Alamance/Guilford Border Change Means People Are Shifting Counties

Alamance Guilford border

A new resolution from the Alamance County Board of Commissioners will put some people in different counties.

"It's really a people issue, the way I see it," says Board Chairman Eddie Boswell. "A lot of people have been taxed by Alamance county for many years."

There's also been a big debate about the Guilford and Alamance County line over the years.  In October, the North Carolina General Assembly notified Alamance County, saying the border should represent the state's Geodetic survey.  That would straighten out the county lines, but it would split some homes in the process.  

With the new line, 71 homes would move from Alamance to Guilford County; 38 homes would switch from Guilford to Alamance County; and 22 homes would be split between the two.  In that case, the rule of thumb is typically wherever the master bedroom of the home lies.

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The board voted unanimously to approve the new line, in accordance with the General Assembly's request, but it wasn't necessarily an easy decision.

"People that have always lived in Alamance county since they were kids. They want to stay in Alamance because they've developed that," explains Chairman Boswell. "They've voted in Alamance County And their kids went to Alamance County Schools."

He adds that Guilford County taxes are higher.  The Guilford County 2017 tax rate is recorded as .7305, while Alamance County's 2017/2018 tax rate is .5800.

"It's not about hurting those people, it's trying to make accurate the situation," explains Commissioner Tim Sutton.

"Given the circumstances, I feel like having a resolution is better," adds Commissioner Bob Byrd. "Even a straight geodetic line is better than not having a resolution at all.  Because not having it solved really puts the property owners in limbo and it's not to their benefit to be that way." 

The Commissioners also hope to work out a deal with the Alamance Burlington School System to grandfather any students in if they have to switch counties.

Andrew Irving's house in Gibsonville is one that will be split between county lines.

"We purchased the house wanting to be in Alamance County, primarily for school district purposes," Irving explains. "But our child is out of school so at this point our chief concern is double taxation.  That would be calamity."

Luckily for Irving, that won't happen.  He'll have to pay to one county.  The majority of his house right now is in Guilford.

"It's good government to get it settled," Irving tells. "Even if you're disappointed with where you are, I understand the concept of the line." 

As for when the change might come, the plan still has to go to the state legislature for final approval.  Guilford County Commissioners will also have to submit a resolution to adopt the geodetic line.

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