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Council to get storm update, decide on zoning at hospital

The Whiteville city council will receive an update Tuesday night on the city’s Hurricane Florence response and recovery from Emergency Manager Director Hal Lowder and take final action on a request for a zoning conditional use permit to allow a medical helicopter service to store petroleum and chemical products at the hospital.

The meeting gets underway at 6:30 p.m. in council chambers in the city hall at 24 Hill Plaza.

Lowder and other department heads gave council detailed updates on Florence-related activities in a special called meeting at Vineland Station last week and Lowder’s presentation Tuesday will be an update of what was reported then.

Apollo MedFlight, which operates medical helicopters, has applied for a special use permit to store petroleum and chemical products at their facility adjacent to Columbus Regional Healthcare. They are requesting approval of a 1,000-gallon fuel tank near their helicopter pad. A legally-required public hearing at which citizens can offer input will take place before final council action Tuesday. Final approval by council is expected Tuesday.

In other business, council is expected to reappoint Bobby Deans and Gary Bass to three year terms expiring Oct. 30, 2021 on the city’s local ABC board. They’ll also appoint a member of the three-member board as chairman. Bass currently serves as chairman.

City Manager Darren Currie also will update the board, talking about issues related to storm recovery in general and activities at the new city hall under construction at the intersection of Madison and Columbus Streets in particular.

Stuart Rogers