Update: House committee to consider ETJ bill Monday
by Anna Oakes
UPDATE: Since this story was posted, the House Committee on Government meeting scheduled for Thursday was canceled and rescheduled for 5 p.m. on Monday, June 23. Below is the previous version of the story.
The N.C. House Committee on Government is slated to consider Senate Bill 865 following the full House session Thursday. The local bill introduced by state Sen. Dan Soucek of Boone would abolish Boone's extraterritorial jurisdiction authority.
An ETJ, authorized by the state since 1959, is a defined area in the county outside of city limits that is subject to a city's zoning regulations, including the type, density and location of land uses. Boone has exercised ETJ authority since 1983. ETJ residents cannot vote in town elections, do not pay town taxes and do not receive town services, but residents of the ETJ serve on the town's Board of Adjustment and Planning Commission.
The bill, if successful, would take effect Jan. 1, 2015.
The Republican-led N.C. Senate on June 12 approved the bill, with Soucek and all fellow Republicans voting in favor, and the bill will now be considered by the House.
The House Committee on Government was slated to consider the S865 and seven other bills 45 minutes after the conclusion of the full House session. The House session convened at 11 a.m. Thursday and was slated to return from a recess at 12:45 p.m.
A similar bill filed by Soucek and passed by the Senate two years ago ultimately died in a House committee. House representatives at that time argued a bill affecting Boone's ETJ should be delayed until the broader issue of ETJ authority and state municipalities could be studied further, which has not yet happened.