Tower plan may be rejected

Published 12:00 am Sunday, July 3, 2011

By Karissa Minn
SALISBURY ó County commissioners will consider dismissal Tuesday of a radio stationís second permit application to build a radio tower in Mount Ulla.
The Rowan County Board of Commissioners will hold a quasi-judicial hearing on a motion to dismiss at its 3 p.m. meeting Tuesday on the second floor of the J. Newton Cohen Sr. Rowan County Administration Building.
Davidson County Broadcasting has applied for a conditional use permit to build a 1,200-foot broadcast tower on property owned by Richard L. and Dorcas Parker in Mount Ulla.
Attorney Anthony Fox, who is advising the county on this issue, told the board at its June 20 meeting that a citizensí group has filed a motion to dismiss the application. They argue that the May 2010 permit application deals with identical issues and decisions as the one denied by commissioners in November 2005.
The board decided after 14 hours of testimony that a 1,350-foot tower on the same property would present a safety hazard to a nearby private airstrip, Miller Airpark.
The company appealed the countyís decision, but a three-judge panel of the N.C. Court of Appeals upheld the denial in September 2007, and so did the N.C. Supreme Court.
In its new application, Davidson County Broadcasting says it plans to submit evidence to the contrary and show that the tower would not create hazardous traffic or air safety conditions.
If the motion to dismiss fails, commissioners have tentatively agreed to schedule a quasi-judicial hearing for the permit on Aug. 1.
In other news, the board will hold a public hearing Tuesday for a conditional use permit for Aaron Martin.
Martin wants to run a new and used tire shop and perform minor automotive repairs in a new 3,000-square-foot, four-bay building at 5130 U.S. 601.
Planning staff wrote to commissioners that Martin has closed the furniture and craft business he used to run there, but he would like to reserve the right to continue it in the future.
According to Martin, repairs at the new operation would not include engine, transmission, drive train and other more intensive activities, planning staff wrote.
A proposed three-sided 12-foot-by-24-foot metal carport to the rear of the shop would store used tires.
Also at Tuesdayís meeting, commissioners plan to:
Hold public hearings for the proposed names of Oliphant Lane for a road east off the 100 block of Dexter Ave., Middle Road for a location north off the 200 block of Woodbury Drive and Lodge Trail for a road south off the 6300 block of Long Ferry Road.
Give final approval to a $50 offer from Ted Deal to purchase a county-owned house near Sloan Park on N.C. 150 West. The county received no upset bids.
In November, the property experienced a fuel oil spill, which the county has remediated except in the soil under the house. After the house is moved at the new ownerís expense, the county will clean up the remaining contaminated soil.
Consider a bond order authorizing the issuance of $20 million general obligation refunding bonds of Rowan County.
County Manager Gary Page said interest rates have fallen enough that the county can save $80,000 to $100,000 per year over the next 8 years by essentially refinancing the balance of the bonds.