DAYTON — Dayton is working to require residents to pay delinquent vehicle registration fees before they can renew Department of Motor Vehicles paperwork, Town Superintendent Angela Lawrence said at Tuesday’s Town Council meeting.

“The town sent out late notices, but nobody really followed through, so nobody put a DMV stop on them,” Lawrence said. “Now, we’ll put a stop on it, which means the next time they go in to the DMV to get new plates or whatever, they can’t renew until they come pay their past taxes to us.”

Staff estimate that $6,495 in unpaid fees could be recovered by using a DMV stop.

Lawrence did not have an exact date for the change, but said it would happen “soon.”

Also at the meeting, Councilman Zachary Fletchall said the town is waiting to hear more about upgrades to the Dayton water treatment plant.

During an Oct. 28 work session, council heard from civil engineer Russell Jackson about four upgrade options, which ran from $1.9 million to $5.5 million.

At the time, council indicated support for the two midpriced options, costing $2.5 million and $3 million.

Now, the town is waiting to hear about a hybrid of the two midpriced options before moving forward with the project, Fletchall said.

At the beginning of the meeting, Megan Argenbright, a director at Brown and Edwards in Harrisonburg, presented the findings of the town’s audit for fiscal year 2019, which ended June 30.

The only issues in the report were minor, with some costs being put in incorrect categories, Lawrence said.

Also during the meeting, council voted to set the salary for acting treasurer at $62,000 with Mayor Sam Lee and council members Robert "RJ" Ohgren, L. Todd Collier, Cary Jackson, Tara Worthy and Fletchall voting in favor. Councilman Jeff Daly was absent.

Timothy Arrington, the previous Dayton treasurer, stepped down in October, and longtime town staffer Susan Smith now holds the job.

Smith has acted as the town’s deputy treasurer for 13 of the 20 years she has been a staff member, and has been treasurer before, as the town has gone through turnover in the position.

In other news, Rockingham County is looking to change its real estate tax billing from twice a year to once a year, according to Smith.

Lawrence said town would look to follow what the county chooses to do, but council has yet to vote on the issue.

Contact Ian Munro at 574-6278 or imunro@dnronline.com. Follow Ian on Twitter @IanMunroDNR

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