Council approves road plan

Published 9:51 pm Tuesday, August 27, 2019

The City of Troy will spend its first year of gas tax revenue toward the extension of Mockingbird Lane from U.S. Highway 231 to the Kimber Manufacturing Industrial Access road.

The council unanimously approved the transportation plan at its meeting Tuesday evening.

The extension of the road is projected to cost approximately $230,000, with about $83,000 expected in revenue from a 6-cent increase on gas tax beginning on September 1.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Mayor Jason Reeves said the Rebuild Alabama Act mandates that municipalities approve a plan each year that shows how cities plan to use the tax revenue. Municipalities are also required to show what the money was actually spent toward.

Reeves said the plan is required to be approved and publicly posted, but that does not mean the city is locked into doing the project within the time frame.

“This is certainly something we need to do and part of what we need to do with the industrial access road,” Reeves said. “This is a good thing. But if for some reason the project can’t get done, this plan doesn’t lock us into completing it.”

Melissa Sanders, planning and zoning administrator, said the access and safer access for the Pike County Advanced Academics and Accelerated Learning Center as well as the industrial and commercial sites in that area.

The council also approved for the city to cosponsor the county’s ATRIP II application through the Rebuild Alabama Act to resurface county roads 2224 and 2227, which connect Henderson Highway to Alabama Highway 87/167 (Elba Highway).

The city is not providing funding for the project, but cosponsoring the grant application.

“The program is designed to fund projects of local interest on state-maintained roads or at state projects,” Sanders said. “These roads are essential. They aid in the reduction of traffic at the corresponding intersections. Of those highways with U.S. Highway 231, so drivers don’t have to get on (U.S. Highway 231) to reach the other highway.”

The council also approved a resolution to clarify that the city is in agreement with abatements on the sales and use tax of construction related materials to Rex Lumber Company. The county abated the taxes when the project was approved, but because the property is within Troy police jurisdiction, the council needed to allow the abatements to occur.

Brain Chandler, utilities manager, introduced the first reading of an amendment to the city utility ordinance that makes three changes to the existing policy.

The first change is to lower the minimum age from 19 to 18 for a resident to hold a utility account in his or her own name, following the reduction of the minimum age at the state level.

The second change is to provide a special rate to Southeast Alabama Electric Cooperative to come from the city’s meter to provide service to a customer not currently able to be serviced by the coop. SAEC provided a similar service to the city previously at the Troy Recreation Center and Sportsplex.

Thirdly, the ordinance would establish an additional service at extra charge to give large utility customers such as Troy University and local industries the opportunity to monitor utility usage by facility via the city customer portal.

The council can take action on the ordinance amendments as soon as the Tuesday, September 10 meeting.

In other business, the council:

  • Approved a contract with Information Technology Security in the utilities department for a cost of $21,500.
  • Approved a contract with Liberty Testing for the testing and repair at utilities substations.
  • Approved the demolition of a former generator shed at the utility department complex to improve storage capabilities at a cost of up to $7,000. However, no cost is expected as the department plans to demolish the structure with its own forces.
  • Approved the declaration of two Pike Area Transit System buses as surplus property.