ST. PAULS — The St. Pauls Board of Commissioners on Thursday paved the way for a new footpath on West Broad Street.
A $200,000 sidewalk will be constructed on the westbound lane of Broad Street, or N.C. 20, from Old Stage Road to Burger King, with the North Carolina Department of Transportation picking up most of the tab, according to Town Administrator Stuart Turille. The town will pay $15,000, which will be coming from the Powell Bill fund, money from the state generated by the gasoline tax.
The board unanimously approved the contract with the Transportation Department, which includes provisions for a retaining wall and slope easement at properties that abut the sidewalk, and wheelchair ramps.
“It’s a pretty good deal for the town,” Turille said. “… It will be an improvement to the property.”
Also on Thursday, Turille brought an item to the board not included on the agenda, saying that he had received complaints from business owners about cars being left parked overnight in the lot adjacent to the town’s War Memorial. Town Attorney C. Neil Yarborough said he would draft an ordinance that would limit the town’s public parking to two-hour time slots.
Also at the meeting, the town approved an agreement with Robeson Community College allowing it to use the R.E. Hooks Community Building on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 6 to 9 p.m. for basic adult education courses. The college will pay the town a monthly rent of $400, but Yarborough said it would probably be a “money-neutral deal” because of the cost of utilities.
“The plus side is that we will be helping to provide a valuable service to our residents,” Turille said. “The downside is we’re locked into three nights a week.”
After much discussion, the board again tabled a discussion on property owner Bernita McLamb Brown’s request for a conditional-use permit to place a manufactured home at 1025 E. Broad St., saying Brown needed to provide a detailed site plan that includes the location of a septic tank; drainage fields; driveway; and a certified permit from the county’s health inspector.
“It would be a terrible disservice to this lady to approve the conditional-use permit and let her go ahead with the purchase of a mobile home and she can’t get a permit for a sewer tank,” Yarborough said.
The matter was also tabled at the board’s January meeting, after the Planning Board voted 4 to 2 to deny the request, with board members citing concerns that the mobile home was too wide for the lot and would have to be placed perpendicular to the road, and that placing it sideways would not allow adequate space for a septic tank.
The lot, which is in the town’s extraterritorial jurisdiction, has had a burned-out home on it for several years. Brown wants to place a double-wide mobile home on the property, but according to Turille, the standard width of a double-wide would not allow her to place the home so that it faces East Broad Street. The only way it would fit on the lot, he said, was if it were turned sideways.
Brown’s request was first on the town’s agenda, and she arrived at the meeting after her request had been tabled.
In other action on Thursday, the board:
— Approved a Robeson County water shortage response plan.
— Named Commissioner Sandy Cain to Robeson County’s Transportation Planning Committee.
— Approved a $6,400 bid from All American Heating & Air Conditioning Service to replace the unit at the Police Department that services the old jail cells, which are now being used as storage, offices and for fingerprinting.
— Authorized Turille to sell surplus equipment.
— Approved the sale of property on West McLean Street that had once been designated for a town well.
— Agreed to pay a $245.10 bill for St. Pauls Elementary School for 140 loblolly pine saplings. The trees are given to students to take home and plant in honor of Arbor Day.
Abbi Overfelt works for Civitas Media as the editor of The St. Pauls Review and The Red Springs Citizen.