GREENSBORO, N.C. – Monday night, a room just outside of the Lake Jeanette neighborhood was packed to capacity with a lot of angry people.
A lot of the homeowners are upset over the possible sale of it and the fact that they don't have a say in it even though they live on the Greensboro lake.
If the sale goes through, the Lake Jeanette Association's Board of Directors says there could be a lot of changes. Potential plans include increasing the speed limit on the water, allowing private docks and boathouses, and setting up a beach - making what some believe are big changes to their serene neighborhood.
The Board of Directors and their attorney, Steven Black, knew this past winter there was a possibility someone wanted to buy the lake – which is owned by ITG (formerly Cone Mills). However, they didn't think it was serious - until now.
Homeowners didn't hold back in letting the Board and attorney know their frustrations.
“We have no idea what it's being sold for, we have no idea what changes they will actually implement, we have no idea if they're going to open the lake publicly, but you don't buy a lake unless you're going to make money,” said Sherry Tow, who lives in the neighborhood.
She bought her home for peace and tranquility, much different from a developed lake with boaters and weekenders. Tow learned three years ago, the lake itself could be sold. However, she says she was always assured by the Board that wouldn't happen.
“What they thought was oh, we'll just delay it, it probably won't happen, this was what was discussed several years ago, so they were in denial,” she said.
Now, with a potential sale underway, there's no saying what is on the table. The Board's attorney says they have not seen the contract between ITG and the third party, and legally, they are not required to show them.
In the meeting, the attorney mentioned talks of private docks, a beach and more traffic on the water. Most people in the room had strong opposition to these changes, and they felt they should have been notified sooner.
Many questioned the motives of buying the lake, and what rights they have as property owners. Would Lake Jeanette become public? What would happen to the property values, or the tree buffers? Finally discussed – whether the Association could buy it, and protect it.
“What the attorney suggested tonight, oh - we could buy the lake from the buyer. Which means now, will be even paying more money for the lake then the buyer did,” said Tow.
The Board says the sale isn't final yet. There's a grace period where the buyer could back out, but that period is over at the end of July.