The tax rate and fees for water, sewer, garbage, recycling and yard waste remain the same in the 2015-2016 fiscal year budget approved by the Holly Springs Town Council at its meeting June 16. In presenting the budget, Town Manager Chuck Simmons said tax rates remained unchanged in part because of healthy growth in Holly Springs.
The Town budgeted $1,430,850 for capital improvements from the general fund and $131,200 from the utility fund, and the Town is not taking on additional debt. Capital improvements include:
- Synthetic turf maintenance equipment to keep the more than 12 acres of synthetic turf playing surfaces clean and bacteria-free and to continue to allow water infiltration through the material
- A new leaf vacuum truck to replace oldest in the four-vehicle fleet
- Four Police Department vehicles
- Self-contained breathing apparatus for the Fire Department to replace 12-14-year-old equipment
- Sugg Farm maintenance barn improvements to bring an existing structure up to code
- UV lamp replacements for treating wastewater at the Town plant
- Outdoor LED stage/festival lighting
- Northeast Gateway features to be built at the intersection of Sunset Lake and Holly Springs roads
- Utility pole banners
- Expansion of the Town’s wireless footprint to more facilities for public access
"The requests for funding always exceed our ability to pay for various services and meet some needs, so we have to establish some priorities," Simmons said.
One resident spoke during the public hearing asking for solar powered recycling bin compactors to be placed at public facilities, including parks.
Engineering and building code development, parks and recreation rental, and cemetery plot fees increased. Fees were enacted for fire inspections and plan review, and golf cart registration.
A fiber optics telecommunications fund was added as the Town leases dark fiber, and a central services department was established within Finance to pay monthly recurring operating expenses.
The budget adds eight new positions: three firefighters, an accountant, a building inspector, a streets technician, a development inspector and a pump station technician.
In Other Business
Also at the meeting, the council approved $12,500 in grants to community agencies. The Golden Hawks Club, Holly Springs Arts Council and Holly Springs Food Cupboard received $2,500; the Holly Springs Community Band received $2,000; the Holly Springs High School PTA received $1,500; and Interact, the MLK Committee, and YMCA received $500.
The council reappointed Elizabeth Stone and LeeAnn Plumer and appointed Alice Reese to the Holly Springs Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee.
The council approved $25,000 to investigate how water is leaking into the Bass Lake sewer line. The investigation will involve cleaning the interior of the line and using a camera to inspect the line.
The council designated no parking zones on East Earp St due to traffic volume, road width and the role the road plays in providing a parallel route to Holly Springs Rd.
The council approved a reimbursement agreement with the Union Ridge developer. The developer is to build oversized sewer infrastructure and provide a fee-in-lieu payment for Avent Ferry Rd. improvements closer to its intersection with N.C. 55.
The council approved a development plan to allow for a four-unit townhome building off Commons Dr. in the Arbor Creek development.
The council approved rezoning a .51-acre residential property off Earp St. to a different residential zoning that would allow about two units to be built on the property. The zoning is consistent with the Village District Area Plan.
The council approved modifications to the Town Engineering Design & Construction Standards. The document last was updated eight years ago. Modifications include clarifications, conformance to state standards and updates.
As part of the meeting’s consent agenda, the council approved $26,305 to repair a section of road at Thorton Green and Sturminster Dr. in the Ballenridge subdivision, approved $2,800 for environmental consulting costs for the Avent Ferry Road widening project, endorsed the original corridor for the I-540 extension, and approved transferring economic and land development agreements with the Town from Novartis to the plant’s new owner, CSL. The council also approved a part-time lease agreement with Wake Futbol Club for fields at the North Main Athletic Complex.