RED SPRINGS — The Red Springs Board of Commissioners on Tuesday approved a recommendation from the Planning Board to allow a conditional-use permit for a used car lot at the corner of Fourth Avenue and Peachtree Street.
Mour Saraman, the owner of the lot, plans to build on to what remains of Merritt’s Grocery, creating a building 20 feet wide by 35 feet long, that will house two offices and a bathroom. The lot is in located in the town’s Central Business District. Placing a car lot in that district requires a conditional use.
Wilson Ray, chairman of the Planning Board, said at the board’s Jan. 31 meeting that he had reservations about approving a conditional use for a car lot being put on a lot that “abuts” a residential area.
“This is important stuff, because you can just ride around and look what happens to a used car lot after the first five or six months,” Ray said. “There are cars out there with no tires on them … people have good intentions, but things happen. … You’re right in a residential area, and we’re just not going to let your business degrade the people who live there.”
Saraman told the Planning Board that the business would be open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. from Mondays through Saturdays. He wasn’t yet sure how many cars he would put on the lot, but that number is regulated by the North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles.
The board held a public hearing on the conditional-use permit, but no one was present to speak.
Also on Tuesday, the board:
— Heard from Linda Thomas, store manager of the Walmart Express under construction on Fourth Avenue, who announced that the store’s grand opening would be Feb. 20 at 7:30 a.m.
— Heard from Marcella Grantham, who thanked the board on behalf of the Jr. Dilettante Club for returning the clock to the corner of Fourth Avenue and Main Street. The clock had been moved during construction of the town’s Martin Luther King Jr. park.
— Recognized Brandon Drose, of Flora MacDonald Academy, as the town’s student of the month.
— Heard from Montressa Smith, director of Southeastern Lifestyle Center of Red Springs, who said that the town was no longer eligible for an employee discount because the number of town employees visiting the center had dropped.
— Heard from Annette Bryant, the town’s Human Resources manager, who updated the board on changes to the department, including implementation of a filing system and a process of keeping track of employee leave.
— Recognized Derrick Edge, director of the town’s Electrical Department, for his work in an understaffed department and announced that a new town employee would soon be in place.
—Approved a conditional-use permit for the Red Springs Rescue Squad Inc. to establish a new rescue base at the corner of West Fourth and West Fifth avenues.
— Approved the subdivision of a lot at 225 1/2 South Main St., which is part of a town parcel and was recently sold to Robbie VanHoy. VanHoy plans to convert the building, once home to the Red Springs Historical Museum, into a recording studio.
— Approved four budget amendments totaling $11,852.
— Approved a resolution opposing legislation that would force municipalities to turn over their water system to county or metropolitan sewer districts.
— Approved a project closeout agreement between the town and a Lumberton contractor, the Tara Group, for repairs to the town’s sewer treatment plant.
— Appointed Talmadge Evers and James Mitchell to serve on the town’s Board of Adjustment in the Extraterrestrial Jurisdiction.
— Appointed Sharon Ingle to the Cemetery Committee. Ingle replaces Marcella Grantham, who resigned because of scheduling conflicts.