Cofield’s call for help is answered

Published 12:00 am Thursday, April 20, 2006

WINTON – The town of Cofield is getting an emergency water connection.

The Hertford County Board of Commissioners agreed to assist the town with their emergency water hook-up during Monday night’s meeting.

Cofield Mayor Hermea Pugh credited Hertford County Manager Loria Williams with assisting the town in its efforts to coordinate and fund the project. Williams contacted Rivers and Associates, a civil and environmental engineering firm out of Greenville, on behalf of the town and the firm provided a preliminary project cost estimate of $36,145.

This figure is much lower than other bids the town had received up to this point.

“The construction cost estimate is based on approximately 1,150 linear feet of four inch PVC water pipe main, relocation of the existing two inch blow-off at the tie-in to Hertford County’s main and installation of the four inch gate,” Pugh said. “The crossing of one state road will be required and we anticipate that NCDOT will allow a free bore without a steel casing. However, if DOT does require the bore be cased, this would add approximately $4,000 to the construction cost.”

“We have $70,000 right now, but this extra $4,000 is going to cut it close,” Pugh added.

Williams and the board suggested in an earlier meeting for Pugh to contact the North Carolina Rural Economic Development Center to seek financial assistance with the emergency water connection.

The North Carolina Rural Economic Development Center develops and implements economic strategies to improve the quality of life of rural North Carolinians. The private, non-profit organization, funded by both public and private sources, serves the state’s 85 rural counties and focuses on communities with limited resources.

The town of Cofield received a $70,000 grant from the center to fund the emergency water connection project.

“Will you (board of commissioners) help us with the $4,000 (if necessary),” Pugh asked. “I’m hoping they (DOT) will not require the steel casing.”

“Is it possible for anyone from DOT to look at this in advance,” Board Chairman Curtis Freeman asked.

“I believe the engineer would have to determine this (whether the steel casing is necessary) up front,” Williams said. “The complete cost of the project is going to have to be submitted to the Rural Center.”

“Personally, I would like to see what DOT says beforehand,” Freeman said.

“We can check with the local DOT office,” Williams added.

“The price (of the emergency water connection project) has come down quite a bit with the help of our county manager,” Commissioner John Pierce said. “I offer a motion to support up to $4,000 for the project if that amount is needed.”

The motion by Pierce was seconded by Howard Hunter III and passed unanimously.

In other business, the board approved a proclamation in honor of Older Americans Month.

“We have a very active group of seniors in this community,” Director of the Office on Aging Linda Blackburn said. “Many of our seniors will be participating in the upcoming Senior State Games.”

Blackburn informed the board of the wide variety of activities seniors in Hertford County are involved in, including various clubs and serving as Tar Heel Legislative Delegates.