WATAUGA COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
TUESDAY, JANUARY 22, 2002
The Watauga County Board of Commissioners held a regular meeting on Tuesday, January 22, 2002 at 7:00 P.M. in the Board Room of the Watauga County Courthouse.
PRESENT: Jimmy Hodges, Chairman
James Coffey, Vice-Chairman
Jack Lawrence, Sr., Commissioner
Sue Sweeting, Commissioner
Pat Wilkie, Commissioner
Jeff Hedrick, County Attorney
Robert E. Nelson, Jr., County Manager
Anita J. Fogle, Clerk to the Board
Chairman Hodges called the meeting to order at 7:01 P.M. welcoming those in attendance.
A moment of silence was observed.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Chairman Hodges called for additions or corrections to the January 7, 2002 regular meeting minutes.
Commissioner Sweeting requested the minutes reflect that five employees benefited from the Employee Assistant Program in 2001.
Commissioner Wilkie requested the minutes reflect that she requested a list of all Sheriff’s Department personnel along with a description of each of their duties.
Vice-Chairman Coffey, seconded by Commissioner Sweeting, moved to approve the January 7, 2002 regular meeting minutes as amended.
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Commissioner Wilkie requested to add to the Agenda time to discuss the Protection of County Owned Property under Miscellaneous Administrative Matters.
County Manager Nelson requested to add a Closed Session after the Public Comment time to discuss Personnel Matters, per G.S. 143-318-11(a)(6).
Commissioner Sweeting seconded by Commissioner Lawrence, moved to approve the January 22, 2002 agenda as amended.
RECREATION GRANT APPLICATION DISCUSSION
Ms. Deb Wynne, Director of Watauga County Parks and Recreation Department, presented the Master Project Plan, tentative budget and PARTF grant application for the proposed Watauga County Park. Ms. Wynne also outlined the design and development plans for the park area.
Commissioner Wilkie, seconded by Commissioner Sweeting, moved to adopt the Master Project Plan for Watauga County Park to continue the PARTF Grant application process.
REQUEST TO SURPLUS PROPERTY
Mr. J.V. Potter requested that the Board of Commissioners declare surplus a 1990 Volvo front-loading trash truck serial # 4V2DCFJE9LN631548. County Manager Nelson recommended that the Board approve this truck be sold by sealed bids with the minimum being advertised at $10,000.
Commissioner Sweeting, seconded by Commissioner Wilkie, made a motion to declare the 1990 Volvo front-loading trash truck serial # 4V2DCFJE9LN631548 surplus property as presented.
WATER/SEWER STUDY COMMITTEE DISCUSSION
Mr. Joe Furman, Planning Director, discussed the appointment of the Water/Sewer Study Committee. Mr. Furman stated that representatives from various groups were solicited through two mailings and public announcements thru local news media. Mr. Furman presented the following list of those who had volunteered to serve on this committee:
Richard Demott, Seven Devils
Deanna Doohaluk, NC Div. of Water Quality
Brian Crutchfield, BREMCO
Mark Klein, Blowing Rock
Bill Moretz, Meat Camp Community
Mark Harrill, (developer) Foscoe Community
Walt McKracken, civil engineer
Frank Hayes, surveyor
Greg Young, Boone
Chuck Davis, civil engineer
John Wright, well driller
Grant Wainscott, Watauga county EDC
Steve Loflin, (developer) Foscoe, Valle Crucis Community
Commissioner Wilkie requested that Scott Heintzelman of Zionville be added to list as he has also agreed to serve.
Vice-Chairman Coffey, seconded by Commissioner Lawrence, moved to appoint those listed, including Mr. Scott Heintzelman, and one member of the Planning Board (to be chosen by the Planning Board) to the Watauga County Water/Sewer Study Committee.
MISCELLANEOUS ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS
A. Western NC Local Government Caucus Appointment and Resolution – Vice-Chairman Coffey and Commissioner Wilkie volunteered to serve on the Caucus.
Chairman Hodges appointed Vice-Chairman Coffey to represent Watauga County on the Western North Carolina Local Government Caucus.
County Manager Nelson presented the Board with a Resolution in support of the Western NC Local Government Caucus.
Commissioner Lawrence, seconded by Commissioner Sweeting, moved to adopt the Resolution in support of the Western NC Local Government Caucus.
B. Boards and Commissions –County Manager Nelson stated that the following nominations were made for the Watauga County Recreation Commission: Mr. Bill Hollingsworth to replace Ms. Donna Nicastro; Mr. Michael Maybee to be reappointed; Mr. Keith Tester to fill the position vacated by Mr. Charles Travis; and Mr. David Wray to fill the un-expired term of Mr. Terry Lentz.
Commissioner Sweeting seconded by Vice-Chairman Coffey, moved to appoint Mr. Bill Hollingsworth, Mr. Michael Maybee, Mr. Keith Tester, and Mr. David Wray to the Watauga County Recreation Commission as presented.
The County Manager stated that the following additional nominations were made for the Watauga County Recreation Commission: Ms. Maggie McFadden, Ms. Mary Horn, and Ms. Lynne Mason, to replace Mr. Max Schrum, as the Town Council Representative.
The County Manager stated that Ms. Gelene Atwood was nominated to be reappointed for a three-year term to the Watauga County Nursing Home Community Advisory Committee.
This was the first reading for the above appointments and therefore no action was required until the February 4, 2002 meeting.
C. Protection of County Owned Property – Commissioner Wilkie stated that Boone Asphalt Plant requested a conditional use permit from the Town of Boone Board of Adjustments to place an asphalt plant on Landfill Road, which is close to county owned property being considered for future parks. Commissioner Wilkie requested the Board write the Town of Boone Board of Adjustments a letter stating concerns of possible health hazards and loss of value of property owned near Landfill Road should an asphalt plant be located there.
Commissioner Wilkie, seconded by Commissioner Sweeting, moved to direct the County Manager to write a letter to the Town of Boone Board of Adjustments sharing the Board’s concerns..
D. Announcements – County Manager Nelson stated that the Annual Retreat was scheduled for March 1-2, 2002 and requested the Board to advise him of any additional topics or issues to be discussed. The County Manager stated that a joint meeting with the Planning Board was scheduled. The Board also requested a joint meeting with the School Board.
A. Request to Extend Listing Period – Tax Administrator, Kelvin Byrd requested that the listing period that expired on January 31, be extended through the month of February. This request, if granted, would allow extra time for citizens to request changes in the use value and exemptions for their properties.
Vice-Chairman Coffey, seconded by Commissioner Sweeting, moved to extend the Listing Period through the month of February 2002.
B. Rumple Memorial Tax Appeal – Tax Administrator Byrd addressed the Board regarding the Tax Appeal by Rumple Memorial Presbyterian Church. At the December 3, 2001, Board meeting, Rumple Memorial Presbyterian Church came before the Board to appeal five years of back taxes that they owed. Past Administrator McLean, before his retirement in July, found the property to be non-exempt during the current revaluation. Mr. Byrd stated that the apartment building that was on said property has since been demolished and the property is currently being used for Church parking and possibly a future park. Mr. Byrd stated the value of the property and building, which once sat on it, is the issue before the Board in its quasi-judicial capacity.
After discussion, Commissioner Sweeting seconded by Commissioner Wilkie, moved to reduce the value of the building that was on the property to $13,400.
Mrs. David Leavitt discussed her displeasure with an article written in USA Today regarding a Parkway Elementary School teacher and her class.
At 8:10 P.M., Commissioner Sweeting, seconded by Commissioner Wilkie, moved to enter Closed Session to discuss Personnel Matters, per G.S. 143-318-11(a)(6).
Commissioner Lawrence, seconded by Vice-Chairman Coffey, moved to resume the open meeting at 8:27 P.M.
Vice-Chairman Coffey, seconded by Commissioner Lawrence, moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:27 P.M.
Anita J. Fogle
Clerk to the Board