Resolution against discrimination, committee appointments among first issues new board will consider

Nonprofit agencies will make their case for funding from Buncombe County's upcoming budget for Fiscal Year 2018. A total of 46 nonprofits are asking for an aggregate of almost $11 million.

The newly constituted Buncombe County Board of Commissioners will hold its first post-election meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 6. The agenda is relatively light and will be the first helmed by Brownie Newman, who is transitioning from commissioner to chair, and will be the inaugural meeting for Commissioners Jasmine Beach-Ferrara and Robert Pressley.

The board will feature another, yet-to-be-named, new member, to fill the District 1 seat left open by Newman becoming chair the board. Kathy Sinclair, chair of the Buncombe County Democrats, tells Xpress that party leadership will make the appointment on Monday, Dec. 5. She says there are still four people officially interested in the appointment: Terry Bellamy, Jacqueline Hallum, Al Whitesides and Keith Young. The appointee will serve a two-year term.

On the commissioners’ agenda is a proposed resolution denouncing discrimination and intimidation. Language in the resolution states: “Hate crimes, threats or intimidation of any kind or manner will not be tolerated.” Beach-Ferrara, via Facebook, cites the resolution is necessary in light of, “The alarming uptick, nationally, statewide and locally, of incidents of violence and harassment targeting immigrants, religious minorities, women, LGBTQ people and other vulnerable communities.” She cited a report from Southern Poverty Law Center and went on to ask people to attend the commissioners’ Dec. 6 meeting in support of the resolution. You can read the entire resolution here.

Commissioners will also consider donating two properties, in the Avery’s Park subdivision, to Habitat for Humanity, and appointing a member to the 2017 Legislative Goals Committee.

Commissioners will also consider 10 board appointments. Those include:

•    Adult Care Home Community Advisory Committee (6 vacancies)
◦    Susan Stuart
◦    Laura Wagenknecht

•    Audit Committee
◦    Mike Fryar

•    Transportation Advisory Committee
◦    Brownie Newman and Ellen Frost

•    Tourism Development Authority
◦    Joe Belcher

•    Crimestoppers Board of Directors
◦    Ellen Frost

•    Health and Human Services Board
◦    Ellen Frost

•    Riverfront Development Board
◦    Brownie Newman

•    Economic Development Coalition
◦    Ellen Frost

•    Land of Sky Regional Council
◦    Open

•    Juvenile Crime Prevention Council
◦    Open

This will be the board’s last meeting of 2016. You can view the entire agenda here.

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About Dan Hesse
I grew up outside of Atlanta and moved to WNC in 2001 to attend Montreat College. After college, I worked at NewsRadio 570 WWNC as an anchor/reporter and covered Asheville City Council and the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners starting in 2004. During that time I also completed WCU's Master of Public Administration program. You can reach me at dhesse@mountainx.com.

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