Thursday, July 28, 2011
Aldermen opt for 10-cent surcharge
By SUE WATSON
The Holly Springs Board of Aldermen, in its July 5 meeting, approved a 10 cents per ccf (100 cubic feet) surcharge on natural gas in order to raise money to replace old cast-iron pipes.
The surcharge will be applied over a period of about 10 years and help the city leverage bonds to replace the aging natural gas system.
The work will be done in three phases and will be completed in year 2020, according to Don Hollingsworth, general manager of the Holly Springs Utility Department. The bonds will be paid off in 2045, he said.
The board reviewed HSUD’s standard practices manual, which was reviewed by the Tennessee Valley Authority also, then the board approved the manual update.
The board and mayor discussed a resolution requested by TVA in support of nuclear power. Mayor Andre’ DeBerry said he is not in favor of more nuclear power plants in light of problems at Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, Japan and elsewhere. He said alternative energy sources should be supported. He called more nuclear plants “a disaster waiting to happen.”
TVA has had time to reposition itself to develop other alternatives to power generation, he said, adding that he would veto a resolution in support of expansion of nuclear power.
Alderman Harvey Payne motioned to deny TVA's request for a resolution, but his motion died for lack of a second.
Alderman Russell Johnson motioned to table the resolution until the board has time to study it. The motion passed unanimously.
Hollingsworth then asked to board to write off $219,500 in bad debt at HSUD covering the 2010-2011 time period. The board unanimously approved the write-offs.
Public works director Micheal Crittle presented five projects for the board to study. He said they are long-standing concerns that the city should prioritize and solve.
They include replacement of twin culverts on South Center Street near Lemac Avenue. Crittle said the Federal Emergency Management Agency would fund 90 percent of the cost of the project with the state and city sharing the remaining 10 percent equally. The damage is from last year’s storms, Crittle said.
A second project on Van Dorn involving collapse of street repair work near Chesterman is a priority project, he said.
An assessment of the cause of the street collapse was found to be caused by water entering an old storm water drain that goes nowhere, he said. Water collects there and scours and undercuts the road bed, he said. The problem was patched up last year by emergency order of the board of aldermen but has not stopped the erosion.
“We want to fix this once and for all when money becomes available,” Crittle said.
A third spot is the erosion and silting in Cato’s pond near the Holly Springs Bypass. Crittle said silting caused by the construction of the bypass road was partially fixed by the county. He proposed the city construct a retention pond to collect the sediment until the erosion of the roadside ceases. He proposed using city resources.
A fourth problem with erosion of property, owned by James Beard along Highway 178 West by Kingdom Hall Church, is a long-standing erosion problem, he said. The erosion, caused partly by outflow coming from Highway 178 into Beard’s yard, has caused lots of erosion and the city will immediately cover an exposed water line and install a concrete ditch to alleviate erosion, he said.
A fifth problem of long duration is the flooding of Leontine Thomas’ yard on West Valley Street where Nunnally Creek crosses West Boundary, Crittle said. Her property has served basically as a retention pond when storm water comes flooding through the area, he said. The storm water drain is too small to handle the volume of water, he said. He said it is a good-size project that has been a lingering problem for 10 years.
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