By Benjamin Cohn
Weaverville – The Town Council of Weaverville met last week for its monthly meeting in the town hall. It was a comparatively brief meeting, the bulk of which was devoted to the review and consideration of seven items comprising the council’s discussion and action items for the month.
Members of town council heard plans to hold public information meetings (see article page 4) in March regarding updates to what the town describes as its “comprehensive land use plan”. Town attorney Jennifer Jackson described a PowerPoint presentation that would explain to homeowners associations, church groups and other organizations stipulations outlined in the town’s new land use plan.
No details about the land use plan itself were discussed.
Council members heard comments from the town’s Planning Director James Eller regarding a proposal to amend some building codes related to multi-family development.
Eller described to council the proposed code amendments, which “include[s] language related to garbage containment devices, the bulk of structures – which is set at 24 units per building – and some additional language related to street lighting.”
The planning director reminded council that “all generally-applicable regulations do remain in effect [for multi-family developments] for this particular use within these zoning districts.” Those regulations, according to Eller, include but are not limited to sidewalk, landscaping and parking.
Town council asked no questions of Eller and voted swiftly to adopt the proposed amendment.
Selena Coffey, Weaverville’s Town Manager, spoke to the council about the town’s forthcoming arrangement with the U.S. Department of Agriculture to obtain a loan. According to Coffey, the goal of the proposed language was to provide “duplicity of water lines for the USDA loan.”
Coffey reported that she has “heard from them [USDA]” and that “the funds have been obligated for us for the project.
“What we’re asking tonight is … to approve … the capital project ordinance,” she said. “What this does is it removes this specific capital project from the general fund budget and moves it into a project fund, which can go multiple years.”
Town council then voted to approve both the capital project ordinance and the related waterline engineering agreement with Withers-Ravenel, something required by the USDA, according to Jackson.
Mayor Al Root noted that Ron Davis was giving his first quarterly report to the council as new the Chief of Police.
According to Davis, “What I’ve found is that … incidents that involve officer activity, vehicle crashes, misdemeanor charges, citations, drug activities … all of these are up.” He cautioned against premature panic, though, saying “It’s taking more time for officers to [respond] to the same amount of activity as it did last year.”
The good news, according to Davis, is that crime numbers overall are down. “They were at the same or they were down from this time last year,” he said.
Weaverville’s Fire Chief Ted Williams also reported to town council that their “call volume remains very consistent. The guys are very busy.”