Mint Hill Board Of Commissioner Candidates For Upcoming November Election

Mint Hill Mayor, Brad Simmons

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MINT HILL, NC – We put forward seven questions to each candidate and requested their response. As information, the Mayor is running for reelection unopposed.

Q1. Why have you made the decision to run for the Board of Commissioners? For the Mayor, why are you running for reelection? 

Q2. Why should citizens of Mint Hill vote for your candidacy? What do you consider to be your biggest accomplishment?

Q3. How would you manage the growth that is inevitable in Mint Hill?

Q4. Concerning the expected additional traffic congestion, especially along Matthews-Mint Hill Road, how would you mitigate the concerns citizens have to improve the situation going forward?

Q5. Regarding the health of downtown Mint Hill, do we offer enough selection of shopper options? What about more sidewalks? Would you consider a small village of boutiques, restaurants, arts and crafts, etc., similar to what Matthews, Locust, and Waxhaw have developed in their downtown districts?

Q6. How do you plan to get more involvement and input from residents in the decision-making process in our town to improve the quality of life in the community?

Q7. What about Police and Fire departments? What are some of the challenges you anticipate, and what enhancements would you recommend to ensure the quality of safety in our community remains at a high level of service?

Brad Simmons, Mayor

Q1. In my first two years as mayor, I was able to work collaboratively with the Board of Commissioners to accomplish a number of goals. We began by redesigning the Town of Mint Hill website to ensure it was more user-friendly. We also started live streaming all of our town meetings to increase engagement with the public. In order to be more responsive to the residents and transparent in our practices, I have provided weekly updates and held regular office hours. We initiated and have nearly completed the Comprehensive Land Use Plan. Additionally, we have recently been able to acquire land on Lebanon Road to provide space for our Public Works facility and a second local fire department. I’m running for reelection because I want the opportunity to continue efforts to improve communication between the town government and our community. Additionally, I want to complete the numerous projects we have begun, including finalizing the Land Use Plan and setting it in motion, breaking ground and beginning construction on the Fire Department and Public Works facility, and making the much needed improvements to our parks.

Q2. My biggest goal as mayor was to work with the community transparently, gathering input from our citizens that will continue to guide the direction of our town. In my first term, I have been able to deliver on the commitments made during my initial campaign, including the development of the Comprehensive Land Use Plan and opening communication with our residents.

Q3. The reality is our town is next to one of the fastest growing cities in the country. Growth is inevitable. It has been and continues to be my goal as mayor to make sure it’s the type of growth we benefit from economically, socially and aesthetically. I commit to continuing to build partnerships and work closely with our Mecklenburg County water and sewer representatives, NCDOT, and federal grant programs as an advocate for Mint Hill.

Q4. As mayor, I currently meet monthly with CRTPO (Charlotte Regional Transportation Planning Organization) and maintain ongoing communication with NCDOT about roadway, sidewalk, bike lane, and greenway improvements. I work diligently to keep the concerns of our citizens at the forefront of those conversations.

Q5. I remain proud of the small business offerings we do have in Mint Hill. However, the new Comprehensive Plan will help identify the ongoing needs of our community and develop an action plan to address those requests. Although implementation of a downtown vision will continue to take many years to develop, I continue to meet regularly with developers and business owners to enhance the offerings in our town.

Q6. During my service as mayor, I will continue to make myself available to our residents to discuss ideas, share feelings and solicit input. I will continue to hold office hours, share regular updates on social media and prioritize opportunities to meet and speak with our community. I also continue to encourage our citizens to get involved with local events, communicate their thoughts with our elected officials and attend our town meetings.

Q7. As our town continues to grow, the fire and police departments will also have to grow to ensure the safety and security of our residents. It is important that those departments have all of the resources, including funding and facilities, needed to continue providing the level of excellent service they currently do in our town.

Patrick Holton, Incumbent Commissioner

Q1. It has been a true honor to have served two years as Town Commissioner in Mint Hill.  I knew my first term would be one of great understanding and development.  I have taken the last two years to truly listen, learn, and lead. I have gained incredible knowledge of town management and planning, NC DOT roles, rezoning procedures, budget needs and demands, etc.  I have a passion for this position, because I am truly a voice for the residents of this amazing town I love so much.  Running for a second term was never a question. I wake up every day proud of this beautiful town and grateful for the opportunity to serve the residents of Mint Hill and continue to make this a great place to live, work, and play.

Q2. From day one, I have felt incredibly blessed to have been elected Mint Hill Town Commissioner.  Throughout my current term, and much like my day-to-day, the highlight of my role involves the great people of Mint Hill. Mint Hill is a special place to live.  We have been able to keep the charm of a small Southern town, yet continue to promote and truly live by the term support local. One consistent topic of conversation and concern is on the infrastructure of our town and how we control the rate of growth and development here. This is important to me for multiple reasons. As a Town Commissioner, I try to look at multiple effects of development here: present needs versus future demands, resident engagement levels,  traffic and logistical must-haves, and financial revenue versus financial cost for our residents, businesses and visitors. Being a small business owner in town, I pride myself on my open-door policy.  I have always encouraged residents with questions, concerns, or information on items pertaining to the town to stop by my store and pull up a chair to chat.  I have people come in all the time, sharing thoughts on developments, questions on permitting, feedback on a project they are in the early stages of, etc. If elected to serve another term, my open door availability will continue.

Q3. Growth is inevitable; it is the responsibility of your Board of Commissioners, and Town Management to ensure that the rate of growth is manageable, livable, likable, and profitable for our Town. Past generations have set the groundwork for this place we all call home.  It is up to us to maintain it and continue to make it a great place to live, work, and play for future generations. In my first term, I have gained vast knowledge on town planning, NC DOT stages and gates, local and state taxes, planning for future infrastructures, etc. It is critical that we continue a healthy and manageable rate of growth. It is not just as easy as just saying… I would like sidewalks, or more parks, or no chain restaurants. Growth is inevitable. Streets are widened based on NC DOT Studies because they own the roads. What helps us with these needs, though, is relationships and knowledge. I recognize the level of trust people of this town have instilled in me, and I work hard every day to make sure that every action I do has the proper time, knowledge, and understanding needed to make a solid decision.

Q4. Mint Hill was the first town developed in Mecklenburg County over 271 years ago.  Mint Hill boasts 25 miles of square footage with a large part of land still undeveloped. As a current Commissioner, I have developers calling almost daily to meet and discuss their projects. Mint Hill is a hot target for developers. Working with developers and landowners is critical to making sure what makes our town so wonderful stays intact. We have had tremendous growth in the last 271 years, and we will follow that trajectory of growth in the next 250 years. One critical part of managing that growth is to work diligently on our 10- and 20-year plan. We have to work with the NC DOT, local and national developers and firms, land owners, etc., to maintain, expand, and actively plan for the future.

Q5. One factor that makes our downtown here in Mint Hill very different than other towns surrounding us, is that Mint Hill has a US Highway (US Highway 51) running directly through the center of our town. The quick answer would be yes, walkability to shops, restaurants, arts, etc. is fantastic. I would love to see us continue to grow as a walkable destination for residents and visitors to explore and enjoy our downtown area. The informative answer, though, is that one key component of creating a more walkable downtown area is that we must grow that in a safe manor for all utilizing both our downtown and US Highway 51. That will take time; it will take hard work. It will take effort on the part of developers, NC DOT, town planners etc.  We are incredibly lucky to have the staff that we do at Town Hall. Our town planners, management, engineers, and public works teams are top-notch. Every decision executed by each of them is evaluated with a fine tooth comb and not a knee jerk reaction. Mint Hill is the quintessential, small southern town, already boasting charming local shops, nice restaurants, a historical society sharing town history, a local art guild showcasing local artisans, and home to countless regional and national non-profits. We have so much to be proud of. With strategic planning and knowledge, we will continue to thrive as a community.

Q6. We have certainly had our fair share of challenges in the last 20 months. It is no surprise people are at home more, and perhaps still a little uneasy about meetings, events, etc. Understandable. We have had a lot of challenges and learnings regarding how to communicate and interact safely. To ease access to Town Hall needs, events, and forums,  the website for the Town of Mint Hill was given a nice overhaul. I hear residents say it is now much more user friendly and easy to navigate for residents and visitors. We have also taken a huge leap in our use of technology for meetings and forums, now broadcasting those live on YouTube. If residents have concerns, comments, or dialogue to share at meetings, but don’t feel comfortable to attend in person, we ask that they email them over to our Town Clerk, and they will be read aloud at the meeting and responded to both on site, and following the meeting. It is critical residents get involved. Join a planning committee, meet with your elected officials, drive information and ideas whenever possible.  Walk the walk while you talk the talk. If re-elected to serve another term, I will continue to encourage residents to be involved and to reach out to their elected Board of Commissioners and Mayor with questions, comments, and concerns. We get stronger together!

Q7. Mint Hill is incredibly blessed to have some of the best First Responders.  As we continue to grow, so does our need and demand for staffing First Responders.  Adequate staffing, proper equipment, and competitive compensation are essential to recruiting and retaining talented and tenured First Responders. During my first term as Commissioner, I was honored to help secure land to facilitate an additional future Fire Department, Police evidence storage, and a Public Works facility here in Mint Hill. We are growing at a steady pace. We have some of the best schools in the county, a thriving real estate market, a local strip of downtown that screams Southern charm, etc.  With that comes the need to hire, train and retain quality First Responders. Our First Responders take risks every day for our safety and well-being of us as residents.  It is up to us to make sure they have the necessary tools to do that to the best of their ability.

Rhonda Walker, Candidate

Rhonda Walker, Candidate

Q1. As a civic minded person being very involved in the community, deciding to run was easy. When to run was the question for some years. Now that our children are older and thriving, I felt very strongly that 2021 was my year. There is rapid growth happening in Mint Hill. There are demographic changes and people moving here from all over the country. I am a very hard-working, highly motivated individual. I felt that as a Commissioner, I could use my interpersonal skills to serve as a bridge benefiting the new and old residents of Mint Hill.

Q2. The citizens of Mint Hill should vote for me because I will bring diversity to the board and serve as a bridge for the new and the old residents of Mint Hill ensuring there is equitable representation for all groups of people that are living in Mint Hill. As a Mint Hill Commissioner, I will bring dedication, commitment and hard work to this office. I have over 30 years of experience helping others set and reach their goals whether it’s with my children, in my career, volunteering throughout our community in schools, on various boards and in church. I have gained wisdom, knowledge and experience that will be an asset for Mint Hill and the Board of Commissioners.

Q3. Growth is inevitable, but good growth can increase the town’s tax base, which is imperative. As a Town Commissioner, I will work with the Mayor, planning department  and town engineers to ensure we have measures in place not only for current growth but future growth. Proper drainage systems along Mint Hill-maintained roads are necessary, and not just within the newly built communities. One way to manage growth is to avoid congestion. One way to avoid congestion is to open all accessible dead-end streets and connect them to neighboring developments, allowing local residents to use a variety of routes in and out of neighborhoods and all throughout Mint Hill while making short trips in town.  All of the town of Mint Hill should be connected to city water and sewage. We should have modern drainage along the Mint Hill-maintained roads and side walks with proper curbs. We need to repave and add reflectors on existing Mint Hill-maintained roads. As Commissioners, we should be in contact with the NCDOT ensuring roads in our areas are up to Mint Hill residential standards. As Commissioners, we should work with appropriate departments to add daylight LED lights along town center and LED street lighting on all the roads to improve visibility because visibility reduces crime. We should also require LED street lights along roads in newly-built neighborhoods to increase visibility. Rapid growth can bring many challenges like congestion, crime, pollution, lack of green space, over crowded schools, lack of housing and overpriced housing. That’s why it is important that as a Commissioner I interact with local schools/school board members, interact with Mint Hill residents, obtain feedback through surveys and be proactive.

Q4. Relieving congestion will be a priority for me as a Commissioner. There are several ways this can be done: one way is having more right and left turn lanes especially at major intersections. The intersection of Lawyers and Hwy 51 going toward I-485 could use a right turn lane. Some streets along Hwy 51 and Hwy 218 could use left turn lanes. Another way to avoid congestion is to add sidewalks on all the town-maintained roads in Mint Hill; having sidewalks that connect to downtown and other areas will encourage residents to walk or bike versus using vehicles for short trips. Sidewalks will allow students to walk safely to school, customers can walk to local businesses, and residents can walk to town events/festivities thus connecting the community. Sidewalks and also bike lanes in some areas not only will encourage people to support local businesses but will reduce local vehicle traffic.

Q5. I’m a huge fan of the local village concept that can be pedestrian friendly. These areas will incorporate clothing boutiques, art and pottery shops and also food and drink vendors. I would like to attract brick and mortar or store front restaurants to Mint Hill that will serve healthier food selections, attract them by possibly giving incentives to businesses or building owners who cater to a healthy lifestyle.

Q6. As I stated before, it is important that as a Commissioner, I will interact with Mint Hill Residents, having open dialogue with residents, and addressing concerns. I am and will continue to be involved with our local schools/school board and communicate with school board members often. I will stay abreast of upcoming changes within Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools. The Town of Mint Hill should offer several ways to obtain feedback from residents through surveys, having open dialogue with Commissioners and most importantly, we as Commissioners should be proactive.

Q7. Our Police department has done a great job with community involvement and making themselves available to neighborhood associations. Monthly Coffee with a Cop is good, but with the change in demographics in Mint Hill, evening and/or weekend meeting times may be more appropriate for working residents. Having a day in the park with youth, offering basketball or skatepark type activities would give youth an opportunity to interact positively with police officers. The Fire Department has been very helpful to the Mint Hill Community. We are very fortunate to have the type of service that they provide. With the increase of new homes being built closer together, it is important that we have an appropriate amount of fire hydrants on a street to ensure a water hose can reach each home based on hydrant placement. Also we need to have water hoses that can be extended beyond what is required or needed in fire emergency.

Richard Newton, Candidate

Richard Newton, Candidate 

Q1.  The main reason I am running for commissioner is because I love Mint Hill for its small town feel and its low crime rate. I want to do all I can to keep it this way.

Q2. I was a Mint Hill commissioner for six years and gave up my seat in 2019 to run for Mayor. I feel I still have a lot to give to the town, and I have the most experience of all the current candidates. I would consider my biggest accomplishment while serving the town was keeping lot sizes larger.

Q3. The town definitely has some work to do in managing its growth. Larger lot sizes within the downtown overlay help keep traffic problems down, but a lot of our Highway 51 and Lawyers Road traffic comes from the surrounding counties. We have no control over that, and the state maintains and regulates our major arteries. As for schools, water and sewer, these are all handled at the county level.

Q4. With new businesses and housing coming into the downtown area between Highway 218 and Lawyers Rd, a new stop light at Cresthill Drive will slow down traffic and make tuning safer, but residents may need to alter their travel times and routes through town as we grow.

Q5. We do need some different kinds of businesses in the downtown area, but the town doesn’t get to make those kinds of decisions. If a developer comes with a plan for a shopping area, for example, we may approve the plan, but we don’t get a say-so in what business goes in there.

Q6. I feel like the people who want to get involved do, and the ones who don’t want to get involved don’t. We are somewhat of a commuter town, and a lot of people don’t have time to get involved. If a resident doesn’t know how to get involved, coming to town meetings is a good place to start.

Q7. There are already plans for a new main fire station and a possible satellite police station. We will always have a high level of emergency services for the town.

Twanna Henderson, Candidate

Twanna Henderson, Candidate 

Q1. I have been connected to Mint Hill by way of my residence and my church for over 20 years. I feel it is time for the board to reflect the diversity of our community.

Q2. I feel I can bridge the gap between the “old” Mint Hill and the “new” Mint Hill. I serve as the Executive Minister of New Beginnings Church in Mint Hill alongside my husband. I will bring a new perspective and fresh ideas to our board while respecting the history of our town. What would you consider to be your biggest accomplishment? My resiliency. I am a breast cancer survivor and the mother of a son with autism.

Q3. Mint Hill is a growing and thriving community because people want to live here. We are one of the fastest growing towns in NC. In fact, currently we have the same population as Shelby, but I doubt that is the face of our community that we are seeking. As a current member of the Mint Hill Public Advisory Committee, we are currently looking at how we want Mint Hill to look in the future. I will encourage our citizens to be involved in every step as we plan Mint Hill’s future.

Q4. I would definitely express my concerns to NCDOT and include our citizen’s concerns. Highway 51 is a state-maintained highway, so I will work with our state legislators to resolve these issues.

Q5. Downtown Mint Hill needs to become a destination and not just an afterthought. I would love to spend a Friday or Saturday night in downtown Mint Hill at one of our restaurants followed by ice cream at Carolina Creamery and a show on the lawn of the police station.

Q6. We need to get more of the town’s residents involved by broadcasting meeting times and agendas. Many times it seems as though the town commission meetings last less than 30 minutes.

Q7. Our Police and Fire departments are one of the best for a town our size. Anything we can do to support them is on the top of my list.

Dale Dalton, Commissioner

Dale Dalton, Incumbent Commissioner

Q1. I am running for re-election as I have served the Town of Mint Hill for 3 terms now and have served as Mayor Pro-Tem for the last two years. I love being a public servant and being involved in the management and the day-to-day business of the town. I want to continue to instill that “small town” feel that the people desire. Mint Hill has the largest undeveloped land parcels of Mecklenburg County, and developers are constantly looking at our town to build. I want to continue to be a voice for the residents and consider the long-term effects growth can have on the town.

Q2. I have experience you can trust. I am purposely involved in many committees and organizations within town so I can keep in touch with the people as well as serve the community in other avenues. My daily goal in life is to help others and know the needs and wants of our citizens. I have received approval from the NCDOT to have a left-turn arrow installed on the signal at the Brighton Park entrance at Earp’s and Highway 51. This would allow traffic to turn left when turning left onto Highway 51 without having to wait for oncoming traffic as well as cars backing up into the neighborhood. This project is pending funding. I have also received approval for two signals to be installed on Highway 51 at the I-485 on and off ramps. This is also awaiting funding.

Q3. To help manage growth in the town, we are currently working on the development of a new Fire Department to be located on Lebanon Road. This facility should be completed in the next year or two. The new facility will enable them to have quicker response time from one end of town to the other and more room to eventually have more equipment and trucks. As far as roads, schools, water and sewage, this is all through the City of Charlotte or Mecklenburg County. Regarding the parks, the county is building a new park on Highway 51 called Ezell Park. It will hopefully be completed in 2022. Just recently a nature trail opened on Thompson Road and many are already enjoying it.

Q4. Most of the roads in Mint Hill are owned and managed by the state NCDOT. A lot of our traffic problems are thru-traffic by people who live in Union County and traveling in to Charlotte to and from work. NCDOT contacted Mint Hill a couple years ago and presented a plan to the board to widen Highway 51 from the Mint Hill Town Square to the roundabout at Idlewild road. However, this plan has been delayed by NC due to the current budget restraints. Every time I have had conversations with the NDCOT regarding the needs of our town, I always express my concern of needing a turn lane at Old Sycamore and Ashley Plantation on Highway 218. I am still pursuing this need with them. When re-elected I will continue these conversations.

Q5. Several small businesses have opened in the downtown area in the last several years and have been successful. We would welcome any and all types of small business. Regarding sidewalks, we are currently installing new sidewalks in areas around town, and there are more to come.

Q6. The residents of Mint Hill can always send in questions or comments through the town’s website, and the board will review them. Also, Mint Hill contracted a team of consultants last year to work with a group of citizens within the town. This group is called the Long Range Planning Committee and they are currently working on the MH Comprehensive 10-Year Land Use Plan. There have been two public forum meetings so far. People of the town should watch for announcements of future meetings on the town’s website. They can also email their questions or concerns to the town for this committee to address.

Q7. The growth of the town can always present a challenge, but we have dedicated Police and Fire Fighters that are willing and capable to handle the challenges as they come. The Police and Fire chiefs both developed an incentive program for continuing education and training in their fields. Once completed, the officers and firefighters are rewarded with raises and/or bonuses. This enables our town to have top qualified public servants to protect our citizens.

Scott Fandel, Candidate

Scott Fandel, Candidate

Q1. After living in Mint Hill for past 18 years, I wanted to give back to the community that has given so much to my family and me.

Q2. I feel my 35 years of experience in commercial construction as a general contractor and my 7 years of service on the Planning Board will be valuable as Mint Hill continues to grow. My biggest personal accomplishment was marrying my wife Pam 27 years ago and raising my 2 sons. Professionally my biggest accomplishment continues to be running a successful Mint Hill-based commercial construction company with my partner Greg Foxx. Service related, my biggest accomplishment was providing volunteer project management services towards the construction of the Korean War Memorial at Veterans Park

Q3. As the town continues to grow it will be important to have leadership in place that has experience in dealing with developers, NCDOT, Charlotte Water and Mecklenburg County in general. As a general contractor I deal with these groups on a regular basis and understand how to effectively communicate with them.

Q4. The best way to manage this is by seeing to it that future development along the Matthews-Mint Hill corridor is well thought out and that it meshes with NCDOT’s already planned improvements to Highway 51, Lawyers Road, and the many other state-controlled roads in Mint Hill. We need strong leadership that can work with NCDOT, so they clearly understand what the town needs and ensure the plans, moving forward, are in the best interests of the Mint Hill Citizens and the town’s growth.

Q5. As more people move to our area, more retail, restaurant, arts, and entertainment options will follow. I do support a village type development but understand the challenges locating this in the downtown area presents. The main issue is parking. If we can locate a parking structure in the downtown area that would support the village, then it becomes less challenging to attract the type of business that we would all like to see more of in Mint Hill. I would be more than willing to work with developers to make this happen.

Q6. The town has some really good resources already in place to notify citizens of events. I think we can do a better job of letting the citizens know how to locate and utilize these resources. Maybe a quarterly mailing to the public letting them know of upcoming events with a reminder as to the location of the town’s website where they can stay informed of meeting, hearings, and other events around town.

Q7. We have a great team of First Responders in Mint Hill; both the Police and Fire Fighters do an excellent job for our town. Moving forward I would advocate for ensuring these departments have the proper staffing, equipment and facilities required to continue the great service they provide. This would include my support for the new satellite facilities that are planned for the town-owned property on Lebanon Road.

Tony Long, Commissioner

Tony Long, Incumbent Commissioner 

Q1.  Having served 1 two-year term has been a rewarding experience, and I want to maintain our quality of life as we grow.

Q2.  Leadership at Town Hall has been good as is reflected by the number of new citizens moving here. It seems we have moved toward an open door policy at Town Hall even during times of COVID. Citizen feedback has been very positive on their perception of the government now.

Q3. Changes and challenges we face with growth are inevitable. We are ensuring that new Commercial and Residential projects include road upgrades to minimize the impact of new housing, etc. Water and sewer are handled by Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utility in a greater portion of Mint Hill. Plans are being finished on a new park on Brief Road as well as extensive upgrades to Veterans Park and Wilgrove Park within the next 12 months. We have excellent schools and believe this will continue.

Q4.  Matthews-Mint Hill Road is a state-owned and maintained road, so we are limited as to the influence on changes here.

Q5. Downtown area seems to be evolving, and there are more funds approved and coming for sidewalk and pedestrian safety improvements.

Q6. The recent study group of future Land Use in Mint Hill appears to be engaging many citizens across a broad spectrum of the population. It is exciting to see various input from many as we complete this planning update.

Q7. Public Safety will always be a priority in Mint Hill. Maintaining excellent staff with Police and Fire to serve a growing town is always a challenge. Current labor and housing market is putting stress on keeping good people employed at a favorable wage level.

Beverly Blake Cannaday, Candidate

Beverly Blake Cannaday, Candidate

Q1. Mainly I want to give back to Mint Hill and our community.  Mint Hill is a wonderful place to live. I raised my children here, and I want to keep that small town feel that my family and children have enjoyed. I see Mint Hill as a bedroom community with an easy commute to Charlotte. It’s important to me to manage growth with “smart growth.” While it’s convenient to be close to a large city, we need to keep Mint Hill unique. I strongly support our small businesses and will encourage more small businesses to our area vs big box chains and franchises.

In addition to managing growth and supporting small business, my goals as a town commissioner will be to keep our town safe and clean and to work to continue to keep our taxes low.

Q2. I’m qualified, dedicated and can devote as much time as is needed to carry out the duties of this office. For years I have listened to our citizens with their wishes for Mint Hill, their likes and concerns. I will be available for calls, emails and text from 9:00 am until 8:00 pm Monday thru Saturday. I understand people have various schedules that do not necessarily conform to the Town Hall schedule, so I want to make sure everyone has the opportunity to be heard.

Q3. Currently there is a lot of land available in Mint Hill that developers and big business want to capitalize on by building apartments, condominiums, large single-family developments and office buildings. As a commissioner, it is important to consider the impact of these requests to the area; for instance, is city water available, and if not, how would wells or a community well impact the land and surrounding area? How would the proposed project impact traffic? How would this growth impact the area, and will a tree canopy be kept? No one who lives in a home with a view of old trees behind or beside them wants to see the land completely cleared and the lovely view gone that is replaced with a view of a parking lot and a 3-story apartment buildings.

Q4. Matthews-Mint Hill road is a primary state highway. It connects the towns of Matthews, Mint Hill and Pineville.  This is a road that NC wants to widen and to offer as an alternative route to 485, so it is imperative that Mint Hill town commission work with the state for the good of Mint Hill. While the town of Mint Hill has little say in these changes, we can provide qualified objections on certain issues associated with proposed changes such as safety and impact studies.

Q5. I strongly support sidewalks, especially in our downtown district area and on both sides of the road by our schools. I would support small businesses like boutiques, arts and restaurants, but not necessarily a village as in some small towns. It would take a careful study of the layout and location before I commit to such a project.

Mint Hill was only incorporated in 1971, and I have lived in the area before it was incorporated. The growth of businesses and look to our downtown area is unique to surrounding small towns.  Mathews was founded in the 1800s, and unlike Mint Hill, they have older buildings, railroad tracks etc. that add to their downtown/small town look.  What we build in Mint Hill now is our small town look. Thankfully we have the Mint Hill Historical Society that has moved buildings to their site so that the Mint Hill town history is preserved. Mint Hill is unique in so many ways, and I do not see Mint Hill being a copy of Matthews and other small towns. The decisions we make today will set the look of Mint Hill for many years to come. I want that look unique to Mint Hill.

Q6. I find the best way to get residents’ input is by being active in our community.  At many area events I hear residents talk about proposed changes and speak about what they wish to see changed and/or what objections they have to any proposal.  In addition to town meetings, I will be available by phone and email. It would be great if more people came to monthly town meetings, but often people have conflicts in their schedules or do not have the time. I encourage people to read the agenda and minutes taken at town meetings and contact me with questions or suggestions. I can be reached at  or (980) 267-2157.

Q7. The growth of Mint Hill will be one of the biggest challenges to our fire/EMS department and police. As with most small towns, we must keep up with technology that helps fire/EMS and police do their jobs safely and efficiently while maintaining a reasonable budget. I have taken the time to speak with our fire/EMS and police officers over the last few months.

I talked with Chief Hatley and officers at a recent event; we discussed the K9 unit, traffic, 911 calls, technology and the impact of COVID in our community. I learned that COVID has lead to an increase of domestic abuse calls.  Families are in the home much more often and people have become homebound due to state restrictions.  Loss of income caused by COVID is an added burden and stress factor for some of our residents. We need to see our residents get additional help by putting them in contact with mental health care and programs that are offered by social services.

I recently visited the fire/EMS department and spoke with Chef Leath. I thanked them for the hard work they do every day. At this time, no big concerns were voiced. It is important to be sure that our Fire and EMS have the updated tools and equipment to continue to do the great work they do 24/7.

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Ed Berti
Ed is retired and remains active as a freelance writer, local journalist and independent contractor. He is engaged in print and electronic media writing stories covering business, sports, hometown news and veteran's affairs including articles of interest to various media outlets. Ed is a graduate of Wagner College where he earned an MBA and holds a BBA from Pace University.
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