sam's notes

notes on government, sports and popular culture

Monday, August 09, 2004

Although Guilford County approved the $20 million bond for the November ballot, there were complaints that the bond package was a bit short on details, preventing voters from making an informed decision.

"We don't know what this bond package is going to buy," complained commissioner Skip Alston. "I'll be asking my citizens to vote against it because I won't be buying a pig in a poke."

The N&R story covering the commissioners' meeting on Friday definitely lacked details regarding what $20 million would buy citizens of Guilford County if they approved it. Here, then, are a few details of the bond package, with which a majority of the commissioners were obviously satisfied:

Half the money, $10 million to be exact, would go toward the "preservation of open space," a concept that raised the ire of commissioner Billy Yow.

The Guilford County Open Space Committee (I didn't even know there was such a committee) would purchase 1,400 acres at $7,000 an acre. Lands purchased would be focused on stream corridors and will provide for protection of water quality, flood control, widlife habitat and connections to existing open spaces. Bond funds would purchase critical tracts and accelerate the rate at which the county's Open Space Plan is implemented.

Another $3 million would go toward the construction of Southwest Park, which would be located at the headwaters of the proposed Randleman Reservoir, which should be filled by 2005. Proceeds from the 2005 bond have started construction of the park, but more funds will be needed to complete it.

Yet another $3 million would go toward "school parks," basically soccer and softball fields and which would be used by students during the day and other residents after school and on weekends. As you

Another $2 million each would go toward an addtion to Bryan Park and a Greenway expansion. In addition to continuing construction on the Bicentennial Greenway (for which funds have already been dedicated), there are two other greenway initiatives online: Lake Brandt Greenway, which would link Greensboro and Summerfield and Stokesdale, while Piedmont Greenway would link Greensboro to Winston-Salem. Both would be cooperative efforts involving local governments, DOT and private funding.

I hope these few details will help voters make a more informed choice come November.


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