Swannanoa incorporation is inevitable...

Swannanoa incorporation is inevitable and beneficial

There are 10 comments on the Asheville Citizen-Times story from Mar 20, 2008, titled Swannanoa incorporation is inevitable and beneficial. In it, Asheville Citizen-Times reports that:

Having friends in the Swannanoa area, I have followed the effort to incorporate with great interest.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Asheville Citizen-Times.

jett

AOL

#1 Mar 21, 2008
I WONDER HOW LONG MR RICE HAS LIVED IN THE AREA. AS FAR AS BLACK MOUNTAIN AND MONTREAT APPROVING, WELL ITS OR SHOULD NOT BE UP TO THEM, AS THEY DON'T RESIDE IN SWANNANOA, NOR DO THEY PAY THERE TAXES. AS FAR AS EVERYONE BEING HONEST AND STRAIGHT FOWARD, YOU MUST BE CONNECTED TO THE CLIFFS OR JUST PLAIN STUPID!
Old68

Candler, NC

#2 Mar 21, 2008
As a person who has been actively helping with the incorporation drive, Mr. Rice pretty much tells it like it is. As for the movement being dirven by "new comers" - this is absolutely not true. My home is on property that has been in my family since the early 1800's. The chairman of the task force's family goes back even further. Yes, annexation is one concern (compare the proposed additional $.05 per hundred tax for Swannanoa to the current $.45 for Asheville), but certainly not the only one. As a community we desire to be able to govern ourselves, and to make sure that growth happens in a positive way. There are many things besides incorporation that the Swannnanoa Pride Community Coalition has identified many things that will improve our community. However, without the underlying authority of incorporation we have no means to implement them.

“Dimensions Beyond Left & Right”

Since: Feb 07

Asheville

#3 Mar 21, 2008
Best wishes to the Swannanoa folks and their move to preserve their community.

My observation is that Asheville has virtually no place to expand except east. Woodfin has already incorporated to the north and Henderson County line looms to the south. Asheville is already vowing swallow up Enka and the Enka lake area to the west. My bet is that Asheville is looking at the huge tax dollars that The Cliffs at High Carolina will bring in. So I'd say, this is the time to make a move.

Old68, some of my ancestors lived in that area back in the 1800s to early 1900s as well. It has always been a beautiful valley.
True Swannanoa Native

Candler, NC

#4 Mar 21, 2008
Mr. Rice is just plain misinformed and certainly doesn't speak for the majority of Swannanoa residents. The pro-incorporation group has every means available to them to deceive residents into signing their petition. They didn't just stop at misinformation, they've gone so far as to lie in the pursuit of their agenda. When questioned regarding their actions they revert to the same old rhetoric of Asheville is going to get us which just isn't supported by the facts! Mr. Rice, just because someone says they're a native doesn't mean they've lived here all their life, merely that they where born in that area. I challenge his statement regarding old line family members. The "ONLY" person who has a heritage to Swannanoa left after high school and only returned after retiring. I am a true native having spent the majority of my life working and raising my family in Swannanoa and I want to let you know that these folks don't represent me, my family and the majority of Swannanoa residents. And just so that you know, the 25% of the voters you say that want incorporation, well that number is slowly diminishing once signees find out the TRUTH! In one Saturday, those of us who don't support incorporation gathered over 400 signatures against incorporation. Not only that but we had 5 inviduals who had signed the petition originally request that their name be removed and even more had already been sent to the Pro Incorporation Committee requesting removal. Although your opinion is yours it is the equivalent of me coming into your home or your business and telling you how to run it on a day to day basis. The question of whether or not to incorporate is ours, not yours!
Old68

Candler, NC

#5 Mar 21, 2008
TO: True Swannanoa Native: you are the one who doen't speak for the majority of Swannanoa residents. The Incorporation Task Force backed up every one of their statements with proven facts. The Task Force was up front as to who they were by identifying themselves by name and telephone number on most printed publications. I have yet to see a full list of those people who organized the anit-incorporation group. Maybe the reason a list has not been made public is that they do not want the general public to know that one of their original group, and their major financial supporter, is only a part time resident who spends a large portion of the year in Florida. Does the anti incorporation group consider him a Swannanoa native?

As to your comment about getting 400 signatures on your anit-incorporation petition. How do you plan to verify each and every name to make sure that they are in fact registered voters that live in the area being considered for incorporation? It is easy to get names on a petition for just abut anything if you don't have to get the names verified. Every one of the signatures included on the final petition in favor of incorporation comprising over 25% of the registered voters were verified by the Buncombe County Board of Elections.
True Swannanoa Native

Candler, NC

#6 Mar 21, 2008
I certainly do not hide under the veil of misrepresenting myself; nor do I send letters to my neighbors spewing mistruths in an attempt to win their support. Swannanoa Truth has no "purported" benefactor as you state in your response. It serves your purpose and those within your organization to spread mistruths in the hope that you will diminish our influence in the community. I guess your thinking is that its okay as long as the end justifies the means.

Your desire to have your way is so vehement that you've lost sight of what people in our beautiful valley think or feel. If you want my name or the name of the people on our committee one has only to look at the newspaper, or watch TV or attend a County Commissioners meeting or better yet a hearing on Forced Annexation, which I note there where none of the pro incorporation group in attendance. Why? Because the forced annexation issue is your only hope, your only chance of getting what you want, incorporation. Without it you have nothing to offer! Incidently we are the workers and business owners of Swannanoa who see through your attempt to sway. We've been a part of Swannanoa long before many of your organization and we'll still be here long after you've given up and moved away.

No matter how you try to tweak the numbers 75% always trumps 25%. It's kind've like your organization trying to survey less than 300 people and then saying that 85% of the residents of Swannanoa want incorporation. Your statistics didn't fly then and they don't fly NOW! That means that 75% of the voters in Swannanoa chose against incorporation even after door to door canvasing and all the propaganda your committee produced.
Old68

Candler, NC

#7 Mar 21, 2008
In your last post you made a lot of general comments, but you failed to answer the one factual question I raised - how many of the signatures that your group has collected have been verified that they are in fact registered voters in the area of incorporation?

Also, it is obvious that you only read what you want to read. Annexation is just one of the many stated reasons that we are promoting incorporation. What reasons do you have against incorporation other than you do not think annexation is going to happen?
True Swannanoa Native

Candler, NC

#8 Mar 21, 2008
It doesn't matter how many signatures we get because you and I both know that the “majority” of the residents of Swannanoa are not in favor of incorporation. Our point is to show the legislature that you and the pro-incorporation organization do not represent the majority of Swannanoa voters. In the period from October until the end of January, four months, your group could only muster 1500 signatures, under questionable methods, out of over six thousand registered voters. I believe, as do many others, that your committee knew that they had reached the point of dimishing returns and purposely chose to try and force the issue to the legislature before we woke up. Well, we are awake and now you don't like it!

Just because the law says that you only have to have a minimum of 15% of the registered voters to ask to be incorporated doesn't make it a just law not does it mean that Swannanoa Incorporation is a done deal. The bottom line is that you can scream and yell all you want, placing the blame here and there, but Swannanoa residents don't want incorporation!

You ask for reasons regarding my stance against incorporation and I stand fast on several major points; first that your approach to incorporation includes in leadership positions those who've moved here from other places and they now want to, "save us from ourselves" and frankly I do like it nor do I trust them. They moved to Swannanoa for a reason. Was it to save us from ourselves or was it because of the people, the community and out beautiful valley? If in fact it is for the first reason then there is nothing more that I need to say and if its the latter then; "why change something that has worked and something you chose to be a part of?" Second, the budgetary figures proposed are not realistic and cannot be maintained over the long term much less the first year of operation. When shown the proposed budget several local alderman from an adjacent town stated' "if they think they can run a town on that budget they are selling a bunch of horse manure." Then during the presentation to the Buncombe County Commissioners the presenter for incorporation stated several rates per one hundred dollars of valuation. The first was 17.5 cents and then up to 24 cents. Twenty four cents? That's the first anyone has heard of that number. And if anyone doubts what I'm saying go to the Buncombe County website and watch the webcast of that Commissioners meeting.

Needless to say these represent just two of the many reason I'm against incorporation. I believe that you've truly underestimated the people of Swannanoa and it would be futile to continue with my reasons simply because you've made up your mind on the issue. However, I would encourage you to listen in the future because we've yet to truly have our say in this issue.

I believe, as do many others, that the pro-incorporation organization has purposely misled the community in order to perpetuate some unknown agenda that will forever change Swannanoa in the negative. You've awakened a sleeping giant and because of your behavior and that of your organization you've created a divide in our community, neighbor against neighbor, that will be difficult to overcome. Shame on you and shame on Swannanoa Pride! And, don't give me that bull that the incorporation group and Swannanoa Pride are two separate entities. If that's the case, then why do they share the same website and perpetuate the same propaganda?
OldJohn

Boiling Springs, SC

#9 May 25, 2008
Interesting dialog. I guess I'm part of True Swannanoa Native's problem, I recently relocated here. I had the choice of purchasing a house in any number of neighborhoods but I chose Swannanoa for a number of reasons not the least of which was that there was not a lot of development here, yet and the area was looking at forming a township so as they could control their own destiny. I see this as a good thing. To listen to True Swannanoa Native's seemingly paranoid ramblings here, one would think that the Incorporation Committee was out to steal the valley from True Swannanoa Native and do all sorts of evil things. Perhaps create another Chemtronics? I don't think so. Still it is easy to not participate and stand outside and throw stones and spout off rhetoric. If you see something that don't look right, get involved and open a meaningful dialog with the principles. Standing outside and shouting demagoguery statements only makes you look foolish.

Since: Dec 06

Eddyville, KY

#10 May 25, 2008
OldJohn wrote:
Interesting dialog. I guess I'm part of True Swannanoa Native's problem, I recently relocated here. I had the choice of purchasing a house in any number of neighborhoods but I chose Swannanoa for a number of reasons not the least of which was that there was not a lot of development here, yet and the area was looking at forming a township so as they could control their own destiny. I see this as a good thing. To listen to True Swannanoa Native's seemingly paranoid ramblings here, one would think that the Incorporation Committee was out to steal the valley from True Swannanoa Native and do all sorts of evil things. Perhaps create another Chemtronics? I don't think so. Still it is easy to not participate and stand outside and throw stones and spout off rhetoric. If you see something that don't look right, get involved and open a meaningful dialog with the principles. Standing outside and shouting demagoguery statements only makes you look foolish.
It appears True Swannanoa Native has thrown numbers out and hasn't verified or given us facts to prove it. 75% are against according to him. I wonder how many times he counted the same people?
All I know is that I'm tired of paying sales tax and getting nothing in return. A percentage of the sales tax we pay goes to Asheville, not to Swannanoa. As an incorporated area, we're entitled to a share of the sales tax we remit.
It's also transparent that Asheville is looking to diminish the size and boundaries of Swannanoa that they would approve incorporation for so that they could get their greedy paws on the more affluent areas that are paying bigger property taxes. I trust the Asheville governing body as much as I trust the federal governing body and that isn't saying much.

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