At Troutman Town Council’s agenda briefing meeting Monday, council members unanimously voted to adopt a resolution supporting keeping Iredell County Agricultural Fairgrounds in the town’s corporate limits.

The resolution was submitted to the county Tuesday to be presented at the Iredell County Board of Commissioner’s meeting June 18.

Additional documents at the Troutman meeting indicated council members Paul Henkel and Sally Williams, Town Manager Justin Longino and Troutman Parks and Recreation Director Emily Watson discussed the fairgrounds with Commissioner Jeffery McNeely, County Manager Beth Jones, Register of Deeds Ron “Duck” Wyatt and Iredell County Parks and Recreation Director Michelle Hepler.

The documents indicated that county officials and staff had received complaints from Troutman citizens during the fair or horse sale. Because of those complaints, county officials were unsure if Troutman actually wanted to keep the fairgrounds in corporate limits.

Wyatt said the complaints were about cars parked in nearby residents' yards during events.

Jones said the county wanted to make sure Troutman still wanted the fairgrounds within its limits after the property was designated as mixed use in the town’s future land use plan.

“The County was interested in hearing from the Town regarding their vision for the highest and best use of that property and if it included the fairgrounds remaining there based on the outcomes of the study,” Jones said via email. “We want to be a good partner with Troutman and if the Town felt that site would be better suited for another purpose we were interested in knowing that before the County invested funds in rehabbing the current site.”

County officials suggested Troutman adopt a resolution expressing the town’s desire for the fairgrounds to stay in Troutman.

Jones said that currently the county owns the fairgrounds and leases it to the Kiwanis Club. The county and Kiwanis Club split costs for maintenance.

The resolution council passed Monday indicated officials and staff are willing to offer monetary and non-monetary assistance.

The fairgrounds are “at a major intersection for Troutman. While the properties around it are developed or developing, the corridor is continuing to grow with the connection from I-77 to I-40 out Old Mountain Road. As this growth and usage continue, the Town desires to see this corner parcel reimagined, redeveloped, and/or improved from its current state. Development on this corner will complement and even drive development across Highway 21 and further east and west on Murdock and Old Mountain Roads," the town indicated in documents.

Council to vote on budget Thursday

During Troutman Town Council’s meeting Thursday, council members will vote on the $6.6 million 2019-2020 budget.

Longino’s budget memo indicates Troutman’s tax, water and sewer rates will all stay the same. However, the town will see an 11-percent higher revenue.

Longino attributes the increase to growth. Troutman has added 137 houses and new businesses like Dixie’s restaurant and Puriti labs.

Iredell County’s four-year tax revaluation also occurred this year, and Troutman’s property value increased an average of 15 percent, indicated county documents.

“While always cognizant of economic ups and downs, staff sees this growth and expansion continuing over the horizon,” Longino said in his memo.

To fund goals in Troutman’s Strategic Master Plan, approved in December, staff added a line for “special projects” which will include streetscaping and improving aesthetics.

The money allocated to industrial recruitment, facilities, economic development and greenways increased.

The proposed budget also includes the purchase of two police vehicles and a public works truck.

Funds have also been designated for the development of ESC Park.

A public hearing will be held before the vote. Citizens can attend the meeting at Troutman Town Hall Thursday at 7 p.m. to speak.

Thursday, council will also:

» consider awarding a street improvements project to Carolina Paving of Hickory;

» receive recognition from Mooresville Police Department for assisting in the aftermath of MPD Officer Jordan Sheldon’s death;

» recognize Troutman police officers for their certification in various programs and introduce new part-time officers;

» recognize American Legion of Troutman and Lowes of Troutman;

» and declare May Lupus Awareness Month.

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