Princeton board welcomes new doctor
By Jack Stephens
Published in News on February 8, 2005 2:03 PM
PRINCETON -- Although Princeton's debt increased by 77 percent and its fund balance dropped by 12 percent, the town was still in good financial condition.
The town's auditor, C. Keith Peedin of Smithfield, presented his annual report during Tuesday night's monthly town board meeting in the Community Building.
Princeton's debt increased to $463,000, Peedin said, because of additional borrowing for major capital improvements. The fund balance dropped $43,000 to $348,000. However, the town's net assets increased by 11 percent to $1.9 million.
Peedin also noted in his 56-page report that the Princeton's population declined by 91 people to 1,090. But in the last year, three restaurants, two retail stores and a gas station were opened, and 15 new homes sites were planned.
The auditor urged the town to show diligence in collecting property taxes. The town recorded about a 96 percent collection rate, about 1 percent lower than the county average. Johnston County collects the town's property tax.
Peedin also suggested that the town exhibit better internal controls in collecting water bills. He said all water should be metered and known leaks repaired.
Princeton's new doctor, Donna Capps, addressed the board briefly. Her office is in the old Princeton Family Medical Care building at 213 Barden St. Dr. Capps is one of eight doctors who work for Horizon Family Medicine, which also has offices in Smithfield and Clayton. The town's former doctor, Kimberly Shaftner, resigned last year.
The town board agreed unanimously to annex two, two-unit duplexes at 603 W. First St. The owner, Micron Investments Inc., had asked that the buildings be annexed voluntarily.
Mayor Don Rains said owners of properties that adjoin the town should be annexed because they are on town streets and are using some town services. No one spoke during a public hearing on the annexation.
The board also passed a resolution to ask Town Clerk Marla Ashworth to investigate an annexation request from developer Dale Jones. He is asking that the Eagles Crest subdivision be annexed. The board scheduled a public hearing March 7 on the request.
In other business, the board:
*Was notified that the town will get a $6,000 grant for a downtown beautification project that includes nine trash cans, 16 planters and eight benches.
*Adopted a debt set-off program so that the town can garnish the state income tax refunds for as long as necessary of those who leave town while owing more than $50. Assistant Town Clerk Kay Earp said other Johnston County towns had begun a similar plan.
*Endorsed a countywide $85 million bond referendum that would include the demolition of the old Princeton School gym, construction of a new part of the gym and a site for a Princeton elementary school.
*Listened to a presentation from Commissioner David Starling about having a town web page.
*Authorized the town engineer to amend the sewer plant project.
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