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Mayor begs to differ about policing Indian Trail

Editor's note: The author is mayor of Indian Trail.

I read the letter written by Indian Trail resident Michael McNally. He expressed concern about youth vandalism in his Brandon Oaks neighborhood.

He gave an account of how he saw three teenagers attempting to break into vehicles in his driveway after midnight, and called 911. He believed the response time and subsequent action taken by the responding deputies was somehow inadequate.

He expressed the opinion that a town police department (instead of contracting with the sheriff's office) would be the answer to crime. He went on to say “the mayor and council claim we do not need police.” That statement could not be more inaccurate.

Earlier this year, the council approved adding four officers to the Indian Trail division of the Union County Sheriff's office. In a separate move, the council voted unanimously to seek to create a five-officer traffic unit through a grant from the Governors Highway Safety program. These actions (subject to approval of the grant) would double the number of deputies assigned to our town. Most importantly, the council entered into a five-year contract with the sheriff's office. This commitment will help Sheriff (Eddie) Cathey and his staff create programs and a policing model designed to meet Indian Trail's changing needs.

Creating a police department to provide comparable patrol and response coverage to what we receive from the sheriff's office (not to mention the additional services we receive and don't pay extra for) would be costly for all taxpayers. The most important aspect of this issue, however, is not the cost but the quality – and we do get quality….

In order to get the facts straight, I made inquiry with Sgt. Chase Coble of the sheriff's office (Indian Trail Division) concerning Mr. McNally's 911 call for service….It is clear to me that the two deputies did more than just answer a call. While they were unable apprehend the teens, their persistence in patrolling and searching the area for an hour most likely prevented additional crime.

Last month I was advised that one of our deputies noticed a car suspiciously parked in a driveway behind a Subway restaurant on Unionville-Indian Trail Road. It was after closing time and two teenage girls were inside getting ready to leave. Our deputy investigated and discovered and arrested two men who may have intended to rob the Subway when the girls walked out the door. The men were out on bail as a result of being arrested for a similar crime in Mecklenburg County.

Our Union County sheriff's deputies are doing the job every day. The sheriff's office has proven time and again that they are ready, willing and able to meet the law enforcement needs of Indian Trail as well as other areas they serve in Union County.

John Quinn

Mayor, Indian Trail

Leash law long overdue

Just read an article on the desperate need for a leash law in Union County.

I tried pushing this in May 2007 only to have the issue “tabled” by Union County commissioners and not a word said after that 90-day hold.

It's past time something is done. Union County continues to grow and along with it, the pet population.

During the hearing last year, Sheriff Cathey indicated that because of the tremendous amount of farmland and dogs that work the farms, he could not support a leash ordinance, (but could) a containment ordinance. Whether it's a leash or containment ordinance, its time for something to be done. It's past time!

Let's revisit this issue now and use our heads more wisely and put something in place before it is too late!

Angela Allen

Mineral Springs

IB feedback ‘alarming'

First I would like to thank all of you who have worked to help stop IB's proposal to install a private waste treatment plant in “The Woods” community.

Over the past few months I have had the opportunity to speak with many community members on the subject. Some of the feedback I have received has been alarming. I thought I would use this forum to share some of the discussion points that are of concern to me as a resident of Union County.

“The proposal is a local Weddington problem and does not affect the rest of Union County.”

“I don't really know a lot about the issue.”

“There are enough people working to prevent this, I don't need to be involved.”

“Our Town Council will never let this happen.”

“I am too busy to get involved.”

I assure you this proposal has great potential to affect all Union County residents. I have been told by industry experts that some developers in Union County have already inquired how they would be able to develop land using similar methods. Should this proposal get approved, it sets a precedent for how residential waste treatment can be managed in Union County. Do you want a public municipality to manage waste treatment or do you want small “package” plants embedded inside our communities managed by any number of private management companies? Do you want residential developers making choices to build these plants without odor controls or with open settling pools?

Those of you who don't know – take time to get informed at www.friendsofweddington.org

For those of you who are too busy or believe others will fight your fight – when you wake up next to a “package plant,” ask yourself who are you going to blame?

Join us at the Aug. 11 public hearing.

John Giattino

Weddington

Attend Aug. 11 hearing

Union County residents, we would like to remind you that one of the most important votes in Weddington and Union County history is just ahead. On Aug. 11, there will be a quasi-judicial hearing on The Woods proposed reclaimed wastewater treatment plant. This precedent-setting vote can affect all citizens of Union County and our county public works infrastructure.

A group of Weddington citizens called the Friends of Weddington continues to reach out to you and ask for your support and public attendance at this hearing. This effort has monetary cost. We organized to represent you, the town citizens in this issue. We have hired attorneys and experts to argue Weddington citizens' side of this issue and Development's Conditional Use Permit (CUP) requesting a private residential wastewater treatment plant for The Woods subdivision. If approved, this will be the first private residential wastewater treatment plant used to irrigate common areas and yards in the state of North Carolina! This privately managed sewer plant would be a dangerous precedent, allowing the rest of our town and county to be developed with private sewer plants….

The Woods, developed by IB Development, LLC, is an upscale-gated community of 200-plus homes with lots starting at slightly less than one acre and homes ranging from $1.2 to $3 million. The developer has applied to build a private wastewater treatment plant to pump 100,000 gallons per day of reclaimed wastewater back into the subdivision to irrigate its common areas and lawns. This system requires a pump station, which will be located near Mundy's Run Creek. Solid waste or sludge will be trucked out of the community in tanker trucks approximately every three weeks. …

Why is it important for you, a citizen of Weddington or Union County, to attend the public hearing on Aug. 11?

Residents of Weddington voted the Weddington Town Council to represent our town. We need at least 500 people (or more) at the public hearing! Council members will pay attention to public opposition and our presence could bear weight on their final vote.

Friends of Weddington would like to thank everyone who signed our petition, and we encourage those that have not done so to visit www.friendsofweddington.org. …

Janice Propst

Weddington

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