The Merger of the POA and LHDA

In 1983, a small but vocal group began urging that the POA and the LHDA merge into a single entity. An earlier attempt had failed, but conditions had changed and it appeared more feasible to bring about the merger at this time. A joint committee composed of John Halifax (C-23), James Thompson and Glenn Webb (D-78) from LHDA, and Ruth Andrews-Russell, Marvin Altman and Will Saunders from POA and Jack Weisglass, a non-Director, was set up in July 1984 to work out plans for the merger. There were several problems which
had to be solved before the merger could be accomplished. There were remaining debts to be paid, lots to be sold, and additions to be made to accommodate the large number of owners who were staying at Land Harbor longer and longer.

Two things happened at about this time that facilitated the merger. Two hundred acres of the property east of US 221 were sold to The Linville Charitable Foundation, Inc., for $600,000. The POA ended the year with a rather large cash surplus. Jack Weisglass (D-205) had earlier suggested that the best way to proceed with the merger was for POA to buy out LHDA. Now funds were available to do just that.

POA bought the unsold platted lots and decided that only a few in selected sections would be sold, thus stopping the rapid growth which was already overtaxing the facilities. With the proceeds from the sale of the land and lots, LHDA was able to pay all of the debts and there remained enough money to make some much needed additions to Land Harbor.

At an information meeting held on June 29, 1985, Banks Finger, President of LHDA, announced that this was probably the last information meeting of LHDA. At the Annual Meeting of LHDA held September 21, 1985, it was announced that “We (LHDA) propose to transfer to the POA, immediately following our Annual Meeting, the following:

1. All assets of the Utility Company for a sum of $22,000.
2. All undeveloped, unregistered and unsold properties west of US Highway 221 for the sum of $10,000
(does not include the amenities).
3. The Manager’s house and surrounding lot, and the 30 acre-tract, east of US 221, for the sum to be
negotiated between the management of LHDA and POA.

“In addition, LHDA agreed to:

1. Expand the Recreation Building by 100%.
2. Complete the shuffleboard courts by covering and fencing the courts.
3. Construct and establish an RV storage area, complete with fencing, east of US 221.
4. Arrange with the State of North Carolina for a joint project to complete the paving of Goose Hollow Road
through Land Harbor.”

LHDA also agreed that, “Within 30 days of completion of the above projects, but not later than June 1, 1986, we plan to transfer to the POA all amenities (including the above projects) in consideration of the sum of $1.00 and a comprehensive ‘hold-harmless’ agreement executed and delivered by the POA.”

In appreciation for services far beyond the call of duty, the LHDA Board of Directors gave house lots to Ernie Hayes and Banks Finger and replaced the vehicle which Charles Wilson (M-66) had worn out with the many trips he made between his home in Johnson City and Land Harbor.

Having fulfilled its purpose, LHDA dissolved on August 30, 1986. In order for POA to maintain its not-for-profit status, it was necessary to establish the Land Harbor Sales
Corporation to handle the few lots yet to be sold and to be available for re-sales.

Population growth during the 1980s so taxed the amenities, maintenance and utility systems, the State of North Carolina placed a moratorium on construction in Land Harbor. In order to lift the moratorium, an expansion program and an agreement with the State was developed by Harold Vann (LB-14) resulting in the sewage treatment plant being increased to a 225,000 gallons per day capacity and the digging of two additional wells at a cost of $398,670 and $28,647, respectively.

During and following the 1987 rehabilitation of the utility system, an engineering program was begun to correct the aging sanitation and water supply systems.