03/14/07 — Lack of quorum delays Planning Board decisions

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Lack of quorum delays Planning Board decisions

By Andrew Bell
Published in News on March 14, 2007 1:50 PM

The Wayne County Planning Board couldn't hold its meeting Tuesday night because less than half of its members were unable to attend.

Although Chairman George Aycock, Arthur Bowden and Jo Ann Summerlin were ready to conduct business, the four remaining members were not present and state law says a seven-person board must have four members present for a quorum.

Members Muriel Mereday and Steve Keen were excused from Tuesday's meeting because both were attending funerals. Vice chairman Chris Cox was in Charlotte and Tom Buffkin also was not present.

Tuesday's agenda only had one item that could have been voted on by the board-- a variance request for the Belmoore subdivision. The item was tabled until the board's next meeting April 10.

The planning board also was scheduled to discuss a request by American Legion Post 11 on U.S. 117 to allow for a recreational vehicle campground. Two American Legion members who attended the meeting said the campground would provide recreational vehicles with water and electrical hook-ups, but none for sewer.

Because of the proposed site's location to Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, the request could have been considered encroachment by the base. But since the plan doesn't include septic services on the site, Seymour Johnson doesn't consider the plan to be a residential development.

Since the request was tabled at the last planning board meeting, the planning board could have to hold a special meeting before April 10. The board is required to make a decision on an issue within a certain time frame after that plan is submitted to the planning department. If the board does not make a decision, it is considered a favorable decision by the board and the issue is presented to the commissioners.

Aycock told the attending American Legion members that they would be notified if the board decided to hold a special meeting.