02/17/13 — Commissioners plan slew of meetings, facilities tour

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Commissioners plan slew of meetings, facilities tour

By Steve Herring
Published in News on February 17, 2013 1:50 AM

Wayne County commissioners this coming week will hold two special sessions in addition to their regular mid-February meeting and are expected to schedule additional special sessions for March -- including a joint meeting with the Wayne County Board of Education.

Commissioners will convene at 9 a.m. Monday in their meeting room before setting off on a tour of county-owned facilities.

They will host a WorkReady Community award ceremony at 10 a.m. Wednesday during which the county will be recognized for being the first county in the state to achieve that status.

The board's regular mid-month session will begin at 8 a.m. Tuesday with an agenda briefing. The meeting will start at 9 a.m.

All three meetings this week will be held in their meeting room on the fourth floor of the county courthouse annex.

Commissioners will consider scheduling a joint session with the school board for March 15 at 10 a.m. in the board room at the school system's central office.

Republican Commissioner Steve Keen has been crusading for the meeting since last spring. It did not gain the support it needed until Republicans gained control of the board in the November election.

Keen has been most interested in the school system's five-year facilities plan that was approved in 2007.

He has argued that as the funding arm for the schools that commissioners and the school board should work together.

However, during the board's recent planning retreat, facilitator Wanda Sykes reminded Keen and the rest of the board of their limited role in education.

Also, the school board has indicated it wants to complete the rest of the 2007 plan.

The board Tuesday also is expected to schedule a special meeting for March 11 at 9 a.m. in its meeting room for county department heads to present departmental reports.

In other business Tuesday, Goldsboro Parks and Recreation Director Scott Barnard is scheduled to ask for the board's support of the Reedy Branch Greenway.

Barnard has applied for a $200,000 grant through the state Recreational Trails Program.

The project required a 25 percent ($50,000) local match. The county is not being asked for any money since the local match will be the value of the land, which the Goldsboro Worship Center and Wayne Memorial Hospital will donate.

The local match also includes the staff time on the project and donated labor.

The greenway will connect Wayne Memorial Hospital, Wayne Community College, residential developments and a medical park as well as connecting all to Goldsboro's existing New Hope Road Greenway.

The greenway will be constructed of two-inch asphalt, eight-foot wide, over a compacted stone base. Three wooden bridges averaging 20 feet in length will be constructed by volunteers based on drawings provided by an engineer.

The board will formally adopt a resolution stipulating the county will provide up to a $17,000 match for a $340,000 grant through the North Carolina Rural Economic Development Center.

The board agreed to the match on Jan. 22. The resolution is a requirement of the grant and simply re-states the county's approval.

The grant will be used by ACX Pacific, the leading supplier of long fiber forage and roughage products for the animal feed industries in Far East Asia, South East Asia, and Middle East nations.

It will create 38 new jobs and $4.7 million in initial new investment in the county.

Also on the agenda:

The county's comprehensive annual final report for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2012 will be presented by Paul Nunn and Danna Layne with Nunn, Brashear & Co.

A presentation on the Wayne Opportunity Center will be made by Jeff Parnell, agency chairman

Right-of-way for a Piedmont Natural Gas Co. line to the Progress Energy Lee Energy Complex west of Goldsboro will be discussed by County Attorney Borden Parker

Commissioners will consider approval of a late application for present use value that allows farmland to be taxed at a lower value than other property. George H. and Bonnie E. Giddens filed the application for property that would have qualified if a timely application had been filed, said Tax Administrator David Ward. The board has the authority to approve late applications.

Two subdivision plats are on the agenda for board consideration.

They are:

* Lida Belle Futrell heirs, owner/developer: Janice Horne, eight lots on both sides of Mt. Carmel Church Road at its intersection with Daw Pate Road near Pikeville in Stoney Creek Township.

* Marshelle Williams, et al, owner/developer Marshelle Williams and others, three lots on the south side of Old Smithfield Road South approximately 1,300 feet west of the South N.C. 581 in Fork Township.

The public comment section of the meeting will start at 10 a.m. People will have four minutes to speak on their topic of choice.