Register of Deeds offers new program for veterans

By Kitsey Burns Harrison -

Register of Deeds Aric Wilhelm announced a new program for local veterans at Monday’s meeting of the Yadkin County Board of Commissioners. The Thank You For Your Service discount program will begin on May 30. The program is aimed at encouraging veterans to record their military discharge DD214 forms in the county register of deeds office.

“Those records are important because it’s the capstone for the veteran’s military career,” Wilhelm said. “There’s still a tremendous amount of veterans that don’t have their discharge recorded in the [Register of Deeds] office. Unfortunately most times they realize it’s not there is when the family’s at the funeral home doing arrangements because the discharge is one of the documents they need to either get a military funeral, a flag for the coffin or a marker in the graveyard.”

If a veteran’s discharge paperwork was filed in another county, it also can be filed in Yadkin County if that is where the individual now resides, Wilhelm said.

Veterans who file their discharge form with the Yadkin Register of Deeds office will receive an ID card to be used within the county for discounts at participating businesses. Wilhelm said several other counties have similar programs and he said they are looking forward to working with area businesses to show their support of veterans by way of the new program.

Businesses interested in participating in the program may sign up by completing an application form at and returning it to the Yadkin County Register of Deeds office.

A public hearing was scheduled for 7 p.m. on June 19 regarding revising the Yadkin County Voluntary Agricultural District Ordinance (VAD) to incorporate the Enhanced Voluntary Agricultural District (EVAD) program. The VAD agreement is revocable by the landowner at any time by providing written notice to the Yadkin County Agricultural Advisory Board. The EVAD agreement is non-revocable for a period of 10 years under any circumstance.

The EVAD program has additional benefits for the landowner and the county. Counties with an EVAD ordinance score higher when requesting funds from the NC Agricultural Development and Farmland Preservation Trust Fund. The purpose of the NCADFP Trust is to support the purchase of agricultural conservation easements, including transaction costs, as well as fund private and public enterprise programs that will promote profitable and sustainable farms and fund farmland conservation agreements targeted at active production of food, fiber and products.

A contract with Barrs Recreation was approved in the amount of $39,767.60 to install universally accessible playground equipment and pour in place surfacing at the Yadkin County Park. This is part of a grant from the Connect NC Bond.

“Universal playground equipment goes a step further than ADA [Americans with Disabilities Act requirements],” explained Parks and Recreation Director Jason Walker. “It’s a lot more inclusive, it’s actually called inclusive play equipment.” The new equipment will be installed beside the Daniel’s Park playground equipment at the Yadkin County Park on Service Road behind the YMCA. Additional equipment is slated to be installed at the Yadkin Memorial Park.

In her report to the board, County Manager Lisa Hughes noted that owners of a property on Baltimore Road in East Bend will be taken to court on May 9 for a sewage disposal violation. Hughes explained that when such violations occur, the property owners are notified by letter and given 30 days to come into compliance. If the matter is not resolved in 30 days, it is then taken to court.

Hughes also discussed the East Bend water line briefly during her report. She said the contract is likely to be finished well under budget for the first contract. Hughes said contractors should finish the loop on Flint Hill Road coming down Old 421 sometime this week and then begin the portion on Flint Hill Road towards the pump station. The project is anticipated to be finished by October of November of this year.

As the board works to finalize its 2017-18 fiscal year budget, Hughes presented eight goals based on items they have discussed as things to work on in the coming year. Those items include protecting the financial position of the county, reestablishing healthcare, expanding water and sewer, evaluating employee benefits, developing a comprehensive economic development plan, continuing to work with the public school system and Surry Community College, expanding the parks and river accesses and reviewing county properties in need of improvements. The board approved the goals as outlined, with the suggested addition under the area of parks to initiate a Mountains-to-Sea Trails project in the county.

Members of the board will be in Raleigh later this month for County Assembly Day at the NC Museum of History. The next meeting of the board will be on May 15 at 7 p.m. The county offices will be closed on May 29 in observance of Memorial Day. A Memorial Day service will take place at the Yadkin County Park at 11 a.m.

Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-679-2341 or on Twitter and Instagram @RippleReporterK.

By Kitsey Burns Harrison

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