If you've never been to a meeting of the Cornelius town board, please try to attend one. You find out about so much that is happening in our town.
Meetings are all open to the public. Before you go, check www.cornelius.org for the agenda and to confirm the meeting place and time. (Generally, the board meets at 7 p.m. the first and third Mondays of each month at the Town Hall.)
A summary of some of what was discussed at the last meeting:
A bid has been accepted and construction has been approved for the start of the Westmoreland Athletic Complex, to be built at West Catawba and Westmoreland. The first phase will include two baseball/softball fields, restrooms, picnic shelters, a playground, parking and sidewalks. This project is funded, in part, by a $500,000 grant from the N.C. Department of Environment & Natural Resources.
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Police Chief Bence Hoyle reported that last year, crime in Cornelius was up 18 percent. Property crime was up 25 percent, but violent crime was down 27 percent. The biggest factor in the rise in crime was car larceny, stealing from cars late at night. Many such crimes are preventable, as they result from people leaving valuables in plain sight and in unlocked cars.
The Emergency Dispatch Center had 24 percent more calls last year. Ways to deal with all those calls were discussed: more staff, surveillance cameras, technology upgrades and more.
The board is still talking about the "diverging diamond" interchange for I-77 Exit 28. The renovation is supposed to make traffic flow more efficiently, and it costs less than a more major reconstruction of the interchange.
Local retailers' desire to use more banner advertising is still being discussed. Nothing is final yet.
A presentation on a study by the Urban Land Institute will be on the town's Web site soon. A major focus is how the North Rail Line transit project will affect our town's economy.
Because of the recent snow, the dates for several events have been changed.
The reception for the Gordon C. James art exhibit is now scheduled for 7-9 p.m. Feb. 26 at the Cornelius Arts Center.
Latta Plantation's "Back of the Big House," which teaches about the lives of slaves through first-person interpretation, is scheduled for 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Feb. 27.
The North Meck Soccer Adidas Boys' College Combine is rescheduled for April 25.