Town of Haymarket

The following were among actions taken at the July 2 meeting of the Haymarket Town Council. For more information, call 754-4816.

TOWN BUDGET ADOPTED -- The council adopted a $170,530 budget for fiscal 1991, which began Monday. The new budget is 45 percent higher than last year's spending of $114,370 and includes a new tax on businesses in town -- the first new local tax or tax increase in more than a decade.

Retail business will now be taxed 10 cents per $100 of gross receipts, and wholesale businesses, such as most of the used-car dealers in town, will be taxed on 5 percent of their gross receipts at a rate of 5 cents per $100.

Previously, all businesses paid only a $25 annual license fee. Businesses also pay a county personal property tax.

The new tax is expected to generate about $29,000 this year, compared with about $2,000 from businesses last fiscal year.

Town officials have said the additional tax revenue is needed to help pay for $15,000 in proposed improvements to the town's sidewalks and to fund two new positions at Town Hall -- a second police officer and a part-time town manager -- at a total cost of about $39,000.

According to Town Clerk Dorothy Keller, there will be a 60-to-90-day waiting period before the new business tax system goes into effect because the town is having a certified public accountant review the town's accounts.

Under the new budget, the town's real estate tax rate will remain 14 cents per $100 of assessed value and the personal property tax rate 60 cents per $100 of assessed value. Both of these taxes are levied only on residents, who also pay real estate and personal property taxes to the county.

APPOINTMENTS -- Mayor Terri R. Freeborn made the following appointments: John Kapp, as vice mayor and liaison to the Planning Commission; James Shepard, liaison to insurance companies; Steven Bean, liaison to the town's trash service and chairman of a planned recycling program for the town; Ronald Hancock, liaison to the police department; Samuel Crouch, chairman of health and welfare, and Joseph Gerace, police officer. Dottie Leonard was appointed to organize a display of pictures of past mayors in Town Hall. Turner T. Smith, the town attorney, and Dorothy Keller, town clerk and treasurer, were reappointed.

City of Manassas

The following were among actions taken at the June 26 meeting of the Manassas City Council. For more information, call 335-8211.

REAL ESTATE TAX RELIEF -- The City Council directed its finance committee to study ways of expanding the city's real estate tax relief program for elderly and handicapped citizens by June, 1991.

The tax relief program, which has been amended nine times since 1977, now permits residents who are handicapped or 65 and older with an income of $22,000 or below and a net worth of $75,000 or below -- excluding their house and one acre of land -- to defer payment of all their real estate taxes until death or when their homes are sold. The city's current real estate tax rate is $1.18 per $100 of assessed value.

There are currently 28 residents participating in the program, for whom a total of about $31,000 in real estate taxes is expected to be deferred in 1990.

A state law approved last yaer allows localities to raise the income limit for participants to $40,000 and the net worth limit to $150,000. The law also permits full or partial exemptions of tax payments within those limits. Prince William County recently adopted a combination deferral-exemption tax relief program for the elderly and handicapped with an income limit of $22,000 and net worth limit of $150,000.

In 1980, Manassas had the highest participation in its tax relief program for the elderly and handicapped -- 63 residents -- when it provided complete exemptions for residents with incomes of $12,000 or less and a net worth of $55,000 or less. That program cost the city $35,831 in 1980.

The finance committee, composed of councilmen John Grzejka and Maury Gerson, is expected to submit a recommendation to the council this fall. The council would need to approve a new program by next Jan. 1, in order for it to take effect the following June.

SWIMMING POOL AND CHILD CARE -- The council unanimously approved an amendment to the city's coimprehensive land use plan and a rezoning request to permit a developer to construct a recreational facility, a swimming pool, and a child day-care center on Liberia Avenue near the Oakenshaw and Sherman Meadows subdivisions.

Clearing the way for the facilities, the council approved a request by John F. McMahon to change the land-use designation in the city's comprehensive plan for 16 acres at 9650 Liberia Avenue from low-density residential to general commercial and professional business and to rezone the land from single-family residential to commercial district and professional business.

The council also granted McMahon special use permits to operate both the recreational facility and the child-care center.

According to the plans, the recreational facility will be surrounded by a 12-foot-tall wooden fence. Hours of operation will be from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily. The day-care center is to operate from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.

ZONING ACTIONS -- The council approved a special use permit for Carol J. Vasko to operate a sewing business out of a home at 9250 Bayberry Ave. 6 to 0.