Maxton dodges messy sewer problems

By: David Bradley - The Robesonian

MAXTON — An emergency $7,900 purchase of an aerator for Maxton’s sewer system prevented potential health issues or water problems with the replacement of the part in late June, according to the town manager.

Town Manager Kate Bordeaux told Board of Commissioners members during their meeting on Tuesday that the purchase was made during the week of June 29.

“There was no effect on the town,” Bordeaux said. “Our vendor came out, took care of it, and there was no interruption.”

Bordeaux asked the commissioners for permission to buy a spare aerator at a cost of $7,000 and received it.

Board members also approved work done to prepare for the audit of the 2017-2018 budget.

Bordeaux said the work is standard procedure. One example is to transfer funds not used during the 2017-2018 budget year to the 2018-19 budget.

The commissioners approved a water shortage plan prepared by Public Works Director Dennis Freeman. The plan is a guideline on how to respond in case of drought or low water levels. The state government mandates the plan be updated every five years.

The commissioners appointed seven people to the Maxton Recreation Board. The volunteer board works on civic events such as the Fourth of July celebration, the Christmas parade, the Easter parade and festivals.

Commissioner Elizabeth Gilmore raised the issue of volunteers not completing or providing in-depth information on applications for the Recreation Board.

“We shouldn’t assume we know more about these people,” she said. “We don’t want to assume we know a person. They’re working with kids, what are they qualified to do?”

“We need to have better information from these applicants,” Bordeaux said. “We need to have a full application or don’t appoint them. We’ve tried to coach and get people to fill the application out.”

No action was taken by the commissioners.

Also on Tuesday, the commissioners heard that work, paid for with federal grant dollars, to repair leaks in water system pipes on the west side of town is nearing completion, and plans for the next work phase are underway.

“We’ll be making (grant) applications for the next round in October,” Bordeaux said. “The award letter will come in early 2019. With the scope of the award, we can get an engineer to determine what we can do.”

The next phase of water system work will take place on the east side of town, she said. It will be funded by another grant.

“We have very old water lines, and we want to do work on storm drainage,” Bordeaux said. “We have a lot of runoff, and need a comprehensive storm water project. “

About 30 percent of the water running through the pipes is lost because of leaks, Bordeaux said.

“There’s been a lot of work done with the last grant,” Mayor Emmett Morton said. “We need two more similar grants, and it will save the town a lot of money, preventing the water from going into the ground.”

David Bradley can be reached at 910-416-5182 or [email protected]

David Bradley

The Robesonian