Commissioners Meet Tuesday Morning: HILU, Broadband Access, Sunday Hunting & More

Published Monday, February 6, 2017 at 4:24 pm

Compiled by Jesse Wood

The Watauga County Board of Commissioners meets at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday to discuss a variety of topics, including high impact land uses, Sunday hunting, broadband access, outdoor-adventure grants and much more. 

Click here to view the entire meeting packet. 

Schedule Update on HILU

Watauga County Manager Deron Geouque will provide the commissioners with an updated schedule pertaining to the ordinance regulating high impact land use regulations.

Currently, there is a moratorium on high impact land use development in the Town of Boone’s former extraterritorial jurisdiction. The commissioners decided to revisit the ordinance in light of the recent N.C. Supreme Court ruling abolishing the town’s ETJ.

schedule

Broadband Survey

Staff developed a broadband survey to assess the county’s broadband needs and to identify areas with limited or no broadband access. Once those areas are identified, a map will be created to provide with possible vendors. The county is partnering with App State, the Watauga County Public Library and N.C. Information Technology Broadband Infrastructure Office.

Staff is seeking approval to proceed with the study, which would be available at http://www.wataugacounty.org/broadband, or in person at the local or university library.

Sunday Hunting Ban?

A memo to commissioners states that the N.C. Association of County Commissioners recently provided Watauga County with additional information pertaining to Sunday hunting. The commissioners have a public hearing on the matter scheduled for Feb. 21.

In the memo, Geouque stated that the commissioners have three options and that staff is seeking direction from the board.

Option 1. Continue with the public hearing scheduled for February 21, 2017 to seek additional citizen input regarding Sunday hunting. Upon closing of the public hearing, the Board determines an ordinance banning Sunday hunting is warranted, and directs staff to develop an ordinance for Board review and schedules an additional public hearing on the proposed ordinance. After the public hearing the Board adopts the ordinance with an effective date of January 1, 2018.

Option 2. Continue with the public hearing scheduled for February 21, 2017 to seek additional citizen input regarding Sunday hunting. Upon closing of the public hearing, the Board determines an ordinance banning Sunday hunting is not warranted; NCGS 103-2 would address Sunday hunting.

Option 3. The Board reviews and considers citizen input already received and determines an ordinance banning Sunday hunting is not warranted; and NCGS 103-2 NCGS 103-2 would address Sunday hunting. The public hearing scheduled for February 21, 2017 would be cancelled.”

Outdoor-Adventure Grants

Watauga County Director Joe Furman will request board approval to seek two grants, a $100,000 grant from the Recreation Trails Program for the Guy Ford River Access and a $500,000 Parks and Recreation Trust Fund grant for the Middle Fork Greenway. No county funds are being requested.

County Security System Bids

County Maintenance Director Robert Marsh will present four bids for security systems for the East Annex, old AppalCART and Human Services Center buildings. Creekside Electronics is the lowest bidder at $47,908. Board approval is required to award Creekside Electronics the bid.

WCS Update

Watauga County Schools Supt. Scott Elliott will appear before the board to provide an update and request a release of Education Lottery funds for cafeteria upgrades for K-8 schools for $52,500 and to repair flooding issues at Blowing Rock School for $75,000.

Community Care Clinic Annual Report

Community Care Clinic Director Melissa Selby will appear before the board to present the nonprofit’s annual report for 2016. The main clinic and three satellite clinics served a record 1,247 low-income, uninsured people.

High Country United Way Presentation

The High Country United Way will also present before the commissioners.

For more information about each of these topics, check out the meeting packet.  See agenda below:

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