STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
COUNTY OF HENDERSON OCTOBER 5, 2001
The Henderson County Board of Commissioners met for a special called meeting at 5:00 p.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 Don Ward, County Manager David E. Nicholson, County Attorney Angela S. Beeker, and Clerk to the Board Elizabeth W. Corn.
Absent were: Commissioners Grady Hawkins and Charlie Messer.
CALL TO ORDER/WELCOME
Chairman Moyer called the meeting to order and welcomed those in attendance. The purpose of this meeting was to discuss the legality and appropriateness of the ordinance that the Board adopted on Monday evening - Public Demonstration Ordinance. He explained that the Board felt it was not in the best interest to have adopted that ordinance as they did.
Chairman Moyer made the motion to rescind the adoption of the ordinance, effective immediately, and proceed to look at this at a future Commissioners= meeting and decide whether to proceed or give additional direction to the County Attorney before going any further with the ordinance. As part of the motion he explained that at the next meeting, since there was not a full Board present today, this would be on the agenda for Board ratification of today=s action.
Commissioner Gordon agreed completely. She stated that when you make a mistake you ought to admit it and she felt that the Board made a mistake when they adopted this ordinance. If the Board chooses to go forward with this type of an ordinance, she hopes that they will look at public safety, the rights of the public to use county facilities, protecting our employees, and the right of the demonstrator to be able to be effective in the demonstration as well as their safety. She felt that they could come up with something better.
Commissioner Ward agreed, stating that there is a place for the ordinance but we would have to stay within the boundaries of the state statutes and the case law presented. He stated that it would be for the protection of the citizens of Henderson County. AWe don=t want to in any way harm anybody from freedom of speech@. His biggest concern was the burden on the taxpayers after a rally, sometimes it gets quite costly.
Chairman Moyer stated that this issue needs more study before we proceed.
Commissioner Gordon stated that at the meeting on Monday she expressed her concern about the charges on the ordinance. She felt that the consideration should be safety, not money. She stated that we pay our tax dollars for a lot of basic services and many of those basic services are what we would be getting in the event of a demonstration anyway. She does not want to create an undue hardship on people that are just trying to voice their minds.
Chairman Moyer asked for a vote on the motion. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
The County Attorney apologized to the Board for putting them in this position. She felt that the ordinance was put together hastily and there were some provisions that are more obvious in it that are questionable but there are some that noone would think are questionable that are questionable.
Commissioner Gordon made the motion for the Board to adjourn at approx. 5:08 p.m. All voted in favor and the motion carried.
Elizabeth W. Corn, Clerk to the Board
William L. Moyer, Chairman