Monday, March 9, 2009 – 5:00 p.m.
Attendance: Mayor Larry McMahon, Mayor Pro Tem James Lilly, Commissioners Henry Thompson, Sr., Harold Thompson, Beverly Johnson, Alphonzo Rush, Administrator Dwight Smith, Clerk Pam Lisenby, SNAP Representative Jim Lisk
The Norwood Town Council met for a special meeting on Monday, March 9, 2009 at 5:00 p.m. at the Norwood Town Hall. The meeting had been duly advertised in THE STANLY NEWS & PRESS, as well as in the Norwood Town Hall, with the seven agenda items listed.
Mayor Pro Tem Lilly presided and called the meeting to order at 5:00 p.m. Mayor McMahon attended the funeral of Adam Harris, a member of the Norwood Fire Department, and arrived at the meeting at 5:20 p.m.
AGENDA ITEM #1 – DISCUSSION OF LAKE SHORE PUMP STATION & BERRY HILL, LAKE SHORE, LAKE HEAD SEWER PROJECT
Administrator Smith stated that the Preliminary Engineering Report had been approved on the first addendum of the project to get sewer lines to the Berry Hill area. Smith added that he and Mayor McMahon had visited the Local Government Commission to get permission to do a lease-purchase on part of this project. Smith said he wanted Board members to be aware that another engineer other than Koonce, Noble & Associates had contacted him, stating that if Norwood was willing to back up on the project, he could get the whole system as low pressure and save some money.
Smith said a disadvantage to changing engineers now was that the funds were in place to complete the project. He added that if Norwood went in another direction, more revolving loan money might be available, but it would take longer. Administrator Smith said it was a little too late to back up and change.
Mayor Pro Tem Lilly asked if the project was ready to go. Administrator Smith answered that the Preliminary Engineering Report had been approved for the Lake Shore section, but would take 30 days to six months to get approved to go out for bids.
Commissioner Harold Thompson asked what additional maintenance costs might be incurred in the future if the whole system was low pressure. Administrator Smith said “the more pumps you have, the more maintenance”, adding that when the electricity was out, the pumps would not work.
Administrator Smith reminded the Board that only approximately 1,200 feet of the system would be gravity anyway.
Smith concluded by saying again that he wanted the Board to be aware of this situation and reminded the Board that a contract had been signed with Koonce, Noble & Associates.
Commissioner Harold Thompson made a motion to keep the project “as is”, continuing with Koonce, Noble & Associates and the current project. Commissioner Johnson seconded the motion that passed 4-0.
NORWOOD TOWN COUNCIL
AGENDA ITEM #2 – FINANCING FOR THE ABOVE PROJECT
Administrator Smith stated the Town had funding in place with the State’s Revolving Loans & Grants Program at 2% - 2-1/4% interest, adding there was no reason to look at other financing.
AGENDA ITEM #3 - NORWOOD WATER PLANT CONCERN
Administrator Smith stated he would like permission to get a professional opinion as to whether it would financially benefit Norwood to bring the Water Plant operations back “in-house”. Smith reminded Board members that Norwood had contracted with United Water to run the plant for three or four years now. Smith said, in his opinion, United Water did a good job and was extremely easy to work with. He added the price included the reading of water meters.
Smith said United Water had the Water Plant in good shape and he wanted them to keep up the maintenance.
Commissioner Johnson asked what percentage United Water went up each year on their charges. Administrator Smith answered, “2-3%”.
Commissioner Harold Thompson stated he was curious to find out the price difference in operating the Water Plant and contracting the operations.
Administrator Smith asked if the Board would like to put a “cap” on the amount spent getting this comparison.
It was suggested that Smith might try to renegotiate the contract with United Water.
Commissioner Henry Thompson made a motion to permit Administrator Smith to check into this comparison, using his own discretion on how much money to spend. Commissioner Johnson seconded the motion and it passed 4-0.
AGENDA ITEM #4 – EDGEWATER SEWER LINE
Administrator Smith said forms had been submitted regarding the Edgewater sewer line and a certificate number has been issued to move on. Smith said, in his opinion, the line would be ready by the time the Lake Shore Pump Station was ready.
Commissioner Harold Thompson asked if the tax valuation of Edgewater was still the same as the amount for which it was purchased or if it had been revaluated since being broken up into lots. Administrator Smith said he did not know yet.
Commissioner Harold Thompson said Norwood was “probably being taken advantage of” since the land had been divided into lots.
Administrator Smith said only two lots had been sold.
AGENDA ITEM #5 – BUDGET FOR 2009/2010
Administrator Smith said some budget planning meetings would be held beginning the first of April.
NORWOOD TOWN COUNCIL
AGENDA ITEM #6 – CLOSED SESSION TO CONSULT WITH ATTORNEY
No consultation with the Town Attorney was needed.
AGENDA ITEM #7 – YARD SALES
Administrator Smith relayed an incident involving a gentleman who sets up every week and sells shoes on the old Brown Jug lot, adding there were some merchants complaining. Administrator Smith sent Police Chief Smith to speak with the man about purchasing one-day peddler’s licenses. It was discovered the man was selling used items, so the Town “backed off”. Administrator Smith said the Town needed a policy regarding this.
Mayor McMahon said, “We are still a community, not a Gestapo community.”
With all advertised agenda items having been discussed, Mayor McMahon called for a motion to close the meeting at 5:30 p.m. Commissioner Rush so moved, seconded by Commissioner Johnson. The motion passed 5-0.
LARRY McMAHON, Mayor
PAM LISENBY, Clerk
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