Houston mayors praise regional cooperation

mstucka@macon.comMarch 20, 2014 

WARNER ROBINS -- The mayors of Centerville, Perry and Warner Robins came together Thursday to praise regional cooperation and describe some shared challenges.

“It is so important for us to work together,” Warner Robins Mayor Randy Toms said near the beginning of his talk at the Robins Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Eggs and Issues Breakfast.

To that end, Centerville Mayor John Harley and Perry Mayor Jimmy Faircloth praised a cooperative effort run through the Houston County government that gets bulk discounts on road paving. That gets quite a bit of work done for less expense, Faircloth said.

“Together, we’re making it happen, and together making it successful, and together our future will be secure,” Faircloth said to a group assembled at the Museum of Aviation for the breakfast.

Harley said his city is also coordinating with Warner Robins to plan sidewalk improvements, offering “one big mega city” as a result.

The three cities are also trying to plan a better future. Perry is in the midst of a strategic plan update, while Warner Robins has an all-day retreat scheduled for April 2, and Centerville’s government will have a retreat from March 31 through April 2.

Harley said Centerville is trying to do a better job on code enforcement, and the community is getting more involved with it.

“It’s also making our neighborhoods look better,” he said. “If you make your neighborhood look better, it’s going to cut down on crime.”

Faircloth said Perry is working to cure substandard housing. Warner Robins has also been talking about code enforcement.

The governments are at different points in implementing stormwater fees. Warner Robins has had a stormwater utility for years, and Perry implemented its last year. Centerville is planning to launch a utility soon, perhaps in the next year, Harley told The Telegraph. He said at the breakfast meeting that the city had already spent nearly $300,000 preparing for the system.

“We’re just about ready to fully implement it. It’s a long-term procedure, very expensive,” he said.

To contact writer Mike Stucka, call 744-4251.

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