Commissioners approve 2016-17 budget, special allocations

By Wendy Byerly Wood -

Following four public hearings opening the Yadkinville Board of Commissioners meeting Monday evening, the elected officials pass all issues unanimously during the rest of the meeting.

Public hearings were held on special fund allocation requests by Surry Community College and the Yadkin County Hospice Home, the 2016-17 fiscal year budget and a rezoning request for property at 518 Van Buren St.

The community college requested an allocation of $25,000 each year for four years, while the hospice home had requested $20,000 each year for five years. No one spoke during the public hearings on those two requests, and they both passed unanimously for the 2015-16 fiscal year and the 2016-17 fiscal year. Allocations in the coming years will be handled during each year’s budget process.

The 2016-17 fiscal year budget also passed unanimously after no residents spoke during the public hearing. There will be no tax increases or water or sewer rate increases within the town limits, but there will be adjustments in sewer rates only for those on the formerly county-operated water and sewer system outside the town limits.

During Monday’s meeting, Town Manager Perry Williams asked the board’s preference on how to handle the utility costs for the power and phone service at the sewer lift stations for the system outside the town, which was recently handed over to the town by the county. He said a flat rate could be charged, or the town could calculate and charge a percentage of use spread across all the users each month, which would be the fairer way to handle the costs. He also explained that the town’s water treatment plant utility cost would be absorbed by the town, so it would not be included in the amount be charged to customers.

The commissioners chose to have the fee calculated each month, and that was adopted along with the fiscal year budget.

In the issue surrounding the final public hearing, Town Planning Advisor Richard Smith explained the request for rezoning was to change the property at 518 Van Buren St. from R-10 residential to R-O residential office. This property sits across the street from Virtue Dental Care and Yadkin Medical Associates and the potential buyers, Drs. Scott and Gail Gordon, plan to construct a new office for Yadkin Vision Center on the property.

Speaking during the public hearing were the Gordons about the scope of their project and Yadkin County Chamber of Commerce President Bobby Todd, who also serves as executive director of the county economic development council, in support of the rezoning to allow the project to move forward.

Smith told the commissioners that the town planning board voted to recommend the approval of the rezoning. “What they have planned will have a positive affect on that area,” he said.

The Gordons explained that their current facility at 901 W. Main St. already has been renovated twice and with three practitioners in the business, they are running out of room. The proposed facility will be about 5,000 square feet, and the look will be similar to that of Yadkin Medical Associates.

The commissioners voted unanimously to approve the rezoning request.

In other business:

• The commissioners unanimously approved the capital project ordinance for the Main Street sidewalk restoration and beautification project, as well as the budget amendments appropriating $123,230 for the project, which will be funding solely through the town’s general fund. Also, a budget amendment for $10, 645 was approved to fund professional services for the North Lee Avenue sidewalk project.

• Invoices were approved unanimously for the hospice home and SCC special allocations, both which were budgeted items; for $19,231.01 to Carolina Pumpworks for new chemical storage tanks, a budgeted item; and for $109,943.55 to Insituform Technologies for relining of sewer lines, also a budgeted item.

• Commissioners approved a resolution supporting N.C. Rural Economic Center’s 10 Strategies for Rural North Carolina.

• The board directed town staff to repair a storm drain issue on Filmore Street, which will take about a half-day’s work, with the residents of the street agreeing to foot the bill for the materials.

• An amended motion was approved setting in place a policy for individually assigned town vehicles. Beginning July 1, other than one vehicle which has been grandfathered in, all town vehicles driven to and from work by town employees must stay parked within 15 miles of the town limits and cannot leave Yadkin County after hours.

• When asked in reference to N.C. Department of Transportation projects being proposed, if the town is interested in pursuing widening U.S. 601 from U.S. 421 to Hoots into two driving lanes with a center turn lane, the board consensus was to tell the state it would rather pursue widening of 601 north of town toward the Yadkin Center of Surry Community College.

• The board voted to appoint Richie Parker to the town planning board. Also, Perry Snow, a member of the town’s ABC board, is interested in being appointed to the planning board of adjustment, but the commissioners wanted to make sure there are no limits to having a person serve on two boards prior to any vote on the matter.

Wendy Byerly Wood may be reached at 336-258-4035 or on Twitter @wendywoodeditor.

By Wendy Byerly Wood

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