KM Herald 7-22-20

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HORD’S CONTAINER SERVICE (704) 466-6008 Volume 132 • Issue 30

Wednesday, July 22, 2020 • 704-484-1047


City clarifies E5 Holdings buys land across purchase of from casino for $685,000 land in 2015 By Loretta Cozart

By Loretta Cozart Last week, the Herald reported on two parcels of land purchased by the City MARILYN SELLERS of Kings Mountain in 2015 in order to provide utilities to NTE Energy, now known as Carolina Power Partners, LLC. Documentation provided by City of Kings Mountain shows the city billed NTE

Energy, and NTE Energy paid the city a month later and before the property switched hands. In a phone call with Kings Mountain City Manager Marilyn Sellers on Monday, July 20, Sellers explained the transaction saying, “We had an agreement with NTE that the city would purchase the property and they (NTE) would, in turn, reimburse us. What happened was that it became a pass through. A payment was received by the city from NTE, and we See CITY, Page 4

Kings Mountain casino area land, purchased in June, has been in buying process since 2018. A Memorandum of Option Contract to purchase the land was obtained by CHT Enterprises, LLC on November 21, 2018. In May of 2020, CHT Enterprises, LLC became the managing member of E5 Holdings, LLC, along with members Eddie Holbrook, Stuart Legrand, and Douglas Brown. Together, members of E5 Holdings, LLC purchased the property on June 2 for approximately $685,000, according to the excise tax noted on the deed. The document was filed with the Cleveland County Register of

Deeds office on June 11. E5 Holdings, LLC was incorporated in Nevada on May 12, 2020. The Managing Member of E5 Holdings, LLC is CHT Enterprises, LLC that incorporated in Delaware on Feb. 12, 1996. Its entity name is Kings Mountain Land Development Partners II, LLC. The company’s 2020 Annual Report is signed by Trent Testa and the electronic signature on that report is Gene Harris, as manager. The corporation is listed as a Close Company in Delaware, meaning it “cannot sell stock shares publicly under Title 8, Subchapter XIV, Subchapter 341”. Essentially, CHT Enterprises, LLC acts a shell corporation for Kings Mountain Land Development

Partners II, LLC. One of the principal’s addresses listed for CHT Enterprises, LLC is 19211 Youngblood Road West, Charlotte, NC, 28278. That is the home address of Trent Testa. The businesses’ annual report also lists Post Office Box 846 in Kings Mountain, NC, which belongs to Roadside Truck Plaza of Kings Mountain, also owned by Testa. On November 21, 2018, CHT Enterprises, LLC signed a Memorandum of Option Contract with the Hagan Family, LLC, giving the corporation one-year plus 90-days to purchase land at 245 Dixon School Road. However, the document was not filed with Cleveland County Register of

Deeds office until March 12, 2019. One-year and 90 days from the date of filing would be June 11, 2020. When CHT Enterprises, LLC’s Memorandum of Option Contract was signed, Eddie Holbrook was serving his final weeks as Chairman of the Cleveland County Commission and his term of office did not expire until Dec. 3, 2018. NC G.S. 14234.1 prohibits any public officer from getting a financial benefit based on non-public information that the public officer has because of their role in local government, if that information is not public knowledge. It is not uncommon for See E5, Page 2

Catawba Indian Nation to break ground on casino Wednesday T h e Catawba Indian Nation will hold a groundbreaking ceremony for a new, BILL HARRIS state-ofthe art casino development project on Wednesday, July 22, at 10:30 am, at 245 Dixon School Road in Kings Mountain, off I-85 at Exit 5. The event will be a celebration for the Catawba Indian Nation and the surrounding community as work begins on this important and long-awaited eco-

nomic development project. Through construction and completion, the project will employ 4,000 North Carolinians from the surrounding region. Speakers include Catawba Indian Nation Chief Bill Harris, Delaware North, Gaming President E. Brian Hansberry, Cleveland County Commissioners Chair Susan Allen, and Kings Mountain Mayor Scott Neisler. Masks are required, and social distancing measures will be in effect. We will be adhering to North Carolina's COVID19 Restrictions on outdoor event capacity.

The area highlighted on the map is property owned by E5 Holdings, LLC and they have asked for a rezoning. The large parcel east of the highlighted property is owned by the city and is currently open for upset bid. The smaller property to the south, between E5 Holdings and the I-85 Service Road, is property owned by Trent Testa, who has also requested rezoning. Photo by Cleveland County GIS

Planning and Zoning Board meets

Board recommends City Council NC K-12 public approve 2 rezoning requests schools require safety measures to re-open

G o v ernor Roy Cooper and North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NC ROY COOPER DHHS) Secretary Dr. Mandy Cohen were joined today by education and health leaders to announce health and safety plans for K-12 public schools for the new school year. Schools will open for in-person instruction under an updated Plan B that requires face coverings for all

K-12 students, fewer children in the classroom, measures to ensure social distancing for everyone in the building, and other safety protocols. “The most important opening is that of our classroom doors. Our schools provide more than academics; they are vital to our children’s’ health, safety and emotional development,” said Governor Cooper. “This is a difficult time for families with hard choices on every side. I am committed to working together to ensure our students and educators are as safe as possible and that children have opportunities to learn in the way that is best for them and their families.” See SCHOOLS, Page 4

By Loretta Cozart Kings Mountain’s Planning and Zoning Board met on Tuesday July 14 to discuss several zoning requests along Dixon School Road near the I-85 interchange. There was a quorum present and all members of the board were in attendance: CCETJ Chairman

Doug Lawing, Vice Chairman Ron Humphries, Todd Wilson, Chris Jolly, Ronnie Franks, Joseph Allen, Maury Williams, Bobby Elliott, Donald Atkins, Renee Bost, and Audrey Cody. After Stuart Gilbert updated to the board on the Comprehensive Plan and shared a PowerPoint presentation regarding Consis-

tency Statements, the board addressed the two matters of action on the agenda. Property owner Trent Testa submitted Zoning Request Z-1-6-20, for parcel number 11658 at 259 Dixon School Road in Kings Mountain and asked his property to be rezoned from light industrial to general business. Testa did not

attend the meeting. The second item considered was Zoning Request Z-2-6-20 submitted by members of E5 Holdings, LLC, Eddie Holbrook, Doug Brown, Stuart LeGrand, for parcel number 11650 at 245 Dixon School Road in Kings Mountain, asking the property to be See ZONING, Page 4

New dates and new virtual component

Real to Reel Film Festival By Violet Arth

The Cleveland County Arts Council is excited to begin another decade of offering amazing cinema to film festival goers. Originally slated for the end of July, this year, the 21st annual International Real to Reel Film Fest has been rescheduled for September 9-12 at the Joy Performance Theatre in Kings Mountain.

Although the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has been felt by filmmakers, event planners, and venues around the world, Real to Reel organizers are

hoping the delayed dates and a new virtual companion component will expand the outreach and preparation time for this exploration of international film. “Postponing the festival was not a decision we took lightly but one we felt was best for everyone, and it gave us the opportunity to add a virtual component. We are excited to work with Seed and Spark to bring

Real to Reel Film Festival into the virtual festival space via their platform,” commented Festival Director Violet Dukes. More details are forthcoming in regard to this online element of screenings. The selection committee screened nearly 150 film submissions, from amateur and professional filmmakers, including animated See FILM, Page 4

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