Faith aldermen set hearing for next year’s budget, provide update on new well

Published 12:02 am Friday, May 17, 2024

FAITH — Faith’s monthly board of aldermen meeting on Tuesday was a routine meeting, including short discussions about the town’s well restoration, reports from all of the town’s departments and the scheduling of two public hearings, one for the proposed 2024-205 fiscal year budget and another for a rezoning for a property next to Faith Academy Charter School.

Mayor Randall Barger said that Jeovany Bautista-Gutierrez, a representative of water service company A.C. Shultes of Carolina from Wilmington, came to the town in April and spoke about a potential plan for the draw-down testing. Barger walked through the area with Bautista-Gutierrez, who said that he would put together a plan for how to safely disperse and drain the water from the testing. The two spoke about several natural features including a creek and a pond where, if dispersed correctly, the water could be collected without runover that could lead to property damage.

The members of the board voted to hold both a public hearing for a rezoning and the public hearing for the budget before their next regularly-scheduled meeting on June 11. The first hearing will be held at 6:30 p.m. for a proposed rezoning of the property located at 3725 Faith Road, on the north edge of town, from industrial to B-3, or general business. The rezoning application was submitted by local developer Darren Brown, who said that he wanted to place a multi-use commercial building on the property which could include restaurants, retail stores and athletic facilities.

The aldermen did learn that the current owner of the building, Intertape Polymer Woven USA, wanted a condition added to the request that the rezoning would only be effective if the property was bought by Darren Brown or a family member, as the company believed that it would be easier to sell on the market if it remained industrial.

The other public hearing, for the proposed budget for the upcoming fiscal year, was set for 6:45 p.m. on June 11, or directly after the rezoning hearing.

The departmental reports were short for the most part, but Town Clerk Karen Fink did note to the aldermen that the daily average of 76,310 gallons pumped from the town’s water system was one of the lowest she had seen in years. The town has asked residents to conserve water while dealing with the issue of the well and residents have responded by reducing water usage by almost 700,000 gallons from the past year.

Granite Quarry-Faith Joint Police Authority Chief Mark Cook shared during the police department’s report that they were working on hiring two candidates that would bring the department up to fully-staffed status with 10 officers on payroll.