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2009 Chatham County, NC Video Clips

Chatham County BBS

xx Congratulations to Chatham Hospital staff!
Today at 02:26:24 PM by Tina
Chatham Hospital in Siler City has been ranked as one of the top three in North Carolina.

See WRAL article at http://www.wral.com/for-nc-few-standout-hospitals-in-new-federal-rating-system/14587141/
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xx Chatham Farmers speak from the heart, while Chatham Liberals speak from a script
Today at 10:25:04 AM by Chatham Farmers Matter
It appears that the suspicions of many farmers and other people from the Western part of Chatham County are true. The new liberal members of the Chatham County Commission wish to push though county wide zoning regardless of what the general public says.

We have several carpetbaggers from Pennsylvania, California and the Bahamas telling us that they know what is best for us all.

Farmers have come out to speak against county zoning in overwhelming numbers. And while Chatham Farmers speak from the heart, it appears that Chatham Liberals speak from a script.

We now know that the Chatham Liberals have put together a "List of Talking Points" in support of their unpopular position that their minions can use.

Go to http://www.chathamdemsnc.net/talking_zoning to see this list.

The liberals claim that these are the views of the Chatham County Democrats. They are not.

Former Democratic County Commissioner Tommy Emerson (
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/ZWx0VrGWaj4&amp;rel=0" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/v/ZWx0VrGWaj4&amp;rel=0</a>
) has spoken against county-wide zoning. Long-time Democrat and former planning board chairman Tommy Glosson has also spoken against county wide zoning. It is primarily the liberals of Chatham County who want to tell everyone what they can and cannot do with their land.

The Chatham Liberals state The land will care for you, if you care for it.
What the new commissioners from Pennsylvania, California and the Bahamas seem to forget is that it is the farmers whose families have farmed the land in Chatham County for generations that are, in fact, the ones that have cared for the land that has literally cared for them.

Come out to the Henry Dunlap building on Tuesday, April 21st at 6:30 pm and speak out against the tyranny.

In opposition to this unpopular county-wide zoning view being pushed by the elitist liberals of northeast Chatham County we have just started a new blog at  http://chathamfarmersmatter.blogspot.com/

Please feel free to send your thoughts to us at chathamfarmersmatter@gmail.com

We will post the best ones on the blog!

Chatham Farmers Matter
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xx World Trade Center 9/11 Memorial Site in Pittsboro
Yesterday at 07:54:34 PM by rr4016
I am disgusted with this so called "Memorial Site" honoring 9/11 and the World Trade Center in Pittsboro. This area is disgusting to look at, weeds everywhere, garbage all over, and half the time the flag is not present.
It was an honor to receive such a piece of history, a piece of steel that so many men and women lost their lives over.
It is a disgrace that Chatham County did not take this seriously, it's almost a mockery of the day the World Trade Center fell.
Finish what you started, you wanted this great piece, honor your commitment to display it the right way!
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xx Notes from the March 17th Interim Zoning Subcommittee meeting
Yesterday at 03:32:56 PM by Gene Galin
Notes from the March 17th Interim Zoning Subcommittee meeting

March 17, 2015

In attendance:
Chair George Lucier, Gene, Caroline Siverson, Barb Ford, Bill Arthur, Tandy Jones

Public Input:
Jerry Markatos stated that he has been proud of the community spirit in Chatham and regrets the tone that the public debate on zoning has taken and asks all involved be respectful of each other as important decisions are made. He supports the efforts of the planning board on zoning and land use.

Gail Crider lives and farms in unzoned Chatham and as a retired realtor worries that her land values are not protected without zoning. Supports zoning.

Veronica Remy has lived in unzoned Chatham and is not adverse to development but believes it should be planned and deliberate.

Cindy Swensen is not in favor of zoning and believes that fears of heavy industrial uses are overstated and that with freedom comes responsibility.

Craig Swenson stated that we should not look to government for protection but that we should elect leaders and representation that will protect us.
End of public comment.

Chair George Lucier explains the sub-committees charge
   The subcommittee is to consider alternatives to the open use zoning option that was being considered by the previous BOC
   Sub committee recommendations will go to the Planning Board
   The Planning Board will then make recommendations to the BOC
   There is another sub-committee that is to make recommendations to the
Planning Board on an updated Land Use Plan
   There will be many opportunities for public input

Types of zoning designations and permitted uses explained and discussed
   Interim Zoning
o   Short term zoning option with a set time limit. Would be used until a land use plan in developed.
   Agriculture and silvaculture is exempt from all zoning regulations
o   A farmer or timber operation cannot in any way be prevented from using their land for farming and timber cutting. They
would be exempt from any zoning regulations unless or until they choose to change the use of that property to something other then residential or agricultural.
o   Farm related businesses that occur on farms to supplement farm income would be identified and allowed as part of an exempted farming operation.
   R1 zoning is a basic residential zoning that allows for subdivision of aprox 1 dwelling per acre. Agriculture is exempt from any regulation in R1 and thus a permitted use but any commercial or industrial uses would have to apply for a rezoning.
   Minor subdivision rules would be no different then they are now under the subdivisions rules meaning that landowners could continue to subdivide up to 5 lots for family or for sale without being impacted by zoning.
   Large lots over 10 acres are exempt from sub-division ordinance and will see no change under zoning. No county review necessary.
   R1 zoning allows for a minimum of 40,000 square feet per dwelling, R2 allows for 90,000 square feet per dwelling and R5 allows 5 acres per dwelling. These designations are based on watersheds.
   R1 is the least restrictive residential zoning and is consistent with subdivision rules already in place county-wide.
   Home occupations will be allowed as rural home occupations and subject to some limits.
o   An example of a home occupation was given of a landscaping business that does not have onsite employees even if employees come on site for equipment etc.
o   Existent home occupations would be grandfathered as would existent commercial and industrial uses.
o   Any use that is in continued use and doesnt lapse over 365 days can continue regardless of ownership and expansion.
o   Zoning is only concerned with the land use, not with land ownership.
   Open use zoning is the least restrictive choice but has shortcomings.
o   Everything is permitted in this zoning except for a predetermined list of uses not permitted.
o   This requires careful consideration and anticipation of all undesired uses.
o These high impact uses would require a conditional use permit.
o   Standards must be met and it would entail a semi-judicial review and public hearing
   The distinction between quasi-judicial and legislative review is discussed
o   While quasi-judicial review relies on expert testimony and forbids input outside of the public hearing, standards must be
met and the commentary of adjacent and community members has significance.
o   Legislative review is more subjective and commentary is not restricted to public hearings only.
   The option of developing a heavy industrial ordinance instead of zoning was discussed
o   Alamance county uses such an ordinance to regulate heavy industrial use. Towns are zoned, the county is not and so the ordinance is applied countywide.
o Such an ordinance can actually be more restrictive then zoning.

Discussions on alternatives to zoning the entire county at one time.
   The unzoned areas that lie to the south of Pittsboro and immediately adjacent to the Chatham Park development lands are the counties most vulnerable.
   These areas could be zoned R1 at this time leaving other areas unzoned for now.
   Alternatively the areas adjacent or close to Chatham Park could be zoned R1 at this time and the rest of county covered with an open use zoning.
   Threats to the unzoned areas include quarries and coal ash landfills.
o Without zoning quarries require no BOC approval
o   It is unclear whether of not the county is preempted by the state regarding coal ash dumps.
o   There are 12 abandoned clay pits in the unzoned areas. These could be considered as coal ash dumpsites in the future.

The practicalities of zoning are discussed.
   Expense for public notices
   The zoning can be implemented and existing uses can be dealt with later.

Next steps
   George will create a list for next meeting of the options discussed
   Staff will chart out a simple table so that pros and cons can be compared.
   Examples will be included as well as information on the review process and how surrounding counties use zoning.

Next meeting set for April 21st, 6:30 at location TBA
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xx Agenda for Interim Zoning subcommittee meeting on April 21
Yesterday at 03:21:13 PM by Gene Galin
Planning Board subcommittee meeting on Alternatives to Open Use Zoning
April 21, 6:30 pm at the Dunlap Building
1. Public Comments
2. Review of Zoning Practices in Neighboring Counties
3. Pros and Cons of Different Zoning Options
4. Timetable Planning
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xx Dont know what to say? Hear are Zoning Talking Points
April 18, 2015, 11:32:30 PM by zorro
Looks like Chatham liberals have to tell their followers what they are supposed to say and think about county-wide zoning.

Dont know what to say? Hear are Zoning Talking Points

Let the BOC know that you are in support of countywide zoning with an interim zoning measure that would later be adapted to an updated comprehensive land-use plan and map. This zoning would exempt agriculture and the related agricultural businesses that might exist on a family farm. A public process to identify and list agricultural uses will be needed. Additionally, this zoning would exempt minor and family subdivisions, and would grandfather commercial and industrial uses that are already in existence. Owners of a farm or property currently in agricultural or residential use that choose to convert the property to a major residential development or a commercial or industrial use (not related to the agricultural use) would have to seek a zoning change, and that process would require community input and hearing.

Note that of the 100 counties in North Carolina, only 23 are unzoned.

It is particularly important for those in the unzoned areas to speak out! Ask for an updated comprehensive Land-Use Plan and Map:

The county presently has a Land-Use Plan that was adopted in 2001. It is basically a very good guideline, and was developed with much public input. The findings and goals of the plan are still relevant; however, much has changed since 2001, and the current growth patterns and projected development necessitate an update. It is also clear that Chatham County is diverse in land uses, and a one-size-fits-all may not be appropriate at this time.

The primary defect of the existing plan is the absence of a land-use map to accompany the written text. Without such a map, planning staff and officials do not have a framework for governing land uses. This results in ad hoc and haphazard development.

Chatham has a chance to get planning right. We are hopeful that we will!     PDF of Talking Points
Why Zoning Now

    Protect Your Property
    Chatham has recently been assaulted undesirable uses in unzoned areas. This includes 3 quarries and a shooting range this year. Our close proximity to Wake, Orange and Durham counties invites further exploitation of Chatham as a dumping ground.
    Degraded Environment
    Without modern land use controls environmental damage from oil and gas fracking and coal ash disposal will be exacerbated. There are currently 12 open pits in the unzoned area vulnerable to coal ash disposal.
    Agricultural Protection
    The strong urbanization of Chatham, which is upon us, will threaten our growing agricultural community. This intrusion of development will inevitably cause conflicts with the farm community.
    Recent economic proposals such as Chatham Park, the Siler City Megasite, and the Moncure Megasite will provide jobs and prosperity to our community. Good investment requires that adjacent sites be compatible neighbors. Uncontrolled land use leaves this to chance.
    Wise Investment
    Infrastructure investment in schools and utilities needs to be planned so that taxpayer funds are not wasted. It is projected that a new school will need to be constructed every two years. A look at school overcrowding in neighbor counties is a clear warning that a wise response to growth is very necessary if we value education.
    Quality of Life
    People move to Chatham to enjoy the quality of this place we call home. Protection and preservation of our way of life be it urban, suburban, or rural needs to be consistent with our citizens vision.

The land will care for you, if you care for it. Thomas Berry
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xx Deception, Politics, and Property Rights
April 18, 2015, 10:25:11 AM by Brian Bock
In recent conversations with some commissioners and planning board members, Ive been told that that there isnt and never was a plan to implement county wide interim zoning. These individuals either have very short memories or just have trouble with reality (it's impolite to say someone is lying). Many of you attended the meetings where this was discussed so I dont have to tell you, but for those who werent, you can read it on their website.  In an article titled Why zoning matters they unapologetically say this:

           "This plan involves two important steps:

            *  First, implementing an interim zoning that exempts agriculture and related agricultural businesses.
            *  Second, drafting and adopting an updated comprehensive land-use plan.

It goes on to say:

           "But its not going to be easy! There is a strong undercurrent of resistance seeking to undermine these initiatives. This scenario is
            concertingly similar to what happened the last time progressives had the majority in Chatham County, when a loud conservative
            opposition used fear and misinformation to unseat that BOC majority, and to halt and even reverse their policies."

            "There is organized and very vocal opposition to land-use planning in Chatham County, led by former Commissioner Brian Bock,
             who has recently been appointed to the county Planning Board. Their argument is that big government (specifically, the current
             progressive majority county Board of Commissioners) wants to dictate how landowners can use their property. They claim that the
             BOC wants you to give up your independence and conform to group values. They say that community standards and zoning are
             assaults on the freedom of every productive citizen. They claim that your concern for your quality of life is the same as imposing
             your values on other people. Apparently they do not appreciate the concept of land stewardship for future generations."

How can the majority say this to the farmers and residents who have lived here and preserved their property for generations? I would challenge anyone to find a better example of understanding the concept of land stewardship. To the best of my knowledge there is NO opposition (organized or otherwise) to land-use planning. The opposition is to a rushed zoning process without listening to those who live there.

The regressives seem to have a problem with you asking them to slow down and listen:

                 "Brian Bock has instructed his followers to ask them [county commissioners] to slow down and listen to the people that actually
                  live in the affected areas. Ironicaly Brian Bock himself has chosen to live in one of the most regulated and prescribed-use
                  developments in Chatham County: Briar Chapel. Presumably, he likes the quality of life there".

That paragraph illustrates a clear difference in thinking between the current majority and us. They just cant understand the difference between choosing to live in a zoned area and being forced to. The beauty and uniqueness of Chatham County is that we currently have the ability to choose. We are one of the few counties in the State that has this ability and some dont like it!

Ill end with their final paragraph of the article. Notice how they use "planning" in this paragraph instead of "zoning" as if they are synonymous. We know better. I've yet to talk to anyone who doesn't agree that planning is beneficial. Some were mocked when they suggested that politics was the reason for rushing this through, but . . . :

                 "Citizen input empowers the BOC. If you believe that planning is one way to preserve and nurture the way of life you enjoy and love,
                  now is the time to let your commissioners know. An opportunity for progress exists, but in less than two years, the current
                  progressive majority could be overturned. The time to act is now."

That is another point we agree on, the time to act is now! Let's take their advice, let your commissioners know what you think. Keep attending the meetings and sending emails and letters.
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xx Concerts for a Cause in Pittsboro starting May 3
April 18, 2015, 06:04:15 AM by lupine
I wanted to let you know that there is a new concert series at The Plant in Pittsboro (220 Lorax Lane)
Concerts for a Cause is a family friendly outdoor monthly event featuring live music, food court, cash bar from Fair Game Beverage, and it will raise money for a different locally based charity each time.  

Full schedule for the season coming soon, but you can mark your calendars for the following dates:
June 7, July 12, August 2, Sept 13, Oct 18

Our first show is MAY 3 from 5-9PM.  Mike+Ruthy Band and Matt Phillips will be playing, and we'll be raising money for Pickards Mountain Eco-Institute.  NC Fresh Catch will have seafood or BBQ dinners (veggie option too!) for sale and Willow Oak Montessori School will be providing children's activities.

Bring a picnic blanket and come join the fun!
Tickets $20 in advance and $25 at the door KIDS UNDER 12 FREE....and you're supporting a great cause!

To find out more: www.lupineproductionsnc.com
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xx N&O - Chatham Park draws another legal challenge
April 17, 2015, 09:36:02 AM by Gene Galin
Chatham Park draws another legal challenge

PITTSBORO, NC - A local advocacy group has launched another legal action against the town of Pittsboro over its handling of the massive Chatham Park development project.

The latest target of Pittsboro Matters is a bridge being built over the N.C. 64 bypass north of downtown Pittsboro. The group filed a motion April 10 seeking a preliminary injunction to stop work on the bridge; it claims land-clearing and other construction work has been taking place since at least late March.

Pittsboro Matters asked a Superior Court judge to stop the overpass construction because the town never approved plans for it.

The town responded that the work didnt need its approval since all of the land involved is owned by either Chatham Park or by the state, and that the work received the necessary approval from the N.C. Department of Transportation.

The bridge will connect Suttles Road with a wooded area that is part of Chatham Park, the planned 7,200-acre development that will eventually include 22,000 new homes and millions of square feet of labs, office and retail space.

Messick said plans for the overpass have been public knowledge for more than 20 years, and that the Pittsboro Board of Commissioners approved a resolution in 2009 several years before Chatham Park was approved requesting DOT authorize the bridge.

Last winter, Chatham Park broke ground nearby, across from Northwood High School, for a UNC-Hospitals hospice center the first building in the development.

The developers are allowed to build as much as 5 percent of the residential and 15 percent of the commercial space in the near future, as long as site plans are approved.

Read more here: http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/counties/chatham-county/article18628371.html#/tabPane=tabs-b0710947-1-1#storylink=cpy
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xx Arrest made in Bear Creek killing
April 17, 2015, 09:01:45 AM by Silk_Hope

A 26-year-old man was arrested and charged Thursday with killing a Bear Creek man, the Chatham County Sheriffs Office said.

Andrew Darius Marsh, 26, of 5398 Moncure-Pittsboro Road in Moncure, faces a first-degree murder charge in the death of Raymond Cotten Jr., 35.

Marsh, who was arrested in Sanford, was placed in the Chatham County jail Thursday under no bond. His first court appearance is scheduled for Friday.

Read more at http://www.wral.com/arrest-made-in-bear-creek-killing/14587721/#z2lrhIksBSeIC00H.99
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