Town Council Meeting Summary

Regular Town Council Meeting Summary

3/10/2020

Please visit Meeting Agendas and Minutes to review future meeting dates, meeting packets, and minutes. You may click here to view the meeting on Live Streaming. 

1.  Mayor’s Communications: Mayor Pritchett felt it was important to recognize the situation with the coronavirus expressing that we all have individual responsibilities to keep ourselves safe by practicing universal precautions as recommended by the CDC. She pointed out that there are a number of websites offering information and these links have been placed on the Town’s Website. The Town has taken a lot of precautions to ensure that staff are protected. She asked that everyone remain calm and not get caught up in the panic in the moment.

2.  Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge Updates: Executive Director Laura Doster reported that the Chamber is designing a “Welcome to Lake Lure Packet” and asked if the Town could help provide information on the properties that are for sale in Lake Lure.  Town Manager Shannon Baldwin stated that Town Staff could help with this. She stated that the Chamber is currently looking for someone to help volunteer as an event director to support the Chamber with events.

3. Town Manager Updates:

a.  Hydro-Electric Plant: Town Engineer Kurt Wright and Public Works Director David Arrowood provided an update on the hydroelectric facility.

•  Mr. Arrowood reported that the big generator is back online as of 2/26/20 and everything has been working well.

•  He advised that Dean Lindsay was recently hired as the new plant manager and has extensive experience in the maintenance field.

•  Mr. Wright provided an overview of the Global Risk Report noting that the report author David Peckham provided his approval.

•  Three quotes were received for infrared testing. The first quote was from Magnetech out of Ohio, a full service provider in the power generation field.

•  Magnetech was recommended by a hydroelectric engineer with LaBella Associates.

•  They currently have a low backlog and can have items 1-4 on the Global Risk Report completed (excluding item 3 which has already been completed) by the end of the month.

•  Items 5 and 6 must be done in-house as they are preventive maintenance procedures.

•  Mr Wright stated that Mr. Peckham has agreed to meet 3/24/20 to help make improvements to the ERP’s, PMP’s, to include in a packet to submit to the League.

b.  Budget Amendments for Small Generator Repairs: Mr. Wright explained that the proposed Budget Amendment #270 was for small generator repairs totaling $110,000. 

•  These repairs involve replacing the poles on the rotor which have reached their service life

•  Proposed Budget Amendment # 271 is for $50,000 for third party service provider work which is an insurance carrier requirement.

•  This work is needed to ensure the Hydro-Electric Plant is in compliance according to our insurance carrier NCLM.

•  Commissioner DiOrio recommended that they let the Fire Department know when infrared testing is done.

•  Mr. Baldwin noted that next Monday, the new Hydro Plant Director will offer the same approach to get good leadership and start operating the Hydro Plant the way it’s supposed to be operated in the future.

c.  Workshop: Mr. Baldwin noted that a workshop was being planned with Schnabel Engineering o 3/17/20 to discuss the dam, the dam bridge, and the sewer. NCDOT, NC DEQ, and LaBella will also be attending this meeting.

d.  New Marina/Boardwalk Project: Parks, Recreation, and Lake Director Dean Givens provided an update on the new marina and boardwalk. The docks are still on schedule to start arriving on 4/7/20.  The project is on schedule right now.

e.  Dredging: Mr. Givens stated that we will be dredging in the Lake in another week or two. Another dredging project we’re working on is on the Morton property and he’s been evaluating that property with Kurt Wright and William Morgan to get paperwork ready. We can slow or stop sediment from entering into Firefly Cove Bay by dredging that area. The sediment is excavated.

f.  Morse Park Amphitheater: Mr. Givens also noted that Tim Edwards has done a final grading on the amphitheater area and it looks great. He will be sewing grass and then we’ll have a nice area until the construction happens. 

4.  Town Board Liaison Reports:  Please visit Meeting Agendas and Minutes to review meeting schedules and the latest information from each Board.  

a. Commissioner DiOrio reported that the Utilities Advisory Board did not meet but will meet jointly with Council on the 3/17/20.

b.  Commissioner John Kilby reported the activities of the ABC Board and the Lake Advisory Board. He noted that he was out for both of those meetings and the Mayor attended those on his behalf.

c.  Commissioner John Moore reported the activities of the Zoning and Planning Board.

d.  Commissioner Patrick Bryant reported the activities of the Parks and Recreation Board and noted that the Board of Adjustment and the Lake Structure Appeals Board.

      Moe Bay added that the Rumble Event was the 2/6/20 annual and over 300 participants. 40 campers in     Morse Park. They raised over $4,000 will go directly towards conservation. $500 was raised to go to the Friends of Chimney Rock. Business was great during that weekend.  She noted that the Chamber helped with this event. Approximately 40 of the volunteers visited the Park on Boys Camp Road removing graffiti, picked up trash and spent 6 hours of stewardship on Sunday.

5.  Public Forum: Mayor Pritchett invited the audience to speak.

•    Laura Doster asked about a timeline of lake lowering in the future.

•    Mayor Pritchett stated that we do not have a timeline yet but will provide one when it’s available. She hopes that one will be available in early summer. We will have a calendar on when the lake will be down and by how much.

6.  Consent Agenda: The following consent agenda items were approved.

a.    Adopt the 2/11/20 Regular Meeting Minutes and the 2/2620 Special Work Session Minutes

b.    Budget Amendment (BA) # 270 – Small Generator Repairs

c.    BA# 271 – Insurance Carrier Requirements

d.    BA# 272 – Lake Lure Dam Work Order No. 4

e.    Suspension of Chapter 61: “Peddlers” of the Code of Ordinances for the Hickory Nut Gorge

           12th Annual Sale on the Trail Event

f.    Resolution No. 20-03-10 Amending the South Mountains Regional Hazard Mitigation Plan

7.  New Business: 

a.    Lake Lure Adventure Company Concession Agreement Request: Parks, Recreation,

and Lake Director Dean Givens explained that the Lake Lure Adventure Company is requesting a Concession Agreement with the Town for an additional livery commercial boat which exceeds the maximum allowed without a concession agreement.  The request was approved.

 8. Closed Session: Town Council went into Closed Session.

9.  Adjournment: The meeting at 6:09 p.m. Commissioner Patrick Bryant seconded and the motion carried 4-0.


  

 


 

Town Council Meeting Summary

February 22, 2020 

1.    Mayor’s Message: Mayor Pritchett opened the meeting. Communications Specialist Laura Krejci presented a video presented to HGTV Home Town Makeover Contest. Click here to watch the

Mayor Pritchett recognized the Emergency Management Team who took care of the Town during the recent storm event.

2.    Closed Session: Town Council went into a Closed Session to address a personnel issue.

3.    Town Manager Updates:

a.  Hickory Nut Gorge Chamber Memorandum of Understanding (MOU): Town Manager  Shannon Baldwin provided an overview of the Town’s MOU with the Hickory Nut Gorge Chamber. Chamber Executive Director Laura Doster provided an update on the MOU noting that the Town was a huge investor of the Chamber’s.  She stated that the  agreement to work as an alliance with the Town to expand commercial tax base and market town events.  She provided a detailed report of the work today in this fiscal year.

b.   Town Events/Communications and Grants:

·   Events: Communications Specialist Laura Krejci reported on Town events which were identified in an Event Calendar she disseminated.

·  Town Communications: Mrs. Krejci advised that an effort is made to communicate Town Events and News in a number of different ways to reach the largest number of people possible.  The handout she prepared included an example of the communication that is on the website under Town News.  She shared the listing of accomplishments that were made while the Lake was down, as well as a schedule of all the work that is planned for the new Boardwalk and Marina.  She mentioned that this same information is shared on the Town’s Facebook page and in a monthly update that is shared via email.

·  Grants: Ms. Krejci also mentioned that she received news on the Town’s FEMA High Hazard Dam Grant today. The Town originally received $70,000 for the FEMA grant and a subsequent application for an additional $10,000 had just been approved.  These funds will go to cover the cost of the Spillway Assessment that Schnabel Engineering is conducting.  The Town is matching these funds by 35%+. 

c.   Boardwalk/Marina Replacement: Parks, Recreation, and Lake Director Dean Givens provided an update on the Boardwalk/Marina Replacement Project stating that demolition is complete with the boardwalk. 

·  He added that dredging in the area was also complete.  

·  The docks have been ordered and will begin to be delivered on April 72020.

·   The land based walkways to connect to the boardwalk are under construction with a completion day of May 22, 2020.

·   A new boat ramp has been built and put into place in the Marina.

·   Next hot docks will need to be placed for boats to be able to be launched.

·   Dock B must be moved because the ramp will come too close to that dock.

·   He is exploring a new traffic pattern at the ATM in the parking lot.

·   The right side will be a one way and then will circle around and be one way as you exit.

·   This will keep an area available for boat traffic only.  

·   Mr. Baldwin expressed that the boardwalk replacement is self-funded. He pointed out that the boardwalk was becoming extremely dangerous. The new boardwalk will be aluminum and will not deteriorate like wood. It will be self-funded by proceeds from the slips rented to pay for the boardwalk and the Marina.

d.  Dredging:  Mr. Givens reported that dredging in Rumbling Bald Resort and Firefly Cove has been completed with their own funds.  Once the lake is at full pond the Town will continue dredging in the main channel of the Lake.  He added that the Town was looking at a pond we need to dredge to keep overflow from coming into the Firefly Cove area.

e.  Lake Drawdown: Shannon Baldwin added that there will be a need for a five year schedule for the Lake Drawdown and the details are being drafted now.

·  Consulting Engineer Kurt Wright briefed Council on the schedule timeline which goes through 2035.

·  He mentioned that three items associated with the Hydro-Electric Plant will be completed by December 2020.

·  After 2022, he’s proposing a five year inspection and then eventually every eight years.

·  Mr. Wright also briefed on the long-term lake drawdown schedule of events for Lake Operations and the Waste Water Treatment Plant Repairs.

·  This schedule results in a drawdown for the next three years which is the proposed schedule.

·   Mr. Baldwin noted that this is a draft in progress and could change based on LaBella’s Associates design options for the Sewer System Repairs.

·   Once finalized Mr. Baldwin will bring a recommendation back to Council for consideration and then we will communicate this schedule to the community so everyone can make plans.

·   Mr. Wright noted that the penstock inspection will probably only take about a day. It would be done within a week.

·   Mr. Baldwin felt this was a good example of how issues were accomplished while the Lake had been down. Everything was programmed and everyone did an excellent job.

f.  Dam Rehabilitation: Town Manager Shannon Baldwin reported on the dam rehabilitation mentioning that by the end of this month Schnabel Engineering would be presenting a model of life expectancy and costs associated with dam rehabilitation and phasing.  He added that USDA held a meeting with Schnabel and LaBella to discuss types of loans that were available and the phasing process for each one. 

g.  Hydro-Electric Plant Updates: Mr. Arrowood provided an update on Hydro-Electric Plant repairs noting that major repairs were made to the penstock while the Lake was drawn down. The lower turbine bearing has been replaced. A few more repairs are required for the generator to go back into service.

h.   Sewer System and Waste Water Treatment Plant (WWTP) Updates: 

·  Mr. Baldwin provided a brief background explaining that the Town has been receiving Special Orders by Consent (SOCs) which are legal document the Town has entered into with DEQ listing timeframes. The State lists fines they have issued to the Town. The Town has been receiving fines because we are out of compliance. The SOC will help to stop those fines as we work to fix the issues. There are helping us work through our issues as they know the Town is working to get back into compliance.

·  Mr. Baldwin advised that LaBella engineers are completing their technical memo which outlines the repair options and costs.  The Town has received comments from various individuals who have reviewed the technical memo.

·  Conference calls have been scheduled with NC DEQ to develop the Special Order of Consent.

·  Mr. Arrowood reported that sludge at the WWTP is on hold currently.  He spoke with Republic Services in SC to take the sludge from the Plant but they will not accept the sludge before May or June because everything is too wet. We are at their mercy because we have nowhere else to take it.      

4. Presentations: Census 2020 –2020 Census RecruiterErin Miller briefed everyone on the importance of the Census and the need for Census takers in the Lake Lure area.

·  She stated that the Census is to gather the population for the representation in the House of Representatives.

· The Governor believes we have enough population to gain another seat in the House and has tasked people within each County to help ensure that everyone fills out the Census.

·  If we don’t have a complete count then we don’t have the information for businesses in the area, information for the kinds of roads we need, or what kinds of schools we need.

·  Roy Cooper wants to get to 80% of the count and she’s wanting to get to 100% of the population counted for.

·  This count helps with money provided to the County.

·   In mid-March everyone should receive a letter in the mail which will provide an option to fill out the Census online or by call.

·   A select population will receive paper copies; typically areas with no internet access.

·   Mobile units will be available for areas to help people fill out the Census.

·   Also Plan C is Censes Taker Provisions.

·   She provided a postcard paper seeking Census workers in western North Carolina. Lake Lure we need another 20 applicants.

·   She mentioned that the Census taker job, 18 or older, must have a vehicle, must be a citizen, and must have an email.

·   The pay is $17 and 57.5 cents a mile plus options for overtime.

·   This job is an incredible opportunity to meet your neighbors. They want people to go around their own neighborhoods.

·   Mr. Baldwin stated that the revenues the Town receives from the State, sales tax revenue is redistributed based on population, Powell Bill funds for roads is based on miles and population.

·   We will get additional revenue from the State if we get our numbers up and it’s very important to the Town to get everyone to be counted for.

·    Ms. Miller stated that in the next 4 weeks they’ll be calling 4900 people for the selection process for these jobs. Get yourself into the application pool.

·   Go online and fill out a profile and an application. Then wait for a phone call.

·   $1,800 a person for both federal and state per year that would be received. There’s a two day training period.

·   The Census will start within the next four weeks. Most jobs will happen between May and August.

·   She stated that she has a script for information to be given out for anyone who would like to provide this information.

·   They need 9,000 more people in Western North Carolina.

5. Council Liaison Reports: Please visit Meeting Agendas and Minutes to review meeting schedules and the latest information from each Board.

ü  Commissioner DiOrio reported the activities of the Utilities Advisory Board.

ü  Commissioner John Kilby reported the activities of the ABC Board and the Lake Advisory Board.

ü  Commissioner John Moore reported the activities of the Zoning and Planning Board.

ü  Commissioner Patrick Bryant reported on the Board of Adjustment and the Lake Structure           Appeals Board and noted that the Parks and Recreation Board did not meet based on the             weather.

6.  Consent Agenda:The following items were unanimously approved and adopted.

A.  Adopt the January 7, 2020 Special Meeting Minutes, the January 8, 2020 Special Meeting Minutes, the January 14, 2020 Regular Meeting Minutes, and the January 28, 2020 Special Town Council Work Session Minutes

B.  Adopt the January 7, 2020 Closed Session Minutes and the January 14, 2020 Closed Session Minutes

C.  Martin Starnes & Associates’ Contract to Audit

D.  Ordinance No. 20-02-11 – Capital Project Ordinance for the Marina Expansion and Boardwalk Replacement

E.  Resolution No. 20-02-11 – Supporting US 74 to an Interstate Quality Corridor

F.  Amend the 2020 Town Council Meeting Schedule

G. BA# 266 – Sale of Commercial Center

H. BA# 268 – Dam and Hydroelectric Plant Director

7.   New Business: 

a.  Resolution No 20-02-11A Quit Claim Deed – Garlon Prewitt: Community Development Director Brad Burton stated that Garlon and Cynthia Prewitt, 180 Tryon Bay Circle, are interested in asking for a quit claim of 540 square feet of accreted land from 2013. The packet indicates what has occurred and includes a survey of the property. He built something on the Town’s property and has paid for the survey and his lawyer created a quit claim deed. He’s asking for the Town to quit claim this property back to him. The motion was approved.

 b.  Lake Level Discussion:  Town Manager Shannon Baldwin reported that the Lake is rising     and there have been little to no inquiries or complaints.  Work on the Lake is on schedule and going smoothly. Mr. Arrowood noted were 5 feet below full pond and still rising; about .5 inch an hour and a About a foot a day based on the rain we get.  H added that they were taking advantage of the rain but can’t raise more than a foot and a half to two foot a day based on guidelines. The Lake coming up is on track.

c.   Hydro-Electric Plant Director: Mr. Baldwin stated that a job description has been developed for a hydro-electric plant director position. We are recommending back filling the vacant position with a person that can basically serve as a director at the hydro-electric plant. There are a lot of routine items we need to make sure is done on a routine basis and need someone with experience in this field to bring in a level of professionalism to bring to SDG Engineering and have someone oversee this project and take some responsibility from Mr. Arrowood so he can focus on other things he has been tasked with. If Council approves this position we will place an ad to fill this position.  The position was unanimously approved.

8.   Closed Session: Town Council went into a Closed Session.

9.   Adjournment: The meeting was adjourned at 7:40 pm

 

 

 


 

Regular Town Council Meeting Summary 

 December 10, 2019  

 

 

The Lake Lure Town Council met on December 10, 2019.  The following is a summary of the meeting.  Please visit Meeting Agendas and Minutes to review future meeting dates, meeting packets, and minutes.

1.   Mayor’s Communications: Mayor Carol Pritchett welcomed everyone and wished attendees a happy holiday season.  She remarked that this was a special time of year and she was reminded of people who had had such an impact on our community like former Mayor Kevin Cooley who contributed so much to the Town.  She thanked Stephen Webber and Bob Cameron for their service to the Town as Commissioners.  She noted that although this was a time of transition, she assured everyone that the Town Council would remain focused on the key priorities to strengthen our infrastructure for future generations.  She asked Town Manager Shannon Baldwin to provide updates on these critical areas.

2.   Town Manager Communications: Shannon Baldwin introduced Consulting Engineer Kurt Wright from SDG Engineering to provide updates on current projects.
a.  Hydroelectric Plant: Mr. Wright presented a video of the work being completed in the hydroelectric plant.  The video showed eight contract employees working inside the penstock
•    They were seen cleaning the penstock and the two butterfly valves.  
•    He noted that they discovered a small two-inch hole in the penstock which is causing a constant pool of water and advised that they are plugging this leak with a special cement packet (QuakeWrap), at no charge as it helps the contractor with their work to keep the area dry.  
•    In order to patch this hole it will require the water to be drawn down to 12 ½ feet, slightly lower than the original plan of 9 feet.  
•    Mr. Wright stated that there were no other leaks in the tower.  
•    He explained that cleaning the interior of the pipes is the primary function at this juncture.  
•    As far as the penstock and the two butterfly valves he stated they appear to be in good shape and that there was no other breach in the integrity (so far as leaks are concerned) of the concrete cylinder all the way up the intake structure.
•    He reported that the work is currently on schedule and is being monitored on regular basis.  
•    He advised that there was no reason to believe at this time that the remaining work will not be completed on schedule.

               

The photo below shows the Lake Lure Dam's penstock after it has been sandblasted and cleaned. It is now ready for the first coating of the QuakeWrap system.  

          


 
b.   Sewer System:  Mr. Baldwin advised that Mr. Wright was also overseeing the process for objectively selecting the engineering contractor who will support the Town with Sewer System repairs.  Mr. Wright advised that four proposals had been received and he was working with the UAB to provide a systematic process for their objective review and scoring of the proposals. He will not be evaluating the proposals; but he will record and compile the scores for those who were evaluating them. Mr. Baldwin advised that a meeting would be held on 12/19/19 at 2:00 to discuss the proposals and the scoring process and Council will be invited to attend.  Mr. Baldwin advised that a follow up meeting is scheduled for 1/7/20 at 2:00 when the recommendation will be made on which contractor to hire.

c.   Events: Mr. Baldwin asked Communications Specialist Laura Krejci to provide a brief report on events.  Mrs. Krejci advised Council that now that a year of events had taken place in 2019, a cost-benefits analysis would be conducted.  She reported that this evaluation was just beginning and she would be reporting back to them in the near future with a recommendation on future events that the Town could consider supporting.  Mr. Baldwin added that event costs and staff time is one of the items to be discussed at the upcoming budget meetings.

d.   Budget Workshop: Mr. Baldwin advised that the Budget Workshop was scheduled for 12/17/19. Presentations were planned from Schnabel Engineering, the League of Municipalities, and WR Martin. He reported that department heads would be presenting their short and long term goals.  This is a public meeting and will be held at the Justice Academy from 6:30-5:00 in room.C102 for anyone who would like to attend.

e.   Dam Renovations: Mr. Baldwin advised that 2 Divisions of DEQ (the Water Divisions and the Dam Safety Office) will be at the Budget Workshop on 12/17/19, as well as representatives from the Department of Transportation. They will be present to hear the presentation by Schnabel Engineering on the Dam assessment. 

f.    The Highlands: Mr. Baldwin noted that a hearing for a notice of violation from the Highlands needed to be scheduled.  The hearing was confirmed on 1/7/20 at 9:30.

3.  Council Liaison Reports and Comments: Council Members provided updates on the
      following Town Boards.  Please visit Meeting Agendas and Minutes to review meeting  
      schedules and the latest information from each Board.
•    Commissioner Bob Cameron reported the activities of the Board of Adjustment, the Lake
Structures Appeals Board, and the Utilities Advisory Board.
•    Commissioner John Kilby reported the activities of the ABC Board and noted that the Lake Advisory Board did not meet.
•    Mayor Pro Tem John Moore reported the activities of the Zoning and Planning Board.
•    Commissioner Stephen Webber reported the activities of the Parks and Recreation Board.

4.  Public Comment: The public is invited to speak on any non-agenda and/or consent agenda topics. 
•    Mrs. Pat Cook asked Commissioner Kilby about the ABC Store closing on 3:00 p.m. on the day before Thanksgiving and asked who sets those hours. Commissioner Kilby stated he would find out and follow up with her. He noted that Council does not set those hours.

5.  Consent Agenda: Approved. Adoption of the 11/12/19 Regular Town Council Minutes, FY 20-21 Budget Development Calendar, Budget Amendments for Sludge Removal and Geo-Tubes, Sewer Engineering Services, Penstock Repairs, Sewer Valve Expense, Deputy Town Clerk Appointment – Ms. Sha’Linda Pruitt, Tax Collector Appointment – Mrs. Amy Wright.

6.  Unfinished Business:

a.  Animal Control: Police Chief Sean Humphries advised that assistance with animal control is needed from time-to-time and recommended a contract with Rutherford County Animal Control to assist with this issue as needed. He explained that this agreement is for transport of a problematic animal. The fee would be per animal, per call with no retainer needed. The agreement was approved.

b.  Cover for the Flood Gates:  Commissioner Cameron reminded Council that he recommended safety covers be provided for the flood gates. Earlier this year a plan was discussed  to provide this structure to provide physical protection and enhanced lighting for the dam operators. There was a discussion about this possible addition.

c.  Tourism Development Authority (TDA): Commissioner Cameron thanked the TDA for their $100,000 contribution to support the new Lake Lure Boardwalk and Marina. 

d.  Status on the Visitors Center Project: Community Development Director Brad Burton provided an update on this project, advising that a request for proposals (RFP) had been sent out for this project.  He advised that two vendors expressed interest however the RFP was deficient in some specifications.  Mr. Burton as met with the architect who as agreed to put together a specification sheet and tighten it up to get a revised RFP out. 

e.  Awards of Appreciation: Mayor Pritchett presented awards of appreciation to outgoing Commissioners Bob Cameron and Stephen M. Webber in recognition of their dedicated public service and contributions to the Town of Lake Lure. They received a standing ovation from the Commissioners and the audience.

   

RECESS MEETING UNTIL DECEMBER 12TH AT 5:00 P.M. FOR THE FOLLOWING ITEMS:

  • Oath of Office Mayor, Carol C. Pritchett     
  • Oath of Office Commissioner, Christopher Patrick Bryant     
  • Oath of Office Commissioner, David Diorio     
  • Appointment of Mayor Pro Tempore
  • Appointment of Council Liaisons
  • Board Member Appointments
  • Request from Jim Hodges to Remove a Tree within the Lake Boundary
  • Set Minimum Bid Amount for the Commercial Strip Center,
  • Resolution No. 19-12-10B Authorizing Upset Bid Process
  • Adoption of the 2020 Town Council Meeting Schedule


7.    Adjournment

 

 


 

Regular Town Council Meeting Summary

November 12, 2019

 

 

1.  Mayor’s Communications: Mayor Carol Pritchett thanked everyone for attending the meeting and yielded her time to the updates from the Town Manager.

2.  Town Manager Shannon Baldwin’s Communications included the following updates:  

a.  Lake Drawdown Schedule: Kurt Wright, Consulting Engineer provided an overview of the lake drawdown schedule which begins on 12/1/19, The plan is to reduce the lake by one foot per day for repairs to the sewer system, continued dam assessment and replacement of the marina and boardwalk.  Additional details regarding the drawdown schedule and repairs will be shared on the website’s Town News and on Facebook.

b.  Hydro Repairs: Mr. Baldwin stated that the Town is maintaining close contact with George Eller, the State’s Dam Safety officer. Additional information on this topic will be forthcoming.

c.  Dam Structure: Mr. Baldwin reported that part of the Council’s motion was related to the use of grant funding that the Town received from a recent FEMA grant that was awarded for an assessment of the Dam’s spillway. Schnabel Engineering has been contracted to do this work as well as additional work on the Dam.  The budget amendment for this work has already been approved.

d.  Request for Quotations (RFQ): Mr. Baldwin shared that the Town released a new RFQ which has been forwarded to 19 engineers and posted on line for anyone with an interest.  He stated that h is staying in close contact with the NC Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and they are very pleased with this plan. He explained that the sewer system does not meet DEQ standards and therefore the Town has been piling up fines for some time.  The goal is to reach an agreement with DEQ to allow these funds to be used towards fixing the problem.  The Town will need to put the plan in writing to explicitly state what will be done to resolve the issues.  Mr. Baldwin stated that he felt the Town was forming a good partnership with DEQ to help us resolve the issues moving forward.

e.  Comprehensive Financial Analysis: Mr. Baldwin reported that the Town signed contract with WR Martin to complete a comprehensive financial analysis.  A meeting has been planned for 11/21/19 to begin discussions to support this effort.  

3.  Council Liaison Reports and Comments: Council Members provided updates on the following Town Boards.  Please click here for links to the latest meeting minutes and future meeting agendas.

f.    Utilities Advisory Board – Bob Cameron

g.    Lake Advisory Board – John Kilby

h.    Lake Structures Appeals Board

i.    Parks and Recreation Board – Stephen Webber

j.    ABC Board – John Kilby

4.  Public Comment: The public was invited to speak on any non-agenda and/or consent agenda topics.

•    Phil Reitano, 135 Hawks Nest Trail stated that he was speaking on behalf of the Rumbling Bald Resort.  He offered congratulations to Patrick Bryant and Dave DiOrio on their recent election.  He also thanked Stephen Webber and Bob Cameron for their service and Commissioners.

5.  Consent Agenda: the Consent Agenda was approved including the Adoption of the 10/8/19 Regular Town Council Minutes and the 10/15/19 Special Town Council Meeting Minutes, Budget Amendment 258 – Communications Specialist Position Hours, Budget Amendment 259 – Sewer Fines, Budget Amendment 260 – Butterfly Valves, and Appointing Members to TCC and TAC were all approved.

6.  Unfinished Business:

a.  Memorandum of Understanding between the Town of Lake Lure and the Hickory Nut Gorge Chamber of Commerce for Economic Development:  Town Manager Shannon Baldwin reviewed the MOU which was attached in the meeting packet. He added that staff had reviewed the MOU and made recommendations which were approved. John Moore recommended that Telecommunications be removed from the MOU and that the Utility Advisory Board have the oversight for this element. He also recommended that Parks and Recreation remain with the Parks and Recreation Board.  He added that there should be no dual applications submitted by the Chamber as the Town is the grant writer for all grant applications submitted on behalf of the Town.  Any grants that involve the Town must be approved by the Town Manager.   The MOU was approved.

b.  Hydro Operations – Drum Gate Hoist: A motion was approved to find a like-for-like replacement for an amount not to exceed $5,000.  It was noted that this work was routine maintenance.

c.  Hydro Operations –Butterfly Valve: Mr. Wright, Contract Engineer explained that there were two phases of this project, one which is interior and the second which is 2 exterior. Mr. Wright advised that there had been a discussion regarding replacement but the body of the valve is cast metal.  The recommendation was to rehabilitate verses a replacement. The proposal before Town Council was for Phase One of the project. Mr. Baldwin stated that he continues to keep DEQ informed on this process.  He advised that he spoke with George Eller on 11/12/19 and he thought this was routine maintenance which he recommended. A motion was approved for Budget Amendment 260 and to approve the contract with oversite from CDG not to exceed $10,000.  It was noted that this work was routine maintenance.

d.  Hydro Operations – Penstock: Mr. Wright referred to the table on Page 77, which references 4 levels of repairs. Mr. Eller, the Dam Safety Officer, advised that he would approve the level four work at $400K. He advised that it must be done when the lake is down by 9 feet.  It was noted that if the repairs cannot be made this year, then the hydro-electric plant cannot run until next year when the lake is lowered and the repairs are completed.  The Town stands to lose at least $500K in lost revenues. Finance Director Sam Karr confirmed that the money was available for these repairs.  A motion was approved to authorize level 4 work and to make a budget amendment.

7.  New Business: 

a.  The Appeal of a Civil Penalty from the Highlands Property Owners Association was postponed.

b.  Commercial Center: Mr. Baldwin advised that a bid had been received for the Commercial Center on 10/2/19 for $211,400. The bid was published 10/18/19 and no additional bids were received. He noted that the Town received a letter from Marathon Builders on 11/12/19. A motion was made to reopen the bid process again and to add a sign on the building. The motion was approved and the bid process will be reopened.

c.  Approval, Lake Advisory Board Regular Member Appointment, Board of Adjustment/Lake Structure Appeals Board Regular Member Appointment were postponed.

8.  Closed Session: A Closed Session was held in Accordance with G.S. 143-318.11(a) (3) for the Purpose of Discussing Attorney Client Privilege or Legal Claims.

9.  Adjournment: the meeting was adjourned.



 

Special Town Council Meeting Summary 

October 15, 2019 

 

1.   Welcome and Opening Remarks: Mayor Carol Pritchett called the meeting to order and asked Mayor Pro Tem John Moore to give the invocation.

Council members led the pledge of allegiance.

2. Resolution Authorizing the Upset Bid Process:  A resolution was presented to authorize an upset bid process for the property on the corner of Harris Road and Memorial Highway (US 64/74A), PIN 1604850, often referred to as the “strip center.”  The Town of Lake Lure has received an offer to purchase the property described above, in the amount of $211,400, submitted by KML Investments, LLC.  The resolution was approved with some minor revisions. Please click here to review the resolution in full.

3.  Schnabel Engineering Scope of Work: Town Manager Shannon Baldwin provided some background information on the scope of work being presented.  

•  He advised that the Town recently received the award letter for a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) High Hazard Dam Grant) $70,000 in the amount of $70,000.  

•  An effort was made to include hydro repairs in the grant; however, this grant was specifically limited to risk assessments, engineering analysis, specifications and other pre-construction activities associated with rehabilitation.  Hydroelectric repair was not allowable through this funding opportunity so the original scope of work related to the spillway assessment was submitted and approved.  

•  The total cost of this assessment is $138,000 and will require the Town to provide matching funds in the amount of $68,000.  

•  A request was made to make a budget amendment for this amount and it was approved.

•  Jonathan Pittman from Schnabel Engineering, briefed on the background of the Dam’s recent condition assessment.  He stated that the result of the assessment showed that the Dam was in fair condition, considering its age. There are some issues which must be addressed to meet the NC Dam Safety criteria. These issues have been defined and criteria that must be addressed for Dam Safety have been identified. This is the first step in the process is to assess rehabilitation and identify alternatives. Schnabel will present up to two rehabilitation alternatives to address the stability and spillway capacity. One of the changes made would discuss what’s required if you considered a replacement dam but that has not been evaluated in detail. Only what’s needed to upgrade the structure.

•  Ultimately the deliverable will be a report showing rehabilitation alternative concepts and costs.  This is what the State is looking for, clear steps that the Town is moving forward in the process. At the end of the day they want to see a rehabilitated dam that meets criteria. He stated that this will get us towards construction. The grant that was awarded may include construction funding in year 2 and 3 of the grant.

•  Shannon Baldwin stated that hydro long-term assessments need to be conducted as well. Mr. Pittman stated that there are some auxiliary things that need to be addressed but we need to look at the big picture first.

4.  Hydro-electric Repairs Review and Discussion: Town Manager Shannon Baldwin stated that there is a top priority to start hydro operation back up again sine it was stopped in August 2019 for safety reason.  

•  The Town has a good handle on the issues and Kurt Wright, the Town’s consulting engineer is working to secure bids for hoist replacement.

•  One bid was received previously and approved by Council.  Funds were approved to replace the hoist. The Town has asked Mr. Wright to help the Town move forward to resolve the safety issue with the penstock.  This is important to restart operations at the hydro-electric plant.

•  Consulting Engineer Kurt Wright stated that he completed a risk assessment of the plant. He summarized that although the water is used to make electricity, when you are moving water through the dam this becomes under the purview of the Dam Safety Office.

•  He stated there were three critical items involved; the drum gate, the butterfly valves, and the penstock itself. The butterfly valve has many components. The valve is operated from above and there has been so much pressure that it’s bending the gear, which is significant. The extra tension is probably from the components of the butterfly valve, which may be jammed. He added, that there were problems with both generators that needs to be addressed.  

•  It was discussed that the first step is a condition assessment of the penstock.  The following illustration was provided by Dave DiOrio.  There was a lengthy discussion.

 •  Town Manager Shannon Baldwin stated that on the business side, according to Finance Director Sam Karr, The Town had $800,000+ in savings generated from the hydro plant. He noted that the Town had overhead and employees they were paying to work in the hydro plant. He added that if the cost to repair the penstock comes back over $360,000, that money would have to be borrowed. He reported that $50,000 a month is what the Town was losing every month the generator is down.  He felt that we probably can continue, but we need an accurate assessment. He noted that the Town would have to borrow money to repair the Dam. Based on these expenses, the Town has asked WR Martin to provide a financial assessment and recommendations. He advised that the Town needed to understand the total of what the costs are and the total revenues to make the best decision.  There was a lengthy discussion.

•  Finance Director Sam Karr brought the budget amendment forward and it was approved.

5.  Adoption of the March 12, 2019 and October 8 2019 Closed Session Minutes: These minutes will be approved at the next regular Council Meeting.

6.  Adjournment: With no further business the meeting was adjourned.

 

 


 

Regular Town Council Meeting Summary

October 8, 2019 

 

 


1.    Welcome and Opening Remarks: Mayor Carol Pritchett called the meeting to order and asked Mayor Pro Tem John Moore to give the invocation.

Council members led the pledge of allegiance.

The Mayor thanked the Chamber for hosting the recent candidates forum. She encouraged everyone to exercise their right to vote in the upcoming election.

 

2.    Town Manager Updates: Town Manager Shannon Baldwin provided the following updates with respective department heads.

a.  Sewer System Updates: Town Manager Shannon Baldwin provided an update on sewer system stating that the Town relieved the previous engineering firm.  He advised that a new request for proposal had been developed for Town Council’s review.   Additionally he noted that he had been in touch with the NC Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and they were aware of where the Town was in the process.

b.  Chimney Rock State Park Egress: Mr. Baldwin reported on the Town Center and the plans for the Chimney Rock State Park egress. He mentioned that a meeting was held recently to discuss this plan with Chimney Rock State Park. They advised that funds were not currently available to support this project. The Isothermal Planning and Development Commission advised that they could assist with the planning for the impact on Town Center.

c.  West Side Connector: Mr. Baldwin then reported on the West Side Connector stating that a couple of meetings had been held to discuss this project. He advised that the Town and Rumbling Bald Resort were supportive of the project.  He reported that the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NC DOT) agreed to explore what it would cost to create the road. 

d.  Speed Limit Signs: Community Development Director Brad Burton provided an update on speed limit signs planned in front  of the Beach noting that staff met with NCDOT officials to discuss this project.  NCDOT is okay with non-flashing speed measurement signage as long as it meets encroachment regulations. Mr. Burton has received preliminary pricing for potential signage. Mr. Burton stated that he does not believe that a seasonal speed limits are an option based on feedback from NCDOT officials.

e.  FEMA High Hazard Potential Dam Grant: Communications Specialist and Grants Coordinator Laura Krejci provided an update on the FEMA grant. She stated that the state was able to complete a modified mitigation plan which allowed FEMA to provide the state with approximately $160k in grant funds.  There were 5 grant applicants in NC and NC DEQ has been encouraging about Lake Lure receiving a portion of these grant funds for engineering design, assessment and  planning.

3. Public Hearing: Proposed Resolution Authorizing the Town of Lake Lure to Enter into an Installation Purchase Contract of Approximately $1.1 Million to Finance the Cost of the Marina Expansion and Boardwalk Replacement

•  Finance Director Sam Karr gave an overview of the proposed resolution and Town Manager Shannon Baldwin stated that Town staff held a teleconference with Local Government Commission (LGC) staff and received positive feedback.

•    Parks, Recreation and Lake Director Dean Givens explained that the cost of the project is an estimate at this time. Bids and official costs will be presented and considered for approval at a later date.

•    The motion to adopt the resolution passed unanimously authorizing the Town of Lake Lure to enter into an installment purchase contract of approximately $1.1 million to finance the cost of marina expansion and boardwalk replacement. The motion carried 4-0.

4. Board Liaison Reports: Please click here for links to the latest meeting minutes and future meeting agendas.

•  Commissioner Bob Cameron reported the activities of the Utilities Advisory Board.

•  Commissioner John Kilby reported the activities of the Lake Advisory Board and the ABC Board.

•  Commissioner John Moore reported that the Zoning and Planning Board did not meet this month.

•  Commissioner Stephen Webber reported the activities of the Parks and Recreation Board     and mentioned that the Board of Adjustment and the Lake Structures Appeals Board did not meet.

•  Commissioner John Kilby advised that as the end of the calendar year approaches and appointments encouraged citizens to fill out an applications for Town Boards that they may be interested in serving on.

5. Public Forum: Mayor Pritchett invited the audience to speak and no one requested to speak at this time. 

6. Consent Agenda: The following items were approved unanimously.

A.    Adopt the September 10, 2019 Regular Meeting Minutes and the September 20, 2019 Special Joint Town Council and UAB Minutes with minor edits.

B.    Budget Adjustment BA# 255 - New Fire Truck Body


7.  New Business:

A.  Request for Quotes for Professional Engineering Services: Town Manager Shannon Baldwin stated that the Town of Lake Lure is seeking consultants to provide qualifications for On-Call Professional Engineering Services. The term of the possible contract will be through June 30, 2022 with options to renew.  The motion carried 4-0.

B.  Hydro-electric Penstock – Risk Assessment Report: Kurt Wright, President of SDG Engineering, Inc., reviewed  the Risk Assessment Report and stated that the purpose of this report is to provide the Town with information on a critical piece of infrastructure at the Dam, the Penstock.  He explained that SDG Engineering, Inc. was retained by the Town to provide limited program management and professional engineering services to assist with several simultaneous infrastructure projects, two of which are the structural integrity of the Dam and the Powerhouse located at the Dam.  Mr. Wright reported that Ron Thomas has extensive pipeline condition assessment experience and he conducted a peer review of the document along with two other experienced engineers.  A motion was made to accept the report as presented and the motion carried 4-0.

C.  Schnabel Engineering Proposal – Task Order #3 as Revised – Hydro Repairs and “Go/No Go Assessment” and Budget Adjustment #256: Town Manager Shannon Baldwin stated that Town staff received feedback from DEQ this afternoon asking that the Town go back and re-scope the FEMA grant proposal that was going to include this project.  He recommended we table this proposal and schedule a workshop with Schnabel Engineering.  Schnabel Engineering representatives provided dates they were available for the workshop.   A workshop was confirmed at the Town of Lake Lure Municipal Center on Tuesday, October 15 at 9 a.m.


Town Manager Shannon Baldwin explained that the Budget Amendment would cover the cost for Schnabel Engineering to conduct an assessment of hydro-electric facility operations, develop plans for repairs and compare overall big picture costs to revenues to facilitate a “Go, No-Go Analysis.”  Schnabel Engineering was asked to submit a proposal to guide the Town to restart the hydroelectric operations in a safe manner.  There are three primary elements now deemed deficient for safe hydro-electric operations; the Intake gate hoist, the penstock and the butterfly valves.   This proposal was recently submitted to the Utility Advisory Board (UAB) for review and recommendation.  The UAB recommended approval to Town Council.

A motion was made to approve Budget Amendment 256 and adopt the Schnabel Engineering proposal as  submitted after the Town receives final word regarding the grant being administered by the NC Dam Safety Office. The motion carried 4-0.


D.  WR Martin Proposal – Comprehensive Analysis and Budget Amendment 257:  Town Manager Shannon Baldwin stated that the Budget Amendment would cover the cost for a comprehensive financial analysis for the Town’s general and enterprise funds, including current capital improvements plans for those funds. WR Martin was asked to submit a proposal to allow the Town to augment existing staff resources to:

•  Secure financial resources from outside entities, like the NC General Assembly, etc.

•  Develop a long term strategy for financing all infrastructure projects

•  Gain a better understanding of our capital costs

•  Assess our ability to self-fund our needs

    Total Cost:  Not to Exceed $39,000

This proposal was recently submitted to the Utility Advisory Board (UAB) for review and recommendation.  The UAB recommended approval by Town Council.

Representatives from WR Martin explained that the scope of services proposed that they develop a model that looks at that history and look forward 10 years, identifying alternatives for funding the capital projects.  The goal would be a to develop a system that would allow the Town to manage expenses over the next 10 years. A motion was made to approve the proposal and the motion carried 4-0.

Commissioner Kilby commended that Town staff have done great job of collecting information so Council could make informed decisions.

E.  Upset Bid for Commercial Center at Harris Road and Memorial Highway: Town Manager Shannon Baldwin reported that Town Council had received an offer from KML Investments, LLC to purchase the property and building known as the Commercial Center at the corner of Harris Road and Memorial Highway (US 64/74A), PIN 1604850.  The offer was for the sum of $211,400.00; $10,570 refundable earnest money deposit and $200,830 in cash at closing. Town Council must set a time and date to start the upset bid process. At that time bids will be opened, and the highest such bid will become the new offer. If there is more than one bid in the highest amount, the first such bid received will become the new offer.

Attorney William Morgan explained the upset bid process. A motion was made to start the upset bid price as soon as the information could be published in the local paper. The motion carried 4-0.

F.  Closed Session: Council made a motion to enter into a closed session which carried 4-0.  The motion carried 4-0.

While in Closed Session, Council discussed the Lucia Hodge lawsuit.

F.  Adjournment: With no further business, the meeting was adjourned.

 

 


 

Regular Town Council Meeting Summary

September 10, 2019 

 

1.    Welcome and Opening Remarks: Mayor Carol Pritchett called the meeting to order and gave the invocation. Council members led the pledge of allegiance.

Mayor Carol Pritchett provided opening remarks and shared her vision for her role as Mayor. She stated that someone had asked her what she wanted her legacy to be.  She stated that although she was not concerned with her legacy she saw her role as preserving Lake Lure for her children and grandchildren. She thanked the Town Manager and Town staff for their work and said she had been impressed by the quality and dedication of the team that had been built.  She stated that a project list was being developed for review by the Town Council to prioritize the ongoing work of the Town. She advised that she was working with Town leaders to refine the Town’s financial plan that would support the project list. She thanks the audience for their attendance and asked the Town Manager to provide further updates.


2.    Town Manager Updates:
Town Manager Shannon Baldwin provided the following updates with respective department heads.


a.    Dam: The Town is working with Schnabel Engineering to develop a scope of work to address the structural issues. A scope of work was developed and FEMA offered a grant it was discovered and later found out the grant would not be available for the hydro repairs. The state completed their requirements for the grant application. We’ve been told we could possibly get funding but the scope of work is being tweeted and is underway.


b.    Hydroelectric Plant: Mr. Baldwin reported on the hydroelectric plant stating that the lower turbine bearing has been replaced. While the generator was shut down, staff did not have the ability to shut off the hoist. Repairs are underway for the butterfly valves.  A contract is underway for these repairs. The estimated time for repair of the large generator is unknown. Schnabel Engineering has been consulted to assess the entire hydroelectric operation and to determine needed repairs. There is a sense of urgency and this has been expedited. 

c.    Sewer System Updates: Mr. Baldwin stated that the Town received the final report from Bunnell-Lammons Engineering, Inc. (BLE).  The estimate for the low pressure system is $30 million. The Town has previously been approved for a $12.5 million loan and the Town has been approved for, paperwork not finished yet, only 10.5 million can be reused.


Public Works Director David Arrowood mentioned that we may need to back up and look at the concept that was in the Engineering Report and meet with the State to think this through further. Mr. Arrowood provided a report on the sludge at the Waste Water Treatment Plant (WWTP).  He reported that over the last several years, the Town has been spending excessive amounts on sludge removal. Over the last 6-8 months, geo-tubes have been installed and are operational, but the process is not moving as quickly as we thought it would. That whole system is saturated and full of sludge.  Rather than spending that money each year to maintain current levels, it might be time to spend the time to remove the sludge completely out of the system and then maintain using the geo-tubes at a cheaper rate. Several budget amendments would be needed to keep this up if something isn’t done to eliminate the main problem. The sludge has been building up for years and it’s challenging to catch up because the plant is so full of sludge. Commissioner John Moore asked if the remaining funds that have been budgeted could be used to address the sludge. A budget amendment would be required. Mr. Arrowood stated he would like the Engineer to assess the situation and recommend a company that could come in and remove the sludge. The cost would have to be confirmed.

d.    Water Interconnect: Mr. Arrowood thanked Bob Cameron for his help with this project. He reported that the engineers estimate on the project is around $200,000. Laura Krejci has been working with the engineers to explore grants that might support this work.  This project had been budgeted at $75,000. Mr. Baldwin added that the project is budget for next year and we are working to secure the site this year.

e.    Wi-Fi: Community Development Director, Brad Burton, reported on Wi-Fi in the downtown area explaining that proposals have been submitted and are under review. The attorney has provided his feedback and the recommendation will be presented at the next Town Council meeting. 

f.    Permits for Working on the Lake: Mr. Burton provided an update on the Lake Drawdown and permits needed for those working on the lake during this time.  Staff will be meeting with the Army Corps of Engineers and they are presenting them with questions with a goal to get information out in the near future. They will coordinate with Laura Krejci to post guidance for all who need this information. 

g.    Boardwalk and Marina:

•    Parks, Recreation, and Lake Director Dean Givens provided an update on the Boardwalk and Marina noting that a Request for Proposals has gone out for renovation and proposals are due on 9/16/19. 

•    A bid opening will be conducted to determine the cost to tear down the existing boardwalk. 

•    Finance Director Sam Karr is overseeing the financial aspects of the project.

•    The numbers are critical to bring to the Local Government Commission (LGC) for approval of the project.

•    The earliest we can get on the LGC agenda is December.

•    We are also working on a timeline on how long it will cost to get the docks and the construction completed and this may run into spring.

•    It is possible there could be two different contractors for demolition and construction and a barge will be needed for this project.

•    We are working on permitting with the State through the Army Corps of Engineers.

•    Community Development Director Brad will then issue a demolition permit for the demolition of the boardwalk.

•    Mr. Baldwin mentioned that if the timeline is tight and falls into tourist season, we may carry the project to the next year so we will have financing in place and will not affect tourism, but we are hopeful we can complete the project before tourist season.

•    Mr. Givens noted we could build the boardwalk around the Beach area first to be available in time for tourist season as an option and then we can put on the fingers of the slips.

h.    Bears Safety: Mr. Givens reported on bears in the community stating that NC Wildlife is coming to Rumbling Bald Resort (RBR) to provide education to the Town on 9/24/19 at 6PM at Lakeview Terrace Restaurant.

•    Town Staff spoke with the NC Wildlife Commission and relocation of bears as discussed at the last Town Council Meeting is not possible. 

•    They have a Bear Wise Program which is focused on community education and the goal is to teach people how to live in harmony with bears.

•    It was noted that regulations are in place for Vacation Rentals to have bear proof trash receptacles and this seems to be the biggest source of the problem in with bears locally.

•    Mr. Krejci has posted the BearWise Basics Education on the Town Website and shared the information on Facebook.  She has also posted the education session coming up with the BearWise team. 

i.    Grant Update: Communications Specialist Laura Krejci provided an update on grants noting that we are seeking grants for infrastructure and community needs.

•    One of the grants we have applied for is a federal grant through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

•    Last month she advised that she had been informed that the State had not completed their risk and mitigation plan for High Hazard Dams and therefor no applicants from NC were not eligible for consideration for the grant.

•    Since this is a federal grant, we were a subapplicant through the Dept. of Quality to FEMA.

•    DEQ is now working with FEMA on a process to rate and rank applications for the State; however the grant totals are significantly reduced to $159,000 for the entire State and there were 5 applicants.  Our original application was for $305,000.

•    She was told we would potentially receive an award letter but the application may have to be revised at a much lower amount as the funding has been reduced.

•    She will keep everyone posted as we learn more specifics but we are encouraged that we may receive some funding.

•    She stated she attended a recent training session with the NC Division of Water on their grant process.

•    She is working closely with engineering firms to help coordinate the process with these grants and low interest loans.

•    One loan application is scheduled to go forward with Brown Engineering to the State Revolving Fund.

•    Two other grants have potential in 2020, depending on the timing and progression of the sewer system project.

j.    Events: Ms. Krejci provided an update on events and provided the Board a list of upcoming events.

•    Some events are sponsored by the Chamber where she serves as a member of the Board, representing the Town.  

•    She thanked everyone who is volunteering for the Dirty Dancing Festival this coming weekend.

•    She stated the Chamber has hosted this festival for many years and this is the 10th anniversary for this festival, which starts Friday night, 9/13/19 from 5-11 with a movie played on large screen in Morse Park, 9-5 on Saturday, 9/14/19.

•    Online pre-sale tickets have been very positive for both Friday and Saturday.

•    She noted we have worked closed with the FD and PD for safety. We’ve had lots of exposure in the news.

•    Town Council Board Appreciation Picnic: We are having an indoor picnic this month to honor the board members on their valuable service.

•    Candidate Forums: The Chamber is hosting two candidates’ forums for those running for Office.  One will be held in RBR on 1/1/19 at 5:30 PM and one will be in Town Hall on 10/3/19 at 5:30.

•    She mentioned other upcoming events.


k.    Buffalo Creek Road: Fire Chief Dustin Waycaster provided an update on the Buffalo Creek Road landslide stating that it has not been moving. 

•    He noted that they have met with NCDOT and temporary repairs have been made by creating a gravel road.

•    NCDOT noted that the landslide will move at some point in the future but a permanent solution has not yet been made because of the high costs.

•    NCDOT will hold a public meeting with the community to receive their input on solutions.  Plans for a permanent solution may need to be adjusted and they consider recommendations. 

•    Ms. Krejci will post notices on the Town Website when this meeting is scheduled.  

•    The latest information from NCDOT on the Buffalo Creek Road area is posted under Town News. 


3.    Council Liaison Reports: Please click here for links to the latest meeting minutes and future meeting agendas.

•    Commissioner Bob Cameron reported the activities of the Utilities Advisory Board.

•    Commissioner John Kilby reported the activities of the Lake Advisory Board and the ABC Board.

•    Commissioner John Moore reported the activities of the Zoning and Planning Board.

•    Commissioner Stephen Webber reported the activities of the Parks and Recreation Board     and the Board of Adjustment, and mentioned that the Lake Structures Appeals Board did not meet.

4.    Public Forum: Mayor Carol Pritchett invited the audience to speak.

•    Ronnie Wood from 355 Shady Grove commented on his concerns regarding a house was moved down the hill closer to his property line.   

Mr. Burton noted that Mr. Wood has not been happy since the beginning of his property. There was a lengthy discussion about the issues but Mr. Burton stated that legally nothing has been done wrong. 

5.    Consent Agenda: Mayor Carol Pritchett presented the Consent Agenda and asked if any other items should be removed before calling for action.  The Consent Agenda incorporating the following items was unanimously approved and adopted:

•    Adopt the August 13, 2019 Regular Meeting Minutes 

6.    New Business:

a.    Consider an option and activate the upset bid process relative to the commercial center: Community Development Director Brad Burton reported that the original purchase of the Commercial Center was recommended as a relocation for the ABC Store from its current location.

•    The goal was to market that site for a higher, more efficient use.

•    Since its purchase in Jan. 2016 new discoveries at this new location have been made. Based upon a proposal estimate and conversations he’s had with the two respondents to the initial RFP, there is a consistent range for price of this project which is $475,500.

•    A new proposed legislation may directly effect this project if we can remain in the business to sell liquor.

•    There has been an interest from someone to entertain an offer on this property.

•    Is there a desire to start the upset bid process or a desire to ask for RFP’s and enhanced drawings on the addendum.

•    There were only two out of ten contractors who expressed some interest.

•    It was determined that one of the problems there was a lack of information and he met with design professionals who provided some additional information.

•    He’s ready to send out RFP’s now if Council would like.

•    The RFP was for one project (Commercial Center or the Welcome Center Bathrooms), or both projects.

•    The two respondents are for the Commercial Center only, not the Welcome Center.  The number is only for the Commercial Center.

•    Commercial Webber stated he would like the results of the geotechnical summary before a decision can be made.

•    Mr. Burton stated that SMNE did numerous site borings and they have alluvial soils. Soils as a product of dredging.

•    The results were three options. The first is if the Town is desirous of a single story light structure.  There would be necessary soil remediation work but it’s doable. Anything more than that is some advanced type footing systems requiring more mediation to that site. 

•      Commissioner John Moore suggested going forward with the upset bid process and relay information.  Commissioner John Moore made a motion to entertain bids on the Strip Center using the upset bid process. Commissioner Bob Cameron seconded and the motion carried 4-0.

7.    Adjournment: With no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 6:31 p.m.  


  

 

Regular Town Council Meeting Summary

August 13, 2019 


1.    Mayor Pro Tem Remarks:

•    Resolution Honoring Mayor Kevin Cooley Mayor: Pro Tem John Moore presented Yvonne Cooley with a resolution honoring Mayor Kevin Cooley and denoting his many contributions to the Town.  There was a brief reception for Mrs. Cooley.

•    Congressman Patrick McHenry: Congressman Patrick McHenry visited Lake Lure on 8/7/19 and held a public forum here in Town Hall.  It was obvious that he is aware of the infrastructure issues that our Town is working on.  He discussed the Town’s investment in infrastructure and he mentioned that he has written a letter of support for our grant application for the dam.

    Duke Energy Power Enhancements: In February 2019 a public meeting was held here in Town Hall with Duke Energy to discuss improving local power service.  Special thanks to Pat Buede for working with Town staff to host this meeting.  We believe this forum and the Town’s continuous dialogue and coordination with Duke Energy Officials has made an impact.  Duke Energy has announced that they are about to begin work on a project that will help to increase reliability to the Lake Lure area. From August to around mid-November, multiple crews will be working to upgrade the feeder tie that runs south down Hwy 9 to the Mill Springs area. This will include installing bigger wire and taller poles. This is part of Duke's long range strategy to enhance reliability to Lake Lure by strengthening the ties to other feeders and substations in the area. Much of the work will be done right along Hwy 9 so motorists are encouraged to be aware of work zones and pay attention to flaggers.  We expect there will be occasional lane closures, but crews will work to minimize impacts to the public. We are pleased this project is being implemented this fall and look forward to the benefits that this long term strategy will bring to customers in our area.

•    Infrastructure: The Town of Lake Lure is working hard to address these State mandated infrastructure repairs, renovations and replacements that are needed to maintain our beautiful Town for our citizens and for all those who visit the Hickory Nut Gorge.  

•    Events: In addition to this challenging work, our Town is gearing up to support year-round activities and events that will attract visitors and future citizens to our area.  We hope you will support these upcoming festivals which have become signature events for our Town. Please click here to learn more about upcoming events. :

    August 24, 2019: The PAWS Pet Fest will be held in Morse Park

    September 13-14, 2019: Dirty Dancing Festival Sponsored by the Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge

    October 19-20, 2019: Lake Lure Arts and Crafts Festival Sponsored by the Hickory Nut Gorge

Outreach

    November 9, 2019: Lake Lure Annual Artist Show and Sale Sponsored by the Lake Lure Artists

    Elections: As we continue our work to enhance the beauty and infrastructure of Lake Lure, we will be electing new officials that will support this ongoing work.  Your participation in this process if critical and I encourage you all to get out and vote in November.


2.    Town Manager Updates:

•    Town Staff Evaluations: Town Manager, Shannon Baldwin, noted that employee evaluations will be conducted in 9/18.

•    Dam Updates: David Arrowood, Public Works Director, provided an update on the Dam stating that the contract with Schnabel Engineering is pending confirmation on the dam grant. He noted that the contract with Clifton Power Company has been signed and he expects to begin work on the small generator in the next 30 days.

•    Sewer System Updates: Mr. Arrowood provided an update on the sewer system stating that the Town has spoken with the State about the valve on the sewer line. Regarding the interconnect, there are three different permitted systems that are being tested and sampled. If the interconnect is it would make the whole system complete. If it’s not put into place, some systems will be limited. He recommended that it be considered to join the systems into one.

•    Strategic Communications Plan: Laura Krejci, Communications/Events/Grants Coordinator, briefed Council on the Strategic Communications Plan mentioning that the plan is focused on how the community can work with national and state organizations to support critical infrastructure projects in Lake Lure including renovation and repairs for the dam, the sewer system, planning for the Chimney Rock State Park egress, a coordinated plan with NCDOT to address the bridge over the Dam, and dredging to sustain the lake. We have worked with local legislative representatives to identify key partners that can assist moving forward. The focus is very positive and is about building on Lake Lure’s history and innovation.  Our goal is to identify what we can do as a community to work with the State and Federal Government to support our infrastructure needs.  We will present this plan to Council in the coming weeks to get their input.  

•    High Hazard Dam Grant: Ms. Krejci briefed Council on the status of the FEMA High Hazard Dam Grant.  The Town is a sub-applicant with the State on this grant application.  The Town received word from the State on 8/13/19 that unfortunately the State has not completed their risk and mitigation plan for high hazard dams and therefor no NC applicants are eligible to apply at this time.   The good news is that there will another opportunity for the application to be considered once the State completes their plan. The focus of this grants is on design, planning, and engineering. Commissioner Stephen Webber asked how this affects this phase of the timeline. Mr. Baldwin stated that we will be coming back to Council in September with additional information.

•    Wi-Fi: Community Development Director, Brad Burton, provided an update on Town Wi-Fi noting that we have received proposals following our recent Request for Proposals (RFP).  He met with the Town Attorney last week to go through the proposals and he plans to present a report on their findings at the next meeting.

•    Commercial Center: Mr. Burton provided an update on the Commercial Center stating that an RFP had gone out for renovations and packets were due this week.  He has spoken with those who planned to bid on the project and they are requesting additional information. He is meeting with the Town’s design consultants to discuss this request and hopefully to be able to provide the additional information to those bidding on the project.  


3.  Council Liaison Reports:

•    Commissioner Bob Cameron reported the activities of the Utilities Advisory Board.

•    Commissioner John Kilby reported the activities of the Lake Advisory Board and the ABC Board.

•    Mayor Pro Tem John Moore noted that the Zoning and Planning Board did not meet.

•    Commissioner Stephen Webber reported the activities of the Parks and Recreation Board and mentioned that the Board of Adjustment, and the Lake Structures Appeals Board did not meet.

•    Please click here for minutes from these meetings. 

4. Public Forum: Mayor Pro Tem John Moore invited the audience to speak and no one requested to speak at this time.

5. Consent Agenda: The Consent Agenda was adopted with minor edits to the minutes.

A.    Adopt the July 9, 2019 Regular Meeting Minutes

B.    Suspension of Chapter 61: “Peddlers” of the Code of Ordinances for the 10th Annual Dirty Dancing Festival and Approval of a Fabric Structure Permit

C.    Suspension of Chapter 61: “Peddlers” of the Code of Ordinances for the 3rd Annual PAWS Pet Fest in Morse Park on August 24, 2019.

D.    Budget Amendments #252-254, Gate Valve, Gate Hoist, Bearing Work

E.    Resolution No. 19-08-13A Acknowledging Michael Stead who is a long-time property owner in the Town of Lake Lure.  He recognized the opportunity for public benefit and the enjoyment of all concerning river access and passive recreation on this property along the Broad River and he offered to donate his property to The Town. Town Council formally acknowledges these efforts, accepts this donation of land, and expresses its gratitude to Mr. Michael Stead for his gracious contribution to the Town’s Parks and Recreation system.


6. New Business:  

a.  Bears: Commissioner Bob Cameron asked that Council and Town Staff speak with Wildlife to try and relocate bears. He suggested having a meeting with Wildlife to speak with them about the bear problem in the community and stated that it needs to be addressed. Commissioner John Kilby pointed out that there used to be a bear club in Lake Lure years ago which is no longer operating in the Town. Brad Burton stated that his department deals with nuisance abatement and stated that bears seem to get into trash cans of vacation renters a lot and stated that vacation rentals must have animal resistant trash receptacles.  Town Manager, Shannon Baldwin indicated that Town Staff would look into this matter and keep Town Council advised.

b.  Resolution Appointing a New Mayor: Mayor Pro Tem John Moore read Resolution No. 19-08-13B, appointing Carol C. Pritchett as Mayor to serve Kevin Cooley’s unexpired term.  The motion carried 4-0.

c. Oath of Office: Town Clerk, Michelle Jolley, administered the oath of office to newly elected Mayor Carol C. Pritchett to be effective as of August 14, 2019.  

d.  Marine Commission Meeting in September: Commissioner John Kilby mentioned that a subcommittee discussing the boat permitting system will not be ready to present to the Marine   Commission in September and the LAB has asked that we postpone the next meeting until October. Council discussed and agreed to cancel the September meeting.

7. Adjournment: The meeting was adjourned.

 


 

Regular Town Council Meeting Summary

July 9, 2019  

 

1)    WELCOME: Mayor Pro Tem John Moore called the 7/9/19 meeting to order and gave the invocation. Council members led the pledge of allegiance. Please click here to download the meeting packet. The following is a synopsis of the meeting.

 A. Mayor Pro Tem Communications: Mayor Pro Tem John Moore provided the following updates:

1.    Tribute to Mayor Cooley in July Issue of the Mountain Breeze: A copy of the tribute to Mayor Cooley was distributed to those at the meeting.  The Tribute was published in the Mountain Breeze and you may click here to read the tribute.


2.    Everbridge: Everbridge now has over 1,000 people registered and the Town will transition into the new system in December.  Those in attendance were given a handout with instructions on how to register.  You may click here to learn more and register for Everbridge.


3.    Fireworks: This is the first year the Town hosted the July 3rd Fireworks Event and we are pleased to report that from all indicators, the event was a success.  There were many positive comments on the Facebook page.


4.    Mountains Branch Library: The Lake Lure Library sponsors a Books and Bites series each year and they have brought some very talented authors to Town.  Today, the Friends of the Library hosted Jonathan Putnam who came over from London to present his latest book in a series of historical novels.  Today he debuted his book, “A House Divided.”  The author was well received. 


5.    Buffalo Creek Park Clean Up Day: The Town of Lake Lure, NC and Rutherford Outdoor Coalition (ROC) held a workday at Buffalo Creek Park on Monday, 7/8/18.  Thanks to all those who showed up to help repair erosion issues along the trail. We appreciate the support from the community and of Rutherford Outdoor Coalition in helping to maintain the trails.


6.    Buffalo Creek Rd: Mayor Pro Tem Moore reported that he attended a meeting last week with the NC Dept. of Transportation at Rumbling Bald Resort.  The engineers showed their plans for road repairs at the landslide on.  They described the slide as an ancient “Large, Slow Moving Landslide” (which they said is actually a technical engineering term).  They have been monitoring the slide and said that it has not moved in the past several months but that it could begin moving again at any time depending mostly on how much rainfall we have.  The slide is about 300 feet from bottom to top and about 200 feet in length and Buffalo Creek Rd goes through the center. The engineers and geologists are convinced that the slide will continue moving toward Bald Mountain Lake but don’t know when the next movement might occur.  It depends on how saturated with water the soil becomes.  In the past it has moved on average about once every ten years.The plan now is to repair the 200 feet of road with gravel and to begin orking with RBR and property owners to acquire a right of way to go around the slide using Chalet Rd., part of Village Rd. and part of Young’s Mt. Rd.  When the new road is complete, Buffalo Creek Rd. will have a cul-de-sac on each side of the slide. 

7.    Lake Lure - 10 Best Lake Towns in North America: The Town of Lake Lure, NC was recently listed as one of Ten Best Lake Towns in North America by SmarterTravel.(SmarterTravel provides independent expert advice and unbiased reviews for the best travel deals, destinations, and money-saving travel tips.)  We appreciate having this recognition.

8.    Upcoming Events:


•    8/9-11/19: 15th Annual Lake Lure Olympiad


•    8/21/19: Mountain Branch Library will host the next Books and Bites Author, Mary Alice Monroe, another popular author who will be presenting her latest novel, “The Summer Games”.


•    9/9/19 from 9:00-4:00 at Town Hall: Lake Lure Annual Artist Show and Sale


•    9/13-14/19: Dirty Dancing Festival


•    10/19-20/19: Lake Lure Arts and Crafts Festival


2)  National Award: A presentation was made by Conserving Carolina . Weed Patch Mountain Trail has been recognized as one of the best new trails in the nation. Conserving Carolina partnered with the Town of Lake Lure to create the Weed Patch Mountain Trail in only one year in 2017. In addition to designing the trail, the land trust helped fund the project through private donations to supplement the Town’s Recreational Trails Program grant. It also facilitated the creation of the Town’s 1,500-acre Buffalo Creek Park through which the trail traverses, and its permanent protection via a conservation easement.  Weed Patch Mountain Trail travels for 8.6 miles through the Town of Lake Lure’s Buffalo Creek Park and connects to Chimney Rock State Park. It offers stunning scenery and backcountry adventure for both hikers and mountain bikers. It also provides the first access to Eagle Rock, a newly established destination for rock climbers. Its spur trail to Eagle Rock in Chimney Rock State Park passes through a natural rock tunnel. 


“This is an outstanding achievement, and I join Conserving Carolina’s members, volunteers, and the surrounding communities in celebrating this honor,” said Senator Thom Tillis. “As an avid outdoorsman, I stand in awe of the spectacular views and natural beauty of North Carolina…"

3) Town Manager Communications: Shannon Baldwin 


•    Town Staff: Town Manager Shannon Baldwin pointed out that Mr. Givens was appointed to the new merged Parks, Recreation, and Lake Department and Mr. Murphy was appointed to that department. He stated that Brad Burton was elevated to the Community Development Director position. He stated that the budget project went smoothly, resulting in a tax deduction. He mentioned that he felt communication has increased with Laura Krejci serving in her role as the Communications Specialist. He stated that Mr. Arrowood has done a wonderful job overseeing the dam and sewer projects. He stated that both chiefs have managed storms well noting. He recognized all their hard work.

•    Dam and Sewer Updates: David Arrowood provided an update on the Dam stating that the NCLM visited, did an inspection, and we have been working with them. After discussion we are getting closer to where we need to be and another on-site visit with the NCLM will happen soon noting that things are coming together. He stated that the small generator contract is done and sent to Charlie awaiting his signature. Once he signs we can move forward with completing repairs to the small generator. He recognized Commissioner Cameron and his work with Schnabel Engineering in trying to reduce fees. After some discussions numbers were drastically reduced and things are moving forward with the hoist and penstock repairs. Commissioner Webber asked about the flow meter at the Chimney Rock line being removed. Mr. Arrowood stated the meter was put in for a short period of time and there was some high flows on there per day but stated the flow meter was not set up to compare what happened during weather events. He stated he spoke with the Rural Water Association noting they offer services to the Town at no cost and have offered to let the Town use more flow meters and we are in the process to get those to put in other areas around the lake for further information to try and locate where issues are.

•    Sewer System Updates: Mr. Baldwin provided an update on the sewer system stating that the engineering report was submitted to NCDEQ and we’re finishing up on that. We worked with a geotechnical engineer, BLE Engineering, who is running ground engineering radar to take boring samples to find rock. The report should be done, except for the financing piece. 

•    Wi Fi: Mr. Baldwin then reported on downtown Wi-Fi mentioning that he provided graphs from Ron Walters with Pangea. An RFP was sent out to enhance Wi-Fi in the downtown area around Morse Park and the campground area. He stated there is an engineering firm working on site engineering in Town and that project is at a standstill but will in the works.

•    Lake Patrol: Sean Humphries provided a report on lake patrol mentioning that a calendar was provided in the packet showing lake patrol on the weekends by reserve officers. He stated that full-time officers will patrol the lake during the week as they have time between calls and road patrol. Commissioner Kilby mentioned that the new boat is very visible and felt that has made a difference in seeing it on the lake.

•    arks, Recreation & Lake Updates: Parks, Recreation & Lake Director Dean Givens provided an update on dredging stating that lake mapping has been completed and he has the maps now. He stated that restoration on Boys Camp Road recovery material is underway and targeting September to be completed ready for dredging. He stated that we hope to begin dredging late September early October noting that the priority of dredging areas is not set in stone but the Marina Bay needs dredge work before the docks can be placed. He noted that he would then move to the main area and then back into the river working on the catch basin. Mr. Givens stated that Tim Edwards will dredge more as he needs the material. Commissioner Cameron asked that Mr. Givens send the digital maps to Council.

•    Fireworks: Laura Krejci provided a report on the July 3rd fireworks events recognizing the co-chairs of this event, the Chamber of HNG, HNG Outreach, Riverside Center and Riverside Event Center and acknowledged others who helped with this event. She stated that the big areas being assessed are parking, trash, and the fireworks itself and asked for Council’s thoughts. She stated that she estimates around 3,000 at this event.

4) Public Hearings:

A. Ordinance 19-07-09, an ordinance allowing permitted mobile food vendors to operate during town-sanctioned special events in areas specifically designated outside of town owned property or the GU zoning district.

B. Ordinance 19-07-09A, to amend § 92.101(D) of the Zoning Regulations, “Non Conforming Structures.


5) Council Liaison Reports and Comments

•    Commissioner Bob Cameron reported the activities of the Utilities Advisory Board.


•    Commissioner John Kilby reported the activities of the ABC Board and the Lake Advisory Board.


•    Mayor Pro Tem John Moore reported the activities of the Zoning and Planning Board.


•    Commissioner Stephen Webber reported the activities of the Lake Structures Appeals Board and the Parks and Recreation Board.       


6) Public Comment: The public is invited to speak on any non-agenda and/or consent agenda topics. 

•    Ms. Pat Buede spoke with Town Council regarding her concerns for the budget and potential increased taxes.  Mr. Sam Karr, Finance Director agreed to meet with her to review the budget.


7) Consent Agenda:

A.    Adoption of the June 11, 2019 Regular Town Council Minutes, the June 21, 2019 Special Town Council Minutes, and the June 26, 2019 Special Town Council Minutes

B.  Request from Amy Wald to waive the Peddling Ordinance for the Lake Lure Art Show on November 9, 2019

C. Resolution No. 19-07-09 Intent to Reimburse 


8) Adjournment: The meeting was adjourned at approximately 7:00 PM. 


 


 

Regular Town Council Meeting Summary

June 11, 2019 

 

WELCOME: Mayor Pro Tem John Moore called the 6/11/19 meeting to order and gave the invocation. Council members led the pledge of allegiance.

The following is a synopsis of the meeting.
 
A. Mayor Pro Tem Communications: John Moore
 
1. Chamber Recharge:  On 5/22/19, the Town of Lake Lure Management Team hosted the Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge Recharge Meeting.  We had around 60 Chamber Members at the meeting and the Management Team had the opportunity to tell them about projects that are underway. There was a great exchange of information and everyone seemed to enjoy getting to know Department Heads.

2. Hickory Nut Gorge Outreach Arts and Crafts Festival: Visitors and residents of Lake Lure had a great time at the 2019 Spring Arts & Crafts Festival 5/25-27.  Hickory Nut Gorge Outreach raised funds through booth rentals, parking donations and raffles sales. This year the funds raised doubled previous years and 100% of these funds will be allocated to helping Outreach clients.  Special thanks to all the Outreach volunteers.

3. Memorial Day Program: The Town of Lake Lure honored all those who made the ultimate sacrifice while serving in the U. S. Military during a Memorial Day Program on May 27, 2019 at the Veterans Memorial Kiosk.  Thank you to all those who came out to participate in the program.  We had about 100 people there.

Special thanks to those who supported the program including: The 1927 Lake Lure Inn and Spa, Lake Lure Tours, Master of Ceremonies - Capt. James Walters, USN (Ret.), Pastor Alex Heafner from Chimney Rock Baptist Church, Henderson County Honor Guard,  Ms. Johanna Khalafalla (ka-la-fa-la) from Lake Lure Classical Academy,  Command Sergeant Major, Stephen Webber, USA (Ret.), Captain Ed Dittmer, USN (Ret.), Bill Pressley (Marine), and Ken Potter.  

4. Memorial Day Weekend: We had a record number of visitors in Town for the weekend and at the beach on Memorial Day. Thank you all for your patience with the extra traffic.

5. Lure of the Lake Olympiad Swim Event:  The 1ST Lake Lure Olympiad Open Water Swim Event was held 6/8/19 at the Lake Lure Beach. The event was a huge success with 97 swimmers from 5 states participating in the swim. Special thanks to all those who volunteered at the event! We appreciate all those who came out to support the swimmers, the Lake Lure Olympiad Committee, and local charities who benefited from proceeds from the event.  Beneficiaries include the Hickory Nut Gorge Outreach and local first responders in the Town of Lake Lure, NC.

6. Flowering Bridge:  Today, the Flowering Bridge Volunteers hosted the National Association of Community Development Extension Professions.  The Flowering Bridge is an ever growing draw for our Community and we appreciate the volunteers who support this tremendous Town asset.

7. Emergency Preparedness:  We appreciate everyone’s attention and preparation during the rain events over the weekend.  

B. Town Manager Communications: Shannon Baldwin

1.  Engineering Updates: Mr. Baldwin introduced Kurt Wright, P.E. with SDG Engineering, who will be assisting the Town with project management for ongoing projects.  He may be asked to work with the Town in the new Fiscal year as well.

Mr. Baldwin referenced the Infrastructure Pamphlet distributed at the last Town Council Meeting.  He highlighted the fact that the Town of Lake Lure has been working to assess and rebuild infrastructure to better serve residents, business owners and visitors in the Hickory Nut Gorge, specifically the dam, the sewer, the bridge over the dam, lake dredging and to plan for the new egress for Chimney Rock State Park that will be built right in the Lake Lure Town Center.    

2.  Dam Updates:  The Town just received a new task order proposal from Schnabel Engineering and we
will want to set a date to meet and discuss this new task order.  The proposal is currently under review.

3.  Sewer Updates: Brown Consultants submitted the Engineering Report (ER) Report to the State last      week.  Mr. Baldwin sent a letter to the NC Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) regarding terms for loans that we have and those we would like to secure in the future.  We have requested to secure these loans for 30 year terms verses 20 year terms.

4.  Bridge over Dam: The NC Department of Transportation (DOT) would like to replace the bridge in   
some form. Mr. Baldwin, Mayor Pro Tem Moore and Commissioner Kilby met with Dam Safety Office  
and their consultant and DEQ in Asheville to discuss various possibilities.  We should be hearing
something back from the Dam Safety Office and NC DOT soon.  NC DOT will hold a public hearing to
discuss the different ideas they have for the bridge at some point in the near future.

5.  Chimney Rock State Park Egress: The Parks, Recreation and Lakes Department submitted an       application for a grant to provide funding to support an assessment of how best to support the Town as  
the new Chimney Rock State Park Egress planned for the Lake Lure Town Center. The purpose of this
grant would be to plan for traffic flow, parking, etc.

6.  July 3rd Fireworks Event: Laura Krejci, Communications Specialist and Event Coordinator, provided an overview of the plans for the July 3rd Fireworks Event.  She announced that this was the first year that the Town would be hosting the event. 

  • The co-chairs for this year’s Fireworks Event are Sean Humphries, Police Chief, and Dustin Waycaster, Fire Chief/Emergency Management Coordinator. 
  • She advised that the Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge and Chimney Rock Village were also participating as sponsors of the event and made a financial contribution toward the cost of the fireworks. 
  • She stated that the planning committee had contacted the Fireworks Company to be sure this year’s program was even better than the previous year’s event. 
  • She explained that free viewing would be available at Morse Park, Pool Creek Picnic Park and anywhere on the lake. 
  • Food vendors offering carnival type foods will be available in Morse Park starting at noon on 7/3/19 until after the Fireworks Event which will take place after sunset.
  • Vendors offering carnival type foods were selected to minimize any competition with local restaurants. 
  • She announced that there would be a special viewing opportunity at the Lake Lure Beach for $15 which includes an All-You-Can-Eat BBQ Dinner for those ages 6+. Ages 0-5 are free. 
  • The event is on the Town Website and Facebook and these additional details will be added as soon as vendors are secured.


7. Grants: The Infrastructure Pamphlet referenced earlier outlines the needs of the Town and staff will be researching grants to support some of the needs.  Laura Krejci will head up a team that we are pulling together to start working on some of these grants.  

8.  Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge Agreement: At the last Budget Workshop Meeting we spoke about possibly working with the Chamber to help with economic development and grants to support the Town.   We are working with Laura Doster and the Chamber to develop a proposal for consideration.   

9.  Infrastructure Needs Campaign: A meeting is scheduled for this Thursday with Don Cason with the Rutherford County Tourism Development Authority, to discuss creating a professional public relations video that we can use to lobby legislators, the General Assembly and the Governor in support of the Town’s infrastructure needs. The campaign will clearly identify that the Lake Lure infrastructure supports the regional economy, Chimney Rock State Park, and Chimney Rock Village. Chimney Rock State Park is being touted by the State as the gateway into the NC Parks System so we need our legislators to recognize the importance of the State helping the Town with these massive infrastructure costs that we will be facing in the future.

C. Closed Session: There was a closed session to discuss legal matters.

D. Council Liaison Reports and Comments:

  • ABC Board: Commissioner John Kilby
  • Parks and Recreation Board: Commissioner Stephen Webber
  • Utilities Advisory Board: Commissioner Bob Cameron
  • Zoning and Planning Board: Mayor Pro Tem John Moore

E. Public Comments - Mayor Pro Tem John Moore invited the audience to speak and the following individuals made comments:

•    Ronny Wood addressed Town Council about the issue of zoning for the Luther Burbank area.  When he originally purchased his property he was told he had to purchase 2+ acres.  He asked if a change was made allowing people to purchase smaller lots and there has been overcrowding in the area with rental properties allowing visitors to park on Town Roads and to walk on his private property.  Mayor Pro Tem John Moore asked Shannon Baldwin, Town Manager, if he could address this.  Mr. Baldwin said that he would ask Brad Burton, Community Development Coordinator, to schedule a meeting with Mr. Wood to review the zoning ordinance for this area.

•    Ronny Wood raised another issue regarding the Luther Burbank area.  He advised that no one has been cleaning out the ditches and he has been doing it to avoid flooding on Shady Grove.  Mr. Baldwin, Town Manager, advised that David Arrowood, Director of Public Works, was at the meeting and he asked him to address this issue.

•    Moe Bay from Deer Trail in Lake Lure thanked the Commissioners and Town staff for the great work that has been done to improve signage and notifications when houses are being transported into the area.  She said that she had another recommendation to discuss, made by Esther Lusk. The suggestion is to have transporters install a device to allow everyone to be able to track where the house was in the moving process, like UPS does with packages.   Commissioner Stephen Webber acknowledged the suggestion, but added that this would not be likely to work given the challenges we have in the area with internet access.

There was further discussion about the house moving process. Commissioner Stephen Webber asked for clarification about the moving company directing traffic during the moves, instead of Lake Lure Police.  He stated that the Police Officers have the highest concern for the citizenry of the Town and they would be in the best position to oversee directing traffic. Sean Humphries, Police Chief, explained how the process worked and advised that his Officers work closely with the moving company and it is a joint effort between the company and his Officers working in concert to ensure safe passage for all. Commissioner Bob Cameron asked that the Town staff continue to work to refine the process and if possible, to allow times for intermittent road passage during the house moves.  Commissioner John Kilby advised that the most recent communication did indicate that there would be intermittent passage on the roads during the day but stated that specific times could not be identified ahead of time.  

Mayor Pro Tem John Moore asked Sean Humphries, Police Chief, to take detailed notes on the upcoming moves so we could continue to refine the process. There was a discussion between all Commissioners regarding how the process can be refined moving forward.

•    Yvonne Anderson from Garden Lane in Lake Lure addressed Town Council to see if she had any recourse for damages to the street where she lived, which is a private road.  She said there was a home that moved in about 6 months ago and the moving company tour up the road.  She advised that the homeowners paid a great deal of money to have the road paved. She asked if the moving company could be held accountable for the damages to the road.  There was a discussion regarding the situation and a recommendation was made to seek legal guidance to address this issue since it was on a private road and not a Town road.  

F. Consent Agenda: Adoption of Minutes, Resolution-Financing, Closeout Buffalo Creek Park Fund, Amend Ordinance - Low Pressure Project Ordinance,  and Budget Adjustments.

G. Unfinished Business will be a discussion on Ordinance No. 19-05-14A: An Ordinance Amending the Town of Lake Lure Code of Ordinances, Chapter 81, “Animals,” specifically § 81.02C adding the Dittmer Watts Nature Trail (Tax Pin 1649620) to the list of Town properties where leash restraints are required for dogs and the FY19-20 Budget

H. New Business will include the FY2019-2020 Fee Schedule, Brown Consultants – Sewer Contract Amendment

AGENDA PACKET: Please click here to download the meeting packet.
 
 
 

 

Regular Town Council Meeting Summary

May 14, 2019 

WELCOME: Mayor Pro Tem John Moore called the 5/14/19 meeting to order and gave the invocation. Council members led the pledge of allegiance.

    
TOWN MANAGER UPDATES: Shannon Baldwin, Town Manager, provided the following updates:

•    Installation of Geo-tubes: Geo-tubes have been installed at the Waste Water Treatment Plant and they are working well.

•    Small Generator Repair: The Town is reviewing a contract with Clifton Power Co. and recommendations for repairing the hoist for the intake. The Town will be working with Schnabel Engineering on this contract review as well as the hoist for the intake before releasing an RFP.

•    Dam Updates: Town staff met with the NC Department of Environmental Quality’s Dam Safety Office (DSO) in Greensboro, NC.  They were receptive to the conditions assessment report.  They have advised that they have a much more accurate report of the dam’s condition from Schnabel Engineering. With this assessment completed, we are in good standing with the DSO.  

•    Workshop on the Low Pressure Sewer System: Town Council held a workshop on 5/8/19 with Brown Engineering to discuss the Low Pressure Sewer System (LPSS).  This generated an action item for Brown Engineering to complete a white paper on policy recommendations related to the LPSS.  Brown Engineering delivered a draft of the policy recommendations and these have been shared with the Utility Advisory Board for review.  Once they review these recommendations, these will be shared with Town Council as soon as possible.

•    Budget Workshop: Sam Karr, Finance Director, announced the upcoming Special Meeting for a Budget Workshop on 5/23/19, beginning at 9:00.  He advised that department heads had been asked to attend the meeting, along with representatives from any organizations that have requested contributions from the Town.

•    NC Department of Transportation (NCDOT) Bridge Meeting: A meeting was held on 5/21/19 with the NCDOT, Dam Safety Office in Ashville, Schnabel Engineering, and Town staff to discuss the bridge over the dam. There will be ongoing discussions on plans or the dam.

•    Infrastructure Projects Brochure: A new brochure has been developed and was distributed at the meeting, highlighting the major infrastructure needs for the Town, as well as the costs associated with these needs.  This brochure was developed by Mayor Cooley, Shannon Baldwin, Brad Burton and Laura Krejci and is being used to help communicate significant Town needs to those who may be in a position to assist the Town with these costs. 

•    Communication/Events: Laura Krejci, Communications Specialist and Events Coordinator gave an update on Everbridge, Lake Lure’s new mass notification service.    She explained that this is the notification system is utilized by Rutherford County and it will replace the Code Red System that is currently in place.   Ms. Krejci distributed an Everbridge Flyer with information on how to register.
Sign up for Notifications

Please click here to create an account and add your contact and location information into the Mass Notification system. All information you provide will be kept strictly confidential.

•    Memorial Day Program: Ms. Krejci also provided an overview of the Memorial Day Program scheduled for 5/27/19 at 9:00 am at the Veterans Memorial Kiosk in front of the Lake Lure Beach.  She announced that Captain Ed Dittmer, US Navy (Ret.) was serving as the Chairperson for the event. She advised that the Henderson County Honor Guard was participating in the program to Post the Colors and a student from Lake Lure Classical Academy would be singing the National Anthem. She encouraged everyone to attend and distributed a Memorial Day Program. 

PUBLIC FORUM:

A.    Ordinance No. 19-05-14: Brad Burton, Community Development Director gave an overview of this Ordinance amending the Town of Lake Lure’s Code of Ordinances, Chapter 40, “Streets and Sidewalks, “ specifically § 40.21, formerly entitled “House Moving;” proposed to be re-titled as “Heavy/Oversize Loads, Moving of Houses of Modular Homes.”  There was a general discussion regarding the proposed ordinance and the regulations.
   
B.    Ordinance No. 19-05-14A: Dean Givens, Parks, Recreation and Lake Director, gave an overview of the proposed ordinance amending the Town of Lake Lure’s  Code of Ordinances, Chapter 81, “Animals,” specifically § 81.02C adding the Dittmer Watts Nature Trail (Tax Pin 1649620) to the list of Town properties where leash restraints are required for dogs.   There was a discussion about the pros and cons of dog leashes.

Mayor Pro Tem acknowledged Maria Diorio as she asked to make a Public Comment.  She stated her name and said that she lived at 145 Neighborly Drive.  She stated that she was a dog owner and she keeps her dog on a leash.  She said that her husband frequently takes her dog on walks in Dittmer Watts Park and the problem occurs when dogs that are not on a leash, approach her dog.  She is concerned that these dogs might be injured by her dog as he is not as socialized.  She said that she spoke with her veterinarian, Dr. Lisa Shumate, about this issue.  She said she would be happy to speak with any one about this issue and she advocates for the Leash Law. She added that this is another reason to create a dog park that is being considered.

The Commissioners agreed that this was a very controversial subject and that they wanted to be sure to make a thoughtful decision with further input from the Parks and Recreation Board and the Town Attorney.

PRESENTATION: Ms. Laura Doster, Executive Director of the Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge introduced herself and thanked the Council for the opportunity to brief them. She began her presentation by introducing her staff and the Chamber Board members.  She provided an overview of the Chamber’s Mission, Services, Committees, Economic Development, Marketing, Promoting the Gorge, Gorge Events, Membership, Community Development, and Financials.

COUNCIL LIAISON REPORTS: 
•    Commissioner Bob Cameron reported the activities of the Utilities Advisory Board.

•    Commissioner John Kilby reported the activities of the Lake Advisory Board and the Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Board.

•    Mayor Pro Tem John Moore reported the activities of the Zoning and Planning Board.

•    Commissioner Stephen Webber reported the activities of the Parks and Recreation Board, the Board of Adjustment and the Lake Structures Appeals Board.

CONSENT AGENDA: The items in the Consent Agenda were approved.

A.     Adoption of the April 9, 2019 Regular Town Council Minutes.

B.    Budget Amendment #246: Increase budget Sale of Fixed Assets (#351) by 3,500 and increase line item #10-80000-528-Trailer to $3,500.

C.    Suspension of Chapter 61: “Peddlers” of the Code of Ordinances for Hickory Nut Gorge Outreach 2019 Lake Lure Arts and Crafts Festival. 

NEW BUSINESS:

A.    Proposed Ordinance No. 19-05-14: An Ordinance Amending the Town of Lake Lure’s Code of Ordinances, Chapter 40, “Streets and Sidewalks, “ specifically § 40.21, formerly entitled “House Moving;” proposed to be re-titled as “Heavy/Oversize Loads, Moving of Houses of Modular Homes” was approved with minor edits.

B.    Proposed Ordinance No. 19-05-14A: An Ordinance Amending the Town of Lake Lure’s Code of Ordinances, Chapter 81, “Animals,” specifically § 81.02C, adding all Town Parks to the list of Town properties where leash restraints are required for dogs was deferred awaiting further input from the Parks and Recreation Board and the attorney. 

C.    Consider Redefining Full Pond as 990.5 Mean Sea Level (MSL): Mr. Baldwin, Town Manager, noted that in 1927 when they originally measured the elevation of Lake Lure’s Full Pond it was at 990 MSL.  He stated that they used a certain method to calculate the elevation and today when we take this measurement, the calculation is 990.5.  He added that the practical application of changing full pond to 990.5 is that the Town will use this new MSL to allow us to maintain lake levels and ensure that boats do not have difficulty getting in and out. Key staff provided additional input.  Mayor Pro Tem John Moore recommended we try this change for a couple of months and see how it goes before making a definitive change.

D.    Budget Amendment #247 to Complete Custom Repair Projects: The purpose of this amendment is to complete two custom repair projects started by Clifton Power Co. Replacement of custom made Tainter Gate Cables-($11,892) Installation of Electric Motor on Tainter Gate #1. ($3,502.58).  This change would alter the description from Propane Tank (#533) to Tainter Gate Repairs and budgeted amounts change from $25,000 to $15,500 (balance of $9,500 moves to Fund Balance). The Budget amendment was approved with the understanding that the balance of $9,500 would remain in the account until the project was completed.

ADJOURNMENT: The meeting was adjourned. 

NEXT MEETING: The next meeting is scheduled for June 11, 2019.
  

 


 

Regular Town Council Meeting Summary

April 9, 2019 

 

MAYORAL UPDATES

Mayor Kevin Cooley provided the following updates during the April 9, 2019 Town Council Meeting:

•  YMCA: A meeting was held earlier in the month to discuss the potential for opening a YMCA in Lake Lure.  This meeting was organized by the Executive Director of the Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge, Laura Doster, and Russ Pitts. The meeting was a follow up to a previous meeting held ten years prior when Mr. Pitts approached the YMCA about opening a center in the Lake Lure area.  The YMCA Regional Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at the time, Cameron Corder, advised that placing a YMCA in the area was about ten years premature. Mr. Pitts followed up after ten years and requested reconsideration from YMCA. The same CEO, Mr. Corder remained in place and accepted the invitation to meet. In addition to the Mayor, Mrs. Doster and Mr. Pitts, additional attendees included: Town Manager, Shannon Baldwin and representatives from Rutherford County Tourism Development Authority, Chimney Rock Village, Blue Ridge Health, Lake Lure Classical Academy, Hickory Nut Gorge Outreach, Rumbling Bald Resort, and Greg Walker, who has been involved in establishing the YMCA in Hendersonville.  The group discussed the possibilities and the fact that if a YMCA could be established in Lake Lure, it would be a unique arrangement.

•  Lake Lure Rowing Club:  A newly-formed rowing club is taking shape and its founders, Wade Oppliger and Leslie Rowland, are already training on our lake year-round. Wade and Leslie are world-class rowers, competing regularly in national and international Master’s rowing competitions. In fact, Ms. Rowland is a “world champion”. They are actively recruiting others to join their new club and compete with them as representatives of Lake Lure.  

As the club grows, they plan to hold training seminars and, someday hold races on the lake. This should stimulate healthy growth and economic development in our lake-resort community and mesh well with the culture. Mr. Oppliger and Ms. Rowland (Leslie and Wade) are actively working with the Town to secure a lakeside location for a future boat barn and club headquarters.

•  1st Annual Spring Lake Lure Classic Boat and Car Show (May 10th and 11th at the Lake Lure Beach) The event is co-sponsored by the Blue Ridge Chapter of the National Antique & Classic Boat Society and the Great Smoke Mountain Region and Little Detroit Chapter of the Antique Automobile Club of America. The event is hosted by Lake Lure Tours and the Lake Lure Inn & Spa.  The “Boat Parade” and Low Country Boil (buffet dinner on the beach) will be on May 10th and the Classic Boat and Car Exposition, which is a free public event, will be on May 11th. We are all very excited about this event and we expect to have a large crowd attending this event.  The Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge and the Town of Lake Lure will be co-sponsoring the event and helping to coordinate the festivities.

•  Memorial Day Ceremony is scheduled for May 27th @ 9:00 am at the