August 24 , 2004
Members Present: Terry Bledsoe, James Crafton, Donna Cullum, Greg Fulbright, Jon Gladden, Barbara Hamrick, Pinkney Hull, Tawanna Jarrett, Aaron King, Teresa Lail, Travis Norman, and Scott Rhoney.
Members Absent: Carol Hall and Meagan Ortiz.
Staff Present: Jacky Eubanks, Mary George and Sue Ballbach from Catawba County Planning Department; John Kenny and Andrea Lytle from the Western Piedmont Council of Governments (COG) .
John Kenny opened the meeting, explaining that the first part of the planning process is an educational process. County and COG representatives will get to know Committee Member's visions of their future community, and Committee Members will experience the facets involved in planning, zoning and land development. The County and COG will be looking for your insight, your concerns, and attributes you would like preserved. The big issue is that we cannot stop growth, but we can control and direct it. We can preserve the rural lifestyles and views. In the next few months, we will talk about transportation, problem areas, land use, housing density, cultural and natural resources, utilities, schools and emergency services. We will discuss ways in which we can steer and guide growth.
Jackie Eubanks presented an overview of the Small Area Plans (SAP). The planning process will take approximately 12 to 18 months. It is advantageous to plan in smaller areas, as opposed to just planning for the County as a whole, because this considers recommendations from each area with its individual desires and goals. Unfortunately, not all our recommendations will be attainable, but most will come to fruition.
Mary George explained that the County is divided into 7 small areas, with Plateau being the 7th plan to be created. The Small Area Plan Committees plan for the areas outside the incorporated municipalities and their extra territorial jurisdiction areas (ETJ). The County Board of Commissioners is committed to the SAP planning process and appreciate your help and your assistance in getting your and your neighbor's input. You will decide where you want your commercial land uses to grow. The County's website has an area dedicated to each of the SAP's so you can view it when you desire.
John Kenny explained that the SAP Planning Committee will ultimately come up with a list of recommendations on how you want your area to grow. In October we will have a public meeting, publicized to encourage residents to come and voice their likes, concerns and their vision for the next 10 to 15 years.
Mr. Kenny then briefly went over the material that was distributed to the Committee and invited members to read the material to obtain more in depth information about the area. Much of the data is obtained from Census tract information-Plateau is predominantly located in Tracts 118.02 with small portions in Tract 117.02 and Tract 118.01 Generally speaking, from 1990 to 2000, the Plateau area grew by 1041 people (28%)-a little faster than the County as a whole. During the planning process we will be looking at households since a household is 1 economic buying group. (A household can be 1 person, or a whole group of people.) As is typical in other areas, the number of households is increasing, while the size of households is getting smaller. The population of Plateau is overwhelming white (92.4%), and there is a slightly smaller percentage of people over age 65 compared to the County. In Plateau, 45.1% of the people are employed in the manufacturing sector as compared to 38.3% in the County as a whole, and 1.7% of Plateau's people are employed in farming as compared to .5% in the County. Fewer Plateau people are employed in professions (20.1%) as compared to 23.8% in the County.
Volunteers were requested to fill the Plateau SAP Chairperson and Vice Chair positions. Scott Rhoney volunteered for Chair, and Donna Cullum volunteered for Vice Chair. The Committee unanimously supported these appointments.
Mary George handed out cameras so each member could take photos of areas they feel are desirable, and other situations they do not want to encourage in Plateau. The photos will be used to convey concepts to the Committee and the public at the October meeting.
Several sites were discussed for possible future meeting locations. John Kenny will check to see which of these locations are able to accommodate us.
The meeting was adjourned.