7.6 – Frequently Asked Questions

An interim report on the feasibility of incorporating Massanutten into a town was published on a website in August 2010. It was available for review and comment for roughly nine (9) months prior to the start of final reporting. During that review period, the author received numerous questions about town incorporation. Frequently asked questions (FAQs) were answered and placed on the website. Some FAQs have been incorporated into the text of this final report. Other FAQs applicable to this section of the report are noted as follows for completeness of reporting:

FAQ: How would town incorporation affect Great Eastern Resorts and their future timeshare units?

Answer: Great Eastern Resorts timeshare units in Massanutten Village and Woodstone Meadows have been zoned under the Rockingham County Ordinance to include each having Master Plans. If Massanutten were to incorporate into a town, these Master Plans and zoning would be the baseline for any town zoning. In other words, the existing County Master Plans would be grandfathered into Town Master Plans, such that nothing would change. If Great Eastern Resort chooses to amend a plan or ask for rezoning of land, the approval must then be granted by a Town Planning Commission and the Town Council — the County would no longer have zoning authority within town boundaries. Thus, the town citizens would decide about future Great Eastern Resorts growth in their community.

FAQ: Who would be eligible to vote in an incorporated town of Massanutten election?

Answer: The only individuals eligible to vote in any town election are citizens who permanently reside (pursuant to VA law) within the town boundaries and are registered to vote at their town residential address. In an incorporated town of Massanutten, voters would include those town property owners who permanently live within the town boundaries and also those renters who permanently live within the town boundaries. It would not include town property owners who permanently live outside the town boundaries (out-of-town owners). The Rockingham County Voter Registrar would ultimately determine whether an individual is eligible vote in a town election.

FAQ: Who would be eligible to run for office in an incorporated town of Massanutten election?

Answer: The only individuals eligible to run for public office in any town are citizens who permanently reside (pursuant to VA law) within the town boundaries and are registered to vote at their town residential address. In an incorporated town of Massanutten, this would include those town property owners who permanently live within the town boundaries and also those renters who permanently live within the town boundaries. It would not include town property owners who permanently live outside the town boundaries (out-of-town owners). The Rockingham County Voter Registrar would ultimately determine whether an individual is eligible to run for public office in a town election.

FAQ: Where would an election be held in an incorporated town of Massanutten?

Answer: An incorporated town of Massanutten would be entitled to its own voter precinct for all local, state, and federal elections. Incorporated town of Massanutten officials would recommend a location. The Rockingham County Voter Registrar would determine if the location meets state requirements. And, the County Board of Supervisors would approve any re-alignment of the voting districts within the County.

FAQ: What would happen to Massanutten Village vacation rentals in an incorporated town of Massanutten?

Answer: Massanutten vacation rentals are those detached single family homes in Massanutten Village that have been rented short term to tourists on a daily or weekly basis. These vacation rentals were the focus of a recent controversy with Rockingham County regarding its Zoning Ordinance and a civil Circuit Court case regarding Massanutten Village Subdivision Covenants. The point of departure for the Zoning Ordinance of an incorporated town of Massanutten would be the existing Rockingham County Zoning Ordinance at the time of incorporation. All zoning rights under the County’s Zoning Ordinance at the time of incorporation are grandfathered into any Town Zoning Ordinance. Incorporating Massanutten into a town would not change the status of existing vacation rentals.

FAQ: If the MPOA Pool was transferred over to an incorporated town of Massanutten, who would be eligible to use it?

Answer: If the MPOA Pool was transferred to an incorporated town of Massanutten, it would become town property — meaning it would be owned by the citizens of the town. Therefore, anyone who is a citizen of the town would have equal access to its use. This would include the citizens in the additional seventy-three (73) housing units outside of Massanutten Village. But, it would not include occupants of Woodstone Meadows timeshare units. It is possible that a Town Council might allow all out-of-town MPOA property owners (to include MPOA timeshare owners) to have equal access giving consideration to their original ownership of the pool. However, after examining the financial considerations of town incorporation, it is unlikely that the MPOA Pool Area would even be transferred over to an incorporated town of Massanutten.