- Last Updated on Wednesday, 28 August 2013 11:17
- Published on Wednesday, 28 August 2013 05:03
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“We are actually moving,” said Brenda Reamy. The soft-spoken Reamy was talking about the Town of Montross’ seven-year long effort to revitalize its downtown, but she just as well could have been talking about herself.
Reamy, who was raised in Westmoreland County and is a graduate of W&L High School, has been Montross’ Town Manager for 19 years. Additionally, she is an essential part of Montross’ many community activities including the Fall Festival and Market Days. She is also raising funds for the Westmoreland Volunteer Fire Department and for her church, Rappahannock Baptist, which is building a new fellowship hall.
Reamy was a staff accountant for a local CPA firm before becoming the Montross Town Manager. “There is more to this job than accounting,” Reamy said. “There is a lot more administration and a lot of other responsibilities. I am the town’s zoning administrator, for example.”
Despite her busy schedule and without regard to the occasional frustrations, Reamy handles whatever comes through the door with her usual calm, steady demeanor. “I enjoy my job because I enjoy working with the town and seeing things happen,” Reamy said.
The current happening is, of course, the revitalization effort. “We’ve been working on this for a long time. We were turned down the first two times we applied. Now it looks like it is going to happen and we are excited about that.”
The revitalization plan calls for $530,000 in federal dollars that will be administered by the state of Virginia to be used to restore storefronts along Route 3 in Montross’ downtown area from the Montross Laundromat more than a quarter of a mile to the Montross Post Office. “We have 22 applications for funds,” Reamy said.
The town has received its first installment of funding from the State Department of Historical Resources, and Montross’ seven-member Façade Improvement Committee will soon be making decisions about which buildings will be revitalized.
“The Façade Committee will be making its decisions by mid-September,” Reamy said. “Then the grant offers will be made and by late October the specifications will be put together and sent to the state for review. They have 30 days to respond and then in November or December we can get to work.”
“Patience is the most important thing,” Reamy said. “It just takes such a long time. You have to have a lot of patience to deal with all of the red tape and not get stressed.”
In the meantime, Reamy and the town are hardly resting on their laurels. Montross’ popular Market Days is scheduled again for Sept. 7, as well as a major fundraising event for the Westmoreland Volunteer Fire Department on the same date. And in December, Montross will again host its annual Christmas Festival on Courthouse Square.
“We’re staying busy,” Reamy said. “And, that’s good.”