STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
COUNTY OF HENDERSON SEPTEMBER 19, 2001
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 at 100 North King Street, Hendersonville, North Carolina.
Those present were: Chairman Bill Moyer, Vice-Chair Marilyn Gordon, Commissioner Grady Hawkins, Commissioner Don Ward, Commissioner Charlie Messer, County Manager David E. Nicholson, County Attorney Angela S. Beeker, and Clerk to the Board Elizabeth W. Corn.
Also present were: Public Information Officer Chris S. Coulson, Assistant County Attorney Jennifer O. Jackson, Planning Director Karen C. Smith, Assistant to the County Manager/Budget Analyst Selena Coffey, Land Records Supervisor Pam Carver, and Finance Director J. Carey McLelland. Amy Brantley, Volunteer Coordinator/Deputy Clerk to the Board, was present through the Nominations.
CALL TO ORDER/WELCOME
Chairman Moyer called the meeting to order and welcomed those in attendance.
Chairman Moyer asked everyone to rise for a moment of silence in honor and recognition of those who have lost their lives in New York and Washington and in respect for those who have worked so hard and sacrificed so much to save the lives of others.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
Commissioner Hawkins led the Pledge of Allegiance to the American Flag.
Rev. Gus Martschink, Pardee Hospital Chaplaincy Program, gave the invocation after first reading a poem.
DISCUSSION/ADJUSTMENT OF AGENDA
Chairman Moyer asked for the following to be added to the Consent Agenda:
Resolution supporting the United Way campaign for this year (copies distributed this morning).
He asked to add under Staff Report - before AA@ - Well Regulations. Robert Smith will address that issue.
Chairman Moyer also asked to add to Update on Pending Issues:
Regency Development - Home Aid Housing Projects update
Regional Water Agreement - Negotiations Committee update
LGCCA meeting update
Annual Volunteer Appreciation Banquet arrangements update
Chairman Moyer stated that he would like the flexibility of moving the agenda around because of the people present to address certain items, to better facilitate them returning to work.
Chairman Moyer made the motion to approve the agenda as adjusted. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Commissioner Hawkins asked to pull item AI - Resolution - September 11, 2001" for some comments.
Chairman Moyer asked to pull item AJ - United Way Resolution@ (his add-on) for comments.
Item AI@ - Resolution - September 11, 2001
The Board was asked to adopt the following resolution which Commissioner Hawkins read:
WHEREAS, on September 11, 2001, The United States of America was suddenly and brutally attacked by foreign terrorists, and;
WHEREAS, these terrorists hijacked and destroyed four civilian aircraft, crashing two of them into the towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, and a third into the Pentagon outside Washington, D.C., and;
WHEREAS, thousands of innocent Americans were killed and injured as a result of these attacks, including the passengers and crew of the four aircraft, workers in the World Trade Center and in the Pentagon, rescue workers, and bystanders, and;
WHEREAS, these cowardly acts were by far the deadliest terrorist attacks ever launched against the United States, and by targeting symbols of American strength and success clearly were intended to intimidate our nation and weaken its resolve, and;
WHEREAS, these horrific events have affected all Americans. It is important that we carry on with the regular activities of our lives. Terrorism cannot be allowed to break the spirit of the American people, and the best way to show these cowards that they have truly failed is for the people of the United States and their counties to stand tall and proud.
NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Henderson County Board of Commissioners condemns the cowardly and deadly actions of these terrorists, and;
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Henderson County Board of Commissioners supports the President of the United States, as he works with his national security team to defend against additional attacks, and find the perpetrators to bring them to justice, and;
BE IT STILL FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Henderson County Board of Commissioners recommends to its citizens to support relief efforts by giving blood at the nearest available blood donation center.
Item AJ@ - Resolution supporting United Way 2001 Campaign
Chairman Moyer read the following resolution:
WHEREAS, The United Way of Henderson County has launched its campaign for 2001; and,
WHEREAS, Its slogan for this year is AYour United Way: A Partner in Community Building@ by not only solving problems but preparing for the future; and,
WHEREAS, United Way is a network of caring people working to make help available to every person in Henderson County: and,
WHEREAS, United Way impacts Henderson County by:
$ Nurturing Children and Youth
$ Promoting Health and Wellness
$ Strengthening Families
$ Providing Crisis Intervention
$ Delivering Elder Services
$ Developing Self-Sufficiency
NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Henderson County Board of Commissioners applauds the United Way Board and staff for their efforts on behalf of the citizens of Henderson County. The Henderson County Board of Commissioners supports the United Way 2001 Campaign and encourages contributions from the community and Henderson County=s employees.
Commissioner Gordon made the motion to approve the Consent Agenda. All voted in favor and the motion carried. The CONSENT AGENDA consisted of the following:
Minutes were presented for the Board=s review and approval of the following meetings:
October 5, 1998, regular meeting
November 10, 1998, special called meeting
November 16, 1998, special called meeting
December 3, 1998, special called meeting
August 9, 1999, special called meeting
Tax Collector=s Report
Terry F. Lyda, Tax Collector, had provided the Tax Collectors= Report dated September 17, 2001 for the Board=s information.
Darlene Burgess, Deputy Tax Collector, had provided the Deputy Tax Collector=s Report to the Board dated September 10, 2001, for the Board=s information.
A list of 17 tax refund requests was presented for the Board=s approval.
A list of 153 tax release requests was presented for the Board=s approval.
Correction - Budget Ordinance
The Board was requested to correct certain sections of the Budget Ordinance - Fiscal Year 2001 - 2002. The salaries for the County=s elected officials were incorrectly noted on the adopted ordinance.
Staff requested the Board to approve the above correction to the Budget Ordinance and apologized for the error.
Library Computer System Upgrade
The Henderson County Public Library is in the process of updating its computer system which enables library cataloging and circulation to be maintained electronically. The system that is currently being used, the Dynix software system which was purchased from the predecessor of epitech, inc., was installed in 1985 and is being phased out in favor of more advanced technology. The Library Director and IT Director have researched the currently available software and concluded that the only compatible product on the market is the Horizon-Sunrise software which is an upgraded replacement version of the Dynix software and only available from epitech, inc.
The total cost of the upgrade to the Horizon-Sunrise product and the conversion of our current data is $144,531. This total cost includes the software, services, hardware, supplies and shipping and is shown on the cost breakdown (Rider A). While this cost seems expensive, the Library Director and IT Department believe that it would be more costly (due to a more difficult data conversion, extensive staff training, etc.) to implement a different system which would not be compatible with the Library=s current system. The Library Director, therefore, wished to purchase this software upgrade and the hardware and services necessary to implement it. In anticipation of the upgrade a sufficient amount was budgeted to cover the expense.
The hardware component of this project had already been informally bid with epitech, inc. submitting the lowest bid amount. Contracts for services are not subject to the bidding laws. Normally software purchases at this dollar amount would also be subject to North Carolina=s bidding laws. However NCGS 143-129(e)(6) provides an exception to the normal bidding process for items when:
(i) performance or price competition for a product are not available; (ii) a needed product is available from only one source of supply; or (iii) standardization or compatibility is the overriding consideration.
This software purchase appears to fall squarely within the above-stated-sole-source exception. Consequently the Board was asked to approve the purchase of the Horizon-Sunrise software and the Purchase and License Agreement which was in the agenda packet and to authorize its execution by the County Manager. The Legal Department and IT Department have reviewed the Agreement and were comfortable with its provision.
The County Manager recommended the Board=s approval of this purchase contract under the sole-source exception mentioned above.
State Road Petition
Road Petitions had been received by Staff for the following roads for addition to the State Maintenance System:
1. Classic Oaks Circle
2. Stonebridge Drive
It has been the practice of the Board to accept road petitions and forward them to NC DOT for their consideration.
Sale of Voting Machines
The Board of Elections requested the Commissioners sell the attached list of voting machines to Transylvania County. These three old Volronic machines and its associated totaling equipment were the first pieces of equipment used for one-stop voting and are no longer used. Transylvania County has offered a total of $4,500 for the equipment.
Staff recommended the Board authorize the sale of this equipment.
Resolution - September 11, 2001
Please see above.
United Way Resolution
Please see above.
Commissioner Gordon had previously mentioned to the Board of Commissioners that the Health Department would be presenting a Resolution concerning well regulations. At it=s last meeting, the Board of Health unanimously supported the proposed resolution. She encouraged the Commissioners to support the resolution. Robert Smith is the person who deals with these regulations on a day to day basis. Robert Smith was recognized at this time.
Robert Smith informed the Board that earlier this year he received a rule from the Division of Water Quality stating that wells would have to be 100 feet from septic tanks. It stated that the rule was in effect upon receipt. He contacted our Legislators who researched and found out that the rule was not properly adopted because it had not gone to public hearing yet. The Legislature got the rule changed on a temporary basis. Now the Division of Water Quality has proposed to change the rule permanently and are going through the process of holding public hearings. The hearing dates have not been set as yet. Now is the comment period, until October 15. Hearing dates will be set throughout the state of North Carolina. They propose to require that a well be 100 feet from the septic tank. Currently the rule states such but allows it to be cut to 50 feet for a single family dwelling. The current sewage rules state basically the same thing but for site plan considerations, it can be cut to a minimum of 50 feet. For the most part, 50 feet has been the standard for North Carolina. Public Water Supply requires 100 feet. Some counties in North Carolina have passed 100 feet as their requirement. Robert stated that the problems he see are:
He has not seen any scientific research in North Carolina requiring 100 foot separation. He has asked to see such research and none has been produced.
This would require about one acre, if you wish to have a private septic tank and well for a house or mobile home.
Mr. Smith stated that if the research proves that 100 feet is necessary, then he is in favor but currently he is not convinced. He hears from some experts that we need to be more concerned about vertical separation than horizontal.
If this gets passed, they will still allow 50 feet for repairs. Mr. Smith stated that if this is being done for public health, then it should remain 100 feet for everyone, including repairs.
In the past, Water Quality could grant variances for most of their regulations. Mr. Smith questioned whether they would continue to grant variances. He has not gotten a response yet.
A proposed resolution was distributed and reviewed and it was suggested to add language Awithout substantiating date relevant to Western North Carolina@.
Commissioner Gordon made the motion to adopt the resolution presented by the Board of Health concerning well regulations with the above language added. All voted in favor and the motion carried. A copy of that resolution is attached as a part of these minutes.
DONATION - APPLE COUNTRY GREENWAYS
Dan Gilbert, Apple Country Greenways Commission, requested the Board release the Board=s full funding of $2,500. The Board had agreed to fund the Commission contingent upon equal support from all four municipalities.
It was Staff=s understanding that Hendersonville, Flat Rock, and Fletcher had all agreed to fund $2,500 this year; however, Laurel Park only agreed to fund $1,000. Laurel Park had some census discrepancies this year and could not afford to fund any more than $1,000.
Mr. Nicholson reminded the Board that they had agreed to fund Apple Country Greenways Commission based on equal funding from all of the cities. Full funding has been received from three cities with the fourth agreeing to the lesser amount. He recommended to the Board that they release the full funding that is already included in the Fiscal Year 2001-2002 Budget. Phase I of their current greenway project involves Jackson Park and Mr. Nicholson felt it was appropriate to support that effort.
The Board asked several questions of Dan Gilbert and Mike Egan, Chair of the Greenways Commission. They explained that a part-time Director has been hired for the Greenways, Mr. Bill Blalock.
Following much discussion, Chairman Moyer made the motion to release these funds and encourage continuation of the work on the project with the caveat of asking them to give the Board of Commissioners an annual budget. The motion was amended to state that the funds would be released on a quarterly basis as has been done in the past. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Chairman Moyer addressed the Abuffering issue@ since Commissioner Ward had brought it up. He stated that he had a number of questions from people with respect to the buffering issue in the county. He had responded that last year the Environmental Advisory Board spent a considerable amount of time on the buffering issue. After a lot of information was presented, it was determined that the matter should be tabled until we get the results of the Mud Creek Study since that is a major effort going on. They will come back with recommendations with respect to what should be done. The Board of Commissioners will readdress this issue after they receive the recommendations from the Mud Creek Study.
UPDATE ON COUNTY COMPREHENSIVE PLAN (CCP)
This item had been scheduled for the Board=s continued discussion on the development of a County Comprehensive Plan. The Chairman had invited Mr. Denny Martin of Martin & McGill Consultants to attend this meeting to discuss the Plan and the role that their firm can play in the development of the Plan.
Selena Coffey distributed a hand-out entitled AHenderson County Comprehensive Plan Planning Process Outline@ dated September 16, 2001.
Denny Martin informed the Board that he sees his role as facilitator and a resource. He reviewed the hand-out stating that he will work with the other municipalities and with standing county committees with a pause after each phase to regroup. He would like to keep this process as un-complicated as possible. He explained that this CCP needs to understand where this community is now as far as it=s growth and then where it=s headed with its present policies and the approach that=s being taken to infrastructure development and economic development and those things that influence the way Henderson County grows and changes. Based on the Community=s growth objectives, what do we need to do differently or what do we need to do to try to meet those objectives. Mr. Martin stated that he does not view this as a land use plan. He had planned four phases into the project and briefly reviewed those with the Board:
Phase One - Establishing Strategic Priorities
Phase Two - Growth Management Strategy
Phase Three - Planning Key Growth Incentives
Phase Four - Plan Implementation Strategy
There was discussion of roads, school locations, water and sewer and their effect on our county growth. Chairman Moyer explained that Phase I is scheduled to be completed about December 15, 2001, Phase II about February 15, 2002, Phase III about June 15, 2002, and Phase IV about July 15, 2002 with preparation of the final report about August 15, 2002.
Following much discussion, Chairman Moyer encouraged the Board and Mr. Martin to move forward with phase I of the project and that was also the consensus of the Board.
INFORMAL PUBLIC COMMENTS
There were none.
OPTIONS FOR SHARING NATIONAL FOREST RECEIPTS
Carey McLelland explained that each year 25 counties in the State, including Henderson County, receive a share of timber sale receipts from our National Forests from the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture and it flows down through the State of North Carolina.
The Local Government Commission has informed counties that there are now two options for sharing in National Forest Receipts, which are used in support of local school budgets. Counties can continue to receive these receipts under the traditional 25% payment option as has been done in the past or elect to receive the funds based on the Full Payment Amount option. This option is based on the average of the highest three payments received between 1986 and 1999, inclusive.
It would appear that for Henderson County, election of the Full Payment Amount option would result in a higher payment than what has been received in recent years. Electing this option would lock the County=s payment for six years. The anticipated Full Payment Amount the County would receive this year is $11,600. The average payment the County has received over the past four years is $7,050. This lower, average payment is due to the declines in the amount of timber sold from national forest lands in recent years.
Administration and use of these funds would not change under the Full Payment Amount option. The Local Government Commission is requiring that all counties inform them of which option is chosen no later than September 21, 2001 in order to notify the U.S. Department of Agriculture by their September 30, 2001 deadline.
The County Manager recommended that the Board consider electing to receive future National Forest Receipts under the Full Payment Amount option for the next six years based on the anticipated increase in these payments under this option.
In Henderson County, these monies go to our public schools.
Commissioner Hawkins made the motion for the Board to approve the full payment option as recommended by the County Manager and to direct staff to notify the appropriate agency that Henderson County has chosen that option. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
TO PURCHASE FORECLOSED PROPERTY OFFER - LOTS 26, 38, 39, and 40
Lee Morgan Subdivision
Angela Beeker informed the Board that Henderson County had received an Offer to Purchase Lots 26, 38, 39 and 40, Lee Morgan Subdivision in the amount of $600.00. This property was acquired pursuant to a Sheriff=s Sale, held for the nonpayment of taxes in 1985. Pursuant to the Policy Regarding Sale of Real Property Owned by Henderson County As a Result of a Tax Foreclosure Sale, an initial offer is presented to the Board of Commissioners, who can either reject the bid, or issue a proposed acceptance. If the Board issues a proposed acceptance, the bidder is required to post a bid deposit in the amount of 5% of the bid or $150.00, whichever is greater. The bidder must also pay to the County $120.00 to cover the costs of advertising the offer for upset bids. A notice of the offer is then published inviting any upset bids. If no upset bids are received within the ten days following the notice, the offer will come back to the Board for final consideration, at which point the Board may accept or reject the offer. If given final acceptance by the Board, the purchaser must pay the full bid price, and a quitclaim deed is issued. Jerry and Patsy Higgins have made the offer for those lots.
The County Attorney had rendered a basic title opinion, which stated that there were some irregularities in the foreclosure process and subsequent foreclosure sale. For this reason, she had prepared new Offers to Purchase, which had been signed by the Offerer, which acknowledges these irregularities, and required the Offerer to sign a release as part of the purchase price for the properties before the Offers are advertised.
Board action to either give a proposed acceptance or to reject the Offer received would be appropriate at this time.
Following discussion, Commissioner Hawkins made the motion that the Board issue a proposed acceptance and follow the procedure outlined by the County Attorney. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
David Nicholson reminded the Board that they had received a draft of the contract with Analytical Surveys Incorporated (AASI@) for the orthophotography project in Henderson County. The County Attorney had been working with ASI on several minor changes and reported those proposed changes to the Board. The project had been last discussed at the Board=s meeting on February 5, 2001. An excerpt of the minutes for that meeting were also distributed to the Board for review.
Phase I of this project, which included ground control/paneling and aerial photography, was authorized by the Board on February 5, 2001. This Phase I was completed as indicated by the April 23, 2001 letter and has been accepted. Invoices in the agenda packet show the payments that were made for the services related to Phase I.
Mr. Nicholson reminded the Board that this contract was approved during the previous fiscal year=s budget. The funds were put aside as part of the State Budget issues we were dealing with this past spring. Those funds have been released and moved back to last year to help cover this project. These funds are in hand to do this project.
Angela Beeker distributed a memo regarding AChanges to the ASI Contract@ and discussed some minor changes with the Board. She explained that phase II is converting those pictures into digital orthophotos. Ms. Beeker reviewed the recommended changes for the ASI contract:
C The date was changed to September 19, 2001
C Article I.I Definitions C It was clarified that there are no PROCEDURAL DOCUMENTS nor any SOURCES for this Project.
C Paragraph 3.2.3 - It was clarified that PROGRESS REPORTS will be given to the OWNER every 30 days. [to Pam Carver]
C Paragraph 4.3.2 - The termination for convenience clause had been removed.
C Paragraph 4.3.3 - A typo was corrected.
C Subparagraph 184.108.40.206 in conjunction with Paragraph 9.3 - It was clarified that a termination of this Agreement for CAUSE does not end the warranties provisions of the Agreement, nor Article 7, 8, and 9.
C Paragraph 5.1 - Reflects that part of the project has been done and paid for.
C Paragraph 6.1 - Reflects that the warranty period starts from date of OWNER=S ACCEPTANCE, not from the date of delivery to the OWNER.
C Subparagraphs 9.7.1 - 9.7.4 Provisions related to an affirmative action plan had been deleted.
Ms. Beeker stated that the total contract price for this project was $220,000. Phase I has been completed and there is a balance on the contract of $153,409. Funds had been appropriated of $160,000 to this year=s budget.
Pam Carver, Land Records Supervisor, explained to the Board the reason for doing this project. The orthophotos will provide control to the Land Records Department, meaning that they help Staff map the county. They interpret the photos when they are reading documents and mapping them. Other benefits:
C We haven=t had new photos since 1992 and there has been a tremendous amount of growth in the county.
C We have a reappraisal coming up and Staff needs to see the growth. The appraisers rely on it heavily as well as the mappers.
C In doing our GIS project, Planning needs the photos also.
Ms. Carver explained that the fact that the photos will be digital orthophotos will allow the other departments more access.
Chairman Moyer made the motion for the Board to approve the contract with the changes that Ms. Beeker mentioned and authorize the signing of the contract and moving forward with the project as stated. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Chairman Moyer called a 5 - 10 minutes technical recess.
DONATION OF REAL PROPERTY
David Nicholson informed the Board that Henderson County had been approached by Ken Wilson concerning a possible donation of real property to the County. Mr. Wilson would like to donate +/- 12.65 acres of land to the County located near Jackson Welding and running along a portion of Mud Creek. Mr. Wilson acquired this property in 1996 for $132,000 from the Moffits. It is composed of several tracts, including part of an old (1924) subdivision. The tax value placed on this property is $205,600. Staff felt that the County would be required to pay the City and County taxes on this property. County taxes for 2001 total to $1,213.04. City taxes should total to approximately $1,007.44 (based on a City tax rate of $0.49). Mr. Wilson is donating property to Buncombe County to be used as soccer fields and felt that Henderson County might be able to use this property for softball fields. He did not mention any restrictions to be placed on the property. There do not appear to be any restrictions prohibiting such a use, but a full title examination has not been conducted at this point.
The deed which conveyed title to the property to Ken Wilson Ford, Inc. as well as a map showing the area was included in the agenda packet for the Board=s convenience in reviewing this item.
David Nicholson had visited the site and acknowledged that it is in the floodplain and anticipated working with the Parks and Recreation Department to possibly locate some soccer fields on the property. The access to the property would, however, have to be developed or improved prior to full utilization of the property.
If the Board wished to obtain this property, it would be appropriate to authorize the acceptance of a deed conveying the property to the County. Should Mr. Wilson wish to place restrictions on the use of the property in the deed, the County Manager would bring that matter back before the Board for consideration prior to the County=s acceptance of the deed.
There was discussion of isolation and security issues and the fact that there is no good access to the property. This property is along the area that is being considered for the greenway system.
It was the consensus of the Board to pass on this property and to let Mr. Wilson know that the City of Hendersonville or the Greenways Commission might be interested in the property. David Nicholson was asked to work with all the entities mentioned.
Commissioners expressed interest in seeing a list of properties that are in Henderson County=s name as well as the list of properties that the Board of Education own.
Notification of Vacancies
The Board was notified of the following vacancies which will appear under Nominations on the next agenda:
1. Hendersonville City Zoning Board of Adjustment - 1 vac.
Larry Young is the person whose term is expiring and he has indicated a willingness to continue to serve. Chairman Moyer placed Larry Young=s name in nomination for reappointment. Chairman Moyer made the motion to suspend the rules and reappointment Mr. Young. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Chairman Moyer reminded the Board of the following vacancies and opened the floor to nominations:
1. Solid Waste Advisory Committee (SWAC) - 1 vac.
Commissioner Hawkins nominated Linda Fritz for this vacancy. There were no other nominations. Commissioner Hawkins moved the Board accept Ms. Fritz by acclamation. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
2. Mountain Area Workforce Development Board - 1 vac.
There were no nominations at this time so this item was rolled to the next agenda.
3. Equalization & Review Board - 3 vac.
The Board had some discussion regarding qualifications and the need for recruitment to this Board. It was mentioned that a Realtor would be good to have on this Board. Scott Hamilton was present from the Chamber of Commerce and he consented to take back word to the Chamber that we need to find people to serve on this Board.
4. Retired Senior Volunteer Program Advisory Council - 1 vac.
There were no nominations at this time so this item was rolled to the next meeting.
5. Juvenile Crime Prevention Council - 3 vac.
There were no nominations at this time so this item was rolled to the next meeting.
Zoning Board of Adjustment - Adjustment of Terms
In a recent action of the Board of Commissioners, Section 200-65 entitled AZoning Board of Adjustment@ was amended. This amended Section provides that the regular and alternate members of the Zoning Board of Adjustment be appointed for three-year staggered terms. The length and staggering of terms was not changed as it was a requirement in the original text of Section 200-65.
The initial appointments of the regular and alternate members have already been made, however, in reviewing the Roster of this Board it appeared to Staff that the three-year overlapping terms for both the regular and alternate members have gotten out of sync.
For the regular members there are three positions that are due to expire December 31, 2001, two positions that expire December 31, 2003, and no position that expires December 31, 2002. Therefore, the Board was requested to consider adjusting the terms to accomplish the appropriate staggering. Similarly, but more extensively, the terms of the alternate members are also out of sync. There are two positions that expire December 31, 2001 and four that expire on December 31, 2002. No alternate member=s term expires in the year 2003. The amended Section 200-65 grants the Board of Commissioners the discretion to appoint as many alternates as the Board deems necessary - there being no specific number of alternate members required.
The Board was requested to seek adjustment of the terms for existing regular and alternate members. Staff was available to discuss this matter and to answer Board questions pertaining to the Zoning Board of Adjustment=s membership.
Mr. Nicholson stressed the importance of the proper constitution of the Zoning Board of Adjustment in light of the quasi-judicial nature of its work. He recommended that the Board adjust the terms of the regular members and to reduce the number of alternate members to three with terms ending December 31, 2001, 2002, and 2003.
The County Manager=s proposal for the regular members was:
Member Current Term Proposed Term
Tamra Crane December 31, 2001 same
Debra Stierwalt December 31, 2003 same
Diane Grant December 31, 2003 same
Anthony Engel December 31, 2001 same
John Davis December 31, 2001 December 31, 2002*
*Staff felt that Mr. Davis= term should have originally been December 31, 2002.
It was expressed that the Board might want to wait until the end of the year to see who would be coming off as regular members before letting any of the alternates leave.
Commissioner Hawkins made the motion to take the regular members and their terms as recommended by the County Manager and to ask Staff to contact alternate members to see who was willing to continue to serve and for how long and consider the alternate terms a little later. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
UPDATE ON PENDING ISSUES
David Nicholson explained that he has created a Steering Committee of people who are directly involved in the project, people from the Assessor=s Office, from Land Records, from the IT Dept. and some of our major users. One of David=s major concerns is the coordination of the project, to make sure it is done well and is coordinated across county government. He has been assured that they can put together a plan that would allow each area to be responsible for its basic function but be in a position where the GIS function could be transferred to IT.
Mr. Nicholson plans to move the GIS person to the IT Department to see how it will work on a trial basis. The users envision the GIS project being a user oriented product. Staff is working on an updated GIS plan for the Board which will be presented to the Board at the October 17 meeting.
Update on Home Aid
Selena Coffey informed the Board that the Parkside Commons Project (Regency Development) at the old East Flat Rock School site did not receive the tax credits from the North Carolina Division of Community Assistance; therefore, they did not receive the CDBG funds. The project is on hold until they can reapply for tax credits and funding next year. They are still very interested in the project. The Village of King Creek (Housing Assistance Project/Home Aid) project got the tax credits and will do their project this year.
Regional Water Agreement - Negotiations Subcommittee
Chairman Moyer informed the Board that there have been several meetings. He stressed today that the next meeting will be September 26 and will be here at 9:00 a.m. It is a three hour meeting. He encouraged the Commissioners and any other interested persons to attend the meeting to hear the discussions. It is a very important issue for the northern end of the county. At the end of the meeting, at least ten minutes will be set aside for public input.
Chairman Moyer informed the Board that the Local Government Committee for Cooperative Action met yesterday, he and Commissioners Gordon and Hawkins were in attendance. He asked Commissioner Gordon to update the Board on the meeting.
Commissioner Gordon informed the Board that the bulk of the meeting was spent in a discussion with representatives from Western Carolina University. They had asked to come before the LGCCA and poll the group for interest in Western Carolina extending an MPA (Masters in Public Affairs) Program into Henderson County. Some of the local alumni have been working for awhile with Western Carolina and encouraging them to be more of a presence in Henderson County and get some programs here to benefit our local residents. LGCCA will discuss further at the next LGCCA meeting. The County Manager and the City and Town Managers have been asked to let the LGCCA members know how many governmental employees might be interested in a MPA Program and job descriptions that this would be of use to. She explained that most of the other agenda items got put off until the next meeting. Chairman Moyer did present a draft of Planning Procedures for LGCCA and it will be discussed again at the next LGCCA meeting also.
Annual Volunteer Appreciation Banquet
Chairman Moyer reminded those in attendance that the Banquet is scheduled for Thursday, October 4, 6:30 for punch and fellowship and 7:00 p.m. the program will begin. He stressed that this was the Board=s chance to get together with the volunteers once a year and share some hospitality and thank them for their work throughout the year. This year we will have a group of youngsters from the Boys and Girls Club performing - a Drum Corp and Dance Troop. It will be held at The Chariot.
ZONING ORDINANCE REWRITE - SPECIAL USE DISTRICTS
To continue the Board=s discussion of major issues in the draft of the new Zoning Ordinance, Staff presented information on the issue of Special Use Districts (SUDs). At a workshop held on July 11, 2001 on the new Zoning Ordinance, the Board of Commissioners discussed the concept of SUDs. Some Board members expressed some concerns about the concept, saying that it was a way to get around spot zoning, that it could micromanage land use and that it did not provide a blueprint for developing the county. The Board did not want to see it defeat the comprehensive plan and there was a suggestion made that perhaps SUDs could be used in certain areas such as through an overlay district concept that defined what SUDs could be placed and in which locations. The Board had decided to discuss the issue again when more information was available.
Information that attempted to explain the Special (or Conditional) Use District Zoning concept was distributed to the Board. The paper by Julia Cogburn included information about the use of SUDs by other jurisdictions and also noted that there had been a recent decision by the North Carolina Court of Appeals that may impact how the concept is used.
Karen Smith went on to explain that for each general use zoning district there is a corresponding Special Use District. For example, if you have an R-40 District, you also have an SUR-40 District. If someone wished to apply for one of those districts to be applied to your property, any of the uses allowed in the general district would be permitted, however they do require a special use permit.
The Special Use District process entails two steps: rezoning or remapping of a parcel from an existing zoning district to a special use district, and obtaining a special use permit. While the two applications go through the process simultaneously, the decision making is separate. The basic special use district is treated as a legislative decision, while the special use permit is treated as a quasi-judicial process.
There was discussion on the pros and cons of the Special Use Districts. Ms. Smith reminded the Board that information that attempts to explain the Special (or Conditional) Use District Zoning concept was distributed in the agenda packet. The paper by Julia Cogburn included information about the use of SUDs by other jurisdictions and also noted that there had been a recent decision by the North Carolina Court of Appeals that may impact how the concept is used.
Ms. Cogburn informed the Board that the Special Use Zoning Districts are AFloating Zones@. They are just out there, but are not applied until someone applies to have the Board look at the actual application of a particular zone. She was unfamiliar with any stipulation on where a zone can be applied. If a request is made that does not fit with the Comprehensive Plan, the application does not have to be approved. There was discussion on how much protection this allows the current Board to grant given that future Boards may wish to have more Special Use Districts than general districts. Ms. Cogburn reminded the Board that they could not control what types of districts people might apply for, but they have the final determination on where Special Use Districts best apply, and can ensure that they don=t cover the whole County. There has been some recent court action in Charlotte on the manner in which they have granted some districts. Chairman Moyer requested that Karen Smith obtain a copy of that Special Use Permit Legislation for the Board to review.
Ms. Cogburn continues to gather information about the case and may submit some additional information for the Board=s discussion at a later date.
The Board was referred to S200-22C (page 26) and S200-119 (pages 198-202) of the draft of the new Zoning Ordinance which discusses Special Use Districts.
Following much discussion, Chairman Moyer stated that this is a piece that the Board will need to look at again later on, after they see how the rest of the Ordinance is going to be put together and where we come out on a number of other key issues.
Set a workshop on the Zoning Ordinance Rewrite
There was some discussion regarding this need. The Board set that workshop for Thursday, October 11 at 3:00 p.m.
Chairman Moyer made the motion for the Board to 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 11 of the Henderson County Code.
2. (a)(3) To consult with an attorney employed or retained by the public body in order to preserve the attorney-client privilege between the attorney and the public body, which privilege is hereby acknowledged. To consult with an attorney employed or retained by the public body in order to consider and give instructions to the attorney with respect to a claim.
3. (a)(4) To discuss matters relating to the location or expansion of industries or other businesses in the area served by the public body.
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.
Commissioner Hawkins made the motion for the Board to go out of closed session. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
There being no further business to come before the Board, the meeting was adjourned at approximately 1:05 p.m.
Elizabeth W. Corn, Clerk to the Board William L. Moyer, Chairman