The Alleghany County Board of
Commissioners met in regular session on Monday, April 18, 2005, at in the Conference Room of the CountyOfficeBuilding, 90
South Main Street,
Sparta, North Carolina.
Present:Chair Eldon Edwards, Vice-Chair Warren
Taylor, Commissioner Sandy
Commissioner Ken Richardson, CountyAttorney Donna Shumate, CountyManagerDon
Adams and Clerk to
the Board Karen Evans.Commissioner
Graylen Blevins was absent.
Eldon Edwards called the meeting to order.
Ken Richardson opened the meeting with a prayer.
Commissioner Warren Taylor made a
motion to approve the agenda for this April 18, 2005, meeting.Commissioner Sandy
seconded the motion.Vote 4:0.
Monday, April 18,
Called To Order
Motion on Agenda for
April 18, 2005 meeting
Motion on Minutes for April 4, 2005 meeting
RE:Tax Releases & Refunds
RE:Transportation Budget Amendment
RE:Mountain View Area/Racetrack
1.Mt.View Area Race Track—Options to Regulate
Amendments—Board of Education
4.Long Term Care
Advisory Committee Board Appointment
Budget Requests Summary
10.Closed Session—NCGS 143-318.11 (a) (4)—economic development
Sandy Carter Herndon made a motion to approve the minutes for the April 4, 2005, meeting.Commissioner Warren Taylor seconded the motion.Vote 4:0.
Walker, Tax Administrator, presented the March 2005 real property requests in
the amount of $2,234.18 for refunds and $1,744.22 for releases.
Commissioner Warren Taylor made a
motion to approve the March 2005 real property requests in the amount of
$2,234.18 for refunds and $1,744.22 for releases.Commissioner Sandy Carter Herndon seconded the motion.Vote 4:0.
Mary Walker presented the March 2005 automobile requests in the amount
of $1,347.80 for refunds and $594.93 for releases.
Sandy Carter Herndon made a motion to approve the March 2005 automobile
requests in the amount of $1,347.80 for refunds and $594.93 for releases.Commissioner Warren Taylor seconded the
Caudill, Transportation Director, came before the Board to discuss
Transportation Fund budget amendment #2 in the amount of $21,900.She explained the additional amount of
Warren Taylor made a motion to approve Transportation Fund budget amendment #2
in the amount of $21,900.Commissioner Sandy Carter Herndon seconded the motion.Vote 4:0.
Ray spoke on behalf of Ronnie Woodie.He
addressed several issues regarding the racetrack including the needs in the
community, splitting money with GladeCreekElementary School and Glade Creek Volunteer Fire Department, support of the
sport and having something to do on Saturday nights.He talked about the track has two ways to
access it.He mentioned property values
in the area and the growth in the sport.He stated that if a noise ordinance is adopted then problems would be
created for activities like fireworks, target practice and family picnics.He stated that practices have been held at
the track for the last two years and there haven’t been any problems until now.He further stated that this is an activity
for the whole family.He said that a solution
needs to be found for both sides.
Eldon Edwards explained the agenda process including the public comments
Eldon Edwards and Ronnie Woodie talked about holding five races this season and
so far holding practices during the day because the track didn’t have lights
until now.Chair Eldon Edwards and
Michael Ray talked about a non-profit group making donations.Michael Ray stated that the racing group
couldn’t be a non-profit group due to legal issues.Ronnie Woodie talked about additional
requirements including improvements to the track such as covered seating.
Sandy Carter Herndon and Ronnie Woodie talked about money going to the
school and fire department after all expenses are paid.Ronnie Woodie stated that the amount of the
money will depend upon gate attendance.He further stated that one practice on Friday night before the Saturday
night race with no other paid practices.Michael Ray talked about the fee to use the fairgrounds and the usage of
Adams explained the
fairgrounds fee schedule including the portion of 20% of net profit for
Ray stated that he is a neighbor in the community relatively close to the
racetrack and doesn’t own anything in the business.
Ken Richardson said this might be the right idea but in the wrong
location.He stated that he can’t find
fault with what is trying to be gone but it is in the wrong location.He explained that if the noise ordinance and
land-use had passed, then this discussion wouldn’t be happening.He talked about not having a contract and
having nothing other than what is said today.He further talked about the Board might could help find a location.He reiterated that this is the right idea but
Ray and Commissioner Ken Richardson discussed land values at other race tracks.
Maxwell came before the Board to discuss issues concerning the Sparta Lions
Club usage of the fairgrounds.He stated
that he would like to compliment the Board of Commissioners, County Manager Don Adams and Amy
Pardue on the
improvements at the fairgrounds.He
continued about the Lions Club and their rude behavior.He stated that all of the other events were
good, but the Lions Club activities started two days before the scheduled horse
show.He asked if the County rules of
conduct apply to the Lions Club and if so, what will the County do if the rules
Eldon Edwards stated that this issue will be researched.He further stated that he wasn’t aware of
Maxwell stated that if a noise ordinance is passed then the same rules apply to
the County as it does to everyone else.
Adams reviewed his
research concerning three options the Board has in regards to the Mountain View area racetrack.He
explained each of the three options; land-use, noise ordinance and mass
gathering ordinance.He further
explained that the land-use control method would not apply in this situation
because of Mr. Woodie’s vested rights.He stated that the noise-ordinance option would regulate the noise at
the event but not stop the event.He
further stated that the mass gathering ordinance only regulates mass gatherings
where 300 or more people are paying admission for an event lasting six hours or
more.He explained that the mass
gathering ordinance can regulate things such as parking, restrooms, vending and
noise.He reiterated that a noise
ordinance and mass gathering ordinance are to regulate an activity instead of
prohibiting an activity.
Shumate stated that
she found a nuisance law case involving an apartment complex and a race track.She explained the process where the citizens
asked for an injunction through the court system.She stated that there is nothing the Board can
do to stop the race activity.She
further stated that citizens can seek an injunction, and they would have to
prove this is a nuisance.She said that
citizens can pursue this option without the County taking any action.
Warren Taylor and County Attorney Donna Shumate discussed how the citizens would prove the nuisance issue before
a race has occurred.CountyAttorneyDonna
Shumate stated that a judge
would have to look at this situation.She
reminded everyone that the County doesn’t have the authority to do this
Sandy Carter Herndon asked about researching racetracks in general and
whether it applies to automobile racing or all racing.CountyAttorneyDonna
Shumate talked about
the building codes and health codes applying to this racetrack.
Adams talked about Randy Blankenship issuing a building permit for the power.He stated that the important issue concerning
the building and health codes is regarding the seating at the track; bleachers or
grandstands.He further stated that Randy Blankenship looked at the seating at the track and said that the seating
is not permanent.He explained why it
makes a difference in regards to the codes.He stated that the work completed at the track as of now has been done according
to the building permit.He further
stated that he has been in contact with Danny Staley and Barry Irwin at the Health Department to let them know
of these activities.He said that the
codes have been satisfied at this point.
Sandy Carter Herndon and County Manager Don Adams discussed the difference in the seating terminology and the
definition of temporary.He explained
that moveable seating is considered temporary regardless of how long it isn’t
Warren Taylor said that he doesn’t think a noise ordinance is an option.He stated that he recommends looking at the
land-use document again, and it might not stop present building, but needs to
be looked at so if there was something like this in the future.
Ken Richardson talked about the purpose is to raise money for the school and
fire department and to make it more advantageous by being at the Fairgrounds
instead of in a community.
Sandy Carter Herndon talked about any of the schools or fire departments
could use the fairgrounds.She stated
that she agrees with Commissioner Richardson about at time and place for
everything and the comments about land values.She gave an example of property that is for sale on Cliffside Drive.She talked about
having events at a place that was designed for that purpose.She stated that one property owner’s rights
don’t outweigh another property owner’s rights.She stated her appreciate for Ronnie Woodie, but thinks he didn’t think this
through all of the way.
Eldon Edwards asked for legal counsel opinion.
Shumate talked about
the property owners’ pursuing an injunction.She explained the nuisance law and temporary injunction.She further explained that it would be up to
the judge to decide whether this is a nuisance or not, neighbors agree on solution
concerning the nuisance and, if not then the judge would decide.
Adams talked about
the County’s ability to regulate events but not stop events.
Eldon Edwards stated that he doesn’t see where the County has any steps that we
have that will prohibit the race at Mountain View.He talked about land-use
being previously discussed, and it’s a good time to bring it back up.He further talked about the track is already
there, and on his land he can do whatever he desires.He stated that the citizens want something
done by May 14, and the Board can’t.He
further stated that they can proceed with the action that the CountyAttorney mentioned.He said
that he understands everyone’s concerns, but legally there is nothing the Board
can do.He stated the County can look at
other things to stop it from reoccurring in the future.
Sandy Carter Herndon stated that she doesn’t see anything to stop it,
but the County should look at the mass gathering ordinance.She gave examples on chose and cut day
activities and traffic problems.
Ken Richardson asked if an injunction was done by the 14th, could the
fairgrounds be made available for Mr. Woodie.
Sparks talked about the lack of a racetrack at the fairgrounds.
April Caudill stated that the track will be there and ready because they
are having a lawnmower race the weekend before.
General Fund budget amendment #33 in the amount of $3,250 for the option on the
Blevins property and General Fund budget amendment #34 in the amount of $13,032
for the school architectural fees.
Warren Taylor made a motion to approve General Fund budget amendments #33 for
$3,250 and #34 for $13,032 for the architect fees.Commissioner Sandy Carter Herndon seconded the motion.Vote 4:0.
Adams presented a
letter from Duane Davis regarding the proposed purchase of the Blevins property.He reviewed the Board’s previous action on
voting to proceed to purchase the land if environmental issues and other
requirements were met.He talked about
the property being used as a household.He
further talked about the Board of Education meeting the requirements that the Commissioners
had asked them to do before purchasing the property.
Sandy Carter Herndon made a motion that we accept the items from the
Board of Education concerning the property purchase; requirements are met and
approve the purchase of the property.Commissioner Warren Taylor seconded the motion. Vote 4:0.
Adams presented a
nomination form for Inez Worrell to serve on the Long Term Care Advisory
Ken Richardson made a motion to approve the appointment of Inez Worrell to
serve on the Long Term Care Advisory Committee.Commissioner Sandy
seconded the motion.Vote 4:0.
Adams presented the
draft version of the 2006-2012 Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP).He talked about a meeting that will be held
on May 17 in Wilkesboro to hear public comments on the draft.He talked about the delay with the County and
the Town’s first priorities.He further
talked about a meeting he attended where he learned that the entire Division 11
has several projects that have been moved back.
Eldon Edwards talked about the process of putting projects on the TIP, the lack
of standard highways in the County and small mountain county gets left behind.
Sandy Carter Herndon talked about our small population and small voting
Adams stated that
he will work on the TIP comments assuming the County’s priorities remain the
same and will them bring back to the next meeting.
Ken Richardson summarized the Board’s priorities.
Warren Taylor talked about the need for a standard highway through AlleghanyCounty.
Ken Richardson talked about meeting with the Secretary and our legislators concerning
the TIP when he goes to Raleigh.
Adams talked about
including the Alleghany portion of RoaringGapMountain on our TIP comments.
Warren Taylor stated the need to get the Rural Planning Organization (RPO)
support on the mountain project, mention it in our presentation and the need to
complete a standard highway through the County.
Manager Don Adams talked about the mountain project must be a request from
both counties (Wilkes and Alleghany). He
stated he has called the CountyManager and sent him letters in regards to this topic.
Eldon Edwards talked about sending a letter from the Board.He asked the CountyManager to see what can be worked out with WilkesCounty and to include it in the TIP meeting presentation.
Adams explained to
the Board the ranking system of the Rural Planning Organization and where AlleghanyCounty’s projects ranked in the region.
Adams presented the
FY 2005-2006 budget requests to Board in the amount of $11,542,415 for the General
Fund. He explained the requested capital and additional personnel.He explained that the Finance Office is
putting the budget books together if the Board wants more information before the
budget is officially presented to the Board in June.
Adams presented an
approved line item interdepartmental transfer.He explained the transfer is moving debt from the Finance Office to the
debt service budget.He stated that he
has the authority to do this as long as it is presented at the next Commissioners
meeting.He talked about this was
requested by the auditor.
Eldon Edwards mentioned the Board of E&R meeting tomorrow at at the Courthouse.Also,
he mentioned the budget planning session on April 25 at .
Eldon Edwards talked about a letter from NCACC and local options are being considered.He talked about some of the local options may
be beneficial to the County by receiving additional income rather than raising
property taxes.He further talked about Medicaid.
The Board of Commissioners discussed
property taxes across the State.
Eldon Edwards asked for public comments.
Lundquist stated that she lives in the Mountain View area.She asked about
the mass gathering ordinance clause that a petition must be signed by the
property owners.She stated that they haven’t
been given any help on the racetrack issue.
Adams explained two
areas on the current ordinance where half of the ordinance refers to a state
law that doesn’t exist anymore and the ordinance won’t stop Ronnie Woodie from
getting 200 people together and holding the event.He reiterated his earlier point of mass
gathering ordinance will regulate the event but doesn’t stop it.He talked about the ordinance was passed in
the 1970’s before zoning regulations.He
further talked about since the ordinance was passed before zoning and
grandfathering clauses, the CountyAttorney would have to research how to handle this case in regards
to those areas.He stated that this ordinance
does not apply to what is out there.
Eldon Edwards asked the CountyAttorney to look at it.
Frampton talked about previously mentioned concerns including noise and dust
but an important concern that hasn’t been mentioned is forest fires hazards.He gave examples of the fire hazards.He talked about if property values keep going
up, more money would be collected by the values than races can collect.He stated another concern is what could
happen next, and the Mountain
View area becoming
a dumping area.He informed the Board of
his experience yesterday with the noise from the track.He stated the more lawnmowers running the
more noise there will be.
Browning stated he resides just above the track, brought property in 1993 and
lived there since then.He stated that he
is disappointed is an understatement.He
reminded everyone that Ronnie Woodie stated that track would be for personal
use.He stated that he talked to Ronnie
Woodie and learned that four races were scheduled so far and maybe more.He further talked about practice times,
individual rights are important and needs to be protected, noise pollution,
traffic and property values.He talked
about trespassing is illegal and environmental trespassing should be as
Tracy talked about purchasing property on speculation in the area of the
racetrack.He stated that he would sell his
property and move but has the speculation property.He further stated that at tax time, they
would have to talk about the property values.
Browning talked about the financial side of selling his property.
Frampton said that all of the people in the Mountain View area not wealthy.She talked about being permanent residents.She further talked about being informed that
the track was constructed for occasional, private use.She asked about having a combination of a noise
ordinance and mass gathering ordinance.She
further asked about fees for the track.
Magnum urges the Board of Commissioners to take the forefront.He stated that he supports Ronnie Woodie’s
right to do what he wants on his land.He talked about having a lot of empathy for the people in the area.He stated that he is pleading for everyone to
be good neighbors, work together, be supportive and move forward.
Eldon Edwards reviewed the process that the previous land-use plan went
through.He talked about if the plan had
been adopted, this would be a different situation today.He suggested that the plan be reviewed again.
Hopkins asked the Board to please look at the land management plan one more
time to see what the Board can do to get it in place.
Ken Richardson talked about the amount of taxes and money going to the school
and fire department.He further talked about
the fairgrounds facility and working out the problems.He talked about working to make this county better.
Sandy Carter Herndon requested that the County investigate the mass gathering
ordinance and look at the land-use plan again.She talked about there comes a time to take action even if it isn’t a
popular decision.She further talked
about taking the steps that needs to be taken in order to not have this situation
Ken Richardson asked that the letters received be part of the today’s record.
Sandy Carter Herndon made a motion to enter into closed session at under NCGS 143-318.11 (a) (4)—economic development.Commissioner Warren Taylor seconded the
Board of Commissioners took a brief recess at .
Profit joined the Board during closed session.
Eldon Edwards made a motion to adjourn closed session and reconvene the regular
meeting at .Commissioner
Warren Taylor seconded the motion.Vote
Eldon Edwards stated that no action was taken during closed session.
Being no further business,
Commissioner Warren Taylor made a motion to adjourn the meeting at .Commissioner Sandy Carter Herndon seconded the motion.Vote 4:0.