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Granite town board decides to keep, not sell Faith Road property

GRANITE QUARRY — Over the past six months, the Granite Quarry Board of Aldermen has gone back and forth about whether to sell or keep 10.1 acres at 2400 Faith Road.

On Monday night, the board voted 3-2 to keep the property, with Mayor Bill Feather casting the tie-breaking vote.

Feather sided with Alderman Jim Costantino and Mayor Pro Tem Jim LaFevers on holding onto the property. Aldermen Kim Cress and John Linker voted to put it on the market.

In 2016, the town purchased the 10.1 acres for $20,000 in hopes of carving out youth athletic fields, but those plans never came to fruition.

In September, the board voted to sell the property. By November, the aldermen heard a presentation from Town Planner Steve Blount about other potential options for the parcel, and it also became a “strategic property” in a new comprehensive land plan now being written.

At the board’s Feb. 22 retreat, aldermen asked that the property be discussed again at Monday’s meeting.

Cress said he came to Monday night’s board meeting with three full pages and “15 good reasons” why the town should get rid of that tract.

But Cress decided to hold back from reading those pages before the vote because he said it looked as though he was waging a losing battle.

Cress predicted, however, the board probably would have another vote on the property by year’s end.

In another matter Monday night, the aldermen decided to wait at least until April to start the search for a new town manager.

For now, Larry Smith is serving as interim town manager, and the board had discussed finding a search firm, taking applications, conducting interviews and hiring a new manager by July 1.

“Personally, I think we’re rushing this a bit,” Linker said Monday night. He suggested pushing the process back at least 30 to 60 days.

LaFevers said maybe the town should depend on a timeline established by whatever firm or agency is hired to help with the search. Plus, a lot could depend on how long Smith is willing to be interim manager, LaFevers said.

Town officials have received estimates from six search firms ranging from $6,000 to $26,500.

The board hired certified public accountant Eddie Carrick of Lexington as the town’s auditor for the next three years at $11,000 a year. Carrick’s firm has been serving in that capacity.

The board considered bids from two other CPAs.

Contact Mark Wineka at 704-797-4263.

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