EXCERPT OF DRAFT SUMMARY MINUTES OF THE TOWN COUNCIL APRIL 19, 2006
Billy Braxton Sparrow read a letter he had written to the Town Manager: The letter said that his lawyer was requesting the Orange County Superior Court to rule on his home rental business that was being ruled against by the Town of Chapel Hill. As a medical missionary, Mr. Sparrow said, his profession had included using his house, land and resources for friends throughout the world. “I will contest in court the actions of the Town of Chapel Hill,” he said.
Mr. Sparrow held up a letter from Maggie Bowers of the Chapel Hill Inspections Department regarding a final notice of zoning violation. He said he had come to Town Hall to protest the invasion of his home-based medical missionary business property at 100 Chase Avenue at the corner of South Columbia and Chase Avenue, which is less than 100 feet from University property.
Mr. Sparrow said that when he bought his property “it was outside Chapel Hill in Orange County.” Two or three individuals had caused Town bureaucrats to invade his property rights, he said, adding that he was an ordained Baptist minister whom the US Army had sent to Bowman Gray School of Medicine before UNC had a four-year medical school and a hospital. The U.S. Army had also sent him to Manila, he said, where he medically treated armed forces and civilians.
Mr. Sparrow stated that his preacher/doctor services at 100 Chase Avenue had been offered to people from many parts of the world. At present, he said, he had a mentally insane man whom he was having a bureaucratically impossible job getting rid of. “Please let me use my personal property at 100 Chase Avenue as parking for UNC employees and patients at the hospital,” he said. “Please let there be car parking, free or paid for, on all land east of South Columbia down to Morgan Creek,” he added.
Mr. Sparrow argued that it made no sense to have a thousand parking spaces in Chatham County when the Town owns land right there on the east side of S. Columbia down to Morgan Creek and is not using it for anything. It’s time that Town bureaucrats started acting like democratic people, he said. Mr. Sparrow indicated his house on a map and said that much of the land south of it was available for parking. He said he feels angry every time he sees a busload of people coming up from the parking lots in Chatham County.
Mayor Foy recommended treating Mr. Sparrow’s statement as a petition and referring it to the Town Manager.