Montreat Minute for June 11, 2020

Mayor Pro Tem’s Meeting Summary of Last Night’s Town Council Meeting

Greetings Montreaters,

It was my honor to chair tonight’s meeting in the absence of Mayor Helms. Tim had hip replacement surgery Wednesday afternoon and I am happy to say that his wife, Mimi, reports that he is doing well. We pray for a full recovery for him.

With the continued COVID-19 restriction limiting indoor meetings to 10 or fewer people, we conducted our June Town Council meeting virtually as we did in April and May. The meeting was closed to the public, but people logged on to the meeting via Zoom. Community members sent in their comments/questions for the Public Comments section in advance, and those comments were read by Town Clerk Angie Murphy during the meeting. Here’s a summary of the meeting:

  • I called the meeting to order with all Commissioners present except the Mayor. We approved the minutes of the March Public Forum and Council meeting and the May Council meeting.
  • I made comments about our current social situation, with the coronavirus pandemic and the public outcry against racism. It is my hope, and others as well, that we can overcome the COVID-19 situation quickly and see reform in law enforcement and healing in our race relations.

Read more by CLICKING HERE

Town Hall Update

We mentioned in last week’s Montreat Minute that the interior of the Town Hall is complete and was turned over to the Town from the contractor. However, due to material shortages caused by the pandemic, the exterior was not completed. However, those materials have arrived and work is being completed on the exterior. The exterior “punch list walk through” will be conducted next week, then the contractor will have a week to fix the punch list items. If all goes well, the entire building should be turned over to us the week of June 22. Considering ground breaking was on June 11, 2019, the contractor (Sineath Construction) made excellent time in constructing the building. Read on for some exciting news…

Announcing the new Town Hall Open House Tour

The pandemic has caused significant disruptions in our lives, including cancellation of all July 4th activities at Montreat. However, in the spirit of community, the new Town Hall will be open for your inspection on July 4th from 10am to 1pm! However, it will be a bit different than we originally planned. There will be a proscribed tour route to ensure social distancing, masks will be required and, unfortunately, refreshments will not be served. But, you will have an opportunity to see your tax dollars at work. Tours will include the interior and the exterior pocket park and rain garden. Watch for further details. Dedication ceremonies are being delayed pending easing of COVID-19 gathering restrictions. We will keep you informed.

Another 2020 Census Update

We have received word that all census packages have been delivered to Montreat residences. Therefore, if you consider Montreat as your primary residence, have not completed your census and you did not receive a package at your home, you can still be counted. The most expeditious way of doing so is online. CLICK HERE for detailed instructions on how to do so. There are also instructions for completing it by phone.

We are grateful for everyone’s desire to participate. Its importance cannot be overstated. Not only does it provide an accurate accounting of our population, but it also provides Federal funding locally. The Census Bureau estimates that each person counted represents $1,623 in funding for local municipalities. So, please take the time to complete your census.

If you have any questions, please contact Commissioner Kitty Fouche at 828/357-8488 or Commissioner Tom Widmer at 828/357-5247. Please encourage others to participate. It’s important for our community and our country.

Other Important Information

  • The Planning & Zoning Commission will be meeting every Tuesday for the foreseeable future virtually via Zoom. The Commission is intent upon completing its review of and recommendations for Town ordinances in the coming weeks. Instructions to join the June 16 meeting can be found on the website by CLICKING HERE. The agenda is also posted.
  • Due to the cancellation of June conferences and the expected decrease in rentals and other programming, we will try to get by with one day per week sanitation pick up and eliminate the Friday pickup, saving contract labor costs of approximately $2,500. If it appears that we need to go back to two days per week, we will make it happen. Pick up will remain on Mondays as usual.
  • Speaking of trash, please tie your trash bags before putting them out for pickup. This simple task saves sanitation staff much time in their collection efforts. Thank you for helping them.
  • Brush pick up continues every other Wednesday. Please remember to place only brush in the pile. Other material, such as plants and non-organic material is not acceptable and causes problems for the mechanical chipper. Of particular note: please do not place anything metal in the brush pile, as it can cause bodily harm to the Town staff feeding the material into the chipper.
  • As a reminder, mark your calendars for the Bulk Items/White Goods curbside pick up on Tuesday, July 7th. There will be another pick up day in October.

Burning Questions?

Do you have Town-related questions you would like answered? If so, please send them to Angela Murphy at [email protected] and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Have a safe weekend and stay well.