WATAUGA COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
SPECIAL MEETING, JANUARY 31, 2011
The Watauga County Board of Commissioners attended a special joint meeting called by the Town of Boone on Monday, January 31, 2011, in the Commissioners’ Board Room at the Watauga County Administration Building, Boone, NC. Those present were: Chairman Nathan Miller, Vice-Chairman David Blust, and Commissioners Jim Deal and Vince Gable. Staff: County Manager Rocky Nelson, Deputy County Manager Deron Geouque, and Planning and Inspections Director Joe Furman. County Attorney Four Eggers was also present.
Those present with the Town of Boone were as follows: Mayor Loretta Clawson, Mayor Pro-Tem Lynne Mason, and Council Members Stephen Phillips (arrived at 5:20 p.m.), Jamie Leigh, Andy Ball, and Rennie Brantz. Staff: Town Manager Greg Young, Deputy Clerk Kim Brown, Public Utilities Director Rick Miller, and Development Coordinator David Graham. Town Attorney Sam Furgiuele was also in attendance
Mayor Loretta Clawson called the meeting to order at 5:00 P.M.
Vice-Chairman Blust opened the meeting with a prayer, and Commissioner Gable led the Pledge of Allegiance.
AMENDMENT OF AGENDA
It was requested that the following items be added to the agenda for discussion:
· Proposed Consolidated E911 System
· Water Issues regarding the old Watauga High School property.
Upon a motion by Commissioner Gable, seconded by Vice-Chairman Blust, the Board moved to add discussion of the aforementioned items to the agenda.
VOTE: Aye - All
Nay - None
Upon a motion by Council Member Ball, seconded by Council Member Brantz, Council moved to add discussion of the aforementioned items to the agenda.
VOTE: Aye - All
Nay - None
Absent - 1 (Phillips)
UPDATE ON U-4020 PROJECT - TOWN OF BOONE
Town Manager Greg Young presented a brief update on the status of the U-4020 project. He noted that the Town’s portion of costs for the project was approximately $1.9 million and noted that the total costs for the project was $15.2 million. Mr. Young anticipates that the project will be complete by December 2011. Council Member Mason pointed out that the Town has taken as many opportunities as possible to help insure that the project will be aesthetically pleasing including the use of greenery in the medians, the use of brick pavers, and the use of ornamental fencing within the project.
UPDATE ON TOWN OF BOONE WATER INTAKE PROJECT
Public Utilities Director Rick Miller began by listing background information on the need for a new water source for the Town of Boone. He stated that the Town has purchased property located on the South Fork of the New River for two intake locations. Mr. Miller stated that this is a $25 million dollar project which includes upgrades to the current Water Treatment Plant. He stated that the environmental assessment document required for the project has been completed. Mr. Miller stated that the next step in the process is the reclassification of a portion of the South Fork of the New River to WS-IV. In regard to financing, Town Manager Greg Young noted that the Town has also received a commitment for funding from the USDA Rural Development Center and through grant funding. Furthermore, he indicated that the Town has committed approximately $2,383,000 in funding toward the project. Mr. Young anticipates that the project will take up to two years to complete. He informed the Commissioners that the Town is requesting a letter of support from Watauga County for the reclassification process. Vice-Chairman Blust and Commissioner Gable requested more information regarding the effects of the proposed reclassification on property owners and suggested a public hearing be held to receive feedback from the affected citizens regarding the reclassification of the river. Commissioner Deal inquired as to the feasibility of installing pipeline for treated water during this project. Mr. Miller stated that action will require additional funding and might be prohibited due to regulations for the separation of the lines. The Board of Commissioners suggested a work session be scheduled with the Town Council in order to receive more information on the issue. Town Manager Greg Young stated that the Town will make arrangements to have the project engineers present to answer questions and provide additional information.
UPDATE ON WATAUGA COUNTY FARMERS’ MARKET - WATAUGA COUNTY
Chairman Miller stated that the Farmers’ Market Board is requesting action by the Board regarding the lease of the parking area off Poplar Grove Connector by March 21st. Commissioner Deal added that the Board discussed the impact on the Horn in the West if the Farmers’ Market relocates to another location. Council Member Brantz stated that ASU might be interested in using the area for parking.
UPDATE ON DANIEL BOONE PARKWAY
Chairman Miller stated that the Board of Commissioners will support whichever option is chosen by the Town Council. It was suggested that the two entities meet to further discuss the options available.
DISCUSSION OF SHARED PRIORITIES
· Water Issues/Old Watauga High School property
Commissioner Gable listed the future of the old Watauga High School property as an issue important to both entities. Commissioner Deal pointed out that the availability of water is a major issue regarding the future use of the property.
· Consolidated E911/Dispatch System
Commissioner Gable noted that the Town of Blowing Rock has been having issues with its communications system. He suggested that this may be the time for all entities to reconsider a consolidated system. It was the consensus of the groups to agree to further discussion of the issue.
· Greenway Trail System
Commissioner Deal stated that a connection between the Town’s Greenway system and the County’s Greenway system at Brookshire Park is proposed to be installed under the New River Bridge on Highway 421. He suggested that the Town and County work together regarding funding options for that project.
· Status of Revisions to Town of Boone UDO
Commissioner Deal inquired as to the status of revisions to the Town’s Unified Development Ordinance. Town Attorney Sam Furgiuele stated that the Town is currently working on updating the Table of Permitted Uses.
Council Member Brantz requested that both entities investigate further recreation opportunities.
With no further discussion, the meeting was adjourned at 6:14 P.M.