soon as possible. PLEASE NOTE – DMV has closed its offices and provided an extension on registration renewals. Please visit their website at www.dmvnow.com for additional information.
 
VIRGINIA COOPERATIVE EXTENSION
Commercial Grower diagnostic testing services at the Virginia Tech Plant Disease Clinic:

Due to the COVID-19 response in Blacksburg, the Plant Disease Clinic is without student workers and is prioritizing samples from commercial growers whose livelihood depends on accurate diagnosis. For samples from home landscapes, home gardens and public gardens (including samples from landscape professionals), the Plant Disease Clinic will use visual and microscopic examination to make the best diagnosis of the problem but will only culture samples from commercial growers.


Local producers in need of plant diagnostic services, soil tests, and nematode assays are asked to contact Krista Gustafson by email at kgustafson@vt.edu to arrange delivery of test kits and/or pick up of plant samples.
 

The Gloucester County week of 4-H Camp at Jamestown 4-H Educational Center (June 22-26) is full and on a waitlist. We understand that there is concern regarding the possibility of camp cancelation due to COVID-19 response. Parents should know that our first priority is camper health and safety, and that we are still engaged in planning a terrific camp week. Should the 4-H Center need to cancel, participants will be refunded paid camp fees.
For Extension information regarding family economics, food and health, please contact Glenn Sturm, Extension Agent for Family and Consumer Sciences at gjsturm@vt.edu. For information on 4-H and Agriculture and Natural Resources, contact Krista Gustafson at kgustafson@vt.edu. Those without access to email are asked to leave a message on the office main line at 804-6932602.
 
VOTER REGISTRAR
Although the Voter Registrar’s Office has been closed to the public, residents can still get registered to vote, make changes to their voter registration and make many other transactions online at www.vote.virginia.gov. Residents with questions can call the Voter Registrar’s office at 804-693-3659.  
 
WASTE MANAGEMENT
Due to COVID-19 pandemic, the following operational changes are effective immediately at all 5 of Waste Management's Gloucester County Convenience Centers:

 

1. While unloading debris, Center workers will be limiting the number of customers allowed out of their vehicles at the same time to 6 people.

 

2. As always, offloading of all waste streams is available except for metal, paper, commix and tires at the main landfill located at 3714 Waste Management Way, Glenns VA 23149. Hours of operation at the main landfill are Monday – Friday 7:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. & Saturdays from 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

 

3. We ask that all customers follow the guidance from the site employees and follow social distancing guidelines, this means staying six feet apart from others, as recommended by the CDC. Hours for the other Convenience Centers in Gloucester are 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Saturdays. Also, the Middle Peninsula Landfill will be postponing the Spring Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day that was scheduled for Saturday, April 18.

 
GLOUCESTER COUNTY’S COMMITMENT TO YOU
To the best of our ability, Gloucester County will continue delivery of services, so long as we can do so in a safe manner – promoting the continued health of our employees, our citizens, and the community overall.  While we are doing our best to create service delivery solutions to accommodate these unique and unprecedented times, we acknowledge that no solution is perfect.  Those identifying service delivery gaps that we need to focus on, and those with ideas as to how we can better serve our community are encouraged to provide feedback directly through the department affected.
Additionally, County Administration can be contacted directly for escalation of concerns, for suggestions that may impact multiple departments, and otherwise with regard to County service delivery generally at county.administrator@gloucesterva.info or by dialing 804-6934042.
 
FOR MORE INFORMATION
This is an evolving situation and all information is subject to change at any time. For up to date information, visit www.gloucesterva.info or the County’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/gloucesterva. For specific questions, contact Gloucester’s Community Engagement and Public Information office at 804-693-5730 or e-mail qsheppard@gloucesterva.info.  

 

 

 

York County Information & Closing/Cancellations *Updated

York County officials continue to monitor COVID-19 and are in regular contact with regional officials and representatives of the Virginia Department of Health.  Citizens are reminded to ensure they seek up-to-date information from reliable sources, such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) and local city and county websites (James City County, City of Williamsburg, and York County).

 

 

The closures/cancellations listing is regularly updated on the County’s website - www.yorkcounty.gov – and is being shared on the County’s Facebook page - https://www.facebook.com/yorkcountyva/.

 

For a listing of York County phone numbers, visit www.yorkcounty.gov/directory.

 

Governor Northam’s Executive Order Fifty-Five, announced and effective Monday, March 30th, expands the closure of offices/facilities through June 10th, 2020, unless amended or rescinded by a further executive order.  According to a press release from the Governor’s office, the order directs all Virginians to stay home except in extremely limited circumstances. Individuals may leave their residence for allowable travel, including to seek medical attention, work, care for family or household members, obtain goods and services like groceries, prescriptions, and others as outlined in Executive Order Fifty-Three, and engage in outdoor activity with strict social distancing requirements.

 

Courts

  • The Supreme Court of Virginia issued an Order EXTENDING the declaration of a Judicial Emergency in response to COVID-19 wherein it is ordered that Non-Essential, Non-Emergency court proceedings in all circuit and general district courts be in effect and continue beginning April 6 through April 26, 2020.  Read the Declaration here

 

Library

  • The Tabb and Yorktown branches of the York County Public Library remain closed to the public.  However, library staff has been working with the County’s WYCG-TV staff in producing several video tutorials on using the library’s new website, acquiring a library card, accessing the Overdrive Digital Collection, and more.  These videos are available on the Library’s website – www.yorkcounty.gov/library

 

 

  

Parks & Recreation

  • County parks are open. In order to keep them open, we must all practice social distancing and be in compliance with Governor Ralph Northam's Stay at Home Order, issued Monday, March 30.

 

  • Social distance of six feet apart at all times
  • No groups of more than 10 people
  • Exercise at our parks is meant for individuals and not groups

 

The following restrictions are now in place for public health and safety:

 

  • Organized group practices are not permitted regardless of the number
  • All playgrounds are closed
  • All beaches are closed
  • Fishing Pier at Yorktown Waterfront is closed
  • All School fields in York County are closed to the public

 

For more information, visit www.yorkcounty.gov/parksandrec or call (757) 890-3500.

 

Riverwalk Landing Piers

  • The Riverwalk Landing Piers remain closed (as announced March 24) to all local recreational boaters, transient boaters, and boaters working on the water, which includes the restroom facilities. These steps are taken to keep in compliance with CDC recommendations to stop the spread of COVID-19. At this time, the dockmaster's office will not be accepting any reservations and asks that all boaters avoid coming into our piers unless they are in need of immediate assistance. For questions, and concerns, please call (757) 890-3370 or email dockmaster@yorkcounty.gov.

 

Sheriff’s Office

  • Reminder:  Visiting school or county playgrounds at this time is a violation of the Virginia State Code for trespassing.  We hope that all citizens will respect this necessary change to operations and adhere to the Governor’s orders during the COVID-19 pandemic. When encountering anyone in violation of these orders, the Sheriff’s Office will first request voluntary compliance and, in cases where someone refuses to leave a closed property or repeatedly returns after being warned, formal charges would be considered. For more information, please call the Sheriff’s Office non-emergency number – (757) 890-3621.

 

VPPSA Compost Facility (located at the Waste Management Center)

  

  • Beginning Friday, April 3, the VPPSA Compost Facility will be closed to the public. No residents or businesses will be able to access the compost facility to purchase compost/mulch materials or to drop-off vegetative debris
  • In the interim, County staff will do its best to provide limited service.  Citizens and local contractors with essential yard waste disposal needs who are delivering these materials to the Waste Management Center will be directed to an alternate location on-site to drop off limbs, branches, and clear bags of natural yard waste.

 

Curbside Yard Debris Collections

  • York County residents have the opportunity to schedule a special yard debris collection for items such as limbs, branches, and clear bags of natural yard waste by calling (757) 890-3780 or online through the Customer Service Request portal - www.yorkcounty.gov/813/Customer-Service-Request.
  • Acceptable material size for curbside pickup is 8” in diameter and 10’ in length.
  • All residents who subscribe to the County’s curbside solid waste program may schedule two yard debris collections per 30 day period (approximately 24 cubic yards) at a rate of $25 per collection. Each additional load picked up within 30 days after the first collection will cost an additional $100 per load.  Non-subscribers to the County’s solid waste program may schedule up to two collections within a 30 day period at a rate of $75 per pickup.
  • Loose yard debris, grass, leaves and straw must be placed in clear bags.
  • Stumps, dirt or debris with dirt, construction materials, and other items cannot be collected.
  • Materials placed for scheduled collections must be at the front roadside by 7 a.m. on Monday of your collection week.

 

Waste Management Center 

  • The Waste Management Center remains open to citizens for the drop off of garbage and recyclables.
  • Residents dropping off metal items (such as appliances, bicycles, etc.) should follow onsite instructions provided by the scale operator.

<>·Citizens are asked to keep their household chemicals at home until the next chemical collection event can be scheduled

  

County-Sponsored Special Events

  • In accordance with the Governor’s “Temporary Stay at Home Order” (EO-55), all county-sponsored special events scheduled at the waterfront during the month of May have been either cancelled or postponed.
    • The Art at the River Juried Art Show originally scheduled for Sunday, May 3rd is cancelled.  The Art at the River Committee has opted to cancel vs postpone and is looking forward to the return of this prestigious community event on Sunday, May 2nd, 2021.
    • The hope at this time is for the Blues, Brews & BBQ Festival scheduled for Saturday, May 2nd to be moved to a later date yet to be determined.
    • All waterfront Yorktown Market Days have been cancelled through May 30th, including the Wellness Market on May 9th.
    • The York County Historical Committee’s Memorial Day Ceremony scheduled for Monday, May 25th at York Hall will also not take place this year.

 

  • Reminder: all April events previously cancelled or postponed include Civil War Weekend; YMCA 10K/5K/1-mile Family Fun Run; Mobjack Bay Coffee Roasters’ Backyard Oyster Roast; Go Green opening Farmers Market; Ferrari Invasion; Sister Cities French Market and Pirates Invade Yorktown Festival. Any June events, including the Sounds of Summer series, will be evaluated at a later date. All announcements and updates can be found at www.visityorktown.org.   

 

 

Parks & Recreation

  • County parks are open. In order to keep them open for public use, park visitors must all practice social distancing and be in compliance with Governor Northam’s Monday, March 30 Stay at Home Order (read the order through the link at the top of this release).
  • All spring programs and facility rentals scheduled through June 10 have been cancelled or postponed. Registered participants are being notified.  
  • The Senior Center of York is closed until further notice.
  • All playgrounds are closed.

 

 

Riverwalk Landing/Yorktown Beach

  • The Yorktown Beach is closed to all activity.  This includes the National Park Service Beach Picnic Area and beach located west of the Coleman Bridge.
  • The Riverwalk Landing pathway is open for pedestrians. Rules of social distancing apply (stay six feet apart) with group size limited to no more than 10 people.
  • The Yorktown Fishing Pier is closed.
  • All public parking areas are closed, included the Riverwalk Landing Parking Terrace, National Park Service Beach Picnic Area, Archer Cottage Lot (corner of Read and Water Streets), York Hall (301 Main Street), Yorktown Battlefield and Church Street lots.
  • All public restroom facilities are closed.

 

 

 

Due to the level of beach activity experienced this past weekend, effective immediately the Yorktown Beach is now closed to ALL activities.  This closure also includes the National Park Service (NPS) Beach Picnic Area located at the end of Water Street as well as the NPS beach west of the Coleman Bridge. 

 

            “My hope in limiting the beach to pedestrian-only activity last week was for citizens to enjoy the beauty of the beach area while maintaining their distance and reducing their chance of exposure,” said Neil Morgan, York County Administrator.  “Unfortunately, in the interests of public health and safety, all beach activity is now prohibited. To be clear, the sand on both sides of the bridge is off limits.”

           

This means that no one is permitted on the sand of the beach, on the National Park Service’s beaches, or on the grass at the Beach Picnic area.

           

Also included in the closure is all public restroom facilities at the waterfront and the Yorktown fishing pier.

 

The following parking areas are now closed:

  • Upper Level of the Riverwalk Landing Parking Terrace
  • NPS Beach Picnic Area
  • Archer Cottage Lot (corner of Read and Water Streets)
  • York Hall (301 Main Street)

 

For now, the Riverwalk Landing pathway remains open to individuals practicing social distancing.

 

These steps are being taken to curb the spread of COVID-19 and to protect public health.  If you have questions about what is/is not permitted, please call York County at (757) 890-3300.

 

 

 

Helping the Local Business Community

Members of the community have expressed interest in supporting local businesses during this challenging time.  York County’s Office of Economic Development is maintaining a web page listing local businesses with store hours and services being offered (i.e. food delivery).  Visit www.yesyorkcounty.com/openforbusiness for the listing of businesses.  If residents and/or business owners know of one not included on the listing, please email the information to econdev@yorkcounty.gov.  Check back often – the list is updated as we receive new information.

 

Local Charitable Organizations

During times of emergency, charitable organizations provide for the needs of many in the community.  Consider donating your time or resources to the a charitable group, such as United Way of the Virginia Peninsula (https://www.uwvp.org/), Virginia Peninsula Food Bank (http://hrfoodbank.org/) and the American Red Cross (https://www.redcrossblood.org/), to help others in need.

 

Social Media

Several York County offices maintain active Facebook accounts where information is posted regularly.  Please consider “liking” or “following” these accounts to receive up-to-date information at www.facebook.com:

  • Government - @yorkcountyva
  • Fire & Life Safety - @yorkcountyfire
  • York-Poquoson Sheriff’s Office - @YorkPoquosonSheriff
  • Office of Economic Development - @YesYorkVA
  • Visit Yorktown - @VisitYorktown
  • Public Library - @yorkcountypubliclibrary
  • School Division - @yorkcountyschoolsva

 

Voter Registration

The Voter Registrar’s office, like all County offices/buildings, remains closed to the public.  The Voter Registrar encourages voters to register or update their address online at www.elections.virginia.gov/citizen-portal. Individuals without access to the Internet may call (757) 890-3440 to request an application be mailed to them.  Once completed, the form may be returned via mail to York County Voter Registrar, P.O. Box 451, Yorktown VA 23690. For additional details, visit www.yorkcounty.gov/voting.

 

Waste Management Update

York County’s Waste Management Division has seen an increase in the amount of household trash being collected this week.  Our contracted trash collection provider, Republic Services, is working later each day to ensure all collections are complete.  Residents are asked to leave their containers at the curbside on their collection day until their trash is picked up. 

 

The Keep American Beautiful group, along with York County Waste Management and Beautification Committee, ask everyone to refrain from community cleanup events during this time due to the Governor’s order for social distancing and the ban on groups of more than 10 people.

Waste Management Center (145 Goodwin Neck Road)

Trash and recycling collections are proceeding as scheduled.  The drop-off center is open for the disposal of trash and recycling.  The VPPSA compost facility is open.  Staff is providing citizens with instructions for safe and easy drop-off. The Tire Recycling Event scheduled for April 18 has been cancelled.  The Shred Event scheduled in conjunction with Drug Take Back Day on April has been cancelled. The office personnel are available to answer your questions by phone:  (757) 890-3780.

 

York County Administration

On Tuesday, March 17th, Governor Ralph Northam announced new measures to combat the spread of COVID-19 including the avoidance of non-essential gatherings of 10 or more people, per federal guidelines.  This does not apply to essential services such as grocery stores, pharmacies, medical facilities, airports, bus and train stations, and manufacturers. 

 

We encourage you to follow the Governor’s order and limit the number of individuals in popular gathering spots – restaurants, gyms – to no more than 10.  We recognize the hardship this places on everyone – from business owners to employees to citizens – and applaud you for the creative steps you are taking to continue providing services to the community.

 

By working together and implementing social distancing today, we may reduce the incidence of this virus tomorrow.

 

 

 

Sheriff’s Office/York-Poquoson Courthouse

The office is closed to the public.  If you need the assistance of a Deputy to file a police report, please call the non-emergency number at (757) 890-3621 for more information. In an emergency, call 911. The York-Poquoson Courthouse is open for all business and proceedings, however only those conducting business or reporting to court may be allowed in the building. The National Prescription Drug Take Back Day scheduled for April 25 has been cancelled.

  • Individuals with cases scheduled are asked to contact the appropriate Court Clerk:
    • Circuit Court – (757) 890-3350
    • General District Court – (757) 890-3450 
    • Juvenile and Domestic Relations – (757) 890-3401

 

Clerk of Circuit Court

The Clerk of Circuit Court’s office is closed to the public with the exception of appointments scheduled directly through Clerk’s Office personnel.  Persons needing to conduct business with the Clerk’s Office should utilize the following numbers to schedule an appointment:

  • Deed/Land Records – 890-4103
  • Criminal/Traffic Division – 890-4104
  • Civil Division – 890-4105
  • Fiduciary/Probate Division – 890-4106
  • Any Other Miscellaneous Transactions – 890-3360

 

A temporary drop-box is being placed at the Courthouse’s front door security station for submitting civil and criminal paperwork and deed/land recordings.  Electronic recording and online payments continue to be available online at https://simplifile.com/services/e-recording/ (Deeds/Land Recordings) and https://eapps.courts.state.va.us/fmsOnline/#/?fips=000C (Online Payments).


 

Social Services

York-Poquoson Department of Social Services has a drop box located outside our building from 8:00-4:00.  Our office is currently closed to the public. We are, however, answering all phone calls during our normal business hours, Monday – Friday, 8am to 4pm. Our number is 757-890-3787. After our normal hours, child protective services complaints, can be made at 1-800-552-7096.  Adult protective service complaints, can be made at 1-888-832-3858.  Citizens wishing to apply for benefits (i.e. Medicaid, SNAP, and Temporary Assistance to Needy Families-TANF) can do this 24 hours a day on www.commonhelp.virginia.gov, or dial 1-855-635-4370. If you have documents necessary for your benefits, please consider using your smart phone, tablet, or computer to email to benefit.programs@yorkcounty.gov.  You may also fax documents to 757-890-4980.  As mentioned above, there is also a drop box located outside our building at 301 Goodwin Neck Road available during our normal business hours.

 

Treasurer

The Treasurer’s Office remains closed to the public, however employees are available to assist citizens by phone (757) 890-3420, fax (757) 890-3439, and email to treas@yorkcounty.gov. Payments can be made online, by mail (USPS), or by using the drop-box located outside the Finance Building at 120 Alexander Hamilton Boulevard. Transactions may be processed online at www.yorkcounty.gov/treasurer.  

 

 

County Offices

York County offices, facilities, playgrounds and libraries are closed to the public. Staff is reporting to work and continuing to provide services to the community. Citizens are encouraged to visit the website – www.yorkcounty.gov – and utilize online payments, customer service requests, and more.

 

Commissioner of the Revenue

Citizens are asked to conduct business via telephone, email, and website. Visit www.yorkcounty.gov/revenue for contact information and the Forms portal.

 

Human Resources

The Human Resources office remains closed to the public through the close of business on Friday, March 27.  Jobseekers can view a list of open positions and apply for a job at www.yorkcounty.gov/humanresources.  Staff is available to take your calls at (757) 890-3687.

 

Economic Development

The office has launched a COVID-19 Business Resource page and encouraging businesses to visit the site for helpful links and information that may be useful in preparing for the impact from the virus.  Visit https://www.yesyorkcounty.com/311/COVID-19-Business-Resources.

 

Planning and Development Services

·        The April 8 meeting of the Planning Commission has been cancelled.

·        The Building Safety Office is closed to the public, however staff is in the office to assist you.  Please call 890-3522 for more information.  Procedures have been implemented for permit submits, construction plan review, permit issuance, and field inspections.  Visit www.yorkcounty.gov/buildingsafety.


 

Central Purchasing

All County offices are closed to the public. However, the Purchasing staff is reporting to work and can accept sealed Bids and Proposals. If you need to deliver a Bid or Proposal to our office, please call 890-3864 upon arrival at our location and staff will come to the door to accept your documents and deliver them to the office to be time-stamped.  For more information, visit www.yorkcounty.gov/purchasing.


Fire & Life Safety

The department continues to respond to emergency calls for service. While fire stations are closed to public for visits/tours, individuals that show up at a fire station with an emergency will be provided appropriate care. For general questions, citizens may contact the department’s administrative office at 890-3600.

 

Tourism Development

  • The delay and suspension of Historic Yorktown operations and buildings has been extended until further notice. That includes: Trolley Service; Opening of Gallery at York Hall and the York County Historical Museum; the Riverwalk Landing Piers and the Freight Shed.
  • This also means we will have to cancel or postpone any county-sponsored or co-sponsored events from now until the end of April including our opening market, French Market, and Pirate Festival.  As previously announced, the National Park Service’s Civil War Weekend; the Victory at Yorktown 10K, 5K, and 1 Mile Family Fun Run and Ferrari Invasion are all canceled.  
  • We will continue to evaluate the remaining spring events. For a list of all other gallery, museum, restaurant, shopping and lodging changes, please go to visityorktown.org and follow Visit Yorktown on social media.

 

Libraries

Both branches of the library remain closed. Please keep checked out books and materials until we reopen. Due dates have been extended and we are not charging fines. Visit the library online to check out books electronically – www.yorkcounty.gov/library.  If you do not have a library card, you can apply for one online and we will email your card number to you so that you can access eBooks and digital resources. Staff is available to answer your questions at (757) 890-5100 or (757) 890-3377. 

You may be safeguarding yourself by staying in, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy the library! Your free York County Public Library Card gets you access to a world of digital resources. Over the next few weeks library staff will be featuring them online on their Digital Library Spotlight blog – www.yorkcounty.gov/libraryblog.

 

 

Parks and Recreation

York County parks are open to the public, however playgrounds are closed.  Those choosing to utilize our parks and asked to follow the recommendations for social distancing and to limit group size to 10 people or less. If you have questions about our parks, please visit www.yorkcounty.gov/parksandrec or call 890-3500.

 

York-Poquoson Virginia Cooperative Extension

Master Gardener events have been cancelled through the end of May, including:

  • Annual Plant Sale
  • Master Gardener Study Trip
  • Flower Therapy at the Convalescent Center
  • Earth Day Event
  • Fairies and Friends Pollinator Day
  • All Library Talks

For more information, call (757) 890-4940.


 

Symptoms of COVID-19 – fever, cough, shortness of breath – have ranged from mild to severe, and like other respiratory illnesses, it is spread through coughing and sneezing. There is currently no vaccine to prevent the disease, and the CDC recommends that we take the following steps to help prevent the spread of not only this virus, but the flu and other respiratory diseases as well:

 

·        Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

·        Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.

·        Stay home when you are sick.

·        Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

·        Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

·        If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

·        Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blood Donation Information

We now face a severe blood shortage due to an unprecedented number of blood drive cancellations during this coronavirus outbreak. We encourage healthy individuals to help patients counting on lifesaving blood.
 
To find a Blood Drive near you please visit: www.redcrossblood.org/give
 
Blood donation remains a safe process.  Do not hesitate to give and receive blood even during  this time of social distancing.  
 
At each blood drive, Red Cross employees are following thorough safety protocols. In addition to standard procedures, you will notice the following at your local blood drive:  Pre-Temperature Screening: All donors will be asked to have their temperature taken before being permitted into the blood drive. If a donor has a temperature greater than 99.5°F they will be asked to return to donate when they are healthy & asked to leave the drive.

Enhanced Disinfecting: Hand sanitizer will be at check-in, health history & refreshment areas. Donors will be asked to use hand sanitizer prior to using tablets & laptops. Donors beds will be sanitized between each & every donor.

Social Distancing: Implementation of separated drive set up to allow as much distance as possible between donors.

Staff Wellness and Protection: All staff members will have a temperature check before presenting to work, and they've been asked not to come to work if they are feeling sick. Staff will wear gloves throughout entire blood drive, changing gloves between every donor.

An Important Update From The Gloucester-Mathews Humane Society

Dear Friends:
 
Out of an abundance of caution and in response to Governor Ralph Northam's March 23, 2020, COVID-19 briefing, GMHS remains closed to shelter visitors and will reopen April 23, 2020, at 11 AM. As an essential business, we will continue to schedule adoption appointments and care for the pets at GMHS and the Gloucester County Animal Control Shelter while practicing social distancing to protect team members and clients.
 
Additional GMHS Operational Information
 
Adoptions
Adoptions will continue to be conducted by appointment-only. To begin the adoption process:
  1. Visit our Adoption Process webpage or Petfinder to view the homeless pets searching for a heart connection.
  2. Download and complete the relevant adoption questionnaire available on the Adoption Process webpage. Be sure to list the pet you'd like to meet.
  3. Email the completed adoption questionnaire to animalplacement@gmhumanesociety.org. Expedite processing by calling your current veterinarian and granting him/her permission to share information about your pets’ records with us.
 
Once the adoption questionnaire is approved, a team member will contact you to schedule an appointment for a meet and greet, which will take place outdoors. As always, we're committed to making lasting heart connections and seek to pair pets and adopters with a mutual best fit.
 
Intake/Lost Pets
Intakes will continue to be scheduled by appointment in keeping with our standard, longstanding managed intake practice and to honor our municipal contracts. To inquire about surrendering or reclaiming a lost pet, call (804) 693-5520 ext. 308 or email sheltermanager@gmhumanesociety.org. 
 
Pet Pantry
Pet Pantry clients are asked to visit the Intake entrance and ring the doorbell during our standard operating hours. A team member will meet you outside, verify enrollment in the Pet Pantry, and deliver the food curbside.
 
Events
All onsite and offsite shelter events scheduled through April 22, 2020, are cancelled to protect the health of our staff and volunteer team members. The next volunteer open house is tentatively scheduled for May 14, 2020. Please visit our Volunteer webpage for additional information.
 
Fixin’ to Save Spay & Neuter Clinic
GMHS' Fixin' to Save Spay & Neuter Clinic will remain open until the planned closure for renovations, which will begin April 9, 2020. (Post-renovation, the clinic will reopen for scheduled surgery appointments April 27, 2020.) The clinic team will continue to follow a modified check-in/check-out process, which limits contact with the public, and ensures no more than 10 people, including staff, are in the facility at any given time. Clients exhibiting symptoms of illness are requested to contact the clinic to reschedule their appointments by calling (804) 694-0349.
 
Become a Life-saving Partner
We are incredibly grateful for the outpouring of pet food and supply donations received recently and are humbled by your generosity. We are pleased to share GMHS is well poised to meet the demand for our Pet Pantry.
 
At present, in addition to adopters, our greatest need is monetary donations. Gifts to GMHS ensure we are able to provide homeless pets with everything needed to be healthy and happy while awaiting adoption into their forever homes. Tax-deductible donations to GMHS may be made via mail (P.O. Box 385, Gloucester, VA, 23061) or electronically via PayPal. Your contribution will continue to save and transform the lives of homeless pets in need of kindness, care, and compassion, especially during these unprecedented times.
 
We are buoyed by your belief in our life-saving mission and thank you your support. Together, we will ensure GMHS remains a beacon of hope and safe harbor for community members and homeless pets alike.
 
From all of us at GMHS to all of you, stay safe and be well.
 
In gratitude and friendship,
 
April Martinez, GMHS Executive Director

Bay Aging Community Volunteer and Request For Assistance Information

With the rising prevalence of Coronavirus (COVID 19), Governor Northam has advised for all individuals 65+ and other high-risk individuals to self-quarantine. This creates great concern for many seniors and other self-quarantined individuals in our area about how they will access groceries, medications, and other needed services or supplies. Bay Aging is working to help address these concerns by setting up our Community Volunteer and Request for Assistance link on the Bay Aging Facebook page: . https://www.facebook.com/BayAgingVA

If you are interested in helping your neighbors stay fed and have access to much needed services/supplies during this crisis, or if you are quarantined/home-bound and need assistance, please fill out the following form and we will connect volunteers with those in need. Please note, this service is available to ANY AGE, not just seniors.

Volunteer/Help Form: https://forms.gle/qFUEPiyPMcPxQDbv5

If you do not have a Facebook account, you can also complete the form by going to the following link: https://forms.gle/qFUEPiyPMcPxQDbv5 

 

Completing the request form is easy:

 

1)Sign onto your Facebook account

2)Type in Bay Aging in the Search box and it will come up. 3)Scroll to entry referencing Coronavirus and complete the Community Volunteer and Request for Assistance form (posted 3/17/20).

4)If you  do not have Facebook, you can email devdirector@bayaging.org and the completed form will be posted to the above refenced site.

 

Currently, Bay Aging is still providing Meals on Wheels deliveries to our existing recipients. This is a community service that Bay Aging is providing for information purposes only. This is strictly a VOLUNTEER service and reimbursements of any kind will not be provided by Bay Aging. Bay Aging has not conducted and will not conduct any background checks or any other investigations pertaining to the volunteers providing these services or the recipients. Participants should refer to CDC guidelines and use these services at their discretion.

 

Please visit Bay Aging’s Facebook page as new information is posted.

Gloucester Arts Festival 2020 Cancelled

Gloucester Arts Festival 2020 Cancelled Amid Novel Coronavirus COVID-19

 Following guidance from federal, state and local officials, including the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Virginia Department of Health, the 2020 Gloucester Arts Festival will be cancelled for June 2020 and will return in 2021, steering committee leadership of the annual event announced today. 
 
The cancellation will include the previously planned juried art show, annual Symphony Under the Stars community concert with the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, live stage performances, U.S. Fleet Forces Band concert, Artisan Market, Heart of the River Studio Tour, and Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Artmobile.
 
“We recognize that this is a tough time for our communities in so many ways and that it’s in moments like these that many of us want to turn to art for hope and inspiration,” said Lynne Manning, Chair of the Gloucester Arts Festival. “It was a tough decision to decide to cancel this year’s event, but an important one for us to make to do our part to help slow the spread of novel coronavirus COVID-19 throughout our communities.”
 
The Gloucester Arts Festival steering committee plans to meet virtually over the coming weeks to identify ways it can continue to bring art to the community throughout the year, supporting local artists, artisans and the economic health of the region.
 
“We are confident that as a community we will get through this time,” Manning said. “We will find ways to celebrate the beauty that is all around us and help each other heal.”
 
Stay tuned to gloucesterartsfestival.com for more information.

Phillips Energy

March 24, 2020 Updates from Phillips Energy on COVID-19

Please read on for updates from Phillips Energy about our response to COVID-19.
 
To our valued customers – 
 
Wow! This community is something else. As the COVID-19 crisis evolves each and every day, we are watching a community come together to support each other in a very unprecedented time. 
 
We’re proud to be part of this community with all of you…and proud to continue to serve you. 
 
Please read on for our latest update on COVID-19 and operations and how we are doing just that – working to serve and fuel our customers and community. 
 
CUSTOMER SERVICE AND DELIVERIES 
 
All three of our Phillips Energy offices – Gloucester, New Kent and Mathews – continue to operate to get fuel needs out to our customers. The Governor’s announcement this week closing additional non-essential businesses DOES NOT apply to Phillips Energy. Delivering fuel to homes and businesses is considered an ESSENTIAL need. 
 
Please note, however, that our offices are closed to the public.
 
You may continue to contact our offices via telephone/email with your needs and our team will respond as soon as we are able. We thank you in advance for your patience during this time and process. If at any time you feel you have an emergency situation regarding your system that we supply fuel to, please exercise diligence and reach out again if you have not heard back from us.
 
Any time you smell propane or think you have a gas leak, please contact 911 immediately.
 
SAFETY DURING DELIVERY AND SERVICE CALLS
 
As our qualified team members and delivery drivers continue to make deliveries to your home/business, we ask that you do not engage with them and practice safe social distancing.
 
All non-emergency in-home/building structures that involve contact with our customers will be postponed until a later date.
 
If we need to enter your home/building structure, to ensure the safety for you, your family, or your business, our technicians will wear a respirator mask and gloves. If we do need to enter, please practice safe social distancing from our team members so they can safely accomplish their work.
 
FUEL STATION AT GLOUCESTER POINT
 
While we encourage you to continue to fuel up at our retail fuel pumps at the Gloucester Point fuel station with your Visa, Mastercard, Discover, or Phillips Energy proprietary card, we will not be accepting cash/check payments. Additionally, until further notice, we will not be selling fuels/products that require attendant assistance.
 
The following fuels (which require attendant assistance) are not available until further notice:
 
-DEF (diesel exhaust fluid)
-Non-Ethanol 93 Gasoline
-Kerosene (at our pumps)
-LP Motor Fuel (at our pumps)
-Propane (for cylinder/RV fills)
 
Thank you for your support throughout this time. Together, we will all get through this!
 
We will continue to work to keep you up to date via email, our web site and social media about the operations of Phillips Energy.
 
We are here to serve you and will continue to do so with the same commitment you have come to expect from our team.
 
Stay safe and healthy!
 
The Phillips Energy Team 

The Gloucester Daffodil Club

Daffodil Driving Tour 2020 is a self guided visual driving tour of selected daffodil locations in Gloucester and is  sponsored by the Gloucester Daffodil Club.

 

 

Virginia 4 p.m. Burn Law

The Virginia Department of Forestry (VDOF) is reminding Virginians that the 4 p.m. burn law is in effect.

 

This law prohibits burning before 4 p.m. every day from now until Thursday,  April 30th if the fire is within 300 feet of woodland, brush or fields containing dry grass or other flammable materials.

 

“The 4 p.m. Burn Law is one of the most effective tools we have in the prevention of wildfires,” VDOF Director of Fire and Emergency Response John Miller said in a news release. “In late winter and early spring, downed trees, branches and leaves become ‘forest fuel’ that increase the danger of a forest fire. By adhering to the law and not burning before 4 p.m., people are less likely to start a fire that threatens them, their property and the forests of Virginia.”

 

The 4 p.m. time frame is based on environmental factors, because after that time, the winds are likely to be calmer, temperatures decrease and humidity increases. These all contribute to safer burning conditions, according to the release.

 

“The leading cause of forest fires in Virginia is carelessness. An unattended fire, a trailer chain dragging on the asphalt or a single match can ignite the dry fuels that are so prevalent in the early spring. Add a few days of dry, windy conditions and an escaped wildfire can quickly turn into a raging blaze,” Miller said in the release.

 

VDOF also reminds Virginians that it is critical to exercise sound judgment when burning throughout the year because it may not be wise to burn if it has not rained in several days, the winds are high, or if you do not have the tools and equipment to contain or control your fire.

 

Click here for more information on how to protect yourself and property or to get a copy of the Forest Fire Laws.

2020 Gloucester County Tuesday Blood Drive Schedule

Be a part of a lifesaving journey. Donate blood. The 2020 Gloucester County Tuesday Blood Drive Schedule is listed below.

To schedule an appointment please visit redcross.org and enter sponsor code GCVa or call Mary Beth at 757-876-7046.

 

Newport News Park

12 Things You May Not Know About Newport News Park 

In 1966, the City of Newport News created a watershed around Lee Hall Reservoir to protect the quality of its water. That watershed was developed into Newport News Park. Since then, it’s been a gem in our city, providing trails, shade, a huge variety of wildlife, and much more. So much more, that you probably don’t even know about all this amazing park has to offer. We’ve outlined the Top 12 things you need to know about Newport News Park that will get you planning your next trip there as soon as possible!

1. It’s HUGE

One of the largest municipal parks in the United States, Newport News Park is nine times larger than New York City’s Central Park! At 7,711 acres, Newport News Park is an oasis in the middle of a large metropolitan city. The park is so large that it has its very own campground! 

2. It’s a great place to camp

Campers and outdoor enthusiasts find Newport News Park’s campground the perfect retreat. Its 188 campsites are spaciously arranged throughout the park’s natural woodlands. Camp here and you’ll be surrounded by many of the comforts of home, including electricity, heated showers, a laundry room, a small store for food and supplies, and 24-hour security. And, needless to say, pets are welcome, too!

3. It has an aero-model flying field 

Did you know that Newport News Park has an aero-model flying field? What’s that, you may ask? It’s a place for model aviation enthusiasts to fly their radio-controlled aircraft. The busiest flying times are usually Saturday and Sunday afternoons, weather permitting. The field has a paved 400-foot runway and a spacious 30-acre flyover area, along with bleachers for visitors and spectators.

4. It has miles of trails

The park also offers more than 30 miles of trails through forest, field, and marshland – with many native species to observe in their natural habitat. As you can imagine, the park is home to an incredible variety of native wildlife – deer, fox, raccoon and beaver, to name a few – all found in a thriving setting filled with lush woodlands, flowering meadows, and shimmering lakes. 

5. It has a center to rehabilitate wildlife 

The park even has a state- and federally licensed wildlife rehabilitation program, located at the Discovery Center. The staff there provides care to hundreds of injured or orphaned animals annually, enabling the animals to return to their natural environments, healthy and self-sufficient. We like to think of the Discovery Center as a “temporary haven” for wildlife when they’re most in need. The center also has numerous educational exhibits on display, which are open to the public.

6. You can rent a bike for $3

If you enjoy cycling, bring your own bike or rent one from the campsite office to hit the park’s popular 5.3-mile hard-packed, flat-surface multi-use trail. Newport News Park shares a long stretch of border with the Colonial National Historical Park and several of the park's biking and hiking trails cross over into this historical area.

7. It has ties to the Civil War

Speaking of history, did you know that Newport News Park is the site of some of the best preserved Civil War fortifications, earthworks and redoubts in Virginia? During the American Civil War, the park was the site of Battle of Dam No. 1. In the days prior to the battle, Confederate forces constructed rifle pits and other earthworks from which they held off the Union Army.  Because of this, the park is a designated stop on the official Virginia Civil War Trails network.

8. It has numerous playgrounds and horseshoe pits

Families with small children will be happy to know that Newport News Park has FOUR playgrounds, including one specifically made for younger children (found in Picnic Area 2). With four certified courts for horseshoes, there’s no better place than Newport News Park to play horseshoes, too, especially if you want to keep your own lawn back home pristine! Just remember to bring your own horseshoes, as the park does not provide them.

9. It boasts archery, golf, and a Japanese Peace Garden!

Additionally, it has an archery range, two 18-hole golf courses, and an 18-hole championship disc golf course in the arboretum area. Floral gardens at the park include a Japanese Peace Garden with an authentic tea house!

10.  It’s a great place to go fishing

For water enthusiasts, fishing is permitted in two large freshwater lakes, along with canoe, paddleboat, and Jon boat rentals. And don’t worry about bringing your own paddles, oars, or personal flotation devices – they’re all included in the rental.

11.  There’s a team-building course 

Organized groups looking for a physical and a mental challenge are invited to make a reservation to take the park’s “Ropes & Initiatives Course.” It features a progression of more difficult tasks, similar to an obstacle course. It can be a powerful tool for enhancing group dynamics.  

12.   There are lots of FREE programs there

 

OK, now that we know what Newport News Park has to offer, let’s talk about the many FREE programs scheduled there on a regular basis! Who knew the park offered the following activities?  

1. Archery Safety Lessons – A park ranger presents this one-hour presentation to teach general archery safety tips and discuss the rules and regulations specific to Newport News Park. You’ll also learn more about the art of archery. Call 757-888-3333 for dates and to register.

 2. Bird Walks – Since 1965, the Hampton Roads Bird Club has monitored the park’s bird population on a regular basis. Join club members in the parking lot of Picnic Area 1 at 7 a.m. every first and third Sunday of the month for some early morning birding. Take a stroll through the park and see what interesting species of birds live here. Don’t forget to bring your binoculars!

3. Friday Night Adventures – Between Memorial Day and Labor Day, you can bring your family to the Discovery Center at Newport News Park every Friday evening to learn about some of the amazing living creatures that make their homes in and around the park. Meet a park naturalist to discover facts about some of the park’s natural and historical features through nature walks, themed presentations, and hands-on activities. Topics range from beavers, snakes, and owls to bats, opossums, deer, raccoons, and other creatures inhabiting the park. 

4. Hayrides – Hop on a Saturday evening hayride to explore the park’s beautiful and diverse forest habitats. These family friendly adventures are led by park staff. Hayrides, which depart from the campsite office, are offered on select Saturday evenings between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Rides are free, but tickets are required and distributed at the Campsite Office on a first-come, first-served basis starting 30 minutes before each departure time.

5. Story and a Walk – Enjoy a fun nature story at the Discovery Center in Newport News Park and then take a short walk to discover what you can find around the park. Targeted toward preschool children and their caregivers, this program is held at 10 a.m. every second Wednesday of the month. 

6. Walking Club – This free walking program was created for adults over age 55 who want to get fit or stay fit. Walk through some of the parks most beautiful trails at 10 a.m. every Friday. Call 757-812-7905 to register.

Obviously, the only challenge you’ll have in visiting Newport News Park is selecting among all the fun programs and numerous things to do there! If you opt for one of the programmed activities, call first because a few of these activities are only offered during the summer months. For questions or additional information, call Newport News Park at 757-886-7912.

 

Riverside Hospice Agencies

Riverside Hospice Agencies are looking for volunteers for the Tappahannock and Gloucester offices. They are in need of patient companion volunteers, bereavement and spiritual support volunteers. 8 hours of free training is required and broken up in to two 4 hour days. Criminal background check and Tuberculosis test(covered by Riverside) are also required.

Becoming a hospice volunteer is one of the most rewarding things you can do for yourself and others.

For more information call Frannie Bernard @ 804-443-6130, 804-693-1111 or email to frances.bernard@rivhs.com.

GCPS Screening For Preschoolers

Gloucester County Public Schools conducts screenings for preschool children as part of their Child Find Activities throughout the school year. Parents/guardians should consider having their children screened if they are experiencing difficulty walking, talking, playing and meeting developmental milestones.

 

Newport News Tourism

Newport News Tourism adds Bike Trails to its Website

Cycling is a hobby that can be enjoyed year-round in Coastal Virginia! As such, Newport News Tourism is happy to announce that a new online resource is now available for cyclists to find a variety of bike trails in the city. The trails, which have been added to our website, are separated into three categories: Road biking, Recreational biking, and Mountain biking.

 The trails cover many miles of local terrain, with varying degrees of difficulty. From a leisurely 2-mile paved trail in Riverview Farm Park to the beginner/advanced/expert mountain bike trails in Harwood’s Mill, there is something for all outdoor enthusiasts to enjoy!

A brief description of the six trails is provided, each elaborating on the scenic river views, wooded parks, historic homes, museums, lakefront areas, bridges, and urban streets you’re likely to encounter. 

Maps are available in two formats: Downloadable PDF files that can be printed and online/interactive maps accessible from the web.  The maps can be useful for planning your route in advance and include the following:

Road biking Route 1 – Local Favorite – 8 miles Route 1 – City Tour – 21 miles

Recreational biking Riverview Farm Park – 2 miles Newport News Park – 5.3 miles

Mountain biking Lake Maury Natural Area – 5 miles Harwood’s Mill – 5.9 miles

To make sure everyone takes the typical precautions when biking, we’ve also included a “Bike Safety” tab on the website, which includes basic bicycle rules of the road and cycling tips. For more information, click on “Bike Trails” from the home page of our website at www.newport-news.org.

Weather

Visitor Polls

Which superpower would you like to have?
Add a Comment
(Fields are Optional)

Your email address is never published.