The author of the groups formal letter, Annette Reeves, stated of request to the county commission, The citizens of Watauga deserve to live in a healthy, peaceful environment.
The Watauga Citizens for Local Control release says theyve followed closely the recent planning board hearings and meetings on the county taking over the Town of Boones extraterritorial jurisdiction. Although they say theyre generally pleased with the proceedings, the citizens group wants more than a cursory consideration of protections for residential areas. Butch Reeves, a member of the citizens group, said, We need the Planning Board and the County Commissioners to continue to step up and protect our citizens. The citizens request pointed out that the overwhelming consensus of residents who attended recent planning board hearings favored a high impact land use moratorium and a strengthened county ordinance. The moratorium would allow the county time to replace the protections that were lost when the NC General Assembly took away Boones power of extraterritorial jurisdiction.
In support of the request, Lou Zeller, Executive Director of the Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League, said, People spend most of their time in their own homes. They should not be assaulted by smoke, noise and pollution. He added that the additional buffer zones would also protect private property values and the sanctuary of religious meetings.
Watauga Citizens for Local Control became a League chapter in response to the removal of ETJ protections. The town of Boone is challenging the removal of its ETJ powers in court.