Stokes County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously on Monday to a proposed agreement from the Our Communities (OC) of Northwest Stokes that will keep the playground and walking trail at Francisco Elementary open to the public until the school is sold.
However the fate of FarmFest, scheduled for the first weekend in October, is still undecided.
Texie Jessup, who spoke on behalf of Our Communities Monday, said the event already has sponsors and OC organizers are at a stand-still until they know if the event can be held on the school grounds.
County Attorney Ty Browder said a problem could arise if an event is scheduled three to fourth months in advance.
“That would put a restriction and limit the county on its future ability to possibly dispose of the property,” he said.
Commissioner Ronda Jones said it wasn’t unreasonable for a potential buyer to allow an already scheduled event to occur, but did inquire if Jessup had considered alternative venues for the community day.
“We have looked into that,” Jessup said. “There’s two or three farms we’ve considered, but the water and electricity isn’t available for what we’d need. It wouldn’t be plausible.”
Commissioner Ronnie Mendenhall said the issue could cause a problematic situation.
“It’s a timing issue. If we have a potential buyer come up and want to purchase the property quickly it would put us in a bad scenario,” he said.
Chairman Jimmy Walker suggested gathering additional information and discussing the issue in more detail at the commissioner’s next meeting on July 24.
“We all want to try and work with the group, but we also have to look at the county’s best interest,” he said.
Amanda Dodson may be reached at 336-813-2426.