The City of Winchester’s bond rating has once again been affirmed by S&P Global Ratings to ‘AAA,’ the highest possible rating, in advance of the City’s upcoming General Obligation bond sale scheduled for June 23. The rating reflects an unbiased assessment of the credit-worthiness of the City’s debt obligations to investors in the public financial market. The higher the rating, the greater the likelihood of full and timely repayment of the debt which equates to lower risk to investors and lower interest rates to municipalities.
Virginia’s Cooling Assistance applications are now being accepted. There are three ways to apply for Cooling Assistance benefits:
- Online through CommonHelp at https://commonhelp.virginia.gov
- By phone at (855) 635-4370
- By contacting their Local Department of Social Services. For Winchester city residents, applications are located in the drop box outside the Winchester Department of Social Services office (24 Baker Street).
The application deadline is August 15.
Effective immediately, all WinTran routes, including paratransit, will be canceled for approximately two weeks due to a positive COVID-19 case.
“The safety of our employees and passengers is priority. We regret having to cancel the routes for this extended period of time, but because all WinTran staff will have to quarantine for the recommended 14 days, the cancellation is unavoidable,” stated Public Services Director Perry Eisenach.
In a show of solidarity, a joint statement by the City of Winchester’s Mayor John David Smith, Winchester Police Chief John R. Piper, and Winchester’s National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Chapter President W. Thea Thomas has been released in response to the tragic recent death of Minneapolis resident George Floyd. As in many cities across the United States, residents of Winchester have been deeply affected by Floyd’s death.
On Friday, June 5, 2020, an ‘I Can’t Breathe’ event and walk, organized by community members, will be held in Old Town Winchester. To ensure the safety of event attendees and downtown visitors during this permitted event, the City is releasing information regarding the associated street closures and the planned route for the walk.
Winchester Parks and Recreation is excited to announce the re-opening of their all-day summer childcare program on June 8. Registration will only be accepted over the phone and on designated days and times (June 1-3).
Due to COVID-19 and associated restrictions implemented by the Commonwealth, the outdoor pool in Jim Barnett Park did not open on Memorial Day weekend as in years past. However, Winchester Parks and Recreation is planning to open the pool on Monday, June 1, 2020 for lap swimming and swim team practices for several local programs. General swimming will not be permitted until it is safe to do so and the Governor lifts restrictions.
Over the past two months, parking in metered spaces in the Old Town Winchester area has been free due to the COVID-19 pandemic. On June 1, 2020, the Winchester Parking Authority will return to enforcing use of parking meters requiring that parkers pay the meter to park and obey posted time limits.
In partnership with the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT), the City of Winchester will host a virtual town hall meeting on Wednesday, May 27, 2020 at 6 pm to explain the 11 proposed improvement concepts for South Pleasant Valley Road and answer questions. Following the presentation, VDOT and City staff will answer questions submitted in advance by local residents and by those participating virtually. To submit questions in advance of the town hall, an online form is available on the project website (Deadline: May 26 at 9 am).
In observance of the Memorial Day holiday, the City’s schedule for the week of May 24, 2020 is as follows: