County commissioners have ordered the demolition of a fire-damaged home after repeated complaints from neighbors

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

By Jessie Burchette
Salisbury Post
County commissioners have ordered the demolition of a fire-damaged home after repeated complaints from neighbors.
Commissioners voted unanimously Monday to demolish a house at 114 Eastbrook Circle, near Granite Quarry. It will be only the second house ordered demolished by the county.
A September 2006 fire caused extensive damage to the house. County documents identify the property owners as Leslie Esquivel and/or the estate of Doris Elaine Bowden.
The Eastbrook Property Owners Association sought action starting in November 2006. Last month, a group of the neighbors attended the commissioners’ meeting and asked the county to take action.
County Planning Director Ed Muire and County Attorney Jay Dees said the county has repeatedly met with the owners and given them every opportunity to act.
Jane Lackey, a neighboring property owner, said the property was a nuisance for years before the fire with an overgrown yard. She cited concerns for safety of children and others who might wander onto the property, as well as its impact on surrounding property values.
Commissioner Jim Sides noted his stand for property rights, but said after visiting the site, the county had no choice but to act.
“The entire lot is a mess,” he said.
In other matters, the board:
– Approved a rezoning of the Cornerstone Church property at 315 Webb Road to allow a pickup/delivery pizza operation in the church’s Child Development Center.
– Approved a rezoning and conditional use permit to allow William Webb to build 48,000 square feet of storage space in four buildings on an eight-acre tract on Bernard Lane off the 4300 block of Long Ferry Road. The building will have bays for boats, RVs and similar crafts.
– Approved an agreement with the N.C. Department of Transportation for reimbursement of expenses estimated to run $45,000 to produce a map and signage for a bike trail around the county.
– Approved a contract with H.M. Kern Corporation of Greensboro for $3.96 million to build courtrooms on the third floor of the Justice Center, complete an unfinished pod in the jail and provide a public entrance to the sheriff’s department.
Kern was the low bidder by more than $400,000, but the project came in $258,000 over budget. The board also approved a budget amendment to allocate $258,000 from the county fund balance to cover the extra cost.
– Recognized Carolyn Athey, clerk to the Board of Commissioners, for completing work to be designated a certified municipal clerk. Chairman Arnold Chamberlain and Commissioner Jim Sides praised Athey for her work.
– Appointed Robert Van Geons to a two-year term on the Centralina Economic Development Commission; Jill Debose to a three-year term on the Salisbury-Rowan Human Relations Council; Katelyn Horning to a two-year term on the Juvenile Crime Prevention Council; Curtis Cowan to a three-year term on the Landmarks Commission; William Broadway, Cassandra Beaver, James Murtaugh and Catherine Balentine to three-year terms on the Therapeutic Recreation Board; Leah McFee, Virginia Graves and D.J. Whitfield to three-year terms on the Nursing Home Advisory Committee, leaving six vacant seats on that body.
Commissioners delayed filling two seats on the Zoning Board of Adjustments until their first meeting in April.