Clemmons continues opposition to SB 105

Published 11:52 am Tuesday, September 14, 2021

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Council receives request from Sheriff’s Office for second investigator

By Jim Buice
For the Clemmons Courier

The Clemmons Village Council continued its dialogue in opposition to N.C. Senate Bill 105, reviewing a resolution crafted to that effect in Monday night’s meeting.

The draft, which was put together by staff, opposes proposed legislation on environmental provisions with specific emphasis on stormwater, but council requested more revisions with even stronger language.

In the previous meeting, Wes Kimbrell, stormwater engineer, said that this bill, if approved, would wipe out the village’s stormwater program except for the water quality portion of it.

Clemmons has made stormwater a top priority with a long list of capital improvement projects on the books and committing most of the $6.6 million in funding from the American Rescue Plan funds to address what has become a growing problem.

“Particularly for the Village of Clemmons, it would take away much of our stormwater authority as well as tree preservation,” said Village Manager Scott Buffkin. “I will add that it is exceptionally rare that these types of provisions be included in what is essentially the state budget bill.”

“They’re completely non-budgetary items that we’ve been told would never stand on their own two feet as a bill alone,” said councilwoman Michelle Barson.

Councilman Mike Rogers said that there’s another major concern with this bill.

“There’s other monies in there where people may be endorsing it that ordinarily would not endorse it,” said councilman Mike Rogers. “They used to call it pork barrel money. I think it may still ring true today.”

Buffkin said he would work on another draft in advance of the next meeting in two weeks.

The council also heard from the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office with a request for Clemmons to add a second investigator position to the local force.

Lt. Sammy Joyner, who was present in Monday night’s meeting along with investigator Dustin Ammons and business manager Randy Hunsucker, said that the position was much needed.

“The Village of Clemmons is only growing and with that size comes needing additional resources,” Joyner said.

The Sheriff’s Office outlined a three-year plan, starting in July 2022 (fiscal year 2022-23), where the county would help subsidize the cost of the position in the first two years.

The overall cost in the first year would be $129,630 (and Clemmons would pay $74,050) while in the second year, the overall cost would be $101,790 (and Clemmons would pay $66,990). In the third year, the overall cost would be $105,800, of which the village would be responsible for the full amount.

“This is something that Sheriff (Bobby) Kimbrough discussed a few years ago – just with continued growth and not just the houses, but the different businesses,” Barson said, “and that it’s a growing need and will need to happen at some point.”

Clemmons had two investigators from 2006 to 2013 but since then has only had one person in that position. It was pointed out that Ammons, as the current investigator in the village, carries a caseload significantly higher than his counterparts assigned to other areas of the county.

Also in Monday night’s meeting, the council approved Zoning Docket C-243 from owner 2020 MOJO LLC for Triad Ocular for a medical-dental office building on 1.35 acres at the corner of Town Center Drive and Jessie Lane.

Planner Nasser Rahimzadah said that the project received unanimous approval from the Planning Board and staff.

During his comments, Rahimzadah said that the color of the building — an off-white — was an “ongoing issue” with it being lighter than others with the guidelines in the Village Point Small Area Plan. The building has 7,796 square feet.

“I think this is also a pretty unique building in that the design is not really comparable to anything else,” Rahimzadah said. “If this is approved, this will be the third non-flat roof building in that entire area.”

While the color of the building didn’t meet any final resistance, one condition that was changed before approval was a reduction from 37 parking spaces to 35, at the request of councilwoman Mary Cameron.

“Thirty-five parking spaces are required, and they have 37,” Cameron said. “Now I realize two parking spaces isn’t a big deal, but any time we can keep from covering over dirt, I would prefer that.”

The council agreed, and the petitioner did as well.

In other highlights from Monday night’s meeting, the council:

• Approved spending $12,900 each for Fernworth Court and Spillbury Court drainage system updates.

• Approved an interlocal agreement between the county and local municipalities for the Forsyth County Architectural Survey and Publication Project for approximately $16,500 after hearing a presentation from Michelle McCullough, historic resources officer.

• Approved the low bid of $1,208,318 from Yadkin Valley Paving Inc. for the fall street paving projects.

• Approved Budget Amendment 22-G-2 for the transfer of funds from the General Fund to the Harper Road Sidewalk Capital Project and a contract for $52,280 with Allied Associates to provide the surveying for the project.

• Approved Ordinance 2021-17 amending Chapter 34 Purchasing (Ordinance 2007-06) to modify the maximum limitations for staff to approve contracts from $10,000 to $30,000.

• Approved quotes from Piedmont Fence for $6,000 and $11,785 for fence modifications at the Public Works Facility.

• Heard from attorney Elliot Fus, who reported that regarding Market Center Drive the village now has fully signed dedication of right of way for the former Kmart site.

• Approved a Zoning Text Amendment to amend multiple sections in Chapter C Environmental Ordinance of the Unified Development Ordinances to strengthen stormwater requirements for public health, welfare and safety (Zoning Docket C-UDO-85).

• Called for a public hearing for a Zoning Map Amendment of real property owned by Pennston Corp. from RS-9 (Residential Single Family) to RM-5-S (Residential Multifamily — Special) described by Forsyth County Tax Offices as PIN number 5864-22-6196 on property of 54.84 acres. (Zoning Docket C-242).

• Heard from Gayle Goldsmith of Fair Oaks Court during the public comments portion of the meeting, saying she lives close to Tanglewood Park, loves the space and wants it to stay the way it is — without a proposed agricultural multi-use center. She passed along a sample of dirt to council members and stated, “We just can’t keep constructing on dirt.”

• Recognized Finance Officer Ann Stroud for 30 years of service to the village.

• Heard that Fall 2021 Bulk Item Pickup will begin on Monday, Sept. 27, for residents on the west side of Lewisville-Clemmons Road and on Monday, Oct. 4, for residents on the east side of Lewisville-Clemmons Road.

• Heard in the Marketing/Communications report that the Farmers Market will continue each Saturday morning at the Jerry Long YMCA from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. through Oct. 24. In upcoming events, another Movie Night in the Village is scheduled for Saturday when “Night at the Museum” will be shown at the Y at sunset. The Dirty Dozen & Clemmons Bash is scheduled on Saturday, Sept. 25 at the Y. The Monster Dash & Goblin Hop will be Sunday, Oct. 24, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Village Point Greenway. The Medicine Drop will be Saturday, Oct. 30, from 9 a.m. to noon at the Public Works Facility at 3800 Dillon Industrial Drive. The Clemmons Fall CleanUp is ongoing. More details and registration can be found on the village’s website.