Two annexation applications approved in China Grove

Published 12:06 am Thursday, October 6, 2022

CHINA GROVE — After taking more time to review annexation applications, the China Grove Town Council approved two sites for development Tuesday.

 

The approvals made were for a subdivision at Mount Hope Church and Menius roads, and for a rezoned site that will be for JJ Kane Auctioneers at East N.C. Highway 152. A new condition set for that auto auction business would include one live auction a month between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., which was agreed for the expansion of the business.

 

The only disagreement brought up at the meeting was from town council member Steve Stroud, who was concerned about the addition of another housing project for China Grove.

 

“I’ve always said that houses don’t pay for themselves in tax revenue,” he said. “This development is on the skirts of that, where it’s too far out. We’re going to have to hire firemen and policemen for our public works. We’ve approved a lot of houses already and I think this is going to overtax the town to allow this development to go forward.”

 

Matthew Misenheimer, assistant chief of the Bostian Heights Fire Department, told the council during citizen comment before the decision was made that currently there are not enough paid personnel to provide efficient coverage of the area.

 

“China Grove is rapidly growing and will continue to grow, but this growth comes at expenses and expectations,” Misenheimer said. “Construction is currently underway for two very large buildings that will house Macy’s distribution center on the I-85 corridor and there are many more for commercial buildings in the future. These buildings present several major challenges for China Grove, but the greatest is the need for additional personnel.”

 

Despite Stroud’s opposition, the vote was 4-1 to approve the annexation as presented.

 

“I appreciate Mr. Stroud’s concerns and I as well as most of us would agree with the concerns that were said,” said council member Rodney Phillips. “It’s been a difficult decision. This is an area of growth for us and the landowner has the right to be annexed in the city with a subdivision that meets our standards.”

 

The housing proposal by Ellis Development Group meets with China Grove’s land use plan and would create a development that is low to medium density, preserves existing rural character and open space, and is proposed to be constructed on the outskirts of town.

 

Mayor Charles Seaford also said after the decision that “I do not have a vote on this one way or the other, but I do not like one entrance on this thing. I know there is an emergency entrance but that’s going to be tied down, too.”

He added that his concern comes from his emergency background as a firefighter. “Bottom line, you got one way in, one way out and you have an emergency in there, those people in those houses are screwed,” he said.

 

Seaford said with with two entrances, he would “strongly be for” the development.

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