Wastewater expansion bid accepted

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 9, 2007

MURFREESBORO – A bid has been accepted for Murfreesboro’s expansion of its wastewater treatment facilities.

Relieved sighs and a “whoop” could be heard as the Murfreesboro Town Council approved the lowest bid from Laughlin-Sutton Construction Company of Greensboro.

“I think I will sleep tonight,” said Public Works Superintendent Gene Byrd, as he thanked the board for their approval of the bid.

Council members were so eager to accept the bid, when Mayor Lynn Johnson asked for a second to Councilman Bill Theodorakis’s motion, all three of remaining council members made simultaneous second motions.

Councilwoman Gloria Odum was absent from Tuesday’s meeting.

The total bid from the company is $3,862,600 with a bid bond at five percent.

The expansion of Murfreesboro’s wastewater treatment facility has plagued the town for 14 years.

In February the council approved a resolution, the first step in moving toward a loan application package after Bobby Blowe of North Carolina Construction, Loans and Grants said he would not approve the town to move ahead with the construction of an irrigation system.

Previously, Blowe had informed the council they could work on the construction of the irrigation system as they sorted out a wetlands issue, which prevented a lagoon from being built.

Meanwhile, all of the permits for the project had been obtained, forcing the town to commit to the project as a whole.

Blowe said there were loan funds available for the project.

Due to current wastewater treatment capacity, moratorium is placed on the town’s facilities, preventing the town from taking any new customers. Engineer Robert Graham with George Finch/Boney and Associates said the moratorium would not be lifted until the end of the year.

In other business, the council approved a change to a zoning ordinance, allowing any occupied (within the previous 180 days) residential or commercial structure to be replaced if destroyed (by fire or act of nature) by more than 50 percent of it’s replacement cost at the time of destruction, within the same footprint as the original structure.

Murfreesboro Police Chief Darrell Rowe introduced Donald Cuffs, a recent graduate of Chowan University, and asked the board permission to send Cuffs to the police academy, which the board did.

Rowe said Cuffs recently interned with the Murfreesboro Police Department and happened to be along for the ride during Saturday morning’s car chases.

“He was the one who actually spotted the second car in the chase,” Rowe said.

Johnson also encouraged all Murfreesboro citizens to show their American pride by displaying the flag in honor of Memorial Day (May 28) and especially for the unveiling of the Murfreesboro’s War Veterans’ Memorial, which will be held on the same day at 10:30 a.m.