Politics & Government

Centerville council OKs buying 20 acres for utility use

CENTERVILLE -- The City Council unanimously approved the purchase of almost 20 acres on Elberta Road at a cost of $350,000 to relocate its public utility department there.

Mike Brumfield, utilities superintendent and the city’s director of operations, said the move will allow Centerville to combine two utility department locations and remove them from proximity to city wells and water supplies.

He said moving his department’s equipment and facilities away from wells has been a long-term city goal and a needed improvement cited by regulatory agencies.

Brumfield said an initial purchase is expected to be finalized in December for about 16 acres at a cost of $300,000. The remainder will be purchased within five years at the seller’s discretion.

The property, located on Elberta Road across from the Northridge subdivision, is being purchased from William and Arnold Higdon.

Councilman Randall Wright was absent during Tuesday’s regular council meeting and did not vote.

Also Tuesday, the council approved a potential $269,052 road resurfacing and repair expenditure for the coming year. Part of it, $61,772, will come from a Georgia Department of Transportation Local Maintenance and Improvement Grant.

Portions of roads set for resurfacing or improvement include Trellis Walk, Westfield Drive, Sunshine Way, Rainbow Avenue, Windy Court, Misty Court, Summerwind Place, Greentree Trail, Pine Shadow Court, Sandstone Court and Benjamin Road.

The council approved $15,000 Tuesday for the development of plans and engineering work toward a water feature and improvements at the southwest corner of Gunn Road and North Houston Lake Boulevard.

The council also plans to create an entrance into the Houston County Galleria mall there.

Councilman Ed Tucker said he hopes planning would create a “shovel-ready project,” which would be a distinguishing feature for the city and help create a downtown-like setting.

In other matters Tuesday, the council:

Approved $13,770 for radar equipment for eight police vehicles and $840 for installation. Police Chief Sidney Andrews said the units were being bought at a buy-six get-two free arrangement at a savings of $4,590;

Approved a request from the Robins Air Force Base Environmental Advisory Board to use the City Hall community room without charge;

Passed an ordinance allowing the city’s municipal court to impose a failure to appear fee of $50 and a $100 fee if a failure to appear warrant had previously been issued. These fees are in addition to other court surcharges, fees and municipal court costs;

Voted to give non-emergency city workers Dec. 24-26 as holidays;

Contact Michael W. Pannell at mwpannell@gmail.com.