CORNELIUS, N.C. — Unwilling to have their town’s municipal elections fall on the same years as statewide and national elections, the Cornelius town commissioners Monday night passed a resolution by a 4-1 vote, with Commissioner Jim Duke opposed, to disapprove of House Bill 64, a piece of legislation that is currently working its way through committee at the North Carolina General Assembly.

The bill would allow the state to mandate that cities, towns and counties hold their elections on “even” years — the same years when state and federal representatives are elected. Proponents of HB64 say the law would result in cost savings with fewer election cycles and enhance voter turnout at the local level.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017 16:59

CPD schedules shredding event

A document shredding event will be hosted by the Cornelius Police Department Saturday, March 4, from 9 a.m. to noon in the parking lot at Cornelius Town Hall, 21445 Catawba Ave. Sponsored by Shred-It, the event is free and open to the public.

A four bag or box maximum per resident or business applies. No three-ring binders or metal binder clips are allowed, but paper clips or staples need not be removed.Bring documents such as obsolete tax files, financial statements, cancelled checks insurance documents, business records or any records to be safely destroyed. Do not bring items that can be recycled or trash including junk mail, newspapers or magazines. 

For more information, contact Betsy Shores at the Cornelius Police Department at 704-892-1363 or visit

Tuesday, 21 February 2017 16:59

Our Towns names development director

CORNELIUS, N.C. -- Patrice Reynolds has joined Our Towns Habitat for Humanity as the housing ministry’s new director of development. Reynolds brings 30 years of nonprofit experience to the affiliate, working with both international agencies and small local organizations. Her experience includes fund raising, board development, event planning, programming and volunteer coordination.

Most recently, Reynolds served six years as executive director for Friends of the Animals in Mooresville, where she led a four-year, $2.6 million capital campaign to build a pet education and adoption center. She has also previously worked for Hospice & Palliative Care of Iredell County, the Children’s Museum of Iredell County and the international humanitarian agency CARE, based in her native Atlanta.

HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. -- Area residents have about two weeks to submit ideas for the name of the new recreation facility in Huntersville.

The Huntersville Parks and Recreation Commission is soliciting suggestions for what to call the new 24,000-square-foot center to be built along Verhoeff Drive adjacent to Central Piedmont Community College and across the street from Huntersville Family Fitness and Aquatics Center. Site clearing work has already begun and the ceremonial groundbreaking for the facility will be held Thursday, Feb. 23, at 2 p.m.

The recreation center will include two high school-sized basketball courts that can also be divided into four volleyball courts. Meeting space and a lounge area are also included in the plans.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017 16:53

Talk of the Towns for February 22, 2017

Bottoms up, north Charlotte

The recent news about Charlotte’s Olde Mecklenburg Brewery tapping new territory with an expansion into Cornelius has been warmly received by local beer enthusiasts, elected officials and others.

Cornelius’ mayor is happy to welcome yet another brewery business to what is rapidly becoming Tap Town USA, and the region’s eco-dev cheerleaders love the idea of repurposing an empty building, which is what the co-founder of OMB, John Marrino, says he will do with the purchase of the former home of MacLean Curtis left vacant when the manufacturing company moved to Mooresville last year.

And as far as Talkers are concerned, there’s always room for another place to belly up to a craft brew bar, as the bubbling up of so many successful small breweries over the last few years has proved. The Lake Norman region’s cup doth truly runneth over, as it is now home to several award-winning and crowd-pleasing craft brewers, and the arrival of one more — a comparative Goliath in beer barrel production terms to our half-dozen or so of Davids — can only bode well for the burgeoning industry.

Which all makes Talkers wonder if OMB’s Marrino truly gets it, if he truly understands the tight-knit craft beer enthusiast and entrepreneurial enclave he is about to become a part of in Cornelius.

Referencing his company’s already popular presence in the Charlotte region, of an expansion to Cornelius Marrino said, “… we believe that this site will allow more Charlotteans to experience OMB and our beers first hand.”

Huh? Talkers wonder if he’s aware that Cornelius is not a northern Mecklenburg version of Cotswold, and that it — as well as Davidson, Denver, Huntersville and Mooresville — is all grown up now and thriving quite well on its own, thank you.

That’s a slight that Lake Norman lovers of the hops may not easily swallow.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017 16:52

A Foundation built to serve the service

Susan Tillis creates new foundation to address unmet needs of active military and veterans.

LAKE NORMAN, N.C. — Only a few months after Thom Tillis was sworn in as a freshman member of the United States Senate in January of 2015, the Huntersville resident and his wife, Susan, paid a visit to Fort Bragg in Fayetteville. With an affinity for the military as well as for veterans and the many issues they face, the senator was seeking to learn more about how the federal government can better assist active duty and retired military and their families, especially those living with the sometimes dire consequences of conflict.

While Thom Tillis was factoring what he learned into the macro realm of potential legislation, Susan Tillis was taking it all in at the micro level — one soldier, one soldier’s spouse and one soldier’s child at a time. Particularly moved by the needs of military members and their growing families, she learned from the Armed Services YMCA at Fort Bragg about a program that was running out of funds, out of supplies and out of steam — Baby Bundles.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017 16:48

HYAA: 30-plus years of dedication to youth

HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. — Back in November, during a three-hour session held in an executive conference room provided by Metrolina Greenhouses, dozens of coaches, commissioners and other volunteers affiliated with the Huntersville Youth Athletic Association’s basketball program laid the foundation for the program’s upcoming season.

With personnel profiles and spreadsheets distributed, and a cumulative list of potential assets projected on a large screen, the event had all the trappings of a high-level corporate board meeting. And, in truth, that’s what the HYAA’s annual team-making process is, with a few monumental differences.

HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. — Two development proposals that have made as many recent appearances on the Huntersville Town Board agenda as the Pledge of Allegiance were back for more Monday night, and now it appears only one is destined for more discussion in the near future.

After months of planning department review and multiple town board discussions, followed by a recent string of developer-requested deferrals, a proposal to build a 382-lot residential subdivision on a 224-acre tract on the west side of Huntersville has been indefinitely withdrawn. According to an announcement delivered at Monday’s meeting by Huntersville Principal Planner David Peete, Crescent Communities altered its request from long-term deferral to withdrawal of plans for the project with the option of coming back to the board without a statute-imposed delay.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017 16:44

Davidson seeks more citizen input on Town Hall

Catalyst project dead, town board starts process to expand Town Hall, fire and police HQs.

DAVIDSON, N.C. — Davidson town officials want public input as they assess infrastructure and parking needs for Town Hall and the surrounding area. At last Tuesday’s Davidson Town Board meeting, commissioners voted 3-2 to move forward with the first phase of a public facilities project, allocating $241,000 for a space needs study, architectural and site concept development, and a parking/mobility study, as well as two comprehensive public workshops.

Staff members with Creech and Associates, the architecture firm selected for the project, will lead the workshops, scheduled for March 9 and April 6 at 6 p.m. in the Davidson College Presbyterian Church Congregation House, 218 Concord Road. They will cover project goals, possible site plans, architecture and design character, parking needs and overall project scale. The workshops will be designed to draw feedback and insight with regard to the next steps in the project.

HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. — When Huntersville’s current governing body, with three new commissioners and a new mayor, assumed office in 2015, one of the group’s stated goals was to explore ways to ease some of the regulatory and procedural burdens town policies imposed on potential developers. Last week, at the Huntersville Town Board’s second meeting of 2017 — a few weeks after a two-day planning retreat jam-packed with reports about steady growth, road improvement necessities and a list of municipal investments required to keep pace with population demands — the board took two meaningful steps to make the process of proceeding with new development a little less demanding.

A town ordinance adjustment to allow for significantly smaller lots in one residential zone — approved when Mayor John Aneralla broke a 3-3 tie — and long-discussed tweaks to the town’s Traffic Impact Analysis (TIA) criteria were authorized by the board.