In a work session held prior to their regular meeting on Jan. 4, the Lincoln County Board of Commissioners discussed the proposed change to Chapter 160D of the North Carolina General Statutes. This new chapter consolidates current city- and county-enabling statutes for development regulations into a single, unified chapter. This was not a quick process; it was initiated by the N.C. Bar Association, with support from the N.C. chapter of the American Planning Association in 2013. It’s the first major recodification since 1905. 

“Over the last 40 years, as zoning expanded across the state, little changes had crept up,” Andrew Bryant, director of Lincoln County Planning and Inspections said. “Over time, they started to get away from each other. It wasn’t always quite clear if the differences were different, or an oversight in the law-making procedures.” 

Chapter 160D is effective now, but local governments have until July 1 for the development, consideration, and adoption of necessary amendments to conform local ordinances to this new law, according to the University of North Carolina School of Government. All city and county zoning, subdivision, and other development regulations, including unified-development ordinances, will need to be updated by that date to conform to the new law. Cities and counties that have zoning ordinances must have an up-to-date comprehensive plan or land use plan by July 1, 2022. Times-News will provide more in-depth information about this change in the next week.

At the regular meeting held after the work session, N.C. Sen. Ted Alexander was sworn in. 

The board also heard several zoning public hearings including  

  • A request from Rebecca Smith for a conditional use permit to sell vehicles in the I-G (General Industrial) district. The 1.0-acre parcel is located at 6630 Denver Industrial Park Road in Catawba Springs Township.
  • A request from Ransford Properties, LLC for a conditional use permit to place a Class B (doublewide) manufactured home in the R-S (Residential Suburban) district. The 0.47-acre parcel is located on the south side of Wrenn Drive about 250 feet east of Killian Street/Canada Lane in Catawba Springs Township.
  • A request from Winston Conrad for a conditional use permit to place a Class B (doublewide) manufactured home in the R-S (Residential Suburban) district. The 1.0-acre parcel is located on the north side of Bynum Road about 1,100 feet west of Gastonia Highway in Lincolnton Township.
  • A request from CMH Homes, Inc. for a conditional use permit to place a Class B (doublewide) manufactured home in the R-S (Residential Suburban) district. The 1.46-acre parcel is located on the north side of Car Farm Road about 900 feet east of Horseshoe Lake Road.
  • A request from Oakwood Homes of Newton to rezone a 1.3-acre lot from R-SF (Residential-Single Family) to R-T (Transitional Residential). The property is located on Sherrod Lane at Waterfalls Drive about 150 feet east of Buffalo Shoals Road in Ironton Township.
  • A request from Mark Phinney and Fred Lanier to rezone a 2.86-acre lot from R-S (Residential Suburban) to CZ B-G (Conditional Zoning General Business) to permit vehicle service and vehicle sales. The property is located at 4588 Reepsville Road, on the north side of Reepsville Road about 600 feet east of Jetton Drive, in Howards Creek Township.

The commissioners are slated to vote on all of these zoning cases at the next meeting to be held on Monday, Jan. 11 at 6:30 p.m. at the Lincoln County Administration Office located at 353 North Generals Boulevard in Lincolnton.

Also at the meeting Monday evening, Geraldine Gardner will provide a Centralina Regional Council update, Patty Korn will give the Keep Lincoln County Beautiful annual report, and interim Lincoln County Schools Superintendent Dr. Aaron Allen will deliver the Lincoln County Schools NCDPI Facility Needs Survey.

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