Help me understand the logic here.
A company wanted to rezone property in New Hanover County. The county turned the plan down. So the developer goes to the city of Wilmington and says it wants to become part of the city. The city obliges and votes to start annexing the area.
The county is mad. I understand that. But what I don't understand is the county's response.
Our news department reported how the county is now refusing to participate with the city to help to bring a baseball team and stadium to Wilmington.
What does one have to do with the other? Absolutely nothing - they are completely separate projects.
This move appears to be retaliation. Instead of working out their differences or trying to understand, they make a move toward revenge.
And who gets hurt? Local business, citizens, and possibly our economy.
I just don't understand how anyone can feel this was an appropriate response to a vote our commissioners didn't like.
That's my turn. Now it's your turn. To comment on this segment, or anything else, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Emailed comments from viewers:
I live in Brunswick County and visit Wilmington regularly. I agree with you the retaliatory action taken by New Hanover County toward the city of Wilmington regarding downtown baseball stadium development is beyond belief. Unfortunately this now very public reaction reinforces all too publicly that we continue to elect officials to make responsible decisions in our best interests, only to find they actually act like kindergarteners who have not yet even received their first civics lesson. We live in one of the best places to live in this country; we deserve elected officials who behave like grownups and actually work to make our home even better!
Why is it so difficult to cast aside the fact that the county taxpayers should not be on the hook for another Wilmington boondoggle. If "businesses that could benefit from a stadium downtown" beleive in this project, why don't they pool their monies and invest in this winning proposition. Why don't the Altanta Braves open up their pockets and invest in the city of Wilmington if this is such a great idea. Why do people such as yourself think that the governments primary duty is to built convention centers & ball parks instead of paving roads and funding schools. Get off your high horse Gary. Wilmington is not enjoying a budget surplus and continues to raise taxes. Neither is New Hanover county. At least they have a few sober members that don't get their marching orders from the Mayor.
Now the rest of the story. Wilmington City Council has been uncooperative with County Commissioners over their differences on the Voluntary Satellite Annexation of 27 acres of property located over two miles out of the city.
County Commissioners thoroughly vetted, investigated, and listened to the public, developer, etc. before voting down the property owner's request to be rezoned. There has been ongoing litigation. In the meantime, as reported in a recent article by the Wilmington Business Journal it was stated by the developer's attorney that the city approached the developer about becoming annexed into the city using this special law. It appears that the city did an end run around the county and has bent over backward to assist the developer in prepared of his presention at a public hearing so that it would get a favorable vote. The County Commissioners respectfully asked the Wilmington City Council to meet with them prior to the Public Hearing which was held on January 3 and this request was denied. County Commissioners were told they could speak at the Public Hearing.
This is about respect and working in harmony. No doubt the Commissioners feel that if the City did an end run around their negative vote to rezone this property for the developer, then invited them to be part of the city, then declined to meet with them that a mutual, harmonious working relationship on the ballfield would be problematic. They are not just "mad" as you stated, they made another good business decision.
I don't understand how the official's that you elect to serve to make your place you live a better place to live can try thier best to stop something that you and your family can go to.I hope that the voter's will remeber all of this in November!
I agree that one does not have anything to do with the other, but tax (confiscated) money should not be used for a baseball stadium. I do not believe that the city or county will ever get their money back from the huge investment they are talking about. I watched much of the fiasco during the period that Winston Salem built their stadium and they have double the population we have here. If investors want to build it, they should do so with private money and save the taxpayers money for maintaining what we already have. The streets around here are in terrible shape.
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