STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA                                                            BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS

COUNTY OF HENDERSON                                                                                                         MAY 24, 2004


The Henderson County Board of Commissioners met for a special-called meeting on Monday, May 24, 2004 at 10:00 am in the Commissioners’ Meeting Room of the Henderson County Office Building at 100 North King Street, Hendersonville, NC.   The purpose of the special-called meeting was to conduct a public hearing on the North Carolina Department of Transportation 2004-2005 Secondary Road Improvement Program.


Present were: Chairman Grady Hawkins, Vice-Chairman Larry Young, Commissioner Bill Moyer, Commissioner Charlie Messer, Commissioner Shannon Baldwin and Clerk to the Board Elizabeth Corn. 


In attendance from the North Carolina Department of Transportation were:  Board Member Conrad Burrell; Division Engineers Ron Watson and Mark Gibbs; Division Maintenance Engineer Joel Setzer; County Maintenance Engineer Steve Cannon; Right-of-Way Division Agent Teddy Green, and Right-of-Way Agents Sandra Fox, Jeff Riddle, Dale Davis, Rob Shelton and Rob Woodard.



Chairman Hawkins called the meeting to order and turned the meeting over to Conrad Burrell.



Conrad Burrell, NCDOT Board Member, explained the public hearing was to receive input and answer questions from citizens regarding the North Carolina Department of Transportation Secondary Road Improvement Program for Henderson County for Fiscal Year 2004-2005.


Mr. Burrell stated Henderson County’s share of the secondary trust fund money available for improving secondary roads during the next fiscal year is $4,150,138. 


Ron Watson, Division Engineer, discussed the unpaved roads program.   Henderson County is nearing the end of this program, as almost all roads in Henderson County that are eligible have been paved.  In the past, highway trust funds could not be expended to purchase rights-of-way to make unpaved roads eligible for paving. However, the North Carolina General Assembly had recently enacted legislation which will allow the counties that have gone through their priority list to apply highway trust funds to improving paved secondary roads.


Mark Gibbs, Division Engineer, introduced Road Maintenance Supervisors Jabo Pressley and Tim Smith. He explained the program elements for the funding allocation for the Henderson County Secondary Improvement Program for 2004-2005. As Mr. Burrell had stated, Henderson County’s share of the secondary trust fund money was $4,150,138, of which $511,428 was broken out for items such as spot stabilization and safety improvements. This left $3,638,710 for paved and unpaved road improvements. Due to a remaining balance of $1,891,307 from the previous year, giving an available total of $5,530,017. He presented a list of three unpaved roads that would be paved, six paved roads that would get improvements, and a backup list of six roads “to be done if right of way is unavailable”. All programs were subject to availability of funds, right-of-way, and environmental review.       


Mr. Gibbs answered several questions from the Board on the specific plans for improvements for Howard Gap Road, Patty’s Chapel Road, Mills Gap Road, Upward Road, the paving of Sky Valley Road and Rutledge Drive. He discussed the problem of obstructions located in the right-of-way, stating that they work on such problems on a case-by-case basis, but apply that uniformly across the County. He gave a brief description of the “North Carolina Moving Ahead” program, and addressed several additional questions regarding Stepp Mill Road and the associated bridge, and the priority of improvements on the back up list.




These individuals spoke during the public hearing.


1.         David Stalls, 249 Hudgens Road. Mr. Stalls stated that about four years ago he had received a request from NCDOT asking if he would be willing to give right-of-way to pave Hudgens Road. He stated that he would love to have the road paved if it could be paved as it exists now. However, a lot of rainwater runs across this road and had caused some problems with surrounding fields. Because of that problem, he had indicated that he was not willing to give the right-of-way. The road is now scheduled to be paved, but under condemnation action. Mr. Stalls felt that he should have been notified of the condemnation, and wanted to have some dialogue with NCDOT regarding the problems and possible points of negotiation in the process.  


2.         Joan Husni, 101 Orchard Hill Drive.    Ms. Husni resides on Orchard Hill Dr. which is off Judd’s Peek Road. Judds’ Peek Road was approved to be paved about five years ago. It is about 1/3 of a mile long and about 20 homes utilize it. There are no hazards on the road. Two property owners had declined to grant a right-of-way for paving mainly because of the amount of trees the DOT wanted to take out. She questioned why the DOT had to plan to take out so many trees, and why residents had to come back year after year to ask about paving the road. Ms. Hunsi had asked the DOT to come take another look at the road, as there have been no problems with access on the road and no problems with accidents. She requested the DOT put in writing and send to her what they list as hazards on the road, why it can’t be paved within the current utility poles.


3.                   Marianne Neace, 836 Kyles Creek Rd. Ms. Neace stated that more effective communication needs to be developed between everyone involved in road situations. She asked the status of Kyles Creek Road. Mr. Gibbs answered that originally there were six properties they were working to condemn. Since then he had met with a couple of properties, and had been able to reduce that to four condemnations. It is in the process of condemnation of those four properties, they are being surveyed, once the surveying is complete they will do the appraisals, it will be filed in court and construction can begin. He briefly discussed the situation of the two properties that had agreed to give the rights-of-way, explained the process from this point forward and the minimization of impacts to the environment.


4.                   Judy Miller, 105 Cairn Court. Ms. Miller spoke to the Kyles Creek Road situation. She requested that Mr. Gibbs add her name to the list so she could walk the road with him and understand what the plan was for the road. 


5.         Jay Miller, 105 Cairn Court. Mr. Miller stated there was $350,000 earmarked for Kyles Creek Road improvement, and they would be more than willing to share that with anyone else who might need it. He noted that the NCDOT people he had dealt with had been very professional and very courteous. He noted that he and the other holdout’s on this road had offered to meet with those who had initiated condemnation proceedings and the DOT to work out the differences, but they never heard from the DOT and the other group refused. He wanted to work to solve the problems in a way that everyone was a winner.



Chairman Hawkins moved that the Board approve the resolution recommending a program of total needs for secondary road improvements. All voted in favor and the motion carried.



Chairman Hawkins made the motion to adjourn the meeting.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.







Elizabeth W. Corn, Clerk to the Board                               Grady Hawkins, Chairman