Rest stop future in doubt

Published 12:00 am Friday, April 27, 2007

MURFREESBORO – The rest stop just north of the town on Highway 258 may be no more.

In Tuesday’s meeting of the Murfreesboro Town Council, the board members discussed the fate of the rest stop.

Mayor Lynn Johnson informed the council members there was an agreement drafted a few years ago with NCDOT (North Carolina Department of Transportation) in regard to the rest stop.

The agreement placed maintenance responsibility onto DOT for the area as long as it was viable. When the rest stop became unfeasible to maintain DOT would return to the town’s mandate.

Johnson said July 1 is the deadline for the town to decide what to do with the rest stop when it eventually returns to the town’s responsibility.

The council agreed if the property was left vacant it would serve as a place for unwanted activity.

“It’s going to cause problems,” said Councilman Bill Theodorakis. “You’ll have vandalism, people hanging out; more headaches than you can deal with.”

Johnson said, in the past DOT, has demolished buildings at closed rest areas.

“I think we should return it to its regular state once it reverts back to us,” said Town Attorney Bob Lee.

One citizen noted that it was used frequently by visiting tourists.

Theodorakis said to have the area maintained costs DOT “a little over” $100,000 a year.

“It adds up and that’s what (was stated) in our letter,” said Johnson.

Johnson said she believed the rest stop employed at least three workers.

In other business, the council approved a resolution amending the Murfreesboro Town Code in reference to “organization, rules meetings and records.”

The ordinance now requires boards to “meet quarterly beginning July 1, 2007, or upon written request of the chairman, or any two board members.”

Previously, boards were required to meet once a month.

The board also approved a resolution of support for the Clean Water Act of 2007, which helps to preserve the state’s water resources with an expectation of an increase in population.

The Clean Water Act of 2007 “provides for a $500 million bond issue to be expended over the five years, and an annual appropriation of $50 million in recurring funding to address urgent needs.”