Russellville council discusses roadwork, 2019 budget

Thursday, October 18, 2018

RUSSELLVILLE -- At its regular meeting Monday evening, the Russellville Town Council addressed a variety of issues that have been mulling on its agendas.

The ones taking the most precedence concerned the town’s funds as the council approved two important items.

Town officials first considered the approval of an invoice for the recent roadwork done under the town’s Community Crossings grant. The approval was tabled at the September meeting when the council believed it found potential discrepancies.

Council members said that there was a 100-ton difference in the amount of stone that was planned to be used in the excavation portion of the project. Despite this, the council approved the invoice and agreed to pay the cost after the difference had been explained.

The council also briefly furthered discussions on how to address the drainage issue at the intersection of First and Fordice Streets. A resident present at the meeting said that the pooling could be resolved with the installation of a small pipe under the road.

On the other hand, it was brought up that drilling on the new pavement could compromise its integrity, and that it would be completely on the town to fix the problem. Both the attendee and council members agreed to allow more time to determine how best to drain the road.

Before its portion of the meeting was complete, the council adopted an ordinance for trick-or-treating on Halloween night to be from 6-8 p.m.

The council also confidently approved its budget for 2019, though there was some concern regarding costs to hold elections in the town. Town attorney Stu Weliever advised that the council could push an ordinance through before the end of the year that would sync the next local election with the presidential election in 2020.

Weliever said that the town could save money by doing this, though he also related there would be early pains lining up officials’ terms until a rhythm began given the currently scheduled elections next year. The council said that it would consider the ordinance change with input and information from Weliever.

Council members also devoted much of their attention to matters concerning the Russellville Water Board and entities that operate on the town’s water system.

They considered the prospect of taking those entities off of a flat rate and to place them on a metered rate to calculate water costs. The council believed that one of them in particular was not paying its fair share, and that the town was losing money. Weliever cautioned against singling out any of the named entities, but advised that an ordinance change could occur once the council had talked to those who would be affected.

Before the Water Board concluded its portion of the meeting, a resident commented that the town’s wastewater system would need to be looked over and repaired in the coming months. He said that the town could seek a grant from OCRA (Office of Community and Rural Affairs) to replace a tank and valves.

Due to scheduling conflicts, the next regular meeting of the Russellville Town Council and the Russellville Water Board is scheduled for Monday, Nov. 26 instead of Nov. 19. The meeting will still take place at 7 p.m. in the Russellville Town Hall.

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