STOKES COUNTY WATER/SEWER AUTHORITY

 

MEETING

 

JANUARY 12, 2006

 

 

 

 

 

††††††††††† The Stokes County Water and Sewer Authority Board met in regular session on January 12, 2006, with the following members present:

 

††††††††††† Wayne Smart, Chairman

††††††††††† Worth Hampton, Member

††††††††††† Arzell Montgomery, Member

 

††††††††††† Jay Kinney, Public Works Director

††††††††††† Julia Edwards, Finance Director

††††††††††† Brenda Carter, Secretary

 

††††††††††† Absent:John Hawkins, Vice Chairman

††††††††††††††††††††††† Ron Clifford, Member

 

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

 

††††††††††† Mr. Smart brought the meeting to order and asked the Board if there was approval of the minutes.Mr. Montgomery made a motion to approve the minutes, seconded by Mr. Hampton and the motion was approved with the following vote:

 

††††††††††† For:Mr. Montgomery

††††††††††† †††††††† Mr. Hampton

††††††††††† †††††††† Mr. Smart

 

††††††††††† Absent:Mr. Hawkins

††††††††††††††††††††††† †† Mr. Clifford

 

SAURATOWN PROJECT UPDATE

 

††††††††††† Mr. Smart asked Mr. Jay Kinney to speak to the Board on this project.Mr. Kinney informed the Board that he had talked with the City Manager of King.The City Manager stated that he had sent out fourteen bid packets and would have a bid opening on Thursday, January 19th and hoped to award the bid on February 6th and would start this project shortly thereafter.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Kinney noted that the City Manager hoped that in the future the City and the SCWS Authority could work together on projects and grants of this nature.

 

DAN RIVER WATER RIGHTS UPDATE

 

††††††††††† Mr. Smart asked Mr. Kinney to give the update of the Dan River Water Rights and the letter from Mr. Tory Wagoner of Cavanaugh and Associates, P.A. concerning this matter.††† Mr. Kinney mentioned the letter to Mr. Tom Reeder from Mr. Smart dated September 10, 2004 concerning the Proposed Dan River Water Treatment Plant.This letter was concerning the SCWS Authorityís desire to construct a water treatment plant on the Dan River and to obtain a withdrawal permit.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Kinney also went over the letter from Mr. Tory Wagoner with Cavanaugh and Associates, P.A. concerning this matter.Mr. Wagoner had noted in his letter that he had been in touch with Elizabeth Kountis from NCDENR-DWQ and she said that the original letter had been received by NCDENR, but they had not issued a formal response and had requested an e-mail asking for requesting a written recommendation from the Division of Water Quality about submitting a draft Environmental Assessment as opposed to a final one during the reclassification process. Mr. Wagoner noted that to pursue anything further towards obtaining a withdrawal permit, a draft EA would need to be done and go through the reclassification process.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Kinney asked for direction that the Board should go.Mr. Smart noted that he thought the SCWS Authority Board should go to the Stokes County Board of Commissioners and ask for money for this Environmental Assessment.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Kinney noted that he had the Master Plan that Cavanaugh and Associates had drafted and that according to this plan the SCWS Board moved forward to do this thinking that once the land was secured there would hurdles, but nothing monumental to get these permits in place, and not $50,000 for the Board to secure.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Hampton noted that the Board needed to find the money and move forward with the Environmental Assessment.Mr. Hampton asked if the draft EA is cheaper and is helping or postponing what has to be done?Mr. Kinney noted that he thought this was only postponing the matter and an EA would have to be done.Mr. Hampton noted that this would have to be done, not knowing who is up the river or who is would be looking at taking out of the river. The Board could either go the Board of Commissioners or to seek grants for this.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Smart asked if the Rural Center could assist with this and Ms. Edwards noted that she did not think there was anything at this time.Mr. Kinney noted that the Rural Center could be contacted for anything that could be applied for in the future.

 

††††††††††† The Board agreed that they had come to far to stop now and seek grants or funding from different sources, including Z Smith Reynolds Foundations and Stokes County Trust. Mr. Hampton noted that Mr. Jerry Rutledge could be contacted about the Stokes County Trust.Mr. Hampton noted that this trust had started by citizens in the county giving money to the trust for certain things.One was to maintain a graveyard in Germanton and another was funding for scholarships for students in the county to Salem College.They also raised money by having a dance after the juniorís and seniorís had a dance on Friday night, they would use the same decorations and have a dance on Saturday night.Mr. Hampton noted that he was the first president of this, but did not know where it was today, that this might be a source to consider.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Kinney noted that he would contact The Rural Center about any grants that might become available and if he needed to have a meeting before the date of April 13th that had been discussed earlier he would contact the members.The members agreed that this would be acceptable.Mr. Kinney noted that Mr. Clifford had requested that the meetings be scheduled for 3:30 instead of 3:00 until he had completed his class that he was now taking which ends the middle of May.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Hampton noted that if this was a one time change he did not oppose it, but the 3:00 time was better for his schedule.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Kinney noted that he would try to get on the agenda with the commissioners as soon as he could, hopefully January 23rd.Mr. Smart will attend this meeting also.

 

††††††††††† At this time, Ms. Edwards discussed with the Board the Stokes County Water and Sewer Authorityís Finance Statements and Supplementary Information Audit booklet.She apologized for not having an updated financial statement.

 

††††††††††† Ms. Edwards noted that the Board was still operating at a loss.That the increase in fees only began in September and hopefully this would make a difference in the revenue for this coming year.

†††††††††††

††††††††††† Mr. Smart asked if MLP had increased their fees and Ms. Edwards noted that they had not.Mr. Kinney said that he had talked with Mr. Manuel Perkins and he had said that they were looking over the over all cost, fuel costs, etc. and they may consider an increase by the next contractual service agreement.

 

††††††††††† Ms. Edwards stated that she was not pleased with the service that MLP had provided and informed the Board of her reasons for feeling this way.

 

††††††††††† It was then discussed to talk with the manager of the Town of Walnut Cove for them to do the meter reading and billing that MLP is now doing.Mr. Smart stated that he would discuss this and also that Mr. Montgomery to talk with the Town Manager.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Montgomery asked if the Town of Walnut Cove was doing any of the meter work for the SCWSA and Mr. Kinney noted that Mr. Kevin Webb iscalled on occasion to help.It was then discussed that if the Town of Walnut Cove can take this on, that they could possibly be paid the same amount being paid to MLP Construction.Mr. Smart asked what was being paid to MLP Construction for this service and Ms. Edwards stated that they were receiving NINETEEN HUNDRED DOLLARS ($1,900.00) per month.She noted that this did not include any repair work to be done.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Smart noted that the Town of Walnut Cove needed revenue coming in on their water/sewer and were right on the verge of a rate increase.

 

††††††††††† Ms. Edwards stated that she was not pleased with how a citizen was treated when talking with representatives at MLP Construction and the auditors did not like one person handling the billing, money, deposits, etc.Mr. Edwards stated that the Finance Department was receiving monthly statements from Mrs. Joyce.She also stated that they (Finance Dept.) had been told that Mrs. Kim Joyce was the only one that could handle this and questions about the billing. (just leave this out?)(around 720 on recorder)

††

††††††††††† Mr. Montgomery noted that the Board should pursue this reading meters and billing with the Town of Walnut Cove to have it local.Ms. Edwards noted that they could go to Walnut Cove to pay their bills if they didnít want to go to Greensboro and not have to come to Danbury to pay if Walnut Cove could take over this matter.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Kinney noted that the contract could not be broken and that the contract would be up next October.Mr. Kinney also noted that Mr. Manuel Perkins had talked with him and wanted to discuss the contract.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Worth Hampton asked what the balance was at this time of the SCWSA and Ms. Edwards stated that the balance is $129,772.00 at the end of June.Mr. Hampton asked Ms. Edwards if the Board was in good financial shape for the year and Ms. Edwards noted that they are.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Hampton made a motion to approve the audit, seconded by Mr. Montgomery and the motion was approved with the following vote:

 

††††††††††† For:Mr. Hampton

††††††††††† †††††††† Mr. Montgomery

††††††††††† †††††††† Mr. Smart

 

††††††††††† Absent:Mr. Hawkins

††††††††††† ††††††††††††† Mr. Clifford

 

††††††††††† Mr. Smart noted that some of the Commissioners are concerned about Economic Development in the County.Mr. Smart noted that tax dollars were needed to create a Wetlands in the Germanton area.Mr. Smart noted that if the Wetlands could be created, run one line through Germanton and go one step at a time as money became available, the Board of Commissioners might agree to help fund this project.He believes this would help build that area with businesses.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Smart noted that he would report back to the Board of Commissioners of the SCWSA Boardís opinion of this project.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Smart noted that he had talked with Dr. Wolfton in Mississippi that designed the Walnut Cove Wetlands.Dr. Wolfton stated to Mr. Smart that he would come up and discuss with the Board information concerning wetlands if and when funds became available.Mr. Smart noted that Dr. Wolfton would need a topo map and that Dr. Wolfton stated that he would design the wetlands map for the Board.Mr. Smart noted that an engineer from North Carolina would need to build the wetlands.Mr. Smart noted if it were legal, he would like for Mr. Clifford, if he still had his license, to be the engineer for this project.

 

††††††††††† After further discussion concerning the wetlands in Walnut Cove, sewer in the area, and constructing wetlands in Germanton, Mr. Hampton noted that this is what the SCWSA Board is all about and should proceed in this direction.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Smart noted when acquiring land for a sewer treatment plant that this land should be land that cannot be used for anything and should be located in the flood plain and he asked if an individual could receive a tax credit for this land.Ms. Edwards noted that Mr. Smart could contact Mr. Ron Morgan concerning this matter.Ms. Edwards noted that tax credits had been given in the past.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Smart noted that the Germanton area is a corridor to Winston-Salem and would be an important area to put these ideas in place.The Board was in agreement to pursue these projects.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Smart then asked Ms. Edwards to check into the tax credits.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Smart then stated that he had nothing further and Mr. Hampton made a motion to adjourn.