The Transylvania Times -

By John Lanier
Editor 

Aldermen Call For No Tax Increase - Brevard NC

 


The proposed budget for the town of Rosman for 2015-16 will keep the tax rate at 41 cents per $100 of property value.

Mayor Brian Shelton, who presented the budget Tuesday night at the monthly Board of Aldermen meeting, said, “There were no drastic changes in anything.”

Shelton said the budget projections are based on this year’s budget, with some adjustments mostly on the revenue side.

“One big thing is business licenses are no more,” said Shelton of losing one revenue source.

He added that if the state legislature, which did away with the business licenses, also does away with the franchise tax that “would devastate us.”

General Fund revenues for 2015-16 are projected to be $239,426.

Garbage pickup within the town will account for $91,448 of the revenue. Taxes should generate about $86,100.

General Fund expenses are projected to be $239,223 with wages being the highest expense at $77,840.

Water fund revenues and expenses are projected to be about $111,250, with the largest expense again being wages at $38,920.

Sewer fund revenues are estimated to be 161,348 with expenses estimated at $161,070 with wages costing $38,920.

Shelton said that every cent of the Powell Bill funds, which come from the state for local roads, will be spent, with most of it going to pave the Church Street Extension.

A special meeting will be held Tuesday, June 30, at 5:30 at Town Hall to vote on the proposed budget.

Capital Projects

Shelton told the board that he had made a list of 19 projects he believes the town needs to finish in the next 10 years. Those projects included a study for and construction of a water treatment facility, mapping the town’s water and sewer lines, putting in walking paths, installing more sewer lines, paving some streets, putting in restrooms at Town Hall that can be accessed from the outside and several other projects.

“We can’t do it all in one year,” said Shelton. “We can’t do it all in two years or three years. These are the things that are lacking that we really need, but it can’t be done all at one time.”

Shelton said the town has to receive grants in order to accomplish the larger projects. For example, the study for a water treatment plant would be about $40,000, but the town might receive a $30,000 grant for that study.

Shelton said the town had been denied grants that would have been used to put in sewer lines for Ashe Road and Turnpike Road. He said the town has to provide documentation on individual septic failures on those roads to be considered for the grants.

He said the town would reapply for those grants, but was not optimistic because of the grants for such projects, some $100 million, went to the eastern part of the state.

“Not one went to the west,” said Shelton. “That’s the way it's been the last few years.”

Leachate Agreement

By a 4-0 vote, the aldermen approved an agreement to accept the county’s leachate from the landfill for the next three years.

Shelton said that in the past the leachate had been going to Brevard. He said that he has been working with the county managers the past few years to have Rosman handle the leachate.

Shelton said Rosman would handle up to 20,000 gallons of leachate a day and would charge the county 2.5 cents per gallon. The agreement also calls for the county to pay for any damages caused by tankers transporting the leachate.

Alderman Roget Petit asked if the agreement could be amended so that the county would be responsible for any fines due to the leachate going through the Rosman wastewater treatment system.

Petit added that by having the leachate handled in Rosman instead of Brevard, the county was cutting tanker travel by 20-25 miles for each round trip.

Considering the savings to the county in travel alone, Petit said it was not “too much to ask” the county to cover any fines.

Shelton said the town has been handling the county’s leachate for the past two months and there have not been any problems.

Based on those two months, he said he did not foresee any future problems with handling the leachate.

Alderman Missy Hendricks asked if there was anything coming from the landfill that could cause a future fine.

Shelton said the employees at the landfill do a good of sorting materials.

Alderman Jared Crowe said it’s a “safe assumption” that nothing would be found in the leachate that would cause the town to be fined.

When asked how much money the contract would generate for the town, Shelton said estimates range from $50,000 to $112,000, depending upon the amount of rain and quantity of leachate the town receives.

“It (the revenue) will help us tremendously if we don’t have a problem,” said Shelton.

Shelton said he tried to be fair in the negotiations because the town could also save the county, and therefore county taxpayers, money.

Shelton said revenue generated by the agreement could be used to pay off a bond for the town’s sewer system in the next few years. The town could then use revenue from the agreement to make other improvements.

Since the agreement would go into effect July 1, the board had to either accept or reject the agreement Tuesday night. The board then voted to authorize the mayor to sign the agreement “as is.”

Other News

• The board discussed contacting the county Parks and Recreation Department to see if the restrooms at Champion Park pool could be kept open before and after pool hours. Aldermen noted that there are no outside public restrooms for visitors at Champion Park to use.

Crowe said there are two gates at the pool, one of which separates the restrooms from the pool area. He said if those restrooms could be available while the pool is closed, it would provide a temporary solution to the lack of public restroom facilities.

• The board tabled taking any action on re-establishing an ABC Board for the town until it hears directly from a state ABC representative who can answer their questions, such as the requirements and duties for ABC Board members.

• Shelton said he has not yet received word on whether or not the town has received a $30,000 grant to conduct a water treatment plant study.

 
 

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