The Holly Springs Town Council approved a contract with Waste Industries at its May 20 meeting to double the size of residential recycling bins and move to biweekly recycling pickup beginnng in late summer.
While trash will continue to be picked up every week, recycling pickup every other week prevents an increase in solid waste fees that residents pay. If the service had remained the same, rates would have gone up by 2.7 percent.
"It’s a cost savings … and less trucks in the neighborhoods once a week," said Councilman Tim Sack.
Councilman Hank Dickson was the dissenter in the 4-1 vote. He said that some residents might find the larger recycling bins inconvenient to store.
Raleigh, Wendell and Zebulon are other local municipalities with biweekly recycling pickup.
The council also approved Waste Industries' plan to use a tracking system to improve customer service at no additional cost.
Chris McDonald, site head of Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics in Holly Springs, updated the council about recent news that the company opened bidding on the production facility. He was invited to speak at the council meeting by the Town.
“There have been some things on Facebook that I find very objectionable,” said Mayor Dick Sears. “What better way to clear the air and get all the facts than to invite the site head?”
McDonald said expansion continues on the vaccine manufacturing facility in Holly Springs Business Park.
Although the name on the building may change, he said, “this facility is growing, and I’m excited about the future here in Holly Springs.”
Novartis has a 25-year contract with the federal government to produce pandemic flu vaccine, a contract that McDonald said “Novartis remains fully committed to honor.”
The council approved a bio-solids dewatering system for the wastewater treatment plant. The $587,000 system will covert treated waste into a drier, solid form that will increase the waste storage space at the treatment plant while decreasing costs to haul away watery bio-solids.
The council approved a $47,490 waterline replacement project. The 50-year-old waterline runs along Earp Street and needs to be replaced as new wastewater lines are being constructed nearby beneath the road.
The council awarded $15,000 in community agency grants. The Golden Hawks Club, Inc.; Holly Springs Community Band; Holly Springs Food Cupboard and Holly Springs High School Band Boosters received $2,500. The Holly Springs High School PTSA received $2,000. The Holly Springs Arts Council received $1,500. Interact of Wake County, the Holly Springs Women's Club and the Kraft Family YMCA received $500.
The council approved waiving fees associated with an Eagle Scout project that includes construction of an arbor at Holly Springs Elementary School.
The council also set a public hearing on the proposed Town 2014-15 fiscal year budget for June 3.
Sears designated May as Tick-Borne Disease Awareness Month. Now through June is the peak period for tick activity, since ticks become active when the temperature is 40 degrees Fahrenheit or more at ground level.
Ticks live in and near wooded areas, tall grass and brush and, if infected, can spread various diseases, including ehrlichiosis, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, tularemia and Lyme disease.
Lyme disease is transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected deer tick. The first sign of infection is usually a rash at the site of a tick bite from three to 32 days after the bite. The rash expands over a period of several days, and the center of the rash may clear as it enlarges, resulting in what can be referred to as a "bull's eye appearance."
Ticks can bite without causing discomfort. The rash is not usually painful, so these rashes can be overlooked especially when they occur on areas of the body not readily noticed like on a person’s back or the back of a leg. Some combination of fatigue, chills, fever, headache, muscle and joint aches, and swollen lymph nodes also can occur.
It's important for people to recognize the signs and symptoms of Lyme disease and other tick-borne diseases so treatment is not delayed. Antibiotics are used to treat Lyme disease. Left untreated, other signs and symptoms of the infection can occur, including facial palsy, severe headaches and stiff neck, pain and weakness in the extremities, joint pain with swelling, heart palpitations, and light headedness due to changes in the heartbeat.
The council recessed the meeting to the following evening to discuss the North Main Athletic Complex project.