Commissioners appoint residents to Environmental Review panel

Mar. 19, 2013 @ 05:02 AM

Lee County Commissioners voted to appoint 11 residents to the Environmental Review & Advisory Committee — a board tasked with reviewing technical documentation and advising the county on testing matters impacting the environment — Monday night.

One alternate member was also selected to join the board during the regular-scheduled Lee County Board of Commissioners meeting Monday night.

Commissioner Jim Womack, who pushed for the creation of the new committee, wanted each member of the board to have an area of expertise and address the county's need as the energy industry begins to move into the area.

The following were appointed to a full-board position along with their respective field of knowledge:

* William A. Long - Agriculture, Forestry

* Christopher Stan Cameron - Regulatory Planning and Enforcement

* Brian DeCiancia - Environmental Engineering

* Dereck Martin - Soil Science / Soil Testing

* Martin D. Matthews - Geology

* April Montgomery - Regulatory Planning and Enforcement/ Environmental Law

* Russ Patterson -- Hydrology/Water Testing

* Jeff Reid -- Biology

* Matthew Sakurada -- Waste Management

* David Silvey -- Environmental Health/Toxicology

* Dan Wood -- Engineering

Robert Garrett was selected as an alternative with hydrology and water testing has his area of expertise. 

As part of the motion Monday, Womack asked for the board to be expanded from the nine proposed members to 11 full-time members and one alternative to accommodate all those who applied.

"I'd suggest, rather than just vote of the nine, I'd make a motion to amend the previous agreement to have to extend the size to 11," Womack said. "That we keep it at an odd number for quorum and voting purposes."

The Environmental Review & Advisory Committee replaced the now-defunct Environmental Affairs Board, after a vote by the commissioners in January.

Two staff members — someone from the Lee County Department of Health and Cooperative Extension — would also serve on the board, Womack said.

In other matters, the Commissioners:

* Considered an economic incentives policy that narrows the criteria for business seeking county funds. Commissioner Robert Reives asked the policy be sent to the Lee County Economic Development Corporation, Sanford Area Chamber of Commerce, Town of Broadway and City of Sanford for suggestions and input. No action was taken.

* Considered a youth program for 14 Lee County students. The two-week program would pair the students to a commissioner and include lessons on local government and civic engagement. Commissioner Kirk Smith encouraged commissioners to each solicit two potential student applicants.

* Tabled a resolution on a bill in the North Carolina Senate that would move Lee County into an economic region based around Charlotte to ask questions of regional partners and Lee County's state representatives and senators.