Pick me, pick me (for air-quality board)

A key appointment will be made at the next Buncombe County Board of Commissioners meeting: a seat on the five-member WNC Regional Air Quality Agency Board, which regulates and enforces air-quality standards in Asheville and Buncombe County.

But it looks like it won’t be Buncombe County Board of Commissioners Chairman Nathan Ramsey filling the seat. Last Friday, Ramsey told Xpress he planned to withdraw his name — so his fellow board members wouldn’t have to choose between him and another commissioner vying for the seat.

Though Commissioner David Gantt couldn’t be reached at press time, both Ramsey and Vice Chairman David Young said they’d heard Gantt was also interested.

“I don’t think we want to be voting between commissioners,” offered Young.

There’s been no shortage of interest in the seat, which came open when Alan McKenzie resigned. As of March 18, five candidates had applied: Ramsey, plus David Craft, Brit Lovin, Bruce O’Connell and Don Yelton. Commissioners delayed making the appointment at their last meeting, because Commissioner Bill Stanley was absent. Early last week, Clerk to the Board Kathy Hughes said Planning Board member Bill Newman had also applied.

The appointment will come up again at the board’s April 8 meeting.

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