17 May May 17th, 2010 Minutes
THE THREE HUNDRED-EIGHTY THIRD SESSION OF THE BOARD OF ALDERMAN
VILLAGE OF ALAMANCE
May 17, 2010 – 7:00 PM
Present: Mayor Bundren, Mayor Pro-Tem Sharpe, Alderman Jones, Alderman Crouse, Alderman Slaughter, Alderman Clemmons, Alderman Tichy, Clerk York.
Alderman Clemmons gave the invocation.
Mayor Pro Temp Sharpe moved to approve the April 26th meeting minutes and Alderman Tichy second the motion. The motion passed unanimously.
Marc Reich approached the Board to give an update on the progress of the project. Mr. Reich explained that the project is 98% complete. The advertisement will be sent to the newspaper and will appear in the paper on Thursday. Nine easements will need to be acquired and this information has been sent to Atty. Bateman’s office for review. A pre- bid meeting has been scheduled for June 3, 2010 at 3pm at Alley, Williams, Carmen and King’s office. The bid opening is set for June 17th, 2010. The bid will be awarded on June 21, 2010. The deadline for execution is June 30, 2010. The expected start date is August 1st – September 15th to allow time for the contractor to get permitting finished. Alderman Clemmons asked if the market was still competitive for this type of work and Mr. Reich stated that the market is very competitive and he expects to have ten or more bidders show up to bid.
Second Water Connection
Mr. Reich explained that the contractor is still working on the bore. He is about half way through. The contractor is trying to have the project completed by the end of June.
Report on Cabin Pump Station Access Road
Mr. Reich explained that a preliminary engineering report would need to be done before sending in an application to the USDA. It would cost between $5,000.00 and $10,000.00 to do the report and it would be reimbursed to the Village if awarded the funds for the project. Mr. Reich offered to call Allen Hart or Chuck Saddler to set up a meeting to get guidance for proceeding with this project.
Clerk York shared with the Board the estimates that he had received from Johnny’s Plumbing and Carl Norris Construction. The two estimates are very far apart dollar wise. Carl Norris Construction’s estimate was closer to what we expected to pay. Clerk York said that the fee for irrigation taps is the most important fee to focus on at the moment. It is almost summertime and some residents may want to have irrigation meters installed. Currently, the irrigation tap fee is $525.00 and meter installation is $125.00. The total to have both is $650.00. This is the same price that Carl Norris would charge the Village to make the tap. Clerk York proposed to add $50.00 to the meter tap fee to ensure that the Village earn revenue above their cost, and leave the meter set fee the same. Alderman Crouse asked what Mr. Holt would charge for this service. Clerk York said that our current fees are based on what Mr. Holt charged the Village before he left. Alderman Tichy moved to adopt the new fee schedule leaving tap fees at $525.00 and changing meter set fees to $175.00. Alderman Crouse seconded the Motion. The Motion passed unanimously. The changes will take place at the beginning of the fiscal year which is July 1st 2010.
Mr. Allred approached the Board and went over his ORC report. Several of the floats at the pump stations have had to be cleaned due to grease build up. The outfall lines in Heritage Glen have been mowed. Cardinal Lane up to Hwy 62 outfall lines have been mowed. If weather permits the other outfall lines will be mowed this week. June 3rd 2010 the Village is scheduled for an inspection of the water sewer system. Clerk York and Mr. Allred have prepared reports for the inspection and feel confident that there will be no problems during the inspection. A THM/HA5 sample was taken by Mr. Allred and Burlington took one as well. The test results are not in yet.
Mr. Allred gave a report on the water main break. On May 11, 2010 at around 3pm Clerk York called Mr. Allred to alert him to the break near Village Car Care. Mr. Allred stated that he arrived in the Village at 3:40pm and that the water had been turned off by that time. At around 4:30pm C&J arrived in the Village and brought a track hoe to the site of the break. By 7:00pm the sidewalk had been moved and the line was located. The break occurred because the water line had been sitting directly on top of a concrete drain pipe. There should have been a twelve inch separation between the two at the time the line was originally installed. C & J put in a ten foot section of C900 pipe and two clamps on each end. This raised the pipe up off the concrete. At 9:30pm service was restored back to most residents of the Village. By 11pm the air was off the line and all residents of the Village had water restored.
Alderman Crouse commended Clerk York for his fast response time in handling the crisis and added that the Clerk had not been trained how to handle such an issue. The advice Alderman Crouse gave to Clerk York was that during any water crises always alert the fire department so that they are aware of any water pressure changes going on in the Village. Clerk York said that he would notify the fire department in the event of another break. The fire chief came by the Village the day after the water break and spoke with Clerk York.
Mayor Bundren asked why the line would have been placed directly on top of the storm sewer. Mr. Allred said that that is how the line would have originally been placed in service. Mr. Reich said that the line was probably not inspected at that time. The state requires separation between the lines. Alderman Tichy said that we may have this problem in other areas along the water line. Mr. Reich said he would look at the plans to see if their other areas that have this same problem. Alderman Clemmons asked if the exact amount of water loss and the cost incurred that day by C & J was known. Clerk York responded that C & J charged $5,497.00. Mr. Allred said that the water loss dollar amount was around $3,000.00.
Clerk York told the board that there was a meeting last week of the Plaid Day committee. Alderman Slaughter is co-chairing the committee with Clerk York. Clerk York explained that it is the committee’s hopes that lots of local talent will be used this year. The committee would like to incorporate performances from students at E.M. Holt Elementary School as well as Southern Middle and High School. It is hoped that this will bring more people to the event. The next scheduled meeting is on May 25, 2010.
Presentation of the Fiscal Year
2010-2011 Budget Clerk York explained the General Fund first. The state raised their rates for health insurance by 17%. This increase is $990.00. The amount the state contributed for retirement has been increased. This item added $545.00 to the overall budget. The audit amount will be more this year. If a municipality spends more than $500,000.00 in federal money/grant a single audit is required. This is the highest level of audit and is done when federal money is being used. The amount of $5,000.00 was added to our budget range over what was paid last year to account for this extra expense. There is a reduction under the elections line item because there is not an election to pay for this year. Utilities and inspections are eliminated because we no longer send $60.00 a month to the Alamance Civitan Club to help with the electric bill for the walking track at E. M. Holt Elementary School. The county has taken the expense over. The Village no longer requires rental house inspections. The transportation budget has increased due to additional mowing and road repairs. The sanitation line item for yard waste pick up is for twice a month between March and November. There will not be a pick up in December. There will be a Christmas tree pickup in January and no pick up February. The budget estimates that a 20 cent tax rate will be sufficient to cover expenses
Clerk York explained that in the past the Village has not brought in enough revenue from the water collections to cover the general expense of purchasing it from Burlington. General Fund money has been used each year to cover this loss. The state government is requiring the Village to set water rates so that the fund will be self sustaining and will no longer require a transfer from the General Fund to cover its deficit. In addition, Burlington will raise its water rates by 7% to cover the cost of new infrastructure improvements. Last year, the Board proposed to raise water rates by 70 cents and sewer rates by 37 cents each year for three years to make the water fund self sustaining. The proposed rate increase for this year incorporates both the increase from Burlington and the 2nd year of the three year plan mentioned earlier. The proposed rate for water this year is $4.47 and the proposed sewer rate is $5.03. A monthly billing cycle is recommended by Clerk York to help the residents cope with the billing increase.
Fred Hoy asked why the Village was moving to a monthly billing cycle. Clerk York said that it would help residents absorb the increase in water rates. Mr. Hoy said that a monthly cycle would mean increased expense. Alderman Clemmons said that the Village is trying to help folks absorb the impact of a higher bill. Alderman Tichy said that it will also help detect leaks earlier. Some residents were not aware they had a leak until they received a high bill.
Alderman Clemmons moved to present the revised budget to the residents of Alamance by placing a copy at the post office, Shell gas station and posting a copy on the bulletin board inside Town Hall. Mayor Pro-Tem seconded the Motion. The Motion passed unanimously.
Clerk York explained to the Board that last year’s audit cost was $18,900.00 and this year the cost would be increased by up to $5,000.00 due to the single audit required by the state. Clerk York said that we may be able to use some of the funds received to cover the additional audit expense. Mr. Reich said that he would check to see if that was the case. Mayor Bundren said that the audit contract would be voted on at the special called meeting on June 21st.
Grease Interceptor for K&J Grill
Carolina Byproducts is the company used by K&J Grill to recycle grease used in their grill. Steven Haller the FOG administrator for Burlington and Clerk York met with the manager of K&J grill. It was decided by Mr. Haller that a 40 gallon interceptor is needed at K&J Grill to keep them in compliance with the Village’s ordinance regarding Fats, Oils and Grease (FOG). Clerk York has written a letter to send to K&J this week explaining what will need to be done for them to get into compliance with the Village’s FOG ordinance.
Clerk York explained to the Board that the Village has two Capital Expenditure accounts, one in the General Fund and one in the Water and Sewer Fund. These two line items will not be fully used by the end of the fiscal year. Clerk York is reducing those line items to ensure that other line items have enough funding to make it to the end of the fiscal year. The proposed numbers are larger than a normal amendment. The full amount of the amendment is not expected to be used by the end of the year. Clerk York added $14,800 under the line item Street repair in the General Fund. This will provide enough funds for the street repair on Rob Shepherd Drive. It will also provide enough of a balance in that account to allow for any unforeseen expenses.
A tax collection fee of 2% is added at the end of the year for all the fees collected by the state. Clerk York added $900.00 to the line item to cover the Village’s bill for tax collection. Clerk York added $1,000.00 to the miscellaneous line item to cover any unforeseen expenses over the next few weeks.
Capital Expenses in the amount of $28,300.00 and the line item Condemnation Litigation of $7,800.00 under the Water Fund has been eliminated because it will not be needed before the end of the year. Water charges will be increased by $20,000.00. The Village is already at 98% expended for water charges for the year and the recent water leak will cost more than is left in the budget for this fiscal year. Clerk York explained that he has added $11,700.00 to the Water Maintenance line item to cover the water main break and allow for any unforeseen leaks that might take place before the second connection is up and running. Alderman Crouse moved to adopt the budget amendment and Mayor Pro- Temp Sharpe seconded the Motion. The Motion passed unanimously.
The CD is renewing at an interest rate of 1.1%. Clerk York has checked other banks and it is best to let the CD renew with Carter Bank at this rate.
Mayor Pro-Tem Sharpe said she had received numerous phone calls regarding unruly cats that are damaging a neighbor’s property. Mayor Pro-Tem Sharpe also wanted to know what the ordinance says about having livestock (sheep) on Village property. Clerk York said that such animals must be kept in a pen or enclosed in some manner. Mayor Bundren said that at one time the Village ordinance provided for livestock on farmland as long as they were maintained. Mayor Bundren suggested calling animal control. Mayor Bundren asked Clerk York to review the Animal Control Ordinance.
Allison Patterson approached the Board to discuss a refund of sewer payments that she has made as far back as 2001. Her house uses a septic system, so she should not have been billed for sewer. Mrs. Patterson brought check stubs and bills showing all payments that she had made. She had to estimate the sewer portion of her payment for the period prior to 2004 as she only had the check stub and not the bill. She estimated that 52% of her total water bill was sewer. This was in line with the sewer portion of her other bills. Mayor Bundren said that Attorney Bateman had said that the statute of limitations was limited to three years. Clerk York said that his records only go back to 2004. Alderman Clemmons expressed his desire to see the Patterson family receive the money paid in for services not received. Alderman Tichy agreed and said that the City of Burlington would usually place a credit on the account. Mayor Bundren asked if the Patterson’s would prefer a credit. Mrs. Patterson said that it would take a very long time to eat up that credit. Alderman Clemmons moved to refund to the Patterson family a check for $1,768.98 and apply a credit of $324.82 toward future water bills. Alderman Slaughter seconded the Motion. The Motion passed unanimously.
A resident requested that the waterline be checked and flushed at the end of the line at Ashe Drive for a foul odor.
Alderman Crouse requested that the Board go into a closed session to discuss a personnel matter.
Alderman Crouse moved to come out of closed session. Mayor Pro-Tem Sharpe seconded the Motion. The Motion passed unanimously.
Alderman Crouse moved to adjourn the meeting. Mayor Pro-Tem Sharpe seconded the Motion. The Motion passed unanimously.