Council approves grant requests

Feb. 25, 2013 @ 08:05 PM

More than $2.7 million is the goal, and resolutions that passed muster Monday sets course for funding a new list of water and sewer upgrade projects: Beckford Drive, U.S. 158 Business and additional work on the Sandy Creek pump station project.

With the approval of the Henderson City Council, applications for grant funding will proceed before deadlines pass. One submission deadline was just days away, according to Assistant City Manager Frank Frazier.

“We are continually looking for projects to improve our water and sewer system,” Frazier said, noting the deadline is Friday for grants to fund up to $1.9 million of construction work that would upgrade sewer pipes that are part of the ongoing Sandy Creek pump station project.

Also hoped for is funding for nearly $800,000 in projects along Beckford Drive and U.S. 158 Business.

A $180,000 project would construction 3,000 linear feet of 8-inch water main lines that would create a loop, bringing service further into areas along Beckford Drive while also providing a backup layer of security for Beckford Drive businesses.

“The loop system is needed so if there’s a break in the system, service would not be disrupted,” Frazier said. “This main along Beckford Drive would be good for building in some of that redundancy.”

The $615,000 project would add 10,600 linear feet to the U.S. 158 Business line, from Ruin Creek to Poplar Creek roads, and would become a second feed to Triangle North Industrial Park and Vance-Granville Community College.

Frazier said the water project deadlines are further out, so there was less of a rush order on those applications.

“The water side of it is not due until September, so we have some time with that,” Frazier said.

City Manager Ray Griffin said that the line on U.S. 158 Business has become a priority with him because of its significant extension of water services.

“It is a huge missing link in the system,” Griffin said. “This is a corridor that has had no services before.”

The funding application for work at the Sandy Creek pump station area aims at funding the $1.9 million pipe size upgrade work, but an alternative project plan is proposed at $856,000 that would use existing pipe while increasing slopes in the system.

Costs are estimated, and engineering work under a contract with McGill Associates approved on Monday would produce a design for the proposed water system projects.

In other business

• A question of raising the required security deposits for utility customers on the agenda for discussion by the council did not take place in time for press deadlines on Monday.

• Geraldine Champion, a community activist, challenged city leaders to take action against gun violence that included criminal homicides that claimed three lives in February.

“We haven’t had a gun buyback in Henderson,” Champion said. “I think these guns have to come off the streets. Someone needs to make an effort.”

Contact the writer at mfisher@hendersondispatch.com.