Free Daily Headlines


Set your text size: A A A

Full text of Commissioner Edney's policy statement

Here is the full text of Edney’s policy statement on issues before the Board of Commissioners and municipalities in the county.


Policy Statement.
Henderson County should only engage with the various municipalities within her boundaries when areas of common benefit can be identified and quantified, taking into consideration the legal and historical roles assigned to each under State and Federal law. Absent mutual agreement and collaboration, the County shall not endeavor to impose its influence or establish competing services or enterprises within the legal boundaries of any municipality, nor should any municipality seek to impose its influence, establish competing services or enterprises outside of its legal boundary.
Areas of Unreimbursed Services provided by Henderson County.
There are many unreimbursed services Henderson County government provides within the jurisdictions of Hendersonville, Flat Rock, Fletcher, Mills River, and Saluda. Several of these are mandated, such as the Human Services delivered through the Department of Social Services and the Health Department; the Office of the Register of Deeds; space and furniture for the Court system (including Courtrooms, District Attorney, Public Defender, Probation & Parole, Juvenile Services), real & personal property valuation for tax purposes, elementary and secondary public school facilities (and additionally local teacher / support personnel, school bus fuel, etc....), and Blue Ridge Community College facilities and operating costs. In addition to the mandated services, the County provides multiple unreimbursed services within the legal boundaries of the municipalities. These are services that the County is legally allowed to provide but is not required to do so. These include the UNC/Pardee Health Care System which includes primary and specialty care doctors, Urgent Cares, and Margaret R. Pardee Memorial Hospital; Emergency Medical Services (EMS); the Rescue Squad; multiple recreation facilities (ie Jackson Park and the Activities Center; supplemental law enforcement within the municipal boundaries such as the Drug Taskforce; our public library system; solid waste and recycling center, Cooperative Extension; Veteran Services.
Henderson County does support fire and rescue services within the County through its support of the various Fire & Rescue Departments, and support offices.
Areas of Collaboration between the County and the Municipalities.
There are several areas in which the County and the Municipalities work together to serve the citizens of the County. A prime example is the establishment and funding of the Partnership for Economic Development – the job recruiting arm of local government. The construction of the Health Sciences Building which houses the Cancer Center, BRCC Allied Health and Wingate University Pharmacy and Physician Assistant program.
Exclusive Services within Municipal Boundaries.
Some but not all of the municipalities in the County provide, as required by State Law, some services that the County does not provide. These include Street and Road maintenance; Street Lighting; Garbage pickup; Planning/Zoning; Fire and/or Police protection. Most municipalities also provide parks and recreation opportunities.
Areas of Potential Collaboration in the future.
1. Continuing the historical cooperation related to the recruitment of quality companies , providing quality jobs. The upside down job market artificially created as a consequence of the Covid experience cannot sustain itself indefinitely. We need to be positioned in the recruitment market to remain attractive to the job creators in the near and distant future. This will necessitate continued cooperation among all localities and utilities.
2. The development of the rail trail (linear park) along the old Watco line from downtown Hendersonville, through Laurel Park, to the county line at Etowah. This will be an economic boost to the County as a whole; it will add to the quality of life within the whole County ; it will reduce health care costs within the County, and it will help attract new companies and new jobs.
3. Work with Saluda as they explore a similar linear park along the rail corridor leading from Hendersonville to Saluda and beyond.
4. Development of a Countywide Water and Sewer Authority that offers equal rates to all customers regardless of their location.
5. Manage and operate a new library facility built by the Town of Fletcher.
6. Develop a unified, efficient emergency dispatch system serving all areas of the County.
7. Expand into a permanent space the “Walk of Fame”
8. Co-Develop an outdoor Amphitheatre capable of attracting national acts.
9. Co-Develop a tournament quality Soccer Complex.
10. Reimagine Recreation Department to take advantage of existing municipal and school facilities.
11. Partner to expand golfing opportunities to all citizens within the County.
12. Enhance educational opportunities in the areas of scientific and medical research and training. We should be training doctors, nurses in Henderson County, not MAHEC in Asheville.
13. Design and build waste water collection/treatment to serve the US Hwy 64 corridor from the eastern continental divide to the Countyline at Etowah.
Current Obstacles Preventing Collaboration.
1. The resistance of the City of Hendersonville to a jointly owned and operated Water and Sewer Authority.
2. The insistence by the City of Hendersonville, Town of Laurel Park and Village of Flat Rock that they control areas that are outside of what is allowed by State Law (boundaries and ETJ.)
Potential County Courses of Action.
1. Design, develop and build an Independent / Competing Sewer collection and treatment enterprise serving the US Hwy 64 corridor.
2. Collaborate with MSD to design, develop and build an Independent / Competing Sewer collection and treatment enterprise serving the US Hwy 64 corridor and beyond.
3. Collaborate with the City of Asheville to design, develop and build an Independent / Competing water enterprise serving all underserved areas within the County, at a fair rate.
4. Amend the County Land Development Code creating incentives for property owners to remain under the County’s jurisdiction as opposed to forced voluntary annexation.
5. Prohibit the use of any County tax dollars from being used to artificially support municipal governments.
6. Educate municipal leaders as to the mutual benefits of collaboration over competition.