Bain dedicates building with ribbon-cutting

By Leah Schmalz
bain 1 bain 2 bain 3The history of Bain Elementary School is extensive, dating back 124 years. Last Thursday the school added another chapter to that rich story with a ribbon cutting ceremony for the newly constructed school building.
Principal John LeGrand reflected further on this history, emphasizing that the vision of John Bain in the 1800s, which led to the school’s establishment, is still being upheld today. “This new building does not mean that we’re starting over,” he said. “This new building simply means that we’re continuing that tradition of excellence that was created by the people that stood before us.”
The event was held in the gymnasium and featured student involvement and leadership. Fifth grade students kicked off the ceremony by leading the pledge of allegiance and introducing the principal. Mr. Clenney’s third grade class also performed a song composed by music teacher Noreen Hofmann, complete with clapping, hand motions, and creative lyrics. “The sky’s the limit when you act Bain proud,” rapped one of the students.
CMS Board of Education District 6 member Amelia Stinson-Wesley touched on the legacy of the school, noting that commissioner Mickey Ellington’s family has attended the school for five generations. “I’m really excited about having this new incarnation of Bain here,” she said. “With the technology in this building, with the talent and the passion of all of our teachers, with the drive and dedication of each of you that are students here, it will all guide us to the next generation of Bain Bobcats.”
Dr. Heath Morrison, the superintendent of Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools, spoke about the future of the students, using the analogy of a basketball game. “Here at Bain you have all of the things that you need to make sure that you’re going to be in position the rest of your life to take that winning shot,” he said. He also thanked the principals, teachers, support staff, community members, and parents for their efforts in support of the new building and the school as a whole. Continue reading
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Chamber hears the State of Real Estate

Meeting highlights trends in area home buying 
and financing
By Michele Dotson
The focus of the September 26 Chamber meeting on real estate and financing was facilitated by Mint Hill Chamber president and real estate professional Rich Ferretti and Monarch Mortgage loan officer, Janet Gaglione.
“There is confidence in the market and lenders are loaning money again,” says Ferretti, who cited recent comparisons in the market which shows a 12.4 percent increase in home sales in July 2013 compared with July of 2012.
“The housing market is growing in pockets around the country,” says Ferretti. “Las Vegas is hot right now, and overall, the cost of housing is down.”
Ferretti also says that North and South Carolina continue to attract a lot of newcomers, with large numbers relocating from Florida.
chamber“We call them the half-backs,” he says. “These are individuals who moved to Florida from places up north, and have now settled in the Charlotte area.”
Thanks to Charlotte’s banking industry, 2nd only to New York City, and new industry such as Met Life and Chiquita, Ferretti says our market is thriving.
Although there is a spike in interest in houses close to or in uptown, Mint Hill continues to see a resurgence in building, particularly on sites that were already prepared before the housing crisis hit.
Most recently, Bontera began construction near Lebanon and Hwy. 51 and the upscale Cheval community will be the focus of this year’s HomeArama in November.
There are also lots of investors in the market looking for good deals, and a recent study of home sales in the Charlotte area indicated that nearly one in five home sales last year could be attributed to an investment purchase. Continue reading
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Mint Hill Police station open for business

Screen Shot 2013-09-25 at 8.31.52 PMThe Mint Hill Police station was open for business on Monday, September 23 at its new location in the former town hall building.

A few small problems were reported, but, according to Police Chief Tim Ledford, the transition has been smooth.

“We have a couple of locks not working,” says Ledford. “We had a leak in the men’s locker room that was taken care of this morning, and the phones were not working properly.”

Screen Shot 2013-09-25 at 8.31.58 PMAll minor inconveniences that haven’t dampened the excitement of the move.

The Board of Commissioners approved the renovations of the former Mint Hill Town Hall in March, 2012.

The architects worked hard to make effective use of the space in order to provide the police department with what they need to do their job effectively.

“We went from about 5,000 square feet to 7,800 square feet,” says Ledford. “In the old building, we had to put three units together to make one, and it wasn’t very effective.” Continue reading

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Mint Hill Fire Department holds public meetings to discuss ambulance service

MHVFDA meeting was held on Monday, September 9 at 7 pm at the Mint Hill Fire Department on Fairview Road to discuss the future of ambulance service in Mint Hill and to provide the public with information on the current challenges facing the department which serves over 27,000 people.

Mint Hill Volunteer Fire Department’s board chairman Jerry Mullis welcomed the crowd and set the agenda for the evening.

“The purpose of this meeting is to explain the improvements within our department to our community,” he said. “We want to explain the approach on our plan to charge for EMS service for transportation to a hospital.”

Mullis used historical data and information about current trends across the country to explain the need to raise funds to support additional positions for staff who would be solely responsible for EMS transport services.

“For 38 years we have provided free service for transportation to a hospital,” says Mullis, “Now we’re about the only volunteer fire department that provides transportation to hospitals, period.”

Life-long Mint Hill resident and current Fire Chief John Phillips started his career in 1974 at age 16.

“A lot has changed since I joined the department,” says Phillips. “If we’re going to continue the level of service the people of Mint Hill deserve, we need to take measures to keep up with the growth.”

Population increases as well as economic growth that has come with the completion of I-485, has the department stretched to the breaking point.

In reviewing the call data, MHVFD reports a 1,323 percent increase in call volume from 1999 to 2012. According their records, the department responded to 252 calls in all of 1999.  In 2012, that number jumped remarkably to 3,334. By the end of 2013, that number is expected to keep pace with the 10 to 15 percent annual growth and reach around 3,600 calls.

The increase has not been impetus for Mecklenburg County to provide more funding. In fact, any funding that the department has been receiving from Mecklenburg County will be phased out by July, 2014.

The need to raise funds in now greater than ever, and charging insurance companies for ambulance service for transportation to a hospital for Mint Hill residents is what the department will be doing beginning around October 1, 2013.

Billing will occur for ambulance services provided to all those who reside outside of Mint Hill.

The goal is to hire six new employees whose sole responsibility will be to provide EMS transport services.

“Our current staff provides both fire suppression and EMS transport services,” says Chief Phillips.

The intention is to have the money raised through billing provide the necessary funds for hiring the additional personnel.

At this point the funding is critical to keeping the level of service citizens are used to.

“Without charging we would have to cease providing EMS transport,” says Chief Phillips.

The next public meeting will be September 23, 2013 at 7:00 pm at 8313 Fairview Road in Mint Hill. Call 704-491-6324 for more information, or email Chief Phillips at jphillips@fire.minthill.com

 

 

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Producer has Mint Hill roots

Free movie screening at Blair Road United Methodist

movieSeason of Miracles, the latest movie from Elevating Entertainment, has an official release date of October 1, but Blair Road United Methodist Church will host an early release screening of the new family friendly movie on September 13 at 7:00 pm. This is the third feature film produced by Mint Hill native Dave Moody and his son Josh.

Season of Miracles tells the story of the Robins, an underdog Little League team in the deep south who turn their season around when newcomer and autistic baseball savant, Rafer (Grayson Russell, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Talladega Nights) joins their team.  Continue reading

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Mint Hill Tractor Show

The 2013 tractor and hit and miss engine show will be held from 9 am to 3 pm Sep- tember 28 at the Carl J. McEwen Historic Village. There will be vintage tractors and farm equipment, cow pie Bingo, gold panning, food and music.

It’s not too late to register to bring your old tractor or hit or miss engine. There
is no entry fee. Call Dale at 704-506- 7773. For more information, contact www.minthillhistory .com or info@minthill history.com.

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