Local Historian Recognized at Council Meeting - TribPapers

Local Historian Recognized at Council Meeting

Jan Lawrence receives proclamation from Weaverville Mayor Patrick Fitzsimmons. Photo by Clint Parker

Weaverville – In what was a short agenda night for the Weaverville Town Council, the council started the meeting with the consent agenda, where, among other items, was a budget amendment item for police for a 2017 police cruiser that was lost in a crash responding to a call.

The vehicle was a total loss, and the budget amendment for the $19,778.91 paid to the town from the insurance company and another $15,000 from the town contingency fund to help replace the car. According to Police Chief Ron Davis “the officer responded mutual aid with Buncombe County and Woodfin PD to a gunshot wound victim on Black Locust Lane the night of February 3rd. The officer was unfamiliar with the area and the suspect had not been located. It was a single car collision and went into a ditch at a low speed. The officer was not injured. The insurance company determined it wasn’t worth repairing.”

Also included in the consent item was an extension of the tax collections agreement with Buncombe County, an updated ABC law enforcement agreement, and the setting of a public hearing on code amendments for nonconforming lots, a table of dimensional requirements, and mapping standards. The hearing was set for April 21st at 6 pm at the town hall.

Proclamation of Jan Lawrence Day 

In a consent agenda item, Weaverville Mayor Patrick Fitzsimmons saved for last, Fitzsimmons presented a proclamation to long-time resident Jan Lawrence recognizing April 21st as Jan Lawrence Day in the town.

“I think everyone knows Jan Lawrence, Jan Lawrence is about to have a birthday, and I just wanted to read the proclamation for Jan Lawrence Day in the town of Weaverville,” said Fitzsimons after leaving his seat and taking to a podium (see proclamation on page ??). After presenting the proclamation to Lawrence, Fitzsimmons asked if she wanted to say a few words.

“I love to recognize other people. I don’t like to be recognized,” she started out. “I’m very honored… The town council has recognized me twice in the last three months. I had so much fun being the grand marshal (of the Christmas Parade) that was a blast!.” Among several items, she talked about were her health struggles after two strokes and the town’s history. She thanked the board for making room in the new Community Center at Dottie Sherrill Knoll. She also “I love Weaverville. It has been a special place for me.”

Rest of meeting

In her manager’s report, Town Manager Selena Coffey reported that the state Division of Water Resources had “honored 66 water treatment plants for surpassing federal and state drinking water standards in 2021,” and Weaverville was one of them. “The division’s public water supply section awarded the facilities the prestigious N.C. Area Wide Optimization Award,
which is part of a state effort to enhance the performance of existing surface water treatment facilities. For 2021, the state recognized 16 facilities with the “Gold Star” honor, which is an award for systems that have received the N.C. Area Wide Optimization Award for 10 or more consecutive years.”

No one spoke during public comment, and the council moved right into discussion and action items, with the first being the annexation agreement with the Town of Woodfin regarding the Sourwood Inn area. Coffey said since the nearly 200 acres of the property are closer to Weaverville and the City of Asheville, the two municipalities have to hold public hearings and to adopt an ordinance to approve an annexation by Woodfin. 

The council voted to use the town’s ARPA money as revenue replacement and plans on using part of those funds to convert the water treatment plant’s chlorine system and to buy backup generators.

Public Works Director Dale Pennell reported that last month the town only had 1.9 percent of its water unaccounted for. Pennell said the industry standard is 10% or less. Fitzsimmons said after a meeting with the area mayors, and he found the City of Biltmore Forest had 30% of its water unaccounted for.