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Cornelius News

Dave Gilroy is new mayor pro tem in Cornelius

Cornelius Town Hall. Photo by Jason Benavides

Dec. 7. By Dave Vieser. There was a changing of the guard last night as four new Town Board members were installed: Colin Furcht, Dave Gilroy, Michael Osborne and Todd Sansbury replaced Jim Duke, Mike Miltich, Thurman Ross and Tricia Sisson.

Denis Bilodeau was the only incumbent commissioner who was re-elected; Mayor Woody Washam ran unopposed.

Gilroy named mayor pro tem

At their first meeting, the newly constituted Cornelius Town Board tapped Commissioner Dave Gilroy to serve as mayor pro tem. The post, largely a ceremonial one, usually goes to the top vote-getter in the past election.


Citizen-friendly changes

—The public comment period during public hearings was expanded from three to four minutes. Concerns have been raised that three minutes was often insufficient for members of the public to make their comments, while developers were sometimes given untimed comments.

—The start of board meetings in 2022 will be moved up to 6 pm. The meetings had been shifted to a 5 pm start during the height of the Pandemic.

New building proposal

The public discussion on a proposal to erect a six-story mixed-use building on Bethel Church Road near Jetton Road extension was continued. A cordial discourse was held between  developer Justin Ckezepis, and the commissioners.

However, several nearby residents maintained their opposition to the height of the structure. “If we allow a six-story building to go in here, I fear that we would generate a precedent of sorts,” said Mimi Hooker, who lives across Jetton Extension in the Courtyards at Jetton.

“I’m just not sure that’s ideal for our community,” she said.

More public hearings before the Planning Board and Town Board will be held next year.

The new commissioners indicated that proposals for handling residential development will be forthcoming, possibly at the Dec. 20 Town Board Meeting. The four new commissioners ran on a “contract with Cornelius” platform which included a moratorium proposal on residential development.