The September 26, 2023 meeting will be held at 6 p.m. in the Courtroom at City Hall located at 300 Pollock St. in New Bern, NC.
1. Meeting opened by Mayor Odham. Prayer Coordinated by Alderman Brinson. Pledge of Allegiance.
2. Roll Call.
3. Approve Agenda.
4. Consider Adopting a Resolution Calling for a Public Hearing to Annex a Portion of Tax Parcels 8-209-13001 and 8-209-12003.
(Ward 4) Weyerhaeuser has petitioned to annex portions of Tax Parcel IO’s 8-209-13001 and 8-209-12003. This is the property that the Board conveyed to Weyerhaeuser on August 22, 2023 after approving an exchange of property. It is requested that a public hearing be held on October 10, 2023 to consider this petition. A memo from Brenda Blanco, City Clerk, is attached.
5. Consider Adopting a Resolution Calling for a Public Hearing to Annex Tax Parcels 8-210-11002, 8-210-11003 and a Portion of 8-210-23000.
(Ward 6) McCullough Farms has petitioned to annex Tax Parcels (“PIO”) 8-210-11002, 8-210-11003, and a portion of 8-210-23000. The petition inadvertently references PIO 8-210-13000 which was annexed in 2008, and it does not reference PIOs 8-210-11002 and 8-210-11003, although the parcels are specifically described in the legal description. The property is vacant land that is contiguous to the City of New Bern’s municipal boundary. It is requested that a public hearing be held on October 10, 2023 to consider this petition. A memo from Ms. Blanco is attached.
6. Consider Adopting a Resolution Calling for a Public Hearing to Amend Section 15-343 – “Flexibility in Administration Required” of the Code of Ordinances.
(Ward 1) The Planning and Zoning Board (“P&Z”) has undertaken several discussions about off-street parking in downtown. To facilitate the reuse of buildings and protect historic buildings from being removed to create parking, most historical and coastal cities with available public parking do not apply parking standards in their downtown areas. New Bern has approximately 600 public parking spaces that are not included in any parking calculations. It is requested a public hearing be held on October 10, 2023 to consider an amendment to Article XVIII of the land use ordinance to modify requirements for new commercial developments and “change-of-use” occupancy within existing structures downtown. P&Z recommended approval of the amendment at its September 5, 2023 meeting by a vote of 5 to 1. The proposed amendment is consistent with the 2010 Regional Land Use Plan and the 2022 Land Use Plan Update. A memo from Jessica Rhue, Director of Development Services, is attached.
7. Consider Adopting a Resolution Declaring Tax Parcel ID 8-035-016 on Pine Tree Drive as Surplus Real Property and Establishing a Minimum Bid.
(Ward 2) At its September 12, 2023 meeting, the Board voiced a desire to declare Tax PIO 8-035-016 as surplus property and establish a minimum bid of $225,000, which is the appraised value. The property is a vacant, wooded tract approximately 3.24 acres in size. A memo from Ms. Blanco is attached.
8. Consider Adopting a Resolution to Initiate the Upset Bid Process for 817 Murray Street.
(Ward 5) Justin Beck has tendered an offer of $3,900 for the purchase of 817 Murray Street. The property is a vacant 0.024-acre residential lot with a tax value of $7,800. The property was acquired jointly by the City and County in 2017 through tax foreclosure. If the property is sold for the initial bid, the City is projected to receive $775.77 and the County $3,124.23 from the proceeds. A memo from Ms. Blanco is attached.
9. Consider Adopting a Resolution to Initiate the Upset Bid Process for 1101 Main Street.
(Ward 5) Kurtis Stewart has tendered an offer of $3,000 for the purchase of 1101 Main Street. The property is a vacant 0.138-acre residential lot with a tax value of $6,000. The property was acquired jointly by the City and County in 2007 through tax foreclosure, and the County subsequently transferred its ownership to the City. A memo from Brenda Blanco, City Clerk, is attached.
10. Approve Minutes.
Draft minutes from the September 12, 2023 meeting are provided for review and approval.
11. Consider Adopting a Resolution Establishing a Municipal Service District (“MSD”) Advisory Committee.
(Ward 1) A resolution establishing a MSD Advisory Committee was presented to the Board at its August 22, 2023 and September 12, 2023 meetings. After some discussion, the Board requested the number of Ex-Officio members be increased from four to five to provide for an at-large appointment from the Board of Aldermen, and that term limits be staggered and set at two successive terms for residential members and commercial members representing the same commercial interest. The document has also been revised to specify that the Board can replace any voting member who does not attend three of the four quarterly meetings or who no longer owns real property or resides within the MSD.
12. Consider Adopting a Resolution Accepting an American Rescue Plan Act (“ARPA”) Grant from the NC Department of Environmental Quality for Stormwater Planning.
The City applied for an ARPA grant for stormwater planning through NCDEQ and has been notified of an award in the amount of $400,000. The Board is required to adopt a resolution accepting the grant and authorizing the City Manager to execute a financial award agreement and any other related documents. A memo from Chris Seaberg, Community and Economic Development Manager, is attached.
13. Consider Adopting a Resolution Approving a Water and Sewer Use Agreement for 1955 Old Airport Road.
(Ward 3 area) Hubrich Contracting, Inc. is planning to develop a charter school at 1955 Old Airport Road and has requested to connect to the City’s water and sewer systems. The property is currently outside of the city limits. The proposed development will have a calculated average water and sewer demand of 11,700 gallons per day. Service can be provided with short main extensions to connect to the City’s existing infrastructure. Section 74-74 of the City’s ordinances provides that a written water and sewer use agreement be entered into to outline the roles and responsibilities of both parties in establishing service. A memo from Jordan Hughes, Director of Water Resources, is attached.
14. Consider Adopting a Resolution Approving the Sale of 837 Pavie Avenue.
(Ward 5) After receiving an offer of $12,333, the Board adopted a resolution on March 28, 2023 to initiate the upset bid process for the property at 837 Pavie Avenue. Several upset bids were received with a final bid of $18,000. The property includes a residential structure on 0.06-acres that was built in 1925 and is in need of rehabilitation. The bidder understands that he will be required to bring the structure into compliance with the minimum housing code. If the sale is approved, the City will receive $4,261.53 and Craven County $8,051.47 from the proceeds. A memo from Ms. Blanco is attached.
15. Consider Adopting a Resolution Approving the Redevelopment Commission’s Sale of 209 Bryan Street.
(Ward 2) Charles Diggs submitted an offer of $5,650 for the purchase of a vacant 0.106-acre residential lot located at 209 Bryan Street. Mr. Diggs proposes to construct a residential dwelling on the property, and the Redevelopment Commission supports his plan. The conveyance will be subject to a requirement for construction to begin within 12 months after the transfer. If not met, title to the property shall revert to the Commission. Additionally, if the residential dwelling is not occupied by the owner, it must be sold or rented to persons of low-to-moderate income. Board approval is needed for the Commission to sale this property. A memo from Marvin Williams, Assistant City Manager, is attached.
16. Consider Adopting a Resolution Approving the Redevelopment Commission’s Sale of 821 West Street.
(Ward 2) Charles Diggs also submitted an offer of $3,000 for the purchase of a vacant 0.114-acre residential lot located at 821 West Street. As with the previous item, Mr. Diggs proposes to construct a residential dwelling on the property, and the Redevelopment Commission supports his plan. This conveyance will be subject to a requirement for construction to begin within 24 months after the transfer or title to the property shall revert to the Commission. Additionally, if the residential dwelling is not occupied by the owner, it must be sold or rented to persons of low to-moderate income. Board approval is needed for the Commission to sale this property. A memo from Mr. Williams is attached.
17. Consider Adopting an Ordinance for the Demolition of 1207 Garden Street.
(Ward 2) On November 22, 2022, an initial letter regarding minimum housing deficiencies was sent to the owners of 1207 Garden Street. The owner indicated he would contact staff but has not yet. On July 10, 2023, a complaint was filed stating the property was unfit for dwelling, but no response has been received. An order to bring the structure into compliance by August 28, 2023 was subsequently entered, but to date there has been no communication from the owner, no permits have been obtained, and the structure remains noncompliant. A memo from Patrick Ezel, Minimum Housing and Nuisance Abatement Supervisor, is attached.
18. Consider Adopting an Ordinance to Amend Division 3. “Off-Street Parking” of Article VI. “Stopping, Standing and Parking” of Chapter 70 “Traffic and Vehicles.
(Ward 1) At the Board’s meeting on January 24, 2023, a discussion ensued about converting the Pollock Street parking lot from leased spaces to pay-to-park spaces. Now that the work at City Hall is nearing completion, staff will soon resume parking in the City Hall lot, and the Pollock Street lot can move forward with the pay-to-park. The ordinance designates the change from a leased lot and establishes user fees as identified in the Schedule of Fees and Charges.
19. Consider Adopting an Ordinance to Amend the Schedule of Fees and Charges.
The amendment to the Schedule of Fees and Charges incorporates proposed parking fees for the Pollock Street lot at $1 an hour with a per transaction fee of $0.45. If adopted, the new fees will be effective September 27, 2023. A memo from Kim Ostrom, Director of Finance, is attached.
20. Consider Adopting an Ordinance to Amend the Drainage Improvements Project Fund.
The Drainage Improvements Project Fund will be amended to recognize the $400,000 grant referenced in Item 11 for stormwater planning. No matching funds are required. A memo from Ms. Ostrom is attached.
21. Consider Adopting an Ordinance to Amend the Resiliency and Hazard Mitigation Plan Grant Project Fund.
The Resiliency and Hazard Mitigation Plan Grant Project Fund will be amended to recognize a $175,320 NC Resilient Coastal Communities Program grant from NCDEQ. While no matching funds are required, in-kind labor services of $8,122.92 will be provided by the City. A memo from Ms. Ostrom is attached.
-Raymond Layton’s term on the Planning and Zoning Board expired June 30, 2023, and he is ineligible for reappointment. Alderman Kinsey is asked to make a new appointment to fill Seat 4 for a three-year term.
-George Halyak recently resigned from the Friends of the Firemen’s Museum Board, and a new appointment is needed to fill the remainder of his term which will expire on April 22, 2025.
23. Attorney’s Report.
24. City Manager’s Report.
25. New Business.
26. Closed Session.
Individuals with disabilities requiring special assistance should call 639-2931 no later than 3 p.m. on the date of the meeting.
Information provided by Brenda Blanco, City Clerk