JONESVILLE — The town of Jonesville has been working in the last couple of months to finalize its 2018-19 budget, which includes no property tax increases, as well as highlighting its resources such as the greenway along the Yadkin River.
As commissioners were guided through budget line items during budget meetings, questions and concerns evolved leading the council to further actions, such as creating a new litter program with signs soon to emerge.
Although property taxes were not increased, one councilman did express concern during the final vote on maintaining the current vehicle tax.
Councilman Andy Green explained although he understood the vehicle tax was a good way to give those who rent instead of own property in Jonesville the opportunity to help with road repair and maintenance, he vetoed the tax as a representation of those constituents who expressed their dissatisfaction directly to him.
This $3o motor vehicle tax can be refunded for those vehicles without a motor such as a trailer. To receive the refund, citizens must present their registration and receipt of payment to the town office in the town hall and welcome center building.
This refund is not the best kept secret in Jonesville, however. According to Town Manager Michael Pardue, that might be the green space which is about to become a focal point.
On Thursday at 7 p.m., the Jonesville Tourism Development Authority will host a gathering at the trailhead behind the Starmount Crossing shopping plaza.
“We recognize the Jonesville Greenway Trail is something that is special and more members of the public need to know about it,” said Pardue.
Encouraged by the success of the Elkin Valley Trails Association and the enthusiasm of Dr. Bill Blackley, who spoke at the most recent meeting, the Jonesville Tourism Development Authority is inviting citizens to join the TDA members to discuss the potential of trails on the Yadkin County side of the river.
“[Blackley’s] example of leadership and commitment to the EVTA provides inspiration to us all,” said Pardue, who was interested in more than just providing residents with a safe, clean, fun place to play, exercise and learn.
“It carries more significance than a place to hike or take an afternoon stroll,” said Pardue, “it has the power to unite our community.”
Blackley agreed, pointing out, “Ours is one community connected by a river. Two towns, but one community.”
It is hoped that the sense of community will not only provide assistance from the EVTA and local outdoors folks from Elkin to take an interest in the greenway, but Jonesville citizens, too.
“In order for the greenway to reach its full potential, more people need to be involved. The trail is still in the developmental stage and needs a number of eager volunteers that are willing to work as overseers to make sure its needs are met,” said Pardue.
It is the army of volunteers which has made the EVTA successful, according to Blackley.
“Everything we do is with volunteers,” said Blackley, describing such things as work days at Spice Farm and Carter Falls, events such as the Gathering of the Friends of the Mountains-To-Sea Trail and NC Trail Days, and weekly reminders like the booth at the Elkin Farmers Market for the Duck and Turtle Regatta, all of which are maintained through volunteer efforts.
“Many hands make light work,” said Pardue, who also sees the potential economic impact of the trail efforts, especially when guided by passionate volunteers.
“We recognize the value of working with others and learning from their success,” said Pardue, who has encouraged the cooperation with the EVTA after watching the growth of Explore Elkin as it has enhanced both community involvement and tourism.
“Our greenway is located adjacent to the Yadkin River. It can also provide extra momentum to our local economy as numerous business opportunities and events are cultivated as a result of its existence,” said Pardue.
The gathering of citizens will provide an opportunity to see the space and the vision it provides as well as sharing other ideas and chances to volunteer.
Some of those ideas will be considered by the Economic Development Committee being created by the town to help clarify the town’s vision and to maintain a realistic perspective.
“There are a lot of things we can be doing, grants we could be getting, but it’s going to take a lot of work,” said Pardue. “It’s going to take a lot of research and planning and a lot of work. We’re going to have to really put ourselves to it, but I think it’s going to be worthwhile. We’ve really got something to offer people here in Jonesville, we just need to let them know about it.”
For more information about the greenway gathering, visit https://www.facebook.com/events/270778330167098/ or call Jonesville Town Hall at 336-835-2000.
Beanie Taylor can be reached through voice mail at 336-258-4058 or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TBeanieTaylor.