City of Marion

Detailed Service Directory


A B C D E F G H I J K L M
N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

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ABC Board. The members of the Marion Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Board are appointed by the City Council and oversee the operations of the City of Marion ABC Stores on East Court Street and US Highway 221 North. Profits from the operation are sent to the City. Call 652-8770, ABC Store.

ABC Permits. See Permits, Licenses and Certificates.

ABC Regulations. See Alcohol

ABC Stores. See ABC Board

Abandoned vehicles. Vehicles left or abandoned on City property or on any public street in the City Limits can be removed by the City at the owner's expense. Call 652-5205. Police Department.

Accounts payable. The Accounting Division pays invoices received from vendors for all goods and services rendered. Bills are paid on or around the 10th, 20th, and 30th of the month for invoices dated the previous two weeks. Call 652-3551. Finance Department.

Addressing. Addressing of properties in the City of Marion and throughout McDowell County is handled by the McDowell County 911 Addressing Office, located in the McDowell County Communications Center in the lower level of the Police Department at 270 South Main Street. Call 652-4000 for more information.

Administration. See City Manager

Advisory boards. See Boards and commissions

Agendas. See City Council Agendas

Alcohol. The consumption of alcohol is prohibited in City owned or leased buildings, in City parks, on all City owned or leased property and on public streets, sidewalks, alleys and rights-of-way in the City Limits.

The sale of alcohol, including beer, wine and liquor, in restaurants and retail stores in the City Limits is regulated by the N.C. ABC Commission. State law pre-empts local control over the location of alcohol sales, once the sale of alcohol has been approved in a City, except for allowing the local government to comment on zoning and building code compliance, the location of the establishment and the criminal history of the applicant. Call the Police Department at 652-5205 for more information.

Annexation. 652-3551. City Manager's Office. Annexation into the City Limits is required before a property owner can tap on to City sewer services or tap on to City water services if both water and sewer service are available. Applications for voluntary annexation into the City of Marion may be obtained from the City Manager's office, 652-3551. The City Manager's office, 652-3551, also coordinates City initiated annexation procedures.

Animal control. 652-5205. Police Department. Dogs and cats must be kept under restraint at all times inside the City Limits. If not confined to its owner's or keeper's property, a dog should be on a leash, or in a vehicle and unable to bite a person outside the vehicle. It is a violation of the City's Animal Control Ordinance to allow dogs or cats to annoy neighbors through excessive noise, to run at-large without proper collar and identification, to run at-large while in heat or while creating a public nuisance such as bothering, threatening or chasing people, cyclists or vehicles or spreading garbage or damaging public property. Vicious, fierce or dangerous dogs must be confined within a building or secure enclosure and must be securely muzzled when removed from the building or enclosure. Livestock are prohibited from the City, unless certain criteria is met. Marion is a bird sanctuary. Call 652-5205, Police Department.

Arbor Day. 652-3551. Administrative Assistant to the City Manager. The Tree Board coordinates annual Arbor Day celebrations at Marion and Eastfield Elementary Schools, involving tree planting at various locations across the City. Contact the Administrative Assistant to the City Manager for more information.

Assessments. 652-3551. Finance Department. Property liens from assessments for demolition, paving, street and sidewalk improvements and lot cleaning are maintained by the Finance Office. Assessments should be verified with the Tax Collector before finalizing land transfers.

Auctions. 652-6151. Purchasing Department. Surplus equipment, automobiles, trucks and heavy equipment are generally sold via the on-line auction service, www.govdeals.com. Other surplus materials valued at less than $30,000 may be sold periodically through private sale or other methods allowed by law.

Audit. 652-3551. Finance Department. As required by State law, the City is audited each year by an independent Certified Public Acccounting firm. The City's financial statements are prepared in accordance with the standards of the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) and Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). The audit report must be reviewed and approved by the State Treasurer's Office Local Government Commission and then is presented to the City Council. Copies of the most recent audit report may be reviewed at City Hall or viewed on the City's website.

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Backflow prevention. 652-4224. Public Works Department. The City of Marion requires the installation of approved backflow prevention devices, under certain circumstances, to protect the City water supply from potential contamination.

Bank drafts. 652-3551. Finance Department. Customers can arrange for payment of utility bills by electronic bank drafts upon request to the Utility Collections Division.

Bicycles. Bicycles are not permitted to be ridden on the sidewalk in a business district. Bicycles are also prohibited from being ridden in any City park. For questions or to file complaints, call the Police Department, 652-5205.

Bidding. See Purchasing Department

Board of Adjustment. See Boards and commissions

Boards and commissions. Citizens serving on various advisory boards help run the City government by shaping and carrying out policy. A staff member is assigned to each board to assist in conducting business. Each board has a regular meeting day and time. Meetings are open to the public. Schedules and schedule changes are announced in the McDowell News and on the City Government Access Channel.

  • ABC Board. The members of the Marion Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Board are appointed by the City Council and oversee the operations of the ABC Stores on East Court Street and US Highway 221 North. Profits from the operation are sent to the City. Call 652-8770, ABC Store.
  • Board of Adjustment. Planning and Development Department, 652-3551. Meets monthly or as needed, Council Chambers, City Hall, 194 N. Main St. Decides on special exceptions, zoning variances, appeals of decisions made by the Planning Department, and planned unit developments.
  • Historic Preservation Commission. Planning and Development Department, 652-3551. Meets monthly or as needed, Council Chambers, City Hall, 194 N. Main St. Decides on Certificates of Appropriateness for building additions and changes within local Historic Districts and makes recommendations to the City Council regarding local historic guidelines and historic preservation matters.
  • Planning Board. Planning and Development Department, 652-3551. Meets monthly or as needed, Council Chambers, City Hall, 194 N. Main St. Makes recommendations to the City Council regarding granting rezoning requests, adopting zoning and subdivision text amendments, and approval of subdivision plats. Addresses long-range planning issues for the City of Marion.
  • Tree Board. Administrative Assistant to the City Manager, 652-3551. Meets periodically to develop programs, policies and events to promote tree planting and protection in the City of Marion. Coordinates City’s annual Arbor Day Celebration. The City of Marion is a Tree City USA and the Tree Board coordinates this program.

Budget. 652-3551. City Manager. Each year the Marion City Council approves the City's budget and sets the property tax rate based on the assessed value of property inside the City Limits. City staff develop the recommended budget during the winter and spring prior to a new fiscal year, which runs from July 1-June 30. Opportunities are given for public input. Copies of the budget document are on file at the City Manager’s Office and Finance Officer's Office in City Hall, 194 N. Main St. Budget requests are submitted by department heads to the City Manager by April 30, and the City Manager submits a recommended budget to the City Council by May 31. City Council must adopt a balanced budget each year by June 30.

  • General Fund. The portion of the City budget that accounts for the revenues and expenditures of governmental operations, including administration, police and fire protection, sanitation services, streets, parks and recreation, planning and inspections, public works administration, fleet maintenance, cemetery, and purchasing. Property and sales taxes, along with state reimbursements, and charges for sales and services account for most of the revenue in this fund.
  • Water and Sewer Fund. The portion of the City budget that accounts for revenues and expenditures of the City's water and sewer utilities. Rates charged for water and sewer service account for most of the revenue. Expenditures go toward system maintenance and operations and debt service on water and sewer system improvements.
  • Internal Service Fund. The portion of the City budget that accounts for revenues and expenditures of the Internal Service Fund, which involves the purchasing and warehousing of supplies for resale to all City departments.
  • General Capital Reserve Fund. The portion of the City budget that sets aside money for future major expenditures such as land purchases, equipment acquisition and small construction projects involving General Fund activities.
  • Water and Sewer Capital Reserve Fund. The portion of the City budget that sets aside money for future major expenditues such as land purchases, equipment acquisition and small construction projects involving Water and Sewer Fund activities.
  • Capital Project Funds. The City periodically establishes Capital Project Ordinances, through City Council action, to account for revenues and expenditures of capital projects that overlap fiscal years. Capital Project Ordinances allow for better tracking of revenues and expenditures for individual projects, without skewing the annual budget.

Building Inspector. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. The office of the Building Inspector is located in City Hall. Office hours are from 7:30 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. The Building Inspector is charged with issuing permits for all construction within the City Limits, and with enforcing the North Carolina Building, Electrical, Mechanical and Plumbing Codes.

Business License. See Permits, Licenses and Certificates.

Building Permits. See Permits, Licenses and Certificates.

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Caboose. 652-3551. The City of Marion owns a historic Clinchfield Rail Line caboose that is located next to the City's Historic Depot on Depot Street. The City plans to removate the exterior and interior of the caboose in the future. The exterior of the caboose can currently be viewed.

Call before you dig. See Locating underground utilities.

Catawba River Greenway. See Parks and Recreation facilities.

Cemeteries. 652-4224. Public Works Department. Oak Grove Cemetery, located at 947 Rutherford Road, is City-owned and maintained. Effective July 1, 2014, the City maintains Morehead Cemetery, located off of Morehead Road. The City does not own or maintain any other private cemeteries in the City Limits. The City assists funeral directors in locating and marking grave sites at Oak Grove Cemetery prior to services, but cannot guarantee the ownership of any particular gravesite, due to the number of property transactions involving gravesites taking place without City knowledge over the years. Arrangements can be made through the Public Works Department. All cemetery plots at Oak Grove Cemetery have been sold, but mausoleum vaults and columbarium niches are available. Contact Public Works at 652-4224 for more information about locating grave sites and opening and closing mausoleum vaults or columbarium niches, or City Hall at 652-3551 for information about mausoleum vault or columbarium niche purchases. The Morehead Cemetery does not have any additional gravesites for sale at this time.

Certificate of Occupancy. See Permits, licenses and certificates

Certified Retirement Community. The City of Marion is one of a handful of cities and towns in North Carolina designated by the North Carolina Department of Commerce as Certified Retirement Communities. The City works with the McDowell County Tourism Development Authority, Marion Business Association, McDowell County and the McDowell County Chamber of Commerce to market the community as a retirement destination. For more information about the Certified Retirement Community Program or retirement opportunities in the community, please contact the McDowell County Tourism Development Authority at 668-4282, the Marion Business Association at 652-2215 pr click on the Retire NC link on the home page of this website.

Christmas Parade. 652-2215. Marion Business Association. See Special Events.

City Channel. See Government Access Channel.

City Clerk. 652-3551. The City Clerk keeps minutes of City Council meetings, maintains official records and documents, gives public notice of meetings, and performs other duties required by law or at the direction of City Council. The City Manager serves as City Clerk.

City Code. 652-3551. A record of City laws and regulations adopted by City Council. Copies are on file at City Hall and on the City of Marion website.

City Council. 652-3551. The Marion City Council is the governing body of the City. Its five members are elected at-large by Marion citizens for four year staggered terms. Meetings are called and presided over by the Mayor. The Council adopts ordinances, rules, and regulations as necessary for the general welfare of the City. It also establishes policies and programs for delivering services to City residents, approves the financial plan for the City, and sets the property tax rate and all user fees. City Council meets regularly on the first and third Tuesdays each month at 6:00 p.m. in the Council Chambers, City Hall, 194 N. Main St., except for July, when the City Council only meets on the third Tuesday of the month, and in December, when the City Council only meets on the first Tuesday of the month. Special meetings are called as needed. Meetings are open to the public and are announced in the McDowell News and on the City of Marion website.

City Council agendas. 652-3551. Agendas are prepared prior to each regular Council meeting. Copies are available at City Hall and on the City website. An agenda summary also is published in the McDowell News prior to the regular meeting.

City Hall. 652-3551. Located at 194 North Main Street, City Hall houses the City Council Chambers, City Manager's office, as well as the Tax, Utility Billing, Finance, and Planning and Development Departments. Taxes and water bills can be paid at City Hall, and permits can be obtained, along with general information.

City limits. 652-3551. To find out the location of the City Limits, contact the Planning and Development Department at 652-3551 or look at mapping information on the City website or the McDowell County GIS website.

City Manager. 652-3551. The City Manager is appointed by City Council and runs the day-to-day operations of the City; supervises all City departments; hires all City employees; recommends policies to City Council; analyzes and evaluates programs, proposals and needs; coordinates capital improvement projects; performs organizational planning; and schedules and monitors interdepartmental activities.

City website. 652-3551. Administrative Assistant to the City Manager. The City of Marion's website, www.marionnc.org, is maintained by City staff. Contact the Administrative Assistant to the City Manager for questions or suggestions about additional information that could be posted on the City website.

Civic club and school programs. Contact the City Manager at 652-3551 or individual departments to schedule a civic club or school presentation.

Clinchfield Community Park. See Parks and Recreation facilities.

Code Enforcement. 652-3551. Zoning Administrator/Code Enforcement Officer, Planning and Development Department. The City Planning and Development Department enforces a number of codes, including the State Building Code, the City's Zoning and Subidivision Ordinances, the City's Nuisance Ordinance and the City's Dilapidated Buildings Ordinance. Please see Nuisance and Junked Vehicles, Nuisance Lots, Dilapidated Buildings,Building Inspector and Zoning/Subdivision Violation Enforcement for more information or call the Planning and Development Department at 652-3551.

Columbarium. See Cemeteries.

Commercial Development. See Economic Development.

Communications Center. 652-4000. The McDowell County Communications Center, located in the lower level of the Police Department building at 270 South Main Street, is a consolidated Communication Center providing dispatching services for the City of Marion, McDowell County and the Town of Old Fort. The Communications Center also houses the McDowell County 911 Addressing Office and Emergency Management Department.

Community Building. 652-3551. The Marion Community Building at 191 North Main Street was constructed by the Federal Works Progress Administration (WPA) in 1936. The Community Building contains a large multi-purpose room and kitchen on both the Main Level and in the basement. Both levels are suitable for commercial or non-commercial meetings, receptions and events. The building is available for private rentals. Sound equipment and tables and chairs are provided by the City. No alcohol or tobacco use is allowed in the Community Building. Secure rentals at City Hall, 194 N. Main St.

Community Building Park. See Parks and Recreation facilities.

Community development. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department.. Community revitalization grant programs administered in the City Limits include Community Development Block Grant and Housing Development Grant projects. City staff also make referrals for assistance to other agencies.

Comprehensive Plan. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. The City has an adopted Comprehensive Plan for the City and surrounding area, which guides future decisions in the areas of land use, economic development, transportation, utility services and other areas. The Comprehensive Plan is an update to the City's 1978 Land Use and Development Plan. Contact the Planning and Development Department for questions or more information.

Concert Series. Marion Business Association. 652-2215. See Special Events.

Condemnation. 652-3551. Building Inspector, Planning and Development Department. The City of Marion maintains a list of dilapidated structures in the City Limits and undertakes condemnation and demolition proceedings, as authorized by State law and the City Code, as the City budget allows. Demolition charges are billed to the property owner and become a lien against the property if unpaid. Please contact the Building inspector at 652-3551 to report a dilapidated structure in the City.

Council-Manager form of government. 652-3551. The City of Marion has operated under the Council/Manager form of government since 1949. Under the Council-Manager form of government, the elected City Council appoints a professional City Manager to manage the day-to-day operations of the city government and services. See also City Manager, City Council

Crimestoppers. 65-CRIME. McDowell County Crimestoppers provides a voice mailbox to record information about crimes that are about to happen or that already have occurred. Callers do not have to leave a name or number. Call 911 to report crimes in progress. With Crimestoppers, the identity of the caller remains anonymous and callers can receive a cash reward.

Cross connection control. 652-4224. Public Works Department. The City of Marion and State law prohibit cross connections between the City water system and private wells or water systems. There must be a physical separation between the City water system and private wells or water systems.

Cross Mill Community Park. See Parks and Recreation facilities.

Customer service. 652-3551. Utility Billing Department. Customer service representatives at City Hall can handle questions or concerns about water, sewer and garbage bills and arrange for services to be cut on or off. A deposit and/or service charge is required to activate a service. Business hours at City Hall are 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.

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DARE. 652-5205. Police Department. The Drugs and Alcohol Resistance Education program is taught by the Marion Police Department at the elementary and middle school levels.

Dead animal collection. 652-4224. Public Works Department. For needs inside the City Limits.

Demographics. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. For demographic information about the City of Marion and the surrounding area, please consult the Demographics section of the City website, under the "About Us" button or contact the Planning and Development Department.

Demolition Permits. See Permits, Licenses and Certificates.

Demonstrations. Pickets or demonstrations on City property, public streets and sidewalks in the City Limits require a permit from the Police Department. Call 652-5205 for more information.

Depot. 652-3551. The Historic Depot on Depot Street is the oldest surviving train depot in Western North Carolina, having first been constructed in 1867. The Depot contains a large multi-purpose room suitable for commercial or non-commercial meetings, receptions and events. The building is available for private rentals. Sound equipment and tables and chairs are provided by the City. No alcohol or tobacco use is permitted in the Depot. Secure rentals at City Hall, 194 N. Main St.

Dilapidated buildings. 652-3551. Building Inspector, Planning and Development Department. The City of Marion does not have a Minimum Housing Code, but can take action to require the repair or demolition of structures in the City Limits once they are unfit for human habitation. The City of Marion maintains a list of dilapidated structures in the City Limits and undertakes condemnation and demolition proceedings, as authorized by State law and the City Code, as the City budget allows. Demolition charges are billed to the property owner and become a lien against the property if unpaid. Please contact the Building inspector at 652-3551 to report a dilapidated structure in the City.

Dispatching.See Communications Center.

Dog and cat complaints. See animal control.

Downtown Business Association. See Marion Business Association.

Downtown Summer Concert Series. Marion Business Association. 652-2215. See Special Events.

Downtown revitalization programs. 652-2215. The City administers an active downtown revitalization program, through the Marion Business Association. City involvement includes participation in the North Carolina Main Street Program, on-going capital projects and maintenance of public areas. See also Marion Business Association.

Driveway Permits. See Permits, Licenses and Certificates.

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Eastfield Community Park. See Parks and Recreation facilities.

Economic Development. 652-3551, City Manager, or 652-2215, Marion Business Association. The City works in conjunction with other area agencies, such as the McDowell Economic Development Association, the McDowell Chamber of Commerce and the Marion Business Association, to coordinate economic development within the Marion area. The Marion Business Association serves as the City's economic development agency. Contact the City Manager's Office or the Marion Business Association for more information about Marion, or to discuss industrial, commercial or residential development opportunities.

Elections. Municipal elections are held every odd numbered year in November and are administered by the McDowell County Board of Elections. The Mayor and City Council are elected at-large for four-year staggered terms. City Council also may call for special elections on matters such as bond referendums. Persons age 18 or older residing in the Marion City Limits may vote. Contact the McDowell County Board of Elections regarding voter and candidate registration. Call McDowell County Board of Elections at 652-7121.

Electrical Permits. See Permits, Licenses and Certificates.

Emergencies. 911. Call 911 for emergency service from the police department, fire department or emergency medical services. The county has an Enhanced 911 system, which displays the address of the location from which a 911 call is placed on a screen at the Communications Center.

Water and Sewer utilities emergencies. 652-4224 during business hours, 652-3231 on nights and weekends. City personnel are available 24 hours a day to respond to water or sewer emergencies or street or drainage problems that are emergencies.

Police Non-emergencies. 652-5205

Fire non-emergencies. 652-5201

Emergency alerts and announcements. 652-3551. City Hall. The City of Marion announces emergency alerts through news releases to local media, including the McDowell News and WBRM Radio, as well as on the City website, www.marionnc.org and the City's Government Access Channel, Channel 190 on Charter Cable. Information may also be obtained from McDowell County Emergency Management at 652-3982.

Employment opportunities. 652-3551. Human Resources Office. Position vacancies with the City of Marion are handled through the Human Resources Office. Prospective employees can call or visit the Human Resources Office in City Hall to receive an employment application as openings occur. Job vacancies also are posted on the City website, listed with the Employment Security Commission and may be advertised in the McDowell News and on the City Government Access Channel. The City of Marion is an Equal Employment Opportunity employer.

Events. 652-2215. Marion Business Association. See Special Events.

Extraterritorial Planning and Zoning Jurisdiction (ETJ). 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. The City of Marion does not exercise an Extraterritorial Planning and Zoning Jurisdiction (ETJ). City planning and zoning regulations and permitting requirements only pertain to the City Limits. Please contact the Planning and Development Department at 652-3551 if you have questions about whether your property is in the City Limits. For information about McDowell County permit and zoning requirements, please contact McDowell County Planning and Inspections at 652-7121.

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Facade Grant Program. 652-2215. Marion Business Association (MBA) . The Historic Marion Facade Grant Program is funded by the City of Marion, Marion Business Association and McDowell Economic Development Association, and provides matching funds as an incentive for downtown property and business owners to renovate and improve building exteriors. Call the MBA for more information.

Facility Rentals. 652-3551. See Community Building and/or Depot.

Fair Housing. 652-3551. The City of Marion is required to have a current Fair Housing Plan by state and federal law. The Department of Planning and Development administers the Fair Housing Plan for the City. Anyone who has a complaint about fair housing inside the City should contact the City Manager's Office at 652-3551. The City Manager will assist in completing the complaint form and in conducting a thorough investigation of all complaints.

Farmer's Market. 652-2215, Marion Business Association. See Special Events.

Farmer's Market Shelter. 652-2215, Marion Business Association. See Tailgate Market Shelter.

Fee Schedule. 652-3551, Finance Department. A schedule of all City fees is available at City Hall and is found on the City website. Contact the Finance Department at 652-3551 for more information.

Fences. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. All fences in the City require a permit prior to being installed. Height limits and visibility requirements apply to fences constructed in the City Limits. All fence requests in the City should be evaluated by the Public Works Department, 652-4224, to ensure there will be no encroachment on the City's right-of-way.

Finance Department. 652-3551. The Finance Department administers the City's financial policies and procedures, maintains the City's sound financial condition and consults with City officials and management in the on-going, administration of City financial activities. Financial management functions include financial accounting, investments, managerial accounting, multi-year program accounting, payroll, revenue collections, and financial reporting to the City Council, City Manager, department heads and state and federal agencies. The Finance Department also oversees the City's Human Resources, Purchasing/Warehouse and Information Technology functions.

Financial statements. 652-3551, Finance Department. See Audit.

Fire hydrant repair. 652-4224. Public Works Department. The City inspects and repairs fire hydrants on a regular basis. To report a fire hydrant in need of repair, call the Public Works Department.

Fire inspections. 652-5201. Fire Department. Except for single and two-family homes, all buildings in the City Limits receive a fire inspection on a regular basis. The fire inspector looks for fire hazards, fire code violations, and health hazards that pose a threat to the public.

Fire Department. 652-5201. The Marion Fire Department's full-time and volunteer firefighters are ready to respond quickly to emergencies within the City and the six mile Marion Area Fire District 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Equipment includes three pumper trucks, a tanker truck, a 102 foot aerial platform truck, and two four wheel drive brush unit. To support fire prevention and safety, the department offers school and civic club programs, fire safety house tours, school presentations, and tours of the station.

Fire emergencies. 911

Fire inspections. 652-5201

Fire investigations. 652-5201

Fire prevention education, station tours. 652-5201

Fire District. See Fire Department.

Flood zoning/100-year flood area. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. The City of Marion enforces provisions of the National Flood Insurance Program in the City Limits. Property in these areas must meet Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) standards, which include elevating new construction and substantial renovations above the base flood elevation in flood-prone areas, in particular, the 100-year flood area. The city has on file Flood Insurance Rate Maps for determining in which flood zone a piece of property is located.

Flooding. 652-3231. Report flooding problems in the City Limits to this number.

Form of government. See Council-Manager form of government.

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Garbage collection. See Solid waste services

Gazebo Parks (North and South Main Streets). See Parks and Recreation facilities.

General information. 652-3551. The City's receptionist, based in City Hall at 194 N. Main Street, can direct incoming calls to the appropriate staff member.

Going-out-of-business license. See Permits, Licenses and Certificates.

Government Access Channel. 652-3551. Administrative Assistant to the City Manager. The City of Marion maintains a Government Access Channel on Charter Cable Channel 190. This channel provides scheduled programming including, but not limited to, City events, weather information, City services and facilities, interviews with citizens and organizations, historical documentaries, and public announcements.

Grease and oil discharges. All restaurants and other places where food is prepared, excluding residential units, served by the City sewer system, are required to have a grease tank of not less than 1,000 gallons capacity, which shall be pumped out per City requirements, or else have a 25 gallon/50 pound grease separator. Inspections of restaurants are made by Wastewater Treatment personnel to ensure compliance with this ordinance, to prevent sewer blockages and overflows. Call the Wastewater Treatment Department at 652-8843 for more information.

Greenways. The City of Marion currently maintains two Greenways, the Joseph McDowell Historical Catawba Greenway (Phases 1 and 2) and the Peavine Trail, and is planning for the construction of additional Greenways and trails in the City Limits. See Parks and Recreation facilities.

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Historic Depot. See Depot.

Historic District. 652-3551, Planning and Development Department and 652-2215, Marion Business Association.. The Marion Central Business District, Depot District and downtown churches are listed on the National Register of Historic Places and also in locally designated historic districts. Property owners within the defined districts must obtain Certificates of Appropriateness before making certain exterior changes to their property. Contact the Plannng and Development Department for more information about permit and regulatory requirements. Business and property owners in the districts are also potentially eligible for free design services from the State and Federal and State tax credits for renovation and restoration projects. Contact the Marion Business Assocation for more information about design services and tax credits.

Historic Marion Tailgate Market Shelter. See Tailgate Market Shelter.

Historic Preservation Commission. See Boards and Commissions.

Historic tax credit program. 652-2215. Marion Business Association (MBA). Owners of income-producing properties within the Marion Historic Districts may be eligible for federal and state tax credits for major renovations. The MBA and the N.C. Division of Archives and History will give technical assistance and work with property owners to evaluate proposed renovations.

Holidays. 652-3551. City offices and facilities are closed, and some services may be curtailed, on the following holidays:

  • New Year's Day
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
  • Good Friday
  • Memorial Day
  • July 4th
  • Labor Day
  • Veterans Day
  • Thanksgiving (Thursday and Friday)
  • Christmas (three days, including Christmas Day)

The City's holiday schedule is announced on the City website (www.marionnc.org), in the McDowell News, on WBRM radio, on the City Government Access Channel (Charter Cable Channel 190), and with signs posted at affected facilities. The City seeks to minimize disruptions to household garbage, street trash and recycling collection, but days of collection may vary on certain holidays, so please check for schedule changes around holidays.

House numbers. 652-4000. McDowell County Emergency Management. Address numbers must be posted visibly on the front of homes and businesses. The City does not require numbering on curbs in front of buildings.

Housing. See Community Development.

Housing complaints. See Dilapidated Buildings and Fair Housing.

Human resources. 652-3551. The Human Resources office in City Hall administers programs affecting the employment, training, retention, and benefits offered to employees of the City of Marion. Programs include insurance, pay and classification plan, performance appraisal and merit pay system, employee development and training, employee recruitment and selection, employee Wellness program, and the City employee drug testing policy. The office also makes sure that federal, state and local personnel-related laws are followed. See Employment opportunities

Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) Permits. See Permits, Licenses and Certificates.

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Industrial development. See Economic Development.

Industrial waste pretreatment. 652-8843. Wastewater Treatment Department. Restrictions apply to industrial wastewater discharged into the City's wastewater treatment system.

Information technology. 652-4224. The City's Technology Systems Administrator maintains the City's computer systems and downtown wireless network. Please call Information Technology to report problems with the downtown wireless network or at a specific City facility.

Inspections. See Building Inspector and Fire Inspections.

Itinerant Merchant License. See Permits, Licenses and Certificates.

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Jobs. See Employment opportunities.

Joseph McDowell Historical Catawba Greenway. See Parks and Recreation facilities.

July 4th Celebration. Marion Business Association. 652-2215. See Special Events.

Junk collection. See Solid waste services.

Junked vehicles. See Nuisance and junked vehicles.

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Land Use Plan. See Comprehensive Plan.

Leaf collection. See Solid waste services.

Law enforcement. See Police.

Licenses. See Permits, licenses and certificates.

Livermush Festival. 652-2215. Marion Business Association. See Special Events.

Livestock complaints in the City. See Animal control.

Locating underground utilities. 652-4224 or 811. Public Works Department. As required by State law, call before digging or construction to verify locations of City underground water and sewer lines. 48 hours advance notice is required in order for the Utility Department to mark lines. To determine locations of other utilities call NC One Call at 811. Any damage done to utility lines is the responsibility of the excavator.

Low water pressure. 652-4224. Public Works Department. Slow-running tap water may be a sign of low water pressure. Report this problem to the Public Works Department.

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Main Street Program. 652-2215. Marion Business Association. The City of Marion is part of the North Carolina Main Street Program, which makes downtown business and property owners potentially eligible for technical and design assistance. Contact the Marion Business Association for more information. Marion is one of about 30 cities in North Carolina that are continually accredited as a National Main Street Community by the National Main Street Program.

Manufactured Home Park Plan Approval. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. The Planning Board must approve manufactured home park development plans before projects can be developed in the City Limits. Plans must comply with the City's zoning and subdivision ordinances.

Maps, City. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. City maps are available for a small fee at the Planning and Development Department in City Hall, 194 N. Main Street. The City's Planning and Development Department keeps the City maps up to date. Property maps for parcels in the City Limits are available from the Planning and Development Department or from the McDowell County Tax Department.

Marion Business Association. 652-2215, Historic Depot.. The Marion Business Association (MBA) coordinates downtown and economic development efforts for the City. The MBA receives annual funding from the City and has offices located in the Historic Depot on Depot Street. Programs include the Historic Marion Facade Grant Program, technical assistance, referral of grant and loan opportunities for business development or expansion, promotion of City businesses, maintenance of an inventory of available downtown buildings, and coordination of the Mountain Glory Festival, July 4th Celebration, Downtown Summer Concert Series, Christmas Parade and other events.

Mausoleum. See Cemeteries.

Mayor. 652-3551. As the official head of the City government, the Mayor leads the City Council in establishing priorities for City government and in formulating strategies to achieve those priorities. The Mayor calls and presides at City Council meetings, votes in case of a tie, appoints committees, presides at ceremonial functions, calls attention to community matters by issuing proclamations, and carries out special responsibilities during emergencies. The Mayor is elected for a four-year term by the citizens of Marion in municipal elections held every other odd-numbered year.

Mayor Pro Tem. 652-3551. The Mayor Pro Tem is a City Council Member elected by City Council at the organizational meeting after an election to preside in the absence of the Mayor.

Meeting facilities. 652-3551. The Marion Community Building Main Level, Community Building Basement and Historic Depot contain large multi-purpose rooms and kitchens suitable for commercial and non-commercial meetings, receptions and events. The Historic Marion Tailgate Market Shelter also contains space for meetings and events, as long as such use is open to the general public. The Community Building and Depot are available for private rentals and the Historic Marion Tailgate Market Shelter is available for reservation for events open to the general public. Sound equipment and tables and chairs are provided by the City at the Community Building and Depot. No alcohol or tobacco use is allowed in any City facility. Secure rentals at City Hall, 194 N. Main St.

Melodies on Main. Marion Business Association. 652-2215. See Special Events.

Minimum housing. 652-3551. Building inspector, Planning and Development Department. The City of Marion does not have a Minimum Housing Code. The City does require the repair and demolition, if necessary, of dilapidated buildings in the City Limits. Please see Dilapidated Buildings for more information or call the Building Inspector at 652-3551.

Mobile Home Park Plan Approval. See Manufactured Home Park Plan Approval.

Mount Ida Wilderness Area. See Parks and Recreation facilities.

Mountain Glory Festival. Marion Business Association. 652-2215. See Special Events.

Multifamily Development Plan Approval. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. The Planning Board must approve multifamily development plans before projects can be developed in the city limits. Plans must comply with the city's zoning and subdivision ordinances.

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National Night Out. Police Department. 652-5205. See Police Department and Special Events.

New Year's Eve Celebration. Marion Business Assocation. 652-2215. See Special Events.

Nuisance and junked vehicles. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. Nuisance and junked vehicles are banned from the City limits. Nuisance vehicles are those that serve as a breeding ground for insects, mosquitoes, rats, or other pests; are a point of heavy weed growth; or threaten public health and safety. Junked vehicles typically are vehicles that cannot run, are partially dismantled or wrecked, or which do not have current license tags. If a vehicle is determined to be a nuisance or junk, a letter will be sent to the property owner or registered owner of the vehicle. If the situation is not corrected, the City may remove the vehicle at the owner's expense.

Nuisance lots. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. Property in the City limits cannot be allowed to become a nuisance that threatens public health and safety. The following conditions are in violation of City ordinances and are subject to enforcement action by the City:

  • Weeded lots. Growth of weeds, grass, or other noxious growth to a height of 6 inches or more
  • Trash or junk in yards. Accumulation of all forms of offensive animal or vegetable matter which may be dangerous or prejudicial to the public health or which may constitute a public nuisance; trash, storage of any junked or inoperative appliances in an area which is visible from any public street or highway, or from the premises of any adjoining property owner, or any other condition detrimental to the public health is a violation of City ordinances. A letter will be sent to the owner of property in violation. If the situation is not corrected, the City may correct the problem at the owner's expense. Report weeded lots and nuisance property to the City's Planning Department.

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Outages, power. See Power outages

Outages, water. See Service interruptions

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Parade and Demonstration Permits. See Permits, Licenses and Certificates.

Parades. Most scheduled parades in the City of Marion are coordinated by the Marion Business Association (MBA), including the Christmas and July 4th Parades. Contact the MBA at 652-2215 for more information. Requests by private groups to have a parade or block or close a street in the City Limits require a permit from the Police Department. Call 652-5205 for more information.

Parking tickets. 652-3551. Pay parking tickets at City Hall, 194 North Main Street. Persons with questions about a parking ticket should call the Police Department at 652-5205.

Parks and Recreation facilities. 652-3551.

  • Recreation Offices, West Court and Academy Streets. 652-3001. McDowell County provides recreational programming for City and County residents. The offices are located on Academy Street. Register for programs or obtain information here.
  • Senior Center, located off of Spaulding Road. 652-8953. McDowell County offers programs, activities and serves as an information center for senior adults ages 55 and older.
  • Marion Community Building, North Main Street. The City of Marion operates and maintains this facility, which houses meeting rooms on the Main Level and in the Basement for commercial and non-commercial receptions, meetings and events. Call 652-3551 to arrange rentals.
  • Historic Depot, Depot Street. The City of Marion operates and maintains this facility, which houses a meeting room for commercial and non-commercial receptions, meetings and events. Call 652-3551 to arrange rentals.
  • Historic Marion Tailgate Market Shelter. West Henderson Street. The City of Marion operates and maintains this facility, which contains a large shelter. The shelter houses the Farmer's Market on Tuesday afternoons between May and October and on Saturday morning between Juen and August. The shelter is available for reservation for governmental, non-profit, civic club and private events open to the general public. Call 652-3551 to arrange for reservations.
  • YMCA Trail, Grace Corpening Drive. The Maxwell M. Corpening, Jr. Memorial YMCA and McDowell County maintain the YMCA Trail, which extends around the YMCA, McDowell County Senior Center, Medical Park and County owned facilities on Spaulding Road. Call 652-7121 for additional information.

The following parks are operated and maintained by the City of Marion. Call City Hall at 652-3551 for more information. Parks are available for public use on a first come-first served basis. The City does not reserve parks and picnic shelters. Park rules are listed at each site. The use of tobacco products and alcohol is strictly prohibited in all City parks, including the following. All facilities are open during daylight hours, unless otherwise specified.

  • Community Building Park, Logan Street. Picnic shelters and tables, playground equipment, basketball and tennis courts, splash pad, restroom facilities. The Community Building Park is open during daylight hours, with the exception of the tennis and basketball courts, which are open until 12:00 Midnight.
  • West Marion Community Park, Addie's Chapel Drive off of Ridley Street. Picnic shelter, playground equipment, walking tail, basketball court.
  • Cross Mill Community Park, Granby Street. Picnic shelter, playground equipment, disc golf course, walking trail, basketball court.
  • Eastfield Community Park, Perry Street. Picnic shelter, playground equipment, walking trail, basketball court.
  • Clinchfield Community Park, Hill Street. Picnic shelter, playground equipment, walking trail, basketball court.
  • Gazebo, North Main Street and Brown Drive. Gazebo area located in downtown Marion.
  • Gazebo, South Main Street and Morgan Street. Gazebo area and surrounding small park on southern edge of downtown Marion
  • Joseph McDowell Historical Catawba Greenway, Sam Phillips Drive off of US 70 West. Phase 1 of this paved trail extends for 0.9 miles along the Catawba River. Along with the paved trail, benches and picnic tables, observation platforms, fishing piers and public restrooms are in place. The trail connects with the 0.5 mile paved Round Hill Loop that leads to the Historic Round Hill, the burial site for the McDowell and Carson families, founders of McDowell County. Phase 1 of the Greenway and the Round Hill Loop are owned and maintained by the City of Marion. Phase 2 of the Greenway extends 0.6 miles eastward from the end of Phase 1 under the US 221 Bypass and ends at the Historic McDowell House. Phase 2 contains a paved trail, amphitheater, canoe launch, fitness stations, along with a paved driveway and parking lot at the McDowell House on US 70 West. Future phases of the Greenway are planned and will extend east and west.
  • Mount Ida Wilderness Area. Mount Ida Drive off of Young's Creek Drive off of Rutherford Road. This facility includes a one-half mile gravel access road and parking lot, a picnic shelter and a one-half mile moderate to strenuous trail to the top of Mount Ida. The Mount Ida Wilderness Area features breathtaking views of Downtown Marion, the East Marion neighborhood and many mountains in the region. The City owns 36 acres on the top of Mount Ida, which overlooks downtown Marion. This property was acquired by the City in 2007, using grant funds, and was officially opened in 2016.
  • Peavine Trail, located between State Street and Jacktown Road. This Rails to Trails Project is a gravel trail, which will eventually extend for 2.4 miles from State Street to Jacktown Road. A total of 1.5 miles of this trail is currently open, due to safety concerns with a trestle located behind Mi Pueblito Restuarant on Rutherford Road. Parking is available at the old Rescue Squad building on State Street and at First Christian Church on Rutherford Road (except between 9:00 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. on Sundays).

Paving. See Street maintenance, Street resurfacing

Paying utility bills. See utility bills

Peavine Trail. See Parks and Recreation facilities.

Peddler's Permits. See Permits, licenses and certificates.

Permits, licenses and certificates. The following permits, licenses and certificates are issued or reviewed by the City of Marion:

  • ABC Permit (Beer, Wine, Liquor). Planning and Development Department, 652-3551. Written comments from local governments regarding zoning, building, and fire code compliance and the location of the requested use are required prior to the state issuing ABC licenses.
  • Building Permit. Planning and Development Department, 652-3551. Required prior to undertaking any new construction expansion or building renovation of any building or structure in the city limits.
  • Business License. Tax Department, 652-3551. Required before opening or conducting any business in the City Limits, unless specifically exempted by State law. Must be renewed annually.
  • Certificate of Occupancy. Planning and Development Department, 652-3551. Required when undertaking construction, relocation, expansion, and/or renovations of buildings and structures. Also required when there is a change of use for a building, structure or property in the City Limits. A Certificate of Compliance is issued only when a building, structure, or property is in compliance with all applicable standards, local laws, and terms of City-issued building and zoning permits.
  • Demolition Permit. Planning and Development Department, 652-3551. Required before tearing down any structure in the City Limits.
  • Driveway Permit. Public Works Department, 652-4224. Required before constructing any driveway or making curb cuts in the City Limits.
  • Electrical Permit. Planning and Development Department, 652-3551. Required before undertaking any new construction or renovations involving electrical work in the City Limits.
  • Going-out-of-business license. Tax Department, 652-3551. Required before a retail business in the City Limits conducts a going-out-of business sale.
  • Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) Permit. Planning and Development Department, 652-3551. Required before undertaking any new construction or renovations involving HVAC work in the City Limits.
  • Itinerant Merchant License. Tax Department, 652-3551. Required for persons wishing to sell products or merchandise on a temporary basis from anywhere in the City Limits.
  • Parade and Demonstration Permit. Police Department, 652-5205. Required for person or groups wishing to have a parade or demonstration, or wanting to block or close a street or sidewalk for an event in the City Limits.
  • Peddler's License. Tax Department, 652-3551. Required for persons wishing to exhibit or sell products at different locations in the City Limits. Registration with the Police Department is also required.
  • Plumbing Permit. Planning and Development Department, 652-3551. Required before undertaking any new construction or renovations involving plumbing work in the City Limits.
  • Portable Toilet Permit, Public Works Department, 652-4224. Required before placing any portable toilet in the City Limits.
  • Right-of-Way Encroachment Permit, Public Works Department, 652-4224. Required before any excavation or construction or the installation of any above ground or underground lines, wires, cables or facilities within a City street right-of-way.
  • Sidewalk or Street Closing permit, Public Works Department, 652-4224. Required before closing any sidewalk or street for construction or driving any vehicles or equipment on a public sidewalk in the City Limits as part of a construction project.
  • Sign Permit. Planning and Development Department, 652-3551. Required before erecting, placing, or painting any sign on any building on property in the City Limits.
  • Zoning Permit. Planning and Development Department, 652-3551. Required before constructing, erecting, moving or structurally altering any building or structure in the City Limits, including fences and swimming pools. Zoning permits are also required before a change of use for any building, structure or property in the City Limits.

Personnel. 652-3551. See Human Resources.

Pickets. See Demonstrations

Picnic shelters. 652-3551. City Hall. Picnic shelters at the Community Building Park, West Marion Community Park, Cross Mill Community Park, Clinchfield Community Park and Eastfield Community Park are available for public use on a first come first served basis.

Planning Board. See Boards and commissions

Planning and Development Department. 652-3551. The Planning and Development Department administers activities for general planning, building inspections and code enforcement, zoning, subdivision, downtown revitalization, nuisance abatement, economic and community development and flood prevention in the City Limits.

Planning and zoning jurisdiction. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. The planning and zoning jurisdiction of the City of Marion is limited to the City Limits. The City does not exercise an Extraterritorial Jurisdiction (ETJ) outside the City Limits.

Playful City USA. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. The City of Marion has been designated as one of approximately 200 Playful City communities nationwide because of the parks and recreation opportunities available in the City. For more information, please contact the Planning and Development Department at 652-3551 or click the Playful City USA link on the homepage of this website.

Plumbing Permits. See Permits, licenses and certificates.

Police administration. 652-5205. Contact a member of the administrative staff of the Police Department, 270 South Main Street, about any matter of concern. See Police Department

Police Department Business Line. 652-5205. The Marion Police Department maintains a force of full-time and reserve sworn officers and civilian employees. Operations are supported by an Enhanced 911 Communications Center. Using Community Policing, officers are assigned to teams and individual neighborhoods to facilitate the involvement of citizens in helping to solve neighborhood problems and develop better relationships between the public and the police. The Police Department coordinates an annual National Night Out celebration for the community on the first Tuesday evening of August on Main Street, with events and activities for the entire family.

  • Business Watch, 652-5205
  • Community Watch, 652-5205
  • Crimestoppers, 65-CRIME
  • DARE, 652-5205
  • Emergencies, 911
  • National Night Out, 652-5205
  • Police Administration, 652-5205
  • Police Reports, Fingerprints, Permits, 652-5205
  • School Resource Officer, 652-5205
  • To speak or leave message for officers, 652-5205

Police reports. 652-5205. Police Department. Copies of traffic accident reports, incident reports and arrest reports can be obtained from the Police Department for a small copying fee.

  • To report a crime/officer assist, 652-4000

Population. See Demographics

Portable Toilet Permit. See Permits, licenses and certificates.

Potholes. 652-4224. Public Works Department. Report potholes or other problems with City-maintained streets inside the City Limits to the Public Works Department.

Power outages. 1-800-POWERON. Duke Energy. Duke Energy customers should report power outages to the toll free number 24-hours a day, seven days a week.

Privilege license. See Permits, Licenses and Certificates.

Proclamations. 652-3551. Persons or groups wishing to arrange for the Mayor to sign a proclamation should contact the City Manager’s Office, City Hall, 194 North Main St.

Procurement. See Purchasing Department

Property taxes. Property taxes are levied on real property, automobiles, boats, trailers and income-producing personal property. City residents pay both City of Marion and McDowell County property taxes. City taxes are billed by the City of Marion and payable at City Hall. Tax listing forms are available at City Hall. Taxes are due each September 1 and become delinquent after January 5.

Public Information. 652-3551. City Hall. Contact City Hall for any information about the City or City services or programs.

Public Works Department. 652-4224. The Public Works Department delivers services such as street maintenance and construction, street cleaning, sidewalk construction and maintenance, solid waste and recycling services, brush and leaf collection, curb and gutter construction, storm drain and right-of-way maintenance, and cemetery maintenance.

Purchasing Department. 652-6151. The Purchasing Department assists City operations by providing centralized procurement of materials, supplies and equipment and overseeing some contractual and service agreements. The department also oversees the competitive bidding process, provides contractual assistance for construction projects, and provides technical assistance to City departments in the areas of standardization, specifications, cost reduction and product and price information. The department also ensures that goods and services are purchased in accordance with City policy and state law. Offices of the Purchasing Department are located in the City Warehouse on Shop Drive off of Rutherford Road.

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Recreation facilities. See Parks and recreation facilities

Recycling. See Solid waste services

Repairs, utilities. 652-4224 during business hours or 652-3231 on nights, weekends and holidays. Staff is on-call 24 hours a day, seven days a week to respond to utilities problems.

Residental Development. See Economic Development.

Restaurants. All restaurants and other places where food is prepared, excluding residential units, served by the City sewer system, are required to have a grease tank of not less than 1,000 gallons capacity, which shall be pumped out not less than once every two months, or else have a 25 gallon/50 pound grease separator. Inspections of restaurants are made by Wastewater Treatment personnel to ensure compliance with this ordinance, to prevent sewer blockages and overflows. Call the Wastewater Treatment Department at 652-8843 for more information.

Retail Development. See Economic Development.

Revenue. See Budget

Right-of-way encroachment permits. See Permits, licenses and certificates.

Risk management. See Safety

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Safety. 652-5201. Fire Department. The City of Marion has an active safety program to promote safe work practices in the workplace, and to ensure compliance with N.C. Department of Labor and Federal OSHA regulations.

Sanitation services. See Solid waste services

School resource officer. 652-5205. Through an agreement with McDowell County Schools, the Marion Police Department assigns a School Resource Officer (SRO) officer to East McDowell Middle School and another SRO who splits time between Marion Elementary School and Eastfield Global Magnet School. To reach the SRO at East McDowell Middle School, call 652-7711. To reach the SRO at Marion Elementary School or Eastfield Global Magnet School, call 652-2141 (Marion Elementary School) or 652-3730 (Eastfield Global Magnet School).

Service interruptions. If your water service is interrupted, please contact the Public Works Department at 652-4224 during business hours, or the Police Department at 652-3231 on nights, weekends and holidays. If the water service interruption is due to non-payment, full payment of the charges owed are due before service will be restored. See also Customer service.

Sewer bill questions. See Customer service

Sewer service problems. 652-4224 during business hours or 652-3231 on nights, weekends and holidays. Call day or night to report sewer odors, backups or other emergencies. Call the City first when experiencing sewer trouble to rule out problems with the City's system before hiring a plumber. See also Water and sewer connections

Shop locally. 652-4240. McDowell Chamber of Commerce. The City of Marion supports the McDowell Chamber of Commerce's Shop Locally initiative, which encourages people to shop local businesses first, to keep as many sales dollars as possible in Marion and McDowell County.

Sidewalk and Street Closing Permits. See Permits, licenses and certificates.

Sidewalk maintenance. 652-4224. Public Works Department. The Public Works Department maintains sidewalks along City-maintained and state-maintained streets within the City Limits. Call to report any problems or unsafe conditions. The City maintains a priority list of planned street projects, including sidewalk construction and repairs.

Sign Permits. See Permits, licenses and certificates.

Sign posting. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. It is unlawful to place any bill, poster, or sign on any public utility pole or in any public street right-of-way in the City Limits. Signs placed in violation of this ordinance will be removed by the city. Report illegally posted signs to the Planning Department.

Snow removal. 652-4224. Public Works Department. During winter weather events, the Public Works Department works to clear snow and ice from State and City maintained streets in the City, as well as downtown sidewalks and City parking lots. Major roads are cleared first, followed by side streets. To report problems with snow or ice in the City, contact the Public Works Department at 652-4224 or McDowell County Communications at 652-4000.

Solid waste services. 652-4224. Public Works Department. The City of Marion provides garbage collection and recycling to commercial customers and garbage, yard waste, street trash, and recycling collections to residential customers. City residents also can carry items to McDowell County Solid Waste Convenience Centers. A description of each City service follows:

  • Commercial Service. Commercial enterprises may rent bulk solid waste containers from the City. These containers are emptied according to the level of service desired, with the applicable fees charged for the number of collections provided. Only materials placed in a bulk container can be collected from a business. Bulk containers are for use only by the business renting the container and are not for disposal of yard waste. Recycling service is provided to commercial garbage customers through the City’s contractor.
  • Residential Service. All residential solid waste services, including garbage, street trash, and recycling, are provided once a week on the same day of the week. Call the Public Works Department at 652-4224 if unsure of the collection schedule for your area. Separate crews will work your street at different times, so your garbage may be picked up before your recycling and street trash, or vice versa. Sanitation crews attempt to maintain a regular schedule on every pickup day; however, routes can vary and so can the time that pickups are made. To insure that your refuse items are not missed, please have them out by 7:00 a.m. on your pickup day. It is necessary that all refuse items placed out for pickup are kept separated according to the type of material they are. For example, yard waste should not be mixed with street trash, metal should not be mixed with wood, garbage should not be mixed with recyclables, etc.
  • Garbage. City health and sanitation ordinances require that all garbage be placed in plastic bags, tied securely, stored in strong, sound cans of maximum 35 gallon capacity, and covered with tight-fitting lids. Garbage cans should have 2 sturdy handles since Sanitation crews must be able to pick up the can and deposit the garbage from the can into the City’s container. Garbage cans should be placed at the back or side of the residence. Bulk containers are provided to most apartment complexes for use by their residents.
  • Street trash. Street trash, dry refuse, includes household items such as boxes, small appliances, small furniture, toys, books, etc; generally items that are not recyclable and that would not be placed in with garbage. These items are to be placed in front of the residence near the edge of the sidewalk, or if there is no sidewalk, they should be placed at the edge of the street. Heavy items may require the arrangement of a special pickup, using extra City equipment, for which there is a minimal charge. Residents may avoid the need for a special pickup by scheduling a utility trailer, which will be brought out at no charge, and left at the residence for a scheduled period of time. Items are to be loaded onto the trailer by the resident and City crews will pick up the trailer on the scheduled date. Items that cannot be placed curbside and cannot be placed on utility trailers for pickup and disposal include: car motors, building materials, large appliances, car batteries, paint, TV picture tubes, oil drums, hazardous materials, tree stumps and limbs over 4” diameter. Please call the Public Works Department at 652-4224 if you need to arrange a special pickup or utility trailer or if you have questions as to whether your item(s) will require a special pickup or for information regarding disposal of items that cannot be collected by the City.
  • Yard waste and brush. Grass clippings, leaves and small trimmings are to be bagged and placed near the edge of the sidewalk, or if there is no sidewalk, they should be placed at the edge of the street. Limbs under 4” diameter should be placed neatly near the edge of the sidewalk or edge of the street. The City respectfully requests that residents consider composting leaves or raking them to an area on the property where they can decompose. However, leaf bags are available free of charge at the Public Works Department on Shop Drive Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. during the months of October, November, and December. During the months of October, November, and December, City crews operate a leaf vacuum machine for leaf pickup. Residents may rake leaves to the edge of the sidewalk or edge of the street for pickup by the leaf vacuum machine. The leaf vacuum machine is provided only during the months of October, November, and December. At all other times, leaves must be bagged in order to be picked up.
  • Recycling. The City’s Residential Recycling resolution calls for the following recyclable items to be placed in the proper recycling bin for pickup from each residence. Blue bins are for glass only, while green bins may be used for all other recyclables. Sanitation crews are not permitted to pick up garbage containing these items: newspapers and inserts, all food and beverage cans, clear, brown and green glass, food jars, beverage bottles, milk jugs (yellow and white), drink bottles, and other #1 PETE and #2HDPE plastic containers. The PETE and HDPE numbers are found on or near the bottom of recyclable plastic containers. Glass and plastic containers must have lids removed. All containers must be rinsed and clean. Your recyclables should be placed in the recycling bin and set out at the edge of thesidewalk, or if there is no sidewalk, they should be placed at the edge of the street. Recycling bins are available at City Hall, 194 N. Main Street, for a $5.00 deposit.

Special events. Many special events open to the public are held in Marion each year:

  • Bluegrass Music. Bluegrass music is played at the Historic Depot every Thursday evening by local performers. Call the Marion Business Association at 652-2215 for more information.
  • Christmas Parade. Held in late November, the Christmas Parade includes a variety of entrants, ranging from floats to emergency vehicles to “anything on wheels.” Call the Marion Business Association at 652-2215 for more information.
  • Downtown Summer Concert Series. Concerts are held downtown between June and September. Various types of music are showcased at the concerts. Call the Marion Business Association at 652-2215 for more information.
  • Downtown Yard Sales. A downtown yard sale coordinated by the Marion Business Association is generally held twice per year. Spaces may be reserved or information obtained by calling the Marion Business Association at 652-2215.
  • Farmer's Market. A farmer's market at the Historic Marion Tailgate Market Shelter on West Henderson Street in the downtown area on Tuesday afternoons between May and October and on Saturday mornings between June and August. Call the Marion Business Association at 652-2215 for more information.
  • July 4th Celebration. Held on Independence Day, this celebration includes a parade, music, food and craft vendors, and fireworks. Call the Marion Business Association at 652-2215 for more information.
  • Livermush Festival. The Livermush Festival is held on Main Street on the first Friday evening of June, as part of the the Downtown Summer Concert series. The Livermush Festival celebrates livermush, one of Marion's most delicious and unique products. The Festival includes a concert, free livermush sandwich giveways, an eating contest, vendors and activities for children, youth and the entire family. Various types of music are showcased. Call the Marion Business Association at 652-2215 for more information.
  • Melodies on Main. In early December, Melodies on Main is held on Main Street and includes stores staying open late, food and hot beverages, music of various types and a visit from Santa Claus. Call the Marion Business Association at 652-2215 for more information.
  • Mountain Glory Festival. Held on the second Saturday of October, the Mountain Glory Festival is a three block street festival held in downtown Marion, that is atrended by more than 20,000 people annually and includes over 130 artist, craft, food and non-profit vendors, a quilt show, two stages with various types of musical performances, children’s activities, rides, and games, a foot race and a car show. Call the Marion Business Association at 652-2215 for more information.
  • National Night Out. Held in early August, National Night Out is coordinated by the Marion Police Department and allows the community to come together for fun activities for all ages, and to take a stand against crime. Contact the Police Department at 652-5205 for more information.
  • New Year's Eve Celebration. Each New Year's Eve, the Marion Rotary Club, City of Marion, McDowell County, Marion Business Association, the McDowell Chamber of Commerce and other organizations partner to coordinate a New Year's Eve Celebration for the community. This event features vendors selling food and hot beverages, downtown businesses being open, a scavenger's hunt, music, costume contest and other events, with the featured event being a gold nugget drop at Midnight. Call the Marion Business Association at 652-2215 for more information.
  • Valentine's Dance and Dessert. On or around Valentine's Day, the Marion Business Association hosts a Velentine's Dance and Dessert that features great music and food. Tickets can be purchased prior to the event by contacting the Marion Business Association at 652-2215.

Speed humps. 652-4224. Public Works Department. The City installs speed humps on low speed, residential cut-thorugh streets upon evaluation of whether a street meets the criteria set in the City's Speed Hump/Traffic Calming Policy and upon approval by City Council, based upon available City resources. Speed hump requests are only considered in the Spring, but requests may be submitted to the Public Works Department at any time throughout the year.

Storm drainage. 652-4224. Public Works Department. The City repairs and maintains a system of storm drainage lines and open ditches. The City is not permitted to maintain ditches on private property, unless drainage easements are in place. To help keep the system running as efficiently as possible, please refrain from discarding solid or liquid materials in storm drains or ditches. Call 652-4224 to report problems.

Street addresses. 652-3231. Addressing of properties in the City of Marion and throughout McDowell County is handled by the McDowell County 911 Addressing Office, located in the McDowell County Communications Center in the lower level of the Police Department at 270 South Main Street.

Street cleaning. 652-4224. Public Works Department, Streets Division. A street sweeper cleans City-maintained streets according to a set schedule. Call the Public Works Department at 652-4224 to report special conditions requiring more frequent street cleanings.

Street construction. 652-4224. For information or to ask questions contact the Public Works Department.

Street closings. 652-4224. Public Works Department. Requests for temporary closing of streets or lanes due to construction purposes must be cleared through the Public Works Department. Requests for street closings due to parades, block parties or other special events must be cleared through the Police Department, 652-5205. Requests to permanently close streets require City Council action and should be forwarded to the City Manager, 652-3551.

Street improvements. 652-4224. Public Works Department. The City maintains a priority list of planned street projects, including sidewalk construction and repairs, curb and gutter construction and repairs, drainage improvements, and street construction.

Street lights. 652-5205. Police Department. City street lights are maintained by Duke Energy. Call anytime to report burned out or damaged street lights or report street light outages directly to Duke Energy at www.duke-energy.com/north-carolina/products/lighting/request-light-repair.asp.

Street maintenance. 652-4224. Public Works Department. The City cleans, repairs and resurfaces over 36 miles of paved streets inside the city limits. Thoroughfares, such as Rutherford Road, Main Street, Court Street, West Henderson Street, Logan Street, Baldwin Avenue and Sugar Hill Road, are maintained by the N.C. Department of Transportation. For questions about maintenance of State roads, contact the N.C. Department of Transportation at 652-3344.

Street paving. See Street improvements.

Street resurfacing. 652-4224. Public Works Department. The City resurfaces several paved streets each year. Streets scheduled for repaving are selected each year by the City Council, based on need and staff recommendations. Call for information about resurfacing plans.

Street signs. 652-4224. Public Works Department. The City erects and maintains street signs. To request new signs or report worn signs, call Public Works Department at 652-4224 during regular business hours. To report missing, damaged or broken signs call the Public Works Department.

Street sweeping. See Street cleaning.

Subdivision regulations and plats. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. The City must approve subdivision plats prior to a property owner subdividing property in the City Limits. Plats must comply with the City's zoning and subdivision ordinances. The Subdivision Ordinance describes standards on plat preparation, review and approval; streets; driveways; parkinglot layout; ground cover; open space; and sidewalks. An unapproved subdivision plat will not be accepted for recording by the McDowell County Register of Deeds.

Surplus property sales. 652-6151. Purchasing Department. Surplus equipment, automobiles, trucks and heavy equipment are generally sold via the on-line auction service, www.govdeals.com. Other surplus materials valued at less than $30,000 may be sold periodically through private sale or other methods allowed by law.

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Tailgate Market Shelter. 652-3551. The Historic Marion Tailgate Market Shelter is available for use by governmental agencies, non-profit organizations, civic clubs and private businesses or individuals for events open to the general public. No alcohol or tobacco use is allowed under the shelter. Secure reservations at City Hall, 194 N. Main St.

Tax listing. 652-3551. See Property taxes

Tax payment. 652-3551. See Property taxes

Tobacco use. The use of tobacco products, including smoking and smokeless tobacco, is strictly prohibited in all City owned or leased buildings and vehicles, in all City parks, within 30 feet of public entrances to City buildings and within 10 feet of non-public entrances to City buildings.

Tours, City facilities. To schedule a tour of a City facility, contact the City Manager at 652-3551 or the individual department.

Tourism. McDowell Tourism Development Authority 668-4282. Marion and McDowell County’s scenic beauty and many nearby attractions are becoming more popular with tourists. Revitalization of Marion’s Downtown Historic District and the prospects of passenger rail service through Marion is sure to increase tourism in future years. For more information about tourism and places of interest in the area, contact the Tourism Development Authority.

Trails. The City of Marion currently maintains two trails, the Joseph McDowell Historical Catawba Greenway (Phases 1 and 2) and the Peavine Trail, and is planning for the construction of additional Greenways and trails in the City Limits. See Parks and Recreation facilities.

Train Depot. See Depot

Trash collection. See Solid waste services

Trash/junk in yards. See Nuisance property

Tree Board. See Boards and Commissions, Arbor Day and Tree City USA.

Tree City USA. The City of Marion has been a Tree City USA for 25 years, demonstrating the City's commitment to tree planting and tree prservation. Contact the Administrative Assistant to the City Manager at 652-3551 or click the Tree City USA link on the home page of this website for more information.

Tree problems. Tree limbs that are overhanging or threatening electric power lines should be reported to Duke Energy. To report dead or damaged trees along City street right-of-ways, contact the Public Works Department at 652-4224.

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Unlocking of vehicles. The Police Department will assist motorists in the City Limits who have locked their keys in their vehicles by attempting to unlock the vehicle. The person requesting the vehicle to be unlocked must first sign a liability waiver, releasing the City from all liability associated with unlocking the vehicle. For more informaation, please contact the Police Department at 652-5205. To request assistance with unlocking your vehicle, please contact the McDowell County Communications non-emergency number at 652-3231.

Utility bills. Water, sewer and garbage collection bills are mailed monthly. Bills may be paid in person at City Hall, 194 N. Main St., through the drive-through window at City Hall, or by bank draft. Payments also can be mailed to P.O. Drawer 700, Marion, NC 28752. Business hours are 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Water or sewer bills must be paid by 5:00 p.m. local time on the 15th day of the month in which the bill is received or a late penalty in the amount of $5.00 will be assessed. If the water or sewer bill is not paid by 5:00 p.m. local time on the 25th day of the month in which the bill is received, an additional late penalty in the amount of at least $15.00 shall be charged and water service to the premises shall be turned off. Delinquent accounts where the water has been turned off shall not have such services restored until such delinquent account, including all penalties, has been paid in full.

  • Billing questions and concerns. Call or visit the Utility Billing Department, City Hall, 194 N. Main St., 652-3551. See also Bank drafts.

Utility service connections.

  • Connections to an existing service. Utility Billing Department, City Hall, 194 N. Main St., 652-3551. The Utility Billing Department handles requests to connect new customers where City water or sewer connections already exist. A deposit must be paid prior to receiving water or sewer service where such connections are already in place.
  • Connections in areas not served by City water or sewer. Public Works Department, Shop Drive, 652-4224. The Public Works Department handles requests for water and sewer service in areas not served by the City, or where water or sewer service connections are not in place in a particular location. Receipt of sewer service outside the City requires approval by City Council and submission of a request for annexation by the property owner. Receipt of water service outside the City where sewer service is also available requires submission of a request for annexation by the property owner. Tap fees, system development fees, a deposit, and other applicable fees must be paid prior to receipt of water or sewer service where service does not currently exist. A schedule of fees can be obtained from City Hall or found on the City website.

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Valentine's Dance and Dessert. See Special Events.

Vehicles, abandoned. See Abandoned vehicles

Vehicles, junk. See Nuisance and junked vehicles

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Warehouse, City. 652-6151. Located on Shop Drive, the City Warehouse houses the Purchasing Department and City supplies, which are purchased and resold to City departments. See also Purchasing Department.

Wastewater treatment. 652-8843. Wastewater Treatment Department. The City of Marion operates the Corpening Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant located on Highway 226 South, which has a treatment capacity of up to 3 million gallons per day with average daily treatment around 0.9 million gallons per day. The City of Marion also operates 22 wastewater pumping stations around the City. All wastewater operations of the City are strictly regulated by the State and Federal governments. Treated water that is discharged by the Wastewater Plant into Corpening Creek must meet all State and Federal regulations. Call for more information about the treatment process.

Water bill questions. See Customer service

Water conservation. 652-4224. Public Works Department. The City will announce water conservation levels as warranted by local conditions through the local media, on the City's Government Access Channel (Charter Channel 10) and on the City's website (www.marionnc.org). At almost all times of the year, no formal conservation measures are in place, but customers are urged to conserve water whenever possible. For more information on water conservation tips, please visit www.wateruseitwisely.com.

Water outages. See Service interruptions.

Water problems. 652-4224, Public Works Department, during business hours or 652-3231, Police Department, on nights, weekends, and holidays. Call to report low water pressure, damaged water meters or meter boxes or other problems with water service.

Water quality. 652-4224, Public Works Department, during business hours or 652-3231, Police Department, on nights, weekends, and holidays. Report any change or problem with your drinking water, such as discoloration or unusual taste or odor.

Water treatment. 652-2428. Water Plant Department. The City of Marion operates a Water Treatment Plant on Old Greenlee Road. The Water Plant has a maximum treatment capacity of 4 million gallons a day. Average demand is now at 1.5 million gallons per day. The plant is supplied with surface water from Buck Creek, Clear Creek, and Mackey Creek. The Water Plant currently serves over 4,300 customers both inside and outside the City. City personnel test finished and discharged water regularly to ensure that federal drinking water and environmental standards are consistently being met. The City's Water Plant is one of only two public water systems in North Carolina to have received an award for Facility Optimization from the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources all 12 years the award has been presented. Call for information about the treatment process.

Water and sewer connections. 652-3551. Utility Billing. Call the Utility Billing Department or visit City Hall to apply for installation of water and sewer connections at new construction sites or where no previous connections exist and to inquire about connection. New customers must complete a service application and pay the applicable tap and cost recovery fees, plus a deposit, to receive service. If service is already in place at a location, service may be established by applying for service and paying the applicable deposit.

Weather events and closings. 652-3551. City Hall. The City of Marion announces weather related information and closings through news releases to local media, including the McDowell News and WBRM Radion, as well as on the City website, www.marionnc.org and the City's Government Access Channel, Channel 190 on Charter Cable. Information may also be obtained from McDowell County Emergency Management at 652-3982.

Website. 652-3551. Administrative Assistant to the City Manager. The City of Marion's website, www.marionnc.org, is maintained by City staff. Contact the Administrative Assistant to the City Manager for questions or suggestions about additional information that could be posted on the City website.

Weeded lot enforcement. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. Property in the City Limits cannot be allowed to become a nuisance that threatens public health and safety. The following conditions are in violation of City ordinances and are subject to enforcement action by the city:

  • Weeded lots. Growth of weeds, grass, or other noxious growth to a height of 6 inches or more
  • Trash or junk in yards. Accumulation of all forms of offensive animal or vegetable matter which may be dangerous or prejudicial to the public health or which may constitute a public nuisance; trash, storage of any junked or inoperative appliances in an area which is visible from any public street or highway, or from the premises of any adjoining property owner, or any other condition detrimental to the public health is a violation of City ordinances. A letter will be sent to the owner of property in violation. If the situation is not corrected, the city may correct the problem at the owner's expense. Report weeded lots and nuisance property to the City's Planning Department.

West Marion Community Park. See Parks and Recreation facilities.

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Yard sales. Yard sale signs may not be posted on utility poles or street signs within the City Limits. The City Zoning Ordinance sets limits on the frequency of yard sales on commercial and residential properties inside the City Limits. To report illegally posted signs or frequent yard sales, or if you have questions, please contact the Planning and Development Department at 652-3551.

Yard waste collection. See Solid waste services

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Zoning. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. Zoning is the regulation of land uses to promote orderly growth, separate incompatible land uses, preserve the character of communities, protect property values, protect natural resources and promote economic development. The City's Zoning Ordinance and Official Zoning Map provide the standards for zoning in the City Limits. Development of property in these areas must meet Zoning Ordinance standards on permitted uses, dimensions, parking, signage, landscaping, and other criteria.

Zoning permits. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. A Zoning Permit issued by the City's Planning and Development Department is required before constructing, erecting, moving or structurally altering any building or structure in the City Limits, including fences and swimming pools. Zoning permits are also required before a change of use for any building, structure or property in the City Limits. The proposed use of a building, structure, or property must conform fully to the City of Marion Zoning and Subdivision Ordinances. See Zoning.

Zoning/subdivision violation enforcement. 652-3551. Planning and Development Department. Violation of the City of Marion zoning or subdivision ordinances could bring enforcement action by the City of Marion. Enforcement actions include court injunctions, civil penalties, permit or certificate denial or revocation, stop work orders, or criminal penalties. The person found to be in violation will have an opportunity to correct the situation prior to enforcement action being taken.