Misenheimer, North Carolina
It was chartered on in 2003 directly (without a local referendum) by the North Carolina General Assembly, becoming effective on June 26. The town was created without citizen referendum, in a political move to prevent the federal and state permitted re-exploration of the former Barringer gold mine by local entrepreneur and developer Joe Carter. Carter bought 240 acres and assayed the mine at over a billion US dollars in gold ore in 1998.(1) It has a mayor-council government with five total council members serving staggered four-year terms. The council elects one of its own members as the mayor every two years, and may remove and replace the mayor as well. This system prevents the direct general election of a mayor by the citizens of the town. Members are elected at-large (without districts) and in a non-partisan manner. The local legislation creating the city specified that elections were to be held in even-numbered years, while the rest of the state always uses odd-numbered ones.
The college town is dominated by the main campus of Pfeiffer University, a university which was formed from financial support by Henry and Annie Merner Pfeiffer of NY. Pfeiffer also housed Gray Stone Day School, a charter high school. On January 6, 2011, Gray Stone moved to its new campus on what was previously Pfeiffer land in the town.
U.S. Route 52 passes through Misenheimer along its route from Salisbury to Albemarle, and bisects the Pfeiffer campus along with a Norfolk Southern Railroad line. Misenheimer may be the only municipality in America whose only traffic light is not at an intersection of two or more streets, but at a crosswalk to accommodate pedestrian traffic (the crosswalk being across US 52 connecting the two parts of Pfeiffer's campus on opposite sides of the highway).
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(1)Village Ploy Stops Goldmine. http://www.carolinajournal.com/exclusives/display_exclusive.html?id=2459