The Watauga Commission meeting room was full to overflowing with those wanting to express themselves on property protections about to be stripped by the passage of Senate Bill 865, ending Boones Extraterritorial Jurisdiction as of January 1st. Many spoke of their fears for their property, such as comments from Susan Reid, I have lived in my family home since 1968, our home is in an ETJ neighborhood. My family strongly favors the security that has been provided by the ETJ and clean protections from pollution, from excessive noise, and from high-density development.
Others, like Lou Zeller, of the Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League asked for a development moratorium and a law similar to one in Ashe, reading from it, Location of a polluting industry, both portable and permanent, shall not be within 1000 feet of a residential dwelling unit or a commercial building, or within 1320 feet of any school, daycare, hospital or nursing home facility.
But others were not in favor, like Margaret Eggers, I personally think the Boone Town Council has done a poor job of regulating land use every chance its had. The council has refused to recognize Boone as the commercial, educational, and medical center that it is. I offer the empty store fronts, the vacant shells of buildings, the cleared IRC lot and the Old High School property as evidence.
In the end, the commission put the matter to the planning boardPerry Yates moving to have the matter on the September calendar.
- Written by Steve Frank