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County commissioners to consider radio system upgrades, review West End Plaza Agricultural Center

By Natalie Anderson
natalie.anderson@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY — The Rowan County Board of Commissioners will consider approving county-wide public safety radio system upgrades as part of a full agenda during its Monday meeting.

The meeting will be 6 p.m. at the Rowan County Administration Building, 130 W. Innes St.

Infrastructure improvement recommendations include establishing a geographically diverse prime site, reconfiguring the system to reduce the impact of equipment failure or natural disasters and improving broadband services for rural residents in underserved communities in Cleveland.

According to a presentation from telecommunications chief Allen Cress, the board will need to allow administrative staff to issue a request for proposals for radio replacements, then negotiate service contracts for expiring contracts and solicit cost estimates for system infrastructure upgrades and resiliency. The current support and maintenance contract with Motorola expires in December 2021.

The estimated costs are $2.5 million for phase I and $6.5 million for phase II, with a radio lifespan of 12-15 years.

During the same meeting, commissioners will also be presented with the West End Plaza Agricultural Center interior renderings. The board also has a closed session scheduled to consider a potential lease for the West End Plaza.

Other items on the agenda include:

  • A request from Rowan-Salisbury Schools to enter into a continuing contract for capital outlay with Apple Inc. for the purchase of computers, hardware, software and other related equipment for all K-12 students, teachers and building-level administrators. The lease would last until 2024 and require the Board of Education to pay Apple $3.5 million each fiscal year until 2024, for a total of $12.33 million.
  • A quasi-judicial hearing about a request for a permit that would authorize occupancy of two treehouses and the addition of five more units at the Cherry Treesort property in the China Grove area. Currently, there are a total of five treehouse units that are considered “cabins” under the Rowan County Zoning Ordinance and they are used for rental purposes. Additionally, if approved, Trent Cherry would request a vested rights period of five years to complete the expansion to 15 total units.
  • A revisit of updated standards regarding a six-month solar farm moratorium enacted in December. The committee’s study involved the comparison of adjoining county ordinances, inventory of current sites in the county, material from the UNC School of Government and discussion from different perspectives in the solar industry and community stakeholders. A decision to extend the moratorium will be determined if necessary until all standards and concerns from the board have been addressed. If the board extends the moratorium, the updated details will be sent back to the planning board to continue making necessary revisions.
  • A request to schedule a quasi-judicial hearing for the April 20 meeting. The hearing is for Suretha Springs Event Center intended for “veteran, community, corporate and private family events” in China Grove. The application states the event center will be on 8.19 acres, measure 5,500 square-feet and accommodate approximately 65 parking spaces. The application was filed with the Rowan County Department of Planning and Development on Feb. 24.
  • A request from The Grand on Julian, LLC for the commissioners to waive $13,112.28 of interest due to a billing error on the property’s tax bill. County attorney John Dees II noted in a memo that it was the county’s fault for issuing an incorrect tax bill that used an incorrect assessed value, thus generating bills for amounts less than what should have been owed. The company paid the full principal amount owed.
  • A request from the county finance department for the commissioners to declare 37 vehicles surplus property and allow them to be sold by electronic auction.
  • A request from the Rowan Public Library to use Unit D2 at West End Plaza for off-site archival storage. The archived storage would be for the Edith M. Clark History Room.

Contact reporter Natalie Anderson at 704-797-4246.

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