Gaston County is governed by a seven-member Board of Commissioners (BOC) representing six townships. Commissioners are elected on a countywide or “at-large” partisan basis to four-year staggered terms, but must reside in their respective Township. The Gastonia Township is represented by two Commissioners. In December of each year, the Board elects a Chairman and Vice Chairman to serve for the upcoming year. They hold two meetings per month on the second and fourth Tuesdays (unless otherwise noted in the meeting schedule).
The Board is charged with providing policy direction for the administration of County government and providing for the efficient operation of government services. The Board has established their Priorities as job creation and economic development, education, healthy communities, public safety and quality of life, and strive to incorporate these priorities as guidelines for future policy decisions. The major duties of the Board of Commissioners include assessing and assigning priorities to the needs of the County, adopting an annual balanced budget, establishing the annual property tax rate, maintaining a responsible fiscal policy, and enacting local ordinances. Commissioners are also responsible for appointing volunteers to serve on various advisory boards and commissions.
Gaston County seeks to be among the finest counties in North Carolina. It will provide effective, efficient and affordable services leading to a safe, secure and healthy community, an environment for growth, and promote a favorable quality of life.
Goals & Objectives
To provide residents and others effective and efficient services:
Develop and fund an on-going Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) and a Facilities Master Plan (FMP) to assure prompt and effective maintenance, operation and asset management of Gaston County infrastructure. The CIP and FMP will be updated annually.
Evaluate and secure where appropriate additional sources of revenue, including but not limited to user fees, impact fees, intergovernmental transfers and public-private partnerships in an effort to reduce reliance on the property tax.
Maintain a responsible fiscal policy.
Attract and maintain the quality of personnel working for Gaston County through staff development.
Evaluate the appropriateness and desirability of providing alternative means of services, including but not limited to "outsourcing," "insourcing," sharing of resources with other units of government and others.
Encourage continuous, open and positive communication among County Commissioners, County Staff, and citizens.
Develop and implement productivity measures for services provided by Gaston County, recognizing the interrelated character of many services.
Update the Mission, Goals and Objectives of Gaston County bi-annually at the beginning of odd-numbered years.
To provide a safe, secure and healthy community:
Cooperate with all municipalities in Gaston County.Enforce laws concerning land use and waste disposal. Land use decisions should reflect the integrity of neighborhoods as desirable places to live, while recognizing the need for change.Adopt a Comprehensive Land Use Plan.
Continue to support public health, public safety and social services.
To provide an environment for economic growth:
Evaluate incentives for economic growth. Plan and implement extension of water and sewer services consistent with a Comprehensive Land Use Plan that encourages growth in a desired pattern.Assist the Gaston County School Board and Gaston College to provide quality education. Maintain good communication with the State of North Carolina relative to the development of streets and roads; establish appropriate standards for streets and roads; and continue active participation in the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) and the Rural Planning Organization (RPO).Evaluate and revise as necessary land use, environmental, and other regulations, recognizing the importance of regulatory enforcement. Promote tourism.
Develop and implement a five-year Transportation Improvement Plan, to be updated annually.
To promote a favorable quality of life:
Support development of cultural resources, including but not limited to museums, libraries, and historic resources. Encourage the development of a mixture of housing patterns, including affordable housing and senior citizen housing throughout Gaston County. Be responsible stewards of natural resources, including adoption of soil erosion and sedimentation, storm water management, and stream buffer regulations. Seek region-wide solutions to problems that are regional in character, including environmental protection and transportation. Continue to develop and encourage joint uses of assets among schools, parks, and municipal agencies within Gaston County.
Develop and implement policies to protect open space and agricultural land use.
Develop and implement policies to support the constructive participation of senior citizens, youth and minorities in the life of Gaston County.