04/06/04 — Developer's letter to city intended to put rumors to rest

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Developer's letter to city intended to put rumors to rest

By Barbara Arntsen
Published in News on April 6, 2004 2:01 PM

In a letter to Goldsboro City Council members, developer Bill Lane tried Monday to put rumors about his involvement in a proposed annexation to rest.

Lane summarized the events surrounding the development and growth of Lane Farms and Lane Tree Golf Club since 1989.

"When I elected to build Lane Tree Golf Club, I realized the necessity of being in the city limits, in order to be permitted to sell mixed beverages, as well as the need for water and sewer services to continue to develop the property," he explained. "The first rumor, that the golf course will not be included in the current proposed annexation is somewhat true, as we have been annexed into the city for over 12 years, and I have paid both city and county taxes since that time."

Lane said that in 2003, his city and county taxes amounted to more than $50,000 for the golf course.

He also said that he asked in 2001 for a change of zoning on property that extended to Belfast Road.

"This could not be done prior to that time, as the Department of Transportation had to finalize the plans for the Highway 70/117 corridor that is designed to encompass the majority of this property," he said.

He required a zoning change to general business in order to "utilize the fragments of land that would be left by the state."

"Keep in mind, over the past 10 years, I have received numerous requests for grocery stores, restaurants, strip shopping centers and office space to be built in the community," he said. "None of this can be accomplished without city annexation or water and sewer services."

Two years later, the final parcel was annexed and zoned. This is the tract from Belfast Road to Stoney Hill Road.

"Certain people have voiced their opinion that too much void land is being annexed, and it will remain void without the services of water and sewer," Lane said. "The further development of Canterbury Village, Section III and North Creek, Section VI also relies on these services. Sewage and zoning have been the driving forces behind these requests."

At the time of the annexation request for the golf course, Lane said, he also requested sewage service, but it was about five years before it was available.

"At that time, we paid over $200,000 to have the line brought to Lane Tree Golf Club. We are now in the process of developing Lane Tree Townhomes, and in the year 2003, paid R.D. Braswell $245,000 to install and develop the sewage lines for Section 1.

"We are currently under contract with Braswell for Section Two of Lane Tree Townhomes at a cost of $175,000."

Lane said there were rumors that he had made a deal with the city to receive free sewage.

"This is not only false, but vicious. Add the numbers yourselves ... I have now paid more than $625,000 for my 'free' sewage. In addition, I have invested 15 years of hard work and pride in the development and progress of this community that each one of you chose as your home."