Dear friends of Maverick Farms,
On Monday afternoon, we had our first face to-face meeting with with the NC Dept of Transportation (DOT). Two officials, Mike Pettyjohn (North Wilkesboro) and Ivan Dishman (Boone) visited the farm. Maverick Farms executive director Hillary Wilson, her partner, farmer Worth Kimmel, and, co-landowner Bill Wilson, attended the meeting, along with Chapel Hill environmental attorney John Runkle.
The meeting was neither good nor bad. On the plus side, the DOT announced it will not actually be making a take-it-or-leave offer next week, as they told us three weeks ago. Instead, they said they will "look into alternatives" and get back to us “soon.” The engineers made clear that this decision to delay the proceedings was a result of public pressure brought to bear by our supporters. This is a clear victory—THANKS TO YOU, our supporters!
But the engineers added that the bridges on the road that run through our farm are "functionally obsolete and structurally deficient" simply because they are one-lane bridges. We dispute this assessment--the bridges can handle a reasonable amount of traffic as long as they are properly maintained. Worse still, they claimed the DOT no longer builds one-way bridges. The implication: the bridges must not only be replaced—meaning that a new road must be routed through our fields, since the road dead-ends—and must also be expanded dramatically, and tricked out with large culverts.
In short, DOT wants to spend $820,000 to destroy the farm. The only hope we have is to continue the pressure on these people until they find some alternatives.
About Maverick Farms: Maverick Farms is a 501(c)3 educational
non-profit dedicated to promoting family farming as a community
resource and expanding access to healthy food by reconnecting local
food networks in the High Country of North Carolina. In 2009, Maverick
Farms launched High Country CSA (HCCSA), a multi-farm project that
links area farmers and consumers. HCCSA is committed to being
accessible to low-income community members—it accepts EBT benefits as
payment and works with the Appalachian District Health Department, the
Children’s Coalition, and the Community Care Clinic to make subsidized
shares availble to low-income families. In 2012, HCCSA had 100
members. In 2012, Maverick launched the Farmer Incubator and Grower
program in conjunction with Appalachian State Community's Sustainable
Development Department. In addition, Maverick grows vegetables and
eggs for sale at the Watauga County Farmers Market. Learn more at
maverickfarms.com/ or http://www.facebook.com/maverickfarmnc
SEND LETTERS TO:
Ivan Dishman - division of highways
PO Box 1460
Boone, NC 28607
PO Box 250
North Wilkesboro, NC 28659
James Palermo District 11 DOT
C/O Division 11 DOT
North Wilkesboro, NC 28659
Anthony Tata, NC Secretary of Transportation
1501 MAIL SERVICE CENTER (MAIL)
RALEIGH NC 27699-1501
Nathan Miller, Chairman Watauga County Board of Commissioners
814 West King Street, Suite 205
Boone, North Carolina 28607
This year marks the 10-year anniversary of Maverick Farms. We are so proud for all the programs and work we've accomplished over the last ten years!
This year the focus on the FIG project and beginning farmers in the high country. This year there are 5 beginning, landless farmers at FIG and the land at Maverick is under culitivation with Waxwing farm.
Be sure to check out the FIG website and facebook for more information about what's happening or find the beginning farmers at the Watauga County Farmers Market.