STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA
BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
COUNTY OF HENDERSON
MARCH 17, 1999
The Henderson County Board of Commissioners met for a regularly scheduled meeting at 9:00 a.m. in the Commissioners' Conference Room of the Henderson County Office Building.
Those present were: Chairman Grady Hawkins, Vice-Chair Bill Moyer, Commissioner Renee Kumor, Commissioner Don Ward, Commissioner Marilyn Gordon, County Manager David E. Nicholson, Assistant County Manager Angela S. Beeker, County Attorney Don H. Elkins, and Clerk to the Board Elizabeth W. Corn.
Also present were: Planning Director Matt Matteson, Staff Attorney Jennifer O. Jackson, County Engineer Gary Tweed, and Public Information Officer Chris S. Coulson.
CALL TO ORDER/WELCOME
Chairman Hawkins called the meeting to order and welcomed all in attendance.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
Commissioner Kumor led the Pledge of Allegiance to the American Flag.
David Nicholson gave the invocation.
DISCUSSION/ADJUSTMENT OF AGENDA
Chairman Hawkins stated that the County Attorney has asked that AGeneral Electric Company@, item AD@ under Staff Reports be rolled until after closed session as well as item@D@under Discussion Items, APartners in Health Condominium@. He needed to share some information with the Board on these items pursuant to NCGS 143-318.11(a)(3).
Commissioner Kumor requested the addition of a AJail Report@ as #10 under AG - Update on Pending Issues@.
Commissioner Ward requested the addition of setting a workshop with the Sheriff to discuss budget issues imder AImportant Dates@. He requested an update on the Noise Ordinance and this was added as #11 under AG - Update on Pending Issues@. He also requested that two items be added to Closed Session: Lawsuits pursuant to NCGS 143-318.11(a)(3) and Personnel pursuant to NCGS 143-318.11 (a)(6).
It was the consensus of the Board to approve these adjustments to the agenda.
Commissioner Moyer asked that item AH@ be pulled from the Consent Agenda for discussion.
Commissioner Ward asked that item AC@ and item AF@ be pulled from the Consent Agenda.
Discussion followed on the pulled items as follows:
AC@ Henderson County Financial Report - January 1999
Commissioner Ward requested staff get an update on the Parks & Recreation budget since the recent change in leadership of that department.
AF@ Disposition of Edneyville Library Trailer
Commissioner Ward stated that the agenda item said that we would take bids or try to get someone to dispose of the trailer. He thought he may have someone lined up that will pay us for the trailer. He will have that person contact the County Manager.
David Nicholson stated that this agenda item was what would authorized such contact. It would allow the County Manager to start negotiating for removal of that unit.
Jennifer Jackson stated that the Resolution in the agenda packet authorizes the County Manager to negotiate and dispose of that unit in accordance with the statutes.
Commissioner Moyer stated that the first paragraph in the Resolution should be reworded. He read it to mean the same as Commissioner Ward, that we were going to negotiate for sale for scrap.
AH@ Public Records Disposal
Commissioner Moyer stated that it is important when disposing of records to get a legal sign-off. He just wanted to ask Jennifer Jackson and Gary Tweed if the disposal request was in accordance with applicable statutes and any law that covers disposal of public records.
Jennifer Jackson stated that it is in accordance with the County=s Records Retention Schedule which requires that those records be kept for three years. Currently we are computerized and the new information is going directly into the computer system. These are old paper records, older than three years. They are day to day individual tickets.
Commissioner Hawkins made the motion to approve the Consent Agenda with the one adjustment to the Resolution on Disposition of Edneyville Library Trailer. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
The CONSENT AGENDA included the following:
Minutes were presented for the Board=s review and approval of the following meetings:
January 8, 1999, special called meeting
January 29, 1999, special called meeting
February 8, 1999, special called meeting
February 15, 1999, special called meeting
February 17, 1999, regularly scheduled meeting
March 1, 1999, regularly scheduled meeting
Tax Collector=s Report
The Tax Collector had presented the monthly tax report regarding the status of collection efforts as of this date with a breakdown of the progress they have made since the last report and the steps they are taking to collect all unpaid property taxes.
Henderson County Public Schools Financial Report - January 1999
The Board of Public Education had supplied the Henderson County Schools Financial Report for January 1999.
Henderson County Financial Report - January 1999
The Henderson County Financial Report had been supplied for January 1999. As discussed previously, Commissioner Ward requested an update on the Parks/Recreation Budget since the break out of Maintenance and Park Projects. Staff will supply same.
A list of tax refund requests (26) had been presented for the Board=s approval. The supporting documentation is on file in the County Assessor=s Office.
A list of tax refund requests (68) had been presented for the Board=s approval. The supporting documentation is on file in the County Assessor=s Office.
Disposition of Edneyville Library Trailer
The completion of the new Edneyville Branch Library has rendered the 20 year old trailer that formerly housed the Edneyville Library surplus property. The Library Director requested the County dispose of the trailer in order to allow for its removal from the property.
The County had been informed that the trailer will not remain intact and usable if moved again; however the Library Director believes that he can find someone to haul the trailer away for scrap. (Please see above discussions regarding this item).
NCGS 160A-266 allows the Board of Commissioners to appoint an officer to dispose of the personal property by private negotiation and sale when the personal property is valued at less than $30,000. NCGS 160A-267 requires that the County adopt a resolution authorizing the disposal of the personal property by private sale at a negotiated price. The sale can be consummated 10 days after the contents of the resolution are summarized in a notice and the notice published.
If the Board wishes to declare the trailer surplus and sell it to someone interested in it for its scrap value then the Board should consider the resolution presented. (A change was made to the resolution above).
Surplus Youth Baseball Helmets
The Henderson County Recreation department as 112 youth helmets that are not currently needed for any of its programs. These helmets were previously used for the youth girls softball program which has recently been turned over to the Henderson County Youth Baseball, a nonprofit corporation. Henderson County Youth Baseball has expressed an interest in purchasing the 112 surplus helmets for a total price of $896 ($8 per helmet) for use during its upcoming softball and baseball season.
NCGS 160A-266 allows the Board of Commissioners to appoint an officer to dispose of personal property by private negotiation and sale when the personal property is valued at less than $30,000. NCGS 160A-257 requires that the County adopt a resolution authorizing the disposal of the personal property by private sale at the negotiated price. The sale can be consummated 10 days after the contents of the resolution are summarized in a notice and the notice published.
If the Board wishes to declare the 112 helmets as surplus and sell them to Henderson County Youth Baseball for $896, the Board should consider the presented resolution.
Public Records Disposal
Solid Waste Department
The Solid Waste Department requested permission to destroy various public records stored at the Solid Waste Department at 802 Stoney Mountain Road, Hendersonville, NC. These records are described in the presented report to the County Manager from the County Engineer. (There was also discussion of this item above).
Capital Improvements Projects Reports
Staff had presented the monthly Capital Improvements Projects Reports for February 1999.
Chairman Hawkins reminded the Board of the following vacancies and opened the floor to nominations:
Nursing/Adult Care Home Community Advisory Committee - 7 vac.
The Community Advisory Committee had met and had made recommendation concerning appointments.
Chairman Hawkins stated that the Board can appoint to positions #3, #6, #18 and #20 but can only nominate to positions #14 and #23 but cannot appoint yet to #22 as it needs to go through the process.
Commissioner Kumor made the motion to appoint to positions #3, #6, #18 and #20 Patricia L. Roberts, Tracy Ward Clemo, J. Elaine Seiden, and Wanda Weiss and to only nominate to positions #14 and #23 Arvis Marie Pitts and Teresa Whitmire. She respectfully requested that we reserve Nancy Mitchell for #22 when it can be appointed.
Commissioner Moyer made the motion to suspend the rules and appoint the first four nominees to positions #4, #6, #18 and #20. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Henderson County Agriculture Advisory Board - 1 vac.
Commissioner Ward nominated Kenny Barnwell. Commissioner Kumor made the motion to suspend the rules and appoint Mr. Barnwell. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Mountain Valleys Resource Conservation & Development Program - 1 vac.
There were no nominations at this time so this item was rolled to the next meeting.
Juvenile Crime Prevention Council
Commissioner Kumor nominated Joe Lyda from the Business Community, Julia Reveille, Spence Campbell, Jim Gaillard, and Chris Drake to fill four of the public positions. Chairman Hawkins made the motion to suspend the rules and appoint these nominees. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Downtown Hendersonville - 1 vac.
Commissioner Gordon nominated Annette Owens. Commissioner Kumor made the motion to suspend the rules and appoint Ms. Owens. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
SET PUBLIC HEARING ON EXTENSION OF MANUFACTURED HOME PARK MORATORIUM
Jennifer Jackson reminded the Board that the Ordinance Imposing a Moratorium on the Development or Expansion of Manufactured Home Parks in Henderson County was adopted by the Board on December 7, 1998. This moratorium was a 120-day moratorium and is due to expire at midnight on April 6, 1999. The Board has received a draft Manufactured Home Park Ordinance from the Planning Board and has scheduled a public hearing on that draft for March 29, 1999 at 5:00 p.m. The Board of Commissioners has not yet scheduled a work session on the draft Manufactured Home Park Ordinance. The moratorium currently in place is likely to expire prior to the Board=s adoption of a Manufactured Home Park Ordinance.
Mrs. Jackson stated that if the Board wishes to extend the current moratorium ordinance it would be appropriate to consider setting a public hearing on such extension for the Board=s regular meeting on April 5, 1999 at 7:00 p.m. A special order was presented for the Board=s use in setting such public hearing.
Staff had prepared a draft moratorium ordinance for the Board=s purposes if it desires to set such public hearing. The draft moratorium ordinance does not include a definite extension period. The Board may wish to consider an extension of 30 days (to expire on May 6), 60 days (to expire on June 5), or 90 days (to expire on July 5). A legal notice had also been drafted and should be advertised in advance of the public hearing in accordance with NCGS 153A-323 and the draft moratorium ordinance should be reviewed by the Planning Board prior to the Board of Commissioners taking any action on the extension.
Following discussion, Commissioner Kumor made the motion to set a public hearing to extend the moratorium for 30 days (to expire on May 6) for April 5 at 7:00 p.m. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
CORRECTION TO THE CODE
Angela Beeker reminded the Board that Staff had discovered a section of The Henderson County Code (Section 200-73(B) that is in conflict with the corresponding section of the Zoning Ordinance (Section 1201).
Previous Version - Section 1201.
Section 1201 of the Zoning Ordinance, Initiation of Amendments, consisted of subsections, Section 1201.01, Text Amendments, and Section 1201.02, Map Amendments. Section 1201.01, Text Amendments, allowed the Board of Commissioners, the County Manager, the Planning Board, the Zoning Board of Adjustment, and the Watershed Review Board to submit text amendments by right, and allowed a citizen to submit an amendment only at the discretion of the Board of Commissioners. Section1201.02, Map Amendments, allowed the same persons to submit an application for a map amendment by right as for a text amendment, but did not allow a citizen to submit an amendment for someone else=s property without their consent. The Planning Board or the Board of Commissioners could, however, enlarge a zoning area submitted by a property owner to include property without the owner=s consent.
New Version in the Code - Section 200-73.
Section 200-73 of the Code, Initiation, does not contain the same differentiation between text amendments and map amendments. Therefore anyone can submit an application for the rezoning of any area as long as they are one of the property owners within the area. Of course, the Board or Planning Board still has the discretion to enlarge the area.
At the January 20, 1999 meeting, the Board requested that this matter be sent to the Planning Board for a recommendation. The Planning Board considered the matter on February 23, 1999 and unanimously recommended that the newly codified County Code should remain as is, and that when the Zoning Ordinance is reviewed during the year as part of the rewrite project, the matter could be considered again.
Commissioner Moyer made the motion to accept the recommendation of the Planning Board and keep the Code language of Section 220-73 as is and that it be reviewed as part of the zoning ordinance. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
SHERIFF=S DEPARTMENT - Security at BRCC
Sheriff Erwin informed the Board that Blue Ridge Community College has requested that the Henderson County Sheriff=s Department provide their security services. The College requested that two officers be dedicated for their security patrol. In order to provide this service, the Sheriff=s Department requested that the Board of Commissioners approve this contract and authorize two additional positions. The College will pay for all personnel costs, equipment, and vehicles. Sheriff Erwin stated that this is no different from what they are doing at the NC Justice Academy in Edneyville and with the Hendersonville Housing Authority with a contractual agreement with them. Presently BRCC has a private security firm which has no powers of arrest and no authority. A Crime Stoppers Office at BRCC will be implemented for the officers. Sheriff Erwin stated that the primary function of government officials is to provide safety for our citizens. BRCC has classes starting at 8 a.m. and running till 10 p.m. About 50-60% of our students at BRCC are female with a growing number of senior citizens. He feels that this is a very proactive step in providing safety and security for those students.
Sheriff Erwin sits on the Blue Ridge Community College Board of Trustees.
Hal Sain, Finance Officer for BRCC, stated that BRCC currently has $26,000 budgeted for its Security Forces out of Asheville, which are mainly retirees.
David Nicholson informed the Board that security for BRCC is funded out of local dollars. County money goes into the BRCC fund and then they would pay it out to the Sheriff=s Dept. (Henderson County) so it really is a budgetary issue for the Board.
Following discussion, it was the consensus of the Board to delay action on this item until budget time.
Mr. Shumaker, Dean of Student Services at BRCC, stated that the sooner they can implement such a security program, the better. In 25 years he has been blessed not to have experienced some of the traumatic experiences that other educational institutions have. The College has been very fortunate to have been a safe place. They have an open campus and would like to keep it open.
GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY
REQUEST FOR REFUND FOR TAX YEARS 1993-1998
The County Attorney had asked that this item be rolled until after closed session.
UPDATE ON 1999 REASSESSMENT
Robert Baird, County Assessor, explained that he had some good news for the Board. As of this morning, March 17, his department had mailed 60,000 notices. The total inquiries by walk-in and telephone and fax have been 3,133. The current appeals schedule for appointments are 1,314 and appeals by mail are 1,513 which makes the total appeals to be 2,827. Of these appeals, about 20% are commercial. His department had currently worked 311 of those appeals and 63 of them were informational only. This equates to 4.71% at this time. In 1995 at this time we were at 13% and in 1990 we were at 33%. He stated that they think they have a very good success story evolving through this reappraisal process. The reappraisal was done in house.
Mr. Baird then explained in more detail. Notices were scheduled to be mailed on the week of February 23. There were some mailing problems and the notices actually got in the mail by March 5. People began receiving their notices about March 7 and 8. A tracking system has been built in the telephone environment for their office and to date they have had 3,801 hits, telephone calls that have come in. The first day there were a few bugs in the phone system because they had eight lines rolling over. Essex has a problem with anything more than six. Bell South got those bugs out by 5 pm. on that first day. Incoming phones calls began on March 8 and were very heavy for the remainder of that week. Telephone calls are now moderate to mild and as of yesterday they only had 54 telephone calls, so far the lowest. Of their calls 70% were applying for an appeal. They have a scheduler who can give them an appeal date and time. Once that is done, seven days prior to their actual scheduled appeal they receive an appeal notice.
March 23 will be the first hearing date.
Of the calls 25% were generalized complaints such as schools, jail, where are our tax dollars being spent, will the tax rate go down, etc. About 5% were question and answer type calls, what does all this mean, have all the forms been mailed, I haven=t got my form yet, why did my appraisal go up so much, etc. Most of these calls were answered to the callers satisfaction on the phone. Very few of those ended up in the appeal count.
Mr. Baird stated that they have held nine public hearings. They presented a video at the hearings which is a good information video.
Once the Board of Equalization and Review convenes, which is May 3, 1999, he cannot accept anymore appeals.
It is appropriate that as the Board has access to Cable, that there be some informational programming to help the citizens understand the reassessment process.
PROPERTY TAX RECONCILIATION
The Board has approved engaging the firm of Crisp Hughes Evans LLP to review the County=s property tax procedures and to reconcile the property tax receivables. This firm had provided the initial Schedule of Agreed Upon Procedures for the Board of Commissioners= approval.
Chairman Hawkins, Commissioner Moyer, and David Nicholson have been working together to try to write a better letter of Agreement for the Board to review. The first draft received from Crisp Hughes Evans did not refer to their February 16, 1999 letter and didn=t state what they would do with the project at the end (our group wanted it stated that they would have to issue a formal report to the Board of Commissioners).
David Nicholson explained that the fees are same as in the first draft. Basically what they did in the initial schedule of Agreed Upon Procedures, is go through each one of the areas (for example the Assessor=s Office - to look at real, personal, and motor vehicles and how we list, how we do the billing and how we do releases, discoveries, etc.) and they will do that based on a sample. The same issue applies to the Tax Collector=s office as well as in the Finance Department. Phase II will be taking all that knowledge and going back to the root of the issue (property tax reconciliation) and making sure our reports and procedures balance our receivables.
Commissioner Moyer felt that the company had addressed several of the concerns that were raised. The issue that still bothered him is the second paragraph in the letter. What had been asked of them is that they specifically indicate a reference to the February 16 letter, but more specifically the issues raised in the attachment to that letter and that they would be applying the procedures set forth to answer the questions and specifically address the issues raised in that letter. He particularly felt that the County had raised certain issues and they are listed in the Summary of Significant Issues that is attached to the February 16 letter and that the company should apply the procedures set forth to provide answers to the Board to the extent possible to those issues and concerns. They mention a general review of our procedures and he felt it should be specific to the issues and concerns in that attachment.
We have already had a general audit, that is not what we are looking for here.
Chairman Hawkins stated that he would be willing to sit down and work on redrafting the letter to Crisp Hughes and see if they would then sign the letter stating they would look at the specifics that the Board wants addressed.
Chairman Hawkins called a short recess.
UPDATE ON PENDING ISSUES
Chairman Hawkins stated that he had discussed with the municipalities that we would have the capabilities to videotape meetings here and asked if they were interested in it when we get our equipment installed. There were mixed reactions. He had a list of specific meetings that they wanted to record for later distribution.
He also mentioned to them the discussions this Board has been having regarding joint purchasing. There was some interest in that. He felt that it was a wait, watch and see interest.
He also mentioned Mediacom to them and he felt that all but one Mayor was interested in being present at the Mediacom meeting on March 30.
At this time the agenda was rearranged to accommodate some of the people in the audience.
ECO- Environmental Advisory Board
Eva Ritchey addressed the Board on behalf of the Environmental and Conservation Organization of Henderson County (ECO). She suggested the establishment of an AEnvironmental Advisory Board@ to advise the Board of Commissioners on matters related to environmental quality. A quality environment is important to all Henderson County citizens.
She suggested the Historic Precedent for Need:
1. Incinerator controversy.
2. Asphalt plant on North Rugby where wetland destruction occurred without a permit.
3. Quarry permitted on US #176 without public notice.
4. Jackson Park: cutting of trees in a sensitive bird habitat area.
5. Naples Speedway.
6. Environmental concerns of sprawl development.
The purpose of this Board could be as follows:
1. To provide a means for dialogue between the Commissioners and citizens with environmental concerns.
2. Provide local government leaders and their planning departments with expert and comprehensive advice on various protection policies and compliance standards related to the environment.
3. To prevent brush fire environmental issues from taking up too much of the Commissioners= time.
4. Promote intergovernmental and public/private cooperation on environmental policies.
5. To initiate and perform special studies and projects on environmental concerns.
6. To research and apply for grants that would benefit the county=s environment.
Ms. Ritchey talked a little about the make up of the Board and the terms, officers, meetings, etc.
She introduced Mr. Ken Weitzen, who has worked on this proposal for about a year. Mr. Weitzen stated that a community is based on three components: social
If all these components can remain healthy then the community can remain healthy.
He spoke about a specific problem that he has been working on indirectly for 2-3 years, litter. This committee could work to coordinate a county-wide effort to deal with this problem. He mentioned an acronym that could be a possible name for the committee: ASEE@ for
Commissioner Moyer said that he could support this as long as it dovetailed with Board of Commissioner=s workings/agenda. The agenda would be set in partnership with the Commissioners.
Commissioner Ward stated that he could also support it with the guideline that it be dovetailed with Board of Commissioners action. He sees this as a subdivision of the Planning Board and the Commissioners.
Commissioner Kumor could approve the concept but stated that parameters would have to be set. She stated that when the original Land Use Plan was adopted, this was one of the goals set for that plan, that there be some sort of advisory group.
Commissioner Gordon stated that she too supports the concept but feels that parameters will have to be set.
Commissioner Ward felt that the availability of this new Committee should be offered to the municipalities on certain projects.
Chairman Hawkins stated that it shouldn=t be a citizen advisory board that the county is working but would be more appropriate to be backed by the LGCCA (Local Government Committee on Cooperative Action).
Mr. Weitzen stated that for this committee to be successful, they would have to network and coordinate with all the municipalities and stressed that we do not need the duplication of resources. If we can figure out what would work best, that is what he is in favor of as long as there is consensus that the goal is a worthwhile goal and there is commitment. He suggested an environmental summit.
Commissioner Moyer stated that he felt that it had to be a county committee so that there is agreement on the agenda, a working together partnership. Sharing the benefits is fine but to get this going and get a good agenda with agreed upon approach, he felt it should be a county committee.
Commissioner Moyer made the motion to establish this advisory board in accordance with the terms of the proposal and work out the details and move forward with the establishment of this board.
Following some additional discussion, a vote was taken and the motion carried unanimously.
Mary Jo Padgett, a member of ECO, was present but did not address the Board.
INFORMAL PUBLIC COMMENTS
1. Duane Gentle- Mr. Gentle spoke regarding three issues: Roger Wolff hearing, Zoning in Hoopers Creek, and Manufactured Home Park Ordinance.
Following questions by Mr. Gentle, Chairman Hawkins informed him that later in this agenda was a formal response to Mr. Wolff. As far as zoning in Hoopers Creek, the county has none there. As far as the Manufactured Home Park Ordinance, it was presently before the Planning Board.
Jennifer Jackson responded that the Town of Fletcher extended its extraterritorial jurisdiction on February 8. The Wolff property was part of that boundary. Therefore, he has been zoned by Fletcher zoning. The rest of the Hoopers Creek area is under review by the Henderson County Planning Board on a zoning request.
The County Manager informed Mr. Gentle that Mr. Craig Honeycutt, the Town Manager for Fletcher, was expected to arrive at this meeting within the next 15-20 minutes and stated he would try to get the two of them together to discuss Mr. Gentle=s concerns.
UPDATE CARRIAGE PARK APPEAL OF PLANNING BOARD ACTION
Jennifer Jackson informed the Board that the Chairman had received a letter from Luther Smith on February 17, 1999. The letter requested that the Board of Commissioners review the action of the Planning Board on March 31, 1998 as it relates to the Planning Board=s review of a preliminary plan and the validity of the Planning Board=s internal policy for review of development plans in regard to easements.
This information was first presented to the Board at its March 1, 1999 meeting at which time the Board asked that the County Attorney bring this matter back at today=s meeting with some guidance for how Carriage Park=s request should be handled.
Carriage Park had submitted a letter dated March 11, 1999 asking that they be able to withdraw their appeal. The County Attorney was of the opinion that Carriage Park=s request to withdraw should be granted and that they should be allowed to pursue this matter with the Planning Board.
Commissioner Kumor made the motion to accept the County Attorney=s recommendation and allow the withdrawal of the request to appeal. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
EXTENSION OF IMPROVEMENT GUARANTEE FOR CUMMINGS COVE, PHASE II,
Commissioner Moyer asked to be excused from deliberations and voting on this item as he is an investor in Cummings Cove.
Chairman Hawkins made the motion that Commissioner Moyer be excused from discussion and voting on this issue. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
As allowed by the Land Development Ordinance (now Chapter 170 of the Henderson County Code),the Board of Commissioners on November 2, 1998, approved the posting of a letter of credit as an improvement guarantee for Cummings Cove Subdivision, Phase II, Section 1. The Agreement that related to the improvement guarantee required that the water and sewer improvements be completed by April 1, 1999. Some, but not all, of the water and sewer improvements have been completed.
Jennifer Jackson reviewed with the Board a letter that the Chairman of the Board received from Roger A. Hill on behalf of Cummings Cove on March 9, 1999. This letter requested that the Board of Commissioners extend the improvement completion date to April 1, 2000. The reason for the extension request, as indicated in the letter, is a sewer line design change that will allow most lots in Section 1 to be served by a gravity system. Cummings Cove is willing to post a new letter of credit in the amount of $105,688.75 to cover the cost estimate plus 25% as required by Section 170-39 of the Henderson County Code.
Roger Hill was present to answer any questions regarding their request.
Mrs. Jackson informed the Board that if they wish to grant such an extension, Staff has prepared a draft agreement for the Board=s consideration.
There was discussion that the old letter be amended rather than replaced. Roger Hill answered some questions regarding design changes on sewer and the addition of a water tank.
Commissioner Kumor made the motion to amend the old letter of credit to reflect the dollar amount of $105,688.75 and to extend the date as requested. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
FIRE PROTECTION DISTRICTS
At the Board=s meeting on December 16, 1998, the Fire Marshal presented certain fire protection district boundary amendments for insurance purposes. At that time, he indicated that he would be bringing this matter back to the Board for discussion on the related amendments to the actual fire protection district boundaries for fire tax purposes.
The fire protection district maps have in the past been based upon a point-to-point system which does not take into consideration property lines or the GIS mapping capabilities that the County now has. The current maps are difficult to decipher and do not establish clear distinct boundaries. The Fire Marshal and the Assessor=s Office have worked very diligently over the last 18 months with all of the current fire districts and their fire chiefs in order to develop a revised map that satisfied all concerned. The Board of Commissions briefly discussed this issue with the fire chiefs on February 3, 1999.
A fire district must not extend farther than 5 miles from the districts=s fire station. The map has been redrawn taking into consideration the property lines and the 5 mile limitation. If adopted, the fire protection district map would be consistent with the GIS mapping system which will alleviate confusion and provide much more definite boundary lines. Both the proposed and existing maps were reviewed.
Since the proposed changes in the boundary lines constitute actual changes in the fire protection districts, the County must comply with NCGS 69-25.11 or seek a local bill. Since there are too many properties that are affected to make it practical to comply with NCGS 69-25.11 (receipt of petitions of 2/3 of the owners of the territory involved), the only practical way to accomplish these amendments is through a local bill. A summary of the effects that these boundary amendments will have on property owners was also reviewed.
Jennifer Jackson informed the Board that if they wish to proceed with the updating of the County=s fire protection district map, it would be appropriate for the Board to consider adopting the draft resolution in support of a local bill, either as stated or as the Board may wish to revise.
Large maps were presented for the Board=s review. Rocky Hyder, County Fire Marshal, stated that all Fire Chiefs have signed on to this proposal. Mr. Hyder informed the Board that Jennifer Jackson and Pam Carver have put a lot of time into this project. They were present to answer any questions.
Pam Carver reviewed with the Board some charts she had prepared for each fire department which explained the number of parcels that would change districts as well as the value lost, value gained, and the rate change. Of specific interest were the parcels that were formerly in no mans land that now are in a fire district and will get a fire district bill. This will probably impact the insurance rates on their property also.
Ms. Carver stated that there are 742 parcels which would be going into a fire district for the first time.
She suggested that public educational meetings be held in communities that have a large amount of parcels going to a fire district for the first time. Public Hearings may be needed also.
Rocky Hyder stated that there are still two areas of our county (Jeter Mountain and Green River)that will be outside of a fire district, but just because of the 5 mile Department of Insurance distance requirement. As these areas begin to develop, certainly stations will be built to cover these areas. Right now it is a matter of economics.
Following much discussion, Commissioner Moyer made the motion to adopt the presented Resolution and to pursue local legislation and charge the County Manager with an information program to be developed. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
LETTER TO REP. LARRY JUSTUS
Chairman Hawkins stated that since the Board had indicated that they were desirous of pursuing the fire districts by a local bill and having monitored the State Legislature, local bills are due in by March 24. Last Saturday Mr. Hawkins met with Larry Justus briefly and asked that he be sure to introduce a blank local bill for us so we could get the Fire District Letter to him. The County Manager also sent a letter on our behalf asking that they reserve a local bill for the Fire Districts.
WRITTEN DECISION REGARDING ROGER WOLFF HEARING
The Board of Commissioners held a special called meeting on February 16, 1999 for the purposes of holding a quasi-judicial hearing requested by Roger Wolff. Mr. Wolff had requested a determination regarding vested rights pertaining to his development of a manufactured home park on Jackson Road in Henderson County.
At that meeting the Board decided that the Town of Fletcher had assumed jurisdiction over the matter by establishing an extraterritorial jurisdiction which included the property upon which Mr. Wolff wished to develop a manufactured home park.
The Board=s Rules of Procedure provide that decisions in a quasi-judicial proceeding must be reduced to writing. Staff has drafted a decision based upon the statements and arguments made during the hearing and presented them for the Board=s review and approval. The County Attorney has reviewed the decision and did not suggest any revisions.
Mrs. Jackson informed the Board that it would be appropriate for the Board to take action on this matter by approving the written decision either as presented or as the Board may wish to revise it.
Commissioner Ward made the motion to accept the draft written decision with the addition of the date that Mr. Wolff filed his application for a vested right. All voted in favor and the motion carried
UPDATE ON PENDING ISSUES
1. Courthouse Committee - Renee Kumor & Marilyn Gordon
They proposed that the following groups or boards be asked to participate and provide representation by their Board Chairman or Board designee on the proposed Historic Courthouse Advisory Committee:
Travel & Tourism Board
Chamber of Commerce
Downtown Hendersonville, Inc.
Henderson County Gem & Mineral Society
Henderson County Genealogical Society
Apple Festival Committee
Henderson County Historic Preservation Society
Hendersonville Merchant=s Association
Commissioner Gordon asked the Board=s approval to go ahead and officially appoint that committee.
This Committee should be charged with:
1. Recommending the most efficient and effective way to both protect and utilize our Historic Courthouse property.
2. Determining the agencies which should participate in this utilization and the extent of each agency=s involvement.
3. Developing a planning proposal for the facility that will adequately meet the needs of each participating agency.
This committee should be directed to report to the Commission within 90 days of the first regular meeting. The Commission should consider the recommendations from this committee and, based on that information, give the committee direction. If the decision is to proceed based on concept, the committee should then be directed to address specifics by drafting a financial estimate. This should include type of financial and administrative structure as well as financial commitment expected and sources for this commitment.
They also recommended that this committee have direct participation from County Commission and County staff as needed. Authorization should be given to include advisory input from volunteers with knowledge specific to these goals, as well as from the community at large.
They suggested immediate authorization of this proposal by the County Commission, with prompt invitations to participants. The first meeting will be scheduled for Tuesday, April 13, 3:00 p.m. in the Small Conference Room.
It was the consensus of the Board to approve this plan and proceed as presented.
2. Boards & Committees - Renee Kumor & Marilyn Gordon
Commissioner Kumor stated that to address some of the concerns the Board has had concerning receiving and maintaining information on Boards and Committees, she and Commissioner Gordon offered the following:
1. Each Commissioner maintain his/her own binder of applications. The Clerk will continue to distribute each application as it is received with holes punched. She will also continue to maintain a master book of applications. However, she will no longer include applications in the Board agenda packet.
2. Each Board or Committee list will now include, in addition to name and term ending date, term length (shown as date first appointed to Board) and attendance record. Term length
can be added to the Board roster at our office, however, attendance record keeping must be delegated to the staff member assigned as staff to that particular Board or Committee. They suggested that Mr. Nicholson and his staff propose a quick and uncomplicated method of forwarding this information to the Board of Commissioners. One suggestion
is that attendance rosters of the entire Board or Committee be submitted whenever a vacancy is announced.
3. There are several policy issues that may be discussed at this time:
mission statement and goals of the Board of Commissioners
4. Software opportunities for better information management.
There was discussion of each Board member also having an additional binder with just by-laws for each Board/Committee. There was also discussion that once we get in our new office quarters that it might not be necessary to have individual binders with the by-laws if the Board has access to a master binder of by-laws for the Boards/Committees.
Chairman Hawkins stated that he has been working on a new draft letter regarding membership, expectations, etc. He will pass that along for the Board=s review.
3. Resolution/Board of Health - Marilyn Gordon
Commissioner Gordon stated that the Board of Health has delayed vote on this Resolution. Therefore, it was not appropriate for the Board of Commissioners to take action at this time.
4. DOT Transportation Priorities - Grady Hawkins
Chairman Hawkins and Commissioner Bill Moyer were at the LGCCA meeting yesterday and presented the position that the Board had given to take to them regarding the Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP). He stated that the LGCCA looked at Hwy. #191 versus Hwy. #64. Chairman Hawkins and Commissioner Moyer indicated to them that the County is very interested in a thoroughfare study plan and Chairman Hawkins expects that to be part of the presentation on March 30.
5. Department Head Workshop - Angela Beeker
Angela Beeker had included a brochure as part of the agenda packet that had been distributed for the Department Head Workshop. Periodically there will be Department Head Retreats or Department Head Workshops to get all the Department Heads in a room for a day and to work on some issue.
Mr. Nicholson charged Mrs. Beeker with the responsibility of putting together an agenda for this workshop. She got together a committee, asked for volunteers and appointed some people to the committee to come up with the topics for the agenda. Members of the committee included Rocky Hyder, Kelly Pounder, Larry Harmon, Mona Quinn, and Sam Laughter.
The main goal of this workshop will be to come up with a statement of values and a set of guiding principles to govern working relationships with one another and with employees and the County Manager as county government staff. All the Department Heads will have a chance to have input and buy into the project.
Chairman Hawkins stated that the first thing in this agenda should be to review the COUNTY MISSION which is the Mission Statement adopted by the Board of Commissioners.
6. Blue Ridge Community College - ABo@ Thomas Auditorium
Chairman Hawkins had received a letter from Dr. Sink of Blue Ridge Community College referencing the delta in cost between a 1,100 and 465 seat auditorium. He has received no further information.
Angela Beeker had received those specific numbers from Dr. Sink via fax. The Board also had requested that some research be done to determine the extent to which the Board has already been committed by previous Boards to this. Staff is in the process of doing that research. This was first presented to the Commissioners in 1992 so there are seven years worth of minutes and correspondence to research.
There is a difference of $76,500 in operational costs for one year as follows:
465 seat auditorium = $87,000.00
1,100 seat auditorium = $163,500.00
Since the Board had just received copies of this fax, Chairman Hawkins suggested that this appear as an agenda item for the next meeting. He stated that the Board of Trustees is out on a 90 day window. They should be informed as soon as possible whether the Board of Commissioners is supportive of the expansion of the auditorium, if it takes place, or they aren=t.
7. Millennium Activities - David Nicholson
David Nicholson and Chris Coulson have met with the City Managers. There was agreement that they all wanted to work together in the community and do something to celebrate both the year 2000 and the next millennium. David then met with Chris Coulson and Melody Heltman and Rick Harris to start talking about how to go about doing this with county government taking the lead. They had the idea of creating a millennium council using people who are already out there. They looked at tying all the activities from December 1999 through January of 2001 under one umbrella with a common logo and possibly a common slogan. They hope to bring into this millennium council:
People from the business community,
People with the education community,
People with the cultural community,
People with the athletic community,
Representatives from the municipalities to begin to work on this big project and tie it all in together. We have so many events in our community in a year but they need to all be tied together for one big colossal celebration. They had talked about the possibility of soliciting sponsorship to cover any costs associated with this council.
Melody Heltman stated that this is an excellent opportunity for the county to take the lead. This is something to be proud of - to lead our community into the next millennium. She sees it as a wonderful 13 month celebration. The round table met yesterday and she met with them and suggested this project. She stated that we have some activity happening every month, several events some months. This will be a time to get the information out to the public about all the wonderful events in our community.
8. Recycling Ad - David Nicholson
David Nicholson wrote Judy Robinette, Publisher of the Times-News. We got an advertisement a couple of weeks ago about recycling in the Times-News. He called about it and found out that it was a filler space that they put in the paper. The County had nothing to do with it. Mr. Nicholson informed them that he was concerned that it had an employee=s name on it. In the March 9 paper was the same article absent the county employee=s name. He drafted a letter to Ms. Robinette after that. He felt that the reporters should have read the front page of the paper the previous day which talked about recycling being in a flux and the changes that were being made to it. It=s very obvious that the classified people were not reading the paper.
Mr. Nicholson told Mrs. Robinette that we are sending a mixed message to our community on recycling. We are going to have to make changes on recycling.
Mrs. Robinette called David back and apologized for this several times in the conversation, stating that it would not happen again. The first time it was a filler and they were just trying to be helpful. Recycling was something that she believed in and she put it in. It was not meant to disrupt anything that the County was working on.
Chairman Hawkins called a 5 minute break.
9. Board of Commissioners= Office Space - David Nicholson
Chairman Hawkins stated that we have two plans for the office space, one from Better Homes & Gardens and one from Tractor World. Commissioner Kumor stated that her plan was drawn like it was because Commissioner Ward stated that he wanted an office with a window. After the plan was drawn he said No, that will cost too much money.
Chairman Hawkins stated that the County Manager needs some direction on which plan to follow.
Mr. Nicholson stated that he has full sets of plans and will be glad to share them with the Board, maybe when we come back into open session after lunch.
10. Jail Report- Renee Kumor
Commissioner Kumor distributed a hand-out which shows where the jail project is currently. The fourth page is a time line. Last Friday, after the Jail Advisory Committee meeting, they sat down with Grier-Fripp and improved the schematics and are now going into a phase called ADevelopmental Design@which is the time when you start to talk about the systems to be in the jail, fixtures and equipment issues, all the things that the jail volunteer team has been reviewing and studying and getting prices on. They have been discussing operating issues. They will be dealing with the architects for the next several months on these issues.
Commissioner Kumor thanked the Commissioners for coming by to walk through the mock up at the National Guard Armory. Members of a variety of the law enforcement agencies also walked through: The Highway Patrol, the Magistrates, the Superior Court Judge sent a representative. Some folks came by from the Business Morning update meeting.
Some of the people who have been working with the Jail Planning Team are taking on the role of becoming the Transition Team Planners. They are writing operational procedures and working with the Sheriff=s staff in the jail to get the procedures in place.
It was the consensus of the Board to request in writing what various people=s roles are in the rest of the jail project. The Board would like to know who will be doing what. There is a Jail Advisory Team, A Jail Project Team and a Transition Team.
Commissioner Kumor explained:
The Jail Advisory Team includes all the Commissioners and all the people involved in criminal justice arena who meet on a periodic basis to receive information and give advice.
The Jail Project Team who are the people who do all the research and work in between times to prepare meetings and information for the Jail Advisory Team. There will be a group of people from the Jail Project Team who will work on transition issues and will be known as the Transition Team along with some additional members.
The smaller group of David Nicholson, Sheriff Erwin, and Commissioner Kumor, Lem Dermid, and Bill Byrnes comprise the Leadership Team that try to keep all this work in control so that everybody knows what everybody else is doing.
There was some discussion that the Transition Team should fall under the Sheriff=s budget.
11. Noise Ordinance Update
Don Ward had asked that this item be added. He stated that he had received a letter from one of the kennel owners. He would like to see this integrated into the Noise Ordinance.
David Nicholson stated that staff plans to bring this back to the Board on April 5.
CANE CREEK WATER & SEWER DISTRICT
Commissioner Kumor made the motion that the Board go into the Cane Creek Water and Sewer District to act on the following items:
1. Follow-up on March 8, 1999 joint meeting with the Town of Fletcher - Chairman Hawkins and Commissioner Gordon
2. Town of Fletcher Projects/Grants
All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Commissioner Kumor made the motion that the Board go out of Cane Creek Water and Sewer District. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Commissioner Kumor made the motion that the Board go into Closed Session as allowed pursuant to NCGS 143-318.11 for the following reasons:
1. (a)(1) To prevent disclosure of information that is privileged or confidential pursuant to the law of this State or of the United States, or not considered a public record within the meaning of Chapter 132 of the General Statutes, in accordance with and pursuant to NCGS 143-318.10(e) and Article II of Chapter II of the Henderson County Code.
2. (a)(5) To establish, or to instruct the public body=s staff or negotiating agents concerning the position to be taken by or on behalf of the public body in negotiating (I) the price and other material terms of a contract or proposed contract for the acquisition of real property by purchase, option, exchange, or lease, (II) the amount of compensation and other material terms of an employment contract or proposed employment contract.
3. (a)(3) To consult with an attorney employed or retained by a public body in order to preserve the attorney/client privilege between the attorney and the public body, which privilege is hereby acknowledged and to consider and give instructions to an attorney concerning the handling or settlement of a claim, judicial action, or administrative procedure. .
4. (a)(6) To consider the qualifications, competence, performance, character, fitness, conditions of appointment or conditions of initial employment of an individual public officer or employee or prospective public officer or employee; or to hear or investigate a complaint, charge, or grievance by or against an individual public officer or employee.
All voted in favor and the motion carried. The Board and staff planned to eat lunch during closed session.
Commissioner Ward made the motion that the Board go out of Closed Session at 2:20 p.m.. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
ACTION FOLLOWING CLOSED SESSION
Commissioner Kumor made the motion to approve closed session minutes for the following dates:
February 17, 1999
March 1, 1999, as amended in closed session.
All voted in favor and the motion carried.
PARTNERS IN HEALTH CONDOMINIUM
The Board adopted a Resolution on November 2, 1998 pertaining to the formation of a condominium for the Partners in Health, a project involving Blue Ridge Community College, Pardee Hospital and Four Seasons Hospice.
Hospice had asked that an Agreement be presented to the Board of Commissioners for approval at this meeting.
Don Elkins stated that the Condo Declaration itself has previously been approved; however, there are other allied documents that go with the declaration as attachments, such as plans and specs of each building and a site plan. We do not have those items at the present time. The presented agreement calls for a completion date of April 15, 1999, to have all these documents in place. Beyond that we were going to inquire as to some background of this situation and try to find out exactly where we are on the project and what we can do, if anything, at this point in time.
Chairman Hawkins asked for a little background, especially for the two new Commissioners, on how we got to needing the condominium approach to owning the mortar, etc. He also asked for discussion on the deadline and what the requirements are.
Sharon Alexander stated that Hospice received a certificate of need from the State and these are issued by the Division which we call Certificate of Need. It is part of the Division of Facilities Services. They received their Certificate of Need quite some time ago and began a search for property. The Hospital received its Certificate of Need (CON) some time after that to construct a long-term nursing care facility. After the hospital received its CON, the two groups and Blue Ridge Community College decided that all of these services and all of these facilities could best be built and the services delivered if they collaborated with each other. At that point, they began plans to do so, found the piece of ground that is out on Allen Road, got the architectural plans and started soliciting money for the project and getting bids for the actual building. At all times there are progress reports that are periodically due to the Division of Facilities Services to the person who is in charge of keeping up with CONs. Those were filed timely by Hospice and also by the Hospital and they were made aware of the fact that this was going to be a building that was going to be connected by a hall and that the County was going to own the real property. At some point they focused on that issue and said wait a minute. They have had problems in the other parts of the States that are totally unrelated to this project. The owner of real property who owned what they call the bricks and mortar and who owned the actual building but did not hold the Certificate of Need. A tenant in that building owned the Certificate of Need. The landlord and tenant had a falling out and then the State found itself in the middle of that fight as to who has the right to deliver these services that are subject to this Certificate of Need. So they had made a real black letter rule that said the owner of the bricks and mortar of any facility in which these services are delivered, that person or entity has to actually own the Certificate of Need. This meant that Hospice, who at that point had planned to just rent their part of this building they were going to rent from the County, had to actually own it or they had to transfer the Certificate of Need to the County which was quite problematic for the County and for Hospice and didn=t seem to be a very palatable option for anybody. At that point, which was about a year and a half ago, we met with County staff, we talked with the people in Raleigh about various options and everybody pretty much decided that if it could work to make a condominium out of that building - to divide it into two units. The larger unit would be the long-term skilled nursing facility and the County would continue to own it and would lease it to the hospital and the County holds the Certificate of Need for that. We talked through that issue. At that time actually the hospital had gotten the Certificate of Need but that was just an error. That has been brought to their attention and corrected. The Hospital should have the Certificate of Need for Fleming Street for those facilities and we=ve talked through all of that. Their level of comfort is a lot less with a county owned hospital. As far as Hospice was concerned, Hospice was clearly going to be pure tenant. So Hospice would need to have title to the bricks and mortar to its condominium unit. We brought that concept to the County and it was approved in concept. Ms. Alexander said they are trying to get the surveys and the other documents from the surveyor that are necessary in order to satisfy just the condominium statute. That is what Mr. Elkins referred to, we are still prodding the surveyor to get the last little piece we need. She asked if the Board of Commissioners had isolated any problems in that process but would try to answer any questions the Board might have.
Sam Fritschner explained that there are two means of egress and ingress, one on the ground and one that will be part of the whole package.
Sharon Alexander stated that there are two means of egress and ingress on the ground already.
Commissioner Kumor asked if they were over property that you own or control?
Sharon Alexander stated that there is one that is partially on property that Blue Ridge Community College owns that was put there with their permission with an understanding that there would be either easement or a transfer of title when that became private.
Commissioner Kumor asked if the understanding was written or just a friendly understanding.
Sharon Alexander answered that it was a friendly understanding.
Sam Fritschner stated that the latest understanding which is not 48 hours old is that that is going to be deeded to Henderson County but of course they don=t have anything in writing.
Sam Fritschner stated that as far as Hospice is concerned, their primary means of ingress and egress is going to be off Allen Road. Hospice=s concern is just to get the whole thing done. Its immediate concern about access is not going to be that particular parcel but of course they are just as anxious to get this thing finished as everyone else and that is part of it. Hospice got its CON many years ago and has tried numbers of parcels over the years and this deal fell together very well. It is a perfect arrangement as far as Hospice is concerned. The Division has been patient through all of these parcels but its patience is close to being at an end. We understand that. The pressure has been on Hospice and they have been trying to move with it. They are pretty much up against it at this point.
Don Elkins stated that his main concern is that we have the commitment out there. Although he doesn=t think the County has caused the crisis that has come here today, he suggested that there be some type of approval, not a final approval but one that would allow Hospice to continue on. We would not want them to lose that and have an empty building out there.
Sam Fritschner stated that they need this agreement signed posthaste or yesterday. Delay has been, to a certain extent, out of Hospice=s control. It has been with others.
Frank Aaron stated that he had a letter from the State asking him to declare to them the ownership of both the Hospital facility and the Hospice facility. In order to do their inspection on April 7, they have to know then how the ownership of these two facilities line up so that they then can license separate from the nursing home or however it is going to be done.
Chairman Hawkins stated that from the time of the Resolution of November 2, even in exhibit A in discussions of the condominium he has questions that have not been answered. He understands the bricks and mortar and that someone has to own the building and this is a convenient vehicle for it but when he reads this about an association of the members governed by a Board of Directors, a budget that has to be ratified by 100%. These are things that operate in a different set up for a condominium than what we are looking at. AI don=t know how we address that with this Acondominium@ that is going to lash these two facilities together, one being an arm of the Henderson County Corporation Hospital and Hospice. I guess if you read this statute literally and I don=t propose to be a lawyer, but when I read these things I wonder how they are addressed in this lash up between the Hospital and Hospice under this document that directs that those things be conducted. How do you address that? Who is the Board of Directors for the condominium?@
Sharon Alexander stated that the Board of Directors is going to be appointed or elected by the Henderson County Hospital Corporation and by Hospice. There will be five members and three will be appointed by the Hospital Corporation and two by Hospice.
Chairman Hawkins said that he did not see any of that spelled out in this agreement. How will the budget work and what is it?
Sharon stated that basically the only thing that this association would have to do or really could do would be deal with maintenance and repair issues for the condominium, paving the parking lot and painting lines on the parking lot and that type of thing. The budget as far as that is concerned would be how will the condominium dues be assessed and how much will they be. That would be the kind of things in the budget. The maintenance and repair issues for this condominium are going to be so minimal once everything is finished and turned over to the association.
Chairman Hawkins stated that Henderson County, particularly the County Attorney needs to have a better understanding of how things are going to be done before this agreement can be approved, such as:
Who is the Board of Directors?
Who does the budget?
Does it have to have by-laws?
Sharon explained that once the Board of Directors is created, then a set of by-laws will be established.
Sam Fritschner explained that a lot of the problem is that the statute requires things in a certain order and some things you just can=t know until the time comes, you have to take step one before you take step two. AUntil you sign this exhibit A, it will not be done. What we are asking for today is an approval of the agreement, that is all we are asking for.@
Sharon Alexander statedAwhen you create a condominium, you create a different way to hold title to real property. Instead of somebody having to go through the subdivision ordinance to divide up that land, we=re going to take this building and we=re going to say somebody can own part of it and someone else can own the other part of it. Then this association is going to consist of people representing the owners of the units. Until those units are created and until somebody owns title to those units then there cannot be an association and an association does not have the authority to do anything. The only thing that this document deals with is you=ve got common ownership real close together and there are common areas. Hospice will have a fractional interest of that and the Hospital will have a fractional interest of that. The purpose of the association is to have some entity there to deal with any decisions that might come up about those common areas. That is the only thing that the association will have any authority to do.@
Don Elkins stated that we need a copy of the plans and specs. The County Attorney stated that he is willing to work with Sam and Sharon to get this completed on time.
Commissioner Gordon made the motion to approve the Agreement and the Declaration of the Condominium pursuant to the documents that Don Elkins needs. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Chairman Hawkins asked that Sharon Alexander and Sam Fritschner finish working out the particulars on Exhibit A with our County Attorney.
GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY
REQUEST FOR REFUND FOR TAX YEARS 1993-1998
It had been requested that this item be rolled until after closed session.
Robert Baird stated that NCGS 105-381, Taxpayers remedies, provides any taxpayer asserting a valid defense, may make a demand for the release of the tax claim by submitting to the governing body of the taxing unit a written statement of his defense. If a tax has been paid, the taxpayer, at any time within five years after said tax first became due or within six months from the date of payment of such tax, whichever is the later date, may make a demand for a refund of the tax paid.
The definition of a valid defense is as follows:
a. A tax imposed through clerical error;
b. An illegal tax;
c. A tax levied for an illegal purpose.
After receiving a taxpayer=s written statement of defense and request for release or refund, the Board of Commissioners, shall within 90 days after receipt of such request determine whether the taxpayer has a valid defense to the tax imposed or any part thereof and shall either release or refund that portion of the amount that is determined to be in excess of the correct tax liability or notify the taxpayer in writing that no release or refund will be made.
It is the opinion of the County Assessor that the defense set forth by request for refund letter dated December 19, 1998, does not meet the definition of a valid defense.
And furthermore, the matters described in stated letter are appraisal matters and shall be considered by the Board of Equalization and Review not under the provision of NCGS 105-381.
The Henderson County Assessor recommended that the Board of Commissioners deny the above stated request for refund.
Following discussion, Commissioner Moyer made the motion that since this is an appraisal matter and the Board of Commissioners does not have jurisdiction, that it go before the Board of Equalization and Review. He moved that the Board of Commissioners take no action on this matter.
Don Elkins recommended and approved the above motion.
All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Staff will follow up to the taxpayer.
BLUE RIDGE COMMUNITY COLLEGE
Chairman Hawkins will draft a letter to Dr. Sink asking for clarification or an update on the grant. The Board would also like to see the history of where the Board of Commissioners authorized the remainder of the land to Blue Ridge Community College.
Sheriff Erwin had requested a budget workshop. The Board set a budget workshop for April 22 at 4:00 p.m. for the Sheriff=s Department and the Jail.
Commissioner Moyer suggested the Board have a workshop following the Public Hearing on March 29 on the Manufactured Home Park Ordinance. The Board was in agreement.
March 30 was set as a joint meeting to discuss Mediacom with all the municipalities. This meeting will be at the Village of Flat Rock.
There was discussion of possible meeting dates/times for a joint meeting with the Planning Board and the Board of Commissioners to discuss county-wide zoning and the Zoning rewrite project, with representation from BenchMark. A tentative date was chosen as March 26 at 1:30 p.m., place of meeting to be announced.
April 19 was chosen as the date for a general work session for the Board on boards & committees, goals and objectives, and Mediacom. The meeting will be at 3:00 p.m. in a location to be announced.
The Clerk reminded the Board of the up-coming State Clerks Conference that she is hosting at Etowah Valley. She had invited the Commissioners and the County Manager to attend any or all of the activities during that conference. She asked that if any of the members wished to attend that they notify her so that she could be sure they receive tickets and they that get recognized as being present. The County Manager and the Chairman have graciously consented to be at the Conference on Friday morning to give a welcome.
David reminded the Board of the Legislative Briefing and Reception in Raleigh on May 5. Commissioners Hawkins and Kumor expressed the desire to go. The Clerk will take care of their arrangements.
David also reminded the Board of the NACo Annual Conference to be held in July in St. Louis. Commissioner Ward indicated that he and his spouse would be going. The Clerk will take care of their arrangements.
In the year 2000, the NACo Conference will be in Charlotte, NC.
David also reminded the Board of the County Commissioners District meeting in Waynesville on April 14. Commissioner Kumor expressed her desire to attend.
COMMISSIONERS OFFICE SPACE/Plans
David Nicholson asked the Commissioners to look at the two different plans for their proposed office space in the vacated Board of Elections space.
David explained that one is a quick and inexpensive plan and the other is a little more complicated requiring more time and money. Both plans call for a new entrance to be cut into the existing waiting area/entrance. The quick and inexpensive plan won out four to one.
There being no further business to come before the Board, Commissioner Moyer made the motion to adjourn the meeting at 3:25 p.m. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Elizabeth W. Corn, Clerk Grady Hawkins, Chairman