By Debbie Adams
Vinton Councilwoman Janet Scheid is finishing her final term on Vinton Town Council on June 30. She announced in January that she would not be seeking re-election and would be retiring to spend time with her family.
Scheid was appointed by council in August 2015 to finish the term of Wes Nance, who had moved outside of Vinton. She was then elected on her own in May 2016.
Town Council members recognized her service during their online meeting on June 16 with a proclamation and a gift, thanking her for her service.
The proclamation noted that “Ms. Scheid served with professionalism and dedication, working on behalf of all the citizens of the Town of Vinton; and has enhanced opportunities for all citizens through continuing efforts in sound financial strategies and policies, planning and community development, economic development and marketing the Town as a destination.
“Throughout her tenure, Ms. Scheid has been an environmental advocate for the Town of Vinton which was demonstrated through her work and support of Clean Valley Day, the creation of a Litter Task Force in the Town and the upgrading of the Town’s solid waste program to include refuse carts.
“Prior to and during her service on Town Council, Ms. Scheid served as one of the Town’s representatives on the Roanoke Valley Greenway Commission and was supportive of future expansions of the Greenway system throughout the entire Roanoke Valley including the development of the Glade Creek Greenway in the Town and encouraged other opportunities to enhance the Town’s transportation corridors and improve the Town’s walkability.
“While on Town Council, Ms. Scheid served on the Council Finance, Economic Development and Public Works Committees; the Town’s Urban Development Areas (UDA) Planning Grant Steering Committee, Downtown Housing Rehabilitation Management Team, Brownfields Redevelopment Advisory Group (BRAG), Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) Committee, Roanoke Valley Television Committee and the Roanoke Valley Transportation Planning Organization (RVTPO).”
“It has truly been an honor to serve with Janet Scheid on Vinton Town Council,” said Vinton Mayor Brad Grose. “Janet is, without a doubt, one of the most honorable, smartest, hard-working persons I have ever known! Many people in Vinton are aware of her integrity and her achievements. Janet has made meaningful contributions to our greenways, litter control and refuse collection system, just to name a few accomplishments. Through her hard work and determination to excel at the task at hand, she was a powerful, positive force on both our Finance and Public Works Committees.
“On more than one occasion, I asked Janet to step outside of her normal area of expertise to serve in new and challenging areas. Janet always accepted the challenge and responded in a professional manner, determined to do a complete job.
“Janet’s accomplishments extend beyond the Town of Vinton. Everyone is aware of her (and her husband’s) steadfast support of the Roanoke Valley Greenway Commission. In addition, Janet is currently serving as chair of the Roanoke Valley Transportation Planning Organization. The TPO is a very important element in transportation planning and funding for our entire valley. Janet’s leadership of the TPO has been effective and valuable.
“Janet’s contributions and accomplishments during her public service have been positive and long-lasting. All of us have benefited because of Janet’s service to the Town of Vinton and the Roanoke Valley.
Vice Mayor Keith Liles commented that “Janet has been extremely devoted to her job on Town Council. Because of her dedication we were able to pass a new trash ordinance and provide citizens with containers that help keep our town clean and free of excess litter. Also, she worked tirelessly on the Greenway commission to ensure Vinton would have its own access points. Furthermore, Janet has voted on very important regional transportation issues, serving as the chairman of the Roanoke Valley Transportation Organization. I will truly miss her work ethic and wealth of knowledge she bought to Council. I wish her and Bud ‘Happy Travels’ as they both deserve it!”
Liles commended Scheid for her passion for “bettering the community” and her in-depth research on all issues that council has faced.
Councilwoman Sabrina McCarty said, “Mrs. Scheid has contributed to the Town of Vinton with her wealth of knowledge in reviewing ordnances to ensure that the verbiage is properly relayed to others with no misunderstandings. She has a strong passion to make sure that the Town of Vinton is a clean community and has played an important role in the new refuse container program as well as continuing to make sure that the greenways are safe for folks to enjoy.”
“Janet will leave a legacy as a conservationist for the town, i.e. greenways, refuse collection, and beautification of the town, and she also came prepared in all these areas,” said Councilman Mike Stovall. “
Town Manager Barry Thompson said, “Janet has been a tremendously hard-working council member who championed for environmental concerns to make the Town of Vinton a better community. She was instrumental in the creation of the litter task force which worked with staff and businesses to improve efforts for litter control and she was responsible for the enactment of the litter ordinance. Janet also worked very hard on the updating of the Solid Waste Ordinance and the introducing of the refuse carts to Vinton. The refuse carts have made a huge impact in improving the way our streets look on refuse collection day by having solid waste put out in a more uniform manner, and also was another litter improvement idea for the town.”
Scheid thanked the Town Council from five years ago who appointed her to her seat on council— Mayor Grose, Vice Mayor Liles, Councilman Matt Hare, Councilwoman McCarty, and the late Councilman Doug Adams, “for giving me the opportunity to serve on Town Council. It has truly been an honor and an education. One of the most important things I’ve learned is what an outstanding staff and administration we have. They do a great job every day and during these stressful financial times we need to remember that and be willing to compensate them accordingly.”
She noted that two of the actions she is most proud of during her tenure were the hiring of Vinton Police Chief Foster and Town Manager Barry Thompson, “getting the right people in the right jobs at the right time.”
Scheid said leaving her position on council is “bittersweet. I have gotten more out of this experience that I’ve given.”