In addition to not deciding on establishing a firm site for the second annual antique fair, the West Jefferson Aldermen also moved the final decision to April on updating the town’s proposed new sign ordinance and addressed several other issues during its regular monthly meeting last week.
At the urging of West Jefferson Mayor Dale Baldwin, the aldermen agreed to wait until April to make a final decision on proposed changes to the town’s sign ordinance, which has been on the board’s agenda for the last two months.
“There are a lot of things in the (ordinance). We need to make sure we understand all of it,” said Baldwin.
The aldermen agreed to table the new regulations.
The board also renewed the lease for the Ashe County Farmers’ Market for 2013.
Prior to the formal vote to approve the lease, Market Manager John Smyre offered the aldermen details about the 2012 market.
Smyre said the market counted nearly 29,000 customers in 2012 and operated on 40 Saturdays, eight Wednesdays and was open on 28 holidays.
He said he was especially proud of the growers’ program the market has been operating with the local schools.
“It has been a real success,” said Smyre, referring to the program.
As he finished his presentation to the board, including introducing Linda Sloan, the president of the market, Smyre said the market was “looking forward to another great year.”
Once Smyre finished, Baldwin asked him why the farmers’ market was named “Ashe County” and not “West Jefferson.”
“How much trouble do you think it would be to change it back?” asked Baldwin.
Smyre said he wasn’t sure and would have to check on it.
The aldermen also approved the site for the 28th annual Christmas in July Festival, which will be held on July 5th and 6th.
Jane Lonon, representing the festival, told the aldermen that there were no major changes to the site from previous years.
She added, however, the Elkland Art Center in Todd will bring its puppet parade to the festival this year.
In other business:
• The aldermen also approved finishing the downtown’s streetscape project and approved spending $6,000 to purchase permanent seating and running electricity to the newest streetscape site.
• The board also approved a zoning ordinance amendment that will allow the owner of Cardinal Lanes to modify the appearance of the building and grounds.
• The board decided to permanently change its meeting times to adjust each year with the beginning and end of daylight savings time. During “standard” time during the winter months, the board will meet at 6 p.m. During daylight savings time (or “Summer Time”), the board will meet at 7 p.m. All its regular meetings are held on the first Monday of each month.
• W.J. Police Chief Jeff Rose reported 211 calls for February with 45 citations written, 21 arrests, of which 12 were drug related, 11 accidents, three speeding citations, two driving while impaired charges, three concealed weapon charges, and the recovery of one stolen weapon.
• Town Manager Brantley Price reported that approximately $992,000 of the town’s tax levy had been collected, representing 91.3 percent of the total levy.