Henry County supervisors support bill as added step in City of Martinsville reversion

If passed, the bill would allow City of Martinsville residents to vote on whether they want to revert to a town or not

In a unanimous vote, Henry County’s Board of Supervisors passed a resolution Wednesday night showing their support for new legislation presented in the General Assembly.

HENRY COUNTY, Va. – In a unanimous vote, Henry County’s Board of Supervisors passed a resolution Wednesday night showing their support for new legislation presented in the General Assembly. It would give voters a chance to make their voices heard about the City of Martinsville reversion.

“This resolution says that we will support the efforts for senate bill 85 and house bill 173. These were citizen-initiated requests of both the state senator and house of delegate member from our area,” said county chairman, Jim Adams.

The process to revert Martinsville from a city to a town within Henry County has been years in the making. But the details have not been agreed upon between city council and the board of supervisors.

“It seems to have hit a stall when further continuance of the county’s adopting of a memorandum of understanding did not hit the final step,” said Adams.

If this legislation passes in the General Assembly, the question to revert or not, would be on city voter’s ballots in an upcoming election.

“The reversion process is set up for small cities that struggle financially to become towns and there will be less of a burden financially for them themselves, there is no incentive, there is no benefit to the county who gets them,” said Henry County’s attorney, George Lyle.

Lyle says if Martinsville does revert from a city to a town it could come with a cost.

“All the studies from both the city and the county have indicated it would mean a tax increase for county residents. Because we would have to provide additional services to our new residents which would be the Town of Martinsville residents in Henry County,” said Lyle.

Martinsville City Attorney Eric Monday says the county has worked to get legislation like this in a way to avoid the reversion process entirely.


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Sydney joined the WSLS 10 News team in June 2021.