Unincorporated Buncombe County Waste Pro subscribers will see a new rate for 2024. Following an increase in Buncombe County’s tipping fee and an annual CPI increase of 3.1% beginning Jan. 1, Waste Pro’s new monthly subscriber fee is $23.66 for trash and recycling collection.
Pursuant to their contract, Waste Pro is entitled to rate increases in two situations: County increases in tipping fees and consumer price index “CPI” increases. The first provides for a 10% rate increase in subscriber fees for every $1.00 the County increases its tipping fees at the transfer station and landfill. The second increase is an annual CPI adjustment. In a presentation to the Board of Commissioners at their first regular meeting of 2024, Waste Pro Regional Vice President Chip Gingles outlined the changes. The 2023 per subscriber rate was $22.55 per month. Because the fee increases are pursuant to the contract, no action by the Board of Commissioners was necessary.
Community Development Block Grant
The Board gave Health & Human Services Director Stoney Blevins the direction to close out the Community Development Block Grant coronavirus program. Through the CARES Act, the County received $900,000 in 2021. This funding provided 206 unique households with mortgage assistance and/or utility assistance. A total of $495,780.66 was expended in community assistance and $404,212.34 went unexpended. Blevins explained the unexpended funds could be explained by a lag in receiving the funds, the County had its own mortgage assistance program, and city residents not being able to access the assistance. The grant window closed in June of 2023 and next steps will include a public hearing and further Board action.
Solid Waste ordinance amendments
The Board of Commissioners approved changes in Buncombe County’s solid waste ordinance in preparation for the upcoming waste collection services Request for Proposals (RFP). To ensure consistency, Solid Waste Director Dane Pedersen and Senior Attorney Michael Frue recommended amending Chapter 62 of the Buncombe County Code of Ordinances, which includes local Solid Waste Management regulations. Find the updates here, and the complete presentation here. Commissioners approved putting the County’s trash and recycling service out to bid at their Nov. 21, 2023, regular meeting.
Board of Elections Director compensation
The Board considered a resolution to increase the salary of the Buncombe County Elections Director. The Board of Elections submitted a recommendation in accordance with N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163-35 for the Director of Elections to receive an additional salary increase (inclusive of the 2023 COLA) moving the annual compensation to $115,000 per year. The Board of Commissioners deferred action on the agenda item and will bring it back for consideration at the Jan. 16 meeting.
North Carolina CLASS Investment Pool
Addressing the need for more investment options, the Board voted to approve a resolution and interlocal agreement to join the North Carolina CLASS Investment Pool. The North Carolina Cooperative Liquid Assets Securities System (North Carolina CLASS) is a commingled investment pool established by interlocal agreement in accordance with North Carolina law permitting local government units to pool idle funds in order to invest such funds and earn interest in accordance with, and as permitted by, the provisions of the N.C.G.S. Section 159-30 or other laws of the State of North Carolina governing the investment of monies of a local government unit. Read the resolution. Read the interlocal agreement.
Commissioners approved a budget amendment establishing a construction project for North Buncombe High School softball field upgrades. This is a state lottery project for Buncombe County Schools, read the Public School ADM Capital Fund Project ordinance here.
The next regular meeting of the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners will take place on Jan. 16. To watch this or any Board of Commissioners meeting, go to www.facebook.com/buncombegov.