11/29/13 — Goldsboro to allow hydrant switch

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Goldsboro to allow hydrant switch

By Matt Caulder
Published in News on November 29, 2013 1:46 PM

The city of Goldsboro is continuing to try to find ways to reduce the economic sting of a 2009 annexation reversed by a new state law.

The latest attempt to soften the financial blow from the failed annexaton is the City Council's acceptance of a $20,000 bid to allow 60 fire hydrants installed in the Buck Swamp area as part of that annexation effort to remain in the county.The purchase will allow the hydrants to remain in place after the annexation, which was reversed last year by the North Carolina General Assembly.

Residents of the now de-annexed area fought for nearly a decade against the forced annexation until legislation came down from the state barring involuntary annexations.

The Belfast Volunteer Fire Department will pay $10,000 of the total price, with the Fork Township Sanitary District paying $8,500 and the Belfast-Patetown Sanitary District paying $1,500.

The hydrants cost $200,000 to purchase and install in 2009 during the annexation process.

The total cost of the annexation was $5.3 million, which the city hopes to recover a portion of through the sale of $1.3 million in surplus sewer equipment.

The Belfast Fire Department requested the fire hydrants be maintained in the area, saying the hydrants benefited its operations.

The city has not maintained the hydrants since the de-annexation took place last July.

In other business, the Council:

* Approved a budget amendment to pick up the other half of a $12,000 match to fund two positions at Literacy Connections of Wayne County, which teaches reading to adults in the community. The council voted to approve the first $6,000 at its Oct. 21 meeting.

* Accepted a bid request for just under $105,000 for the Berkeley Boulevard widening project by Smithfield-based R.D. Braswell Construction. A right turn lane will be added onto Royall Avenue from Berkeley Boulevard and another southbound lane from New Hope Road will be built to connect with the section that is already a four-lane road. R.D. Braswell was the lowest bidder.

* Approved a change order for the George Street water main improvement project for almost $78,000 bringing the total project to a little over $500,000. The project is to replace 6-inch water lines along George Street with 10-inch lines to increase flow capacity.

* Approved a tract of land on Cuyler Best Road as an Office Residence Conditional District after neighbors to the property contested the zoning request and sent a valid protest petition to the City Council about the requested office use change. A valid protest petition requires that the City Council pass any vote relating to the zoning by a 6-7 margin. The City Council decided instead to limit the business to office use which requires parking in the rear and that the building maintain a residential look. The vote passed unanimously.