Frankford calls for water surveys

Frankford is in the midst of a Comprehensive Land Use Plan update, and has sent out surveys with 245 water bills, seeking some input from town residents.

It’s been a couple months now, but as Town Manager Terry Truitt reported at the May 2 town council meeting, the town’s only heard back from 38 residents so far (16 percent response).

As Council Member Thomas “Maynard” Esender allowed, the surveys did take a little time to fill out — but he hoped a few more people would offer advice before the committee started breaking down the responses.

In the meantime, Council President Robert Daisey said he’d start work on tabulating the surveys in hand, and try to set up a meeting with Office of State Planning Coordination’s (OSPC’s) Ann Marie Townshend.

Townshend has advised the town to focus on “growth from within,” as there are roughly 100 acres of undeveloped land within municipal limits. According to land use committee member Ron Atherton, the survey responses should give council some guidance on where people would most like to see businesses, condominiums, etc.

In other business, Council Member Greg Johnson said plans for the second annual Community Day celebration (Saturday, May 28) were continuing apace. He planned to chair another meeting at Town Hall on Wednesday, May 11 (7 p.m.) to go over details — “We still need volunteers,” he added.

There was some discussion regarding less than enviable position on the annual town-wide cleanup crew. Truitt said they’d been alternating spring, then fall, from year to year, and were back to spring this year. However, Johnson and others voted for fall — definitely fall, when cooler temperatures tended to keep odors down.

Truitt said she and Daisey had shared a discussion regarding the appropriateness of recruiting volunteers and council members for the distasteful duty, and the possibility of hiring a waste management company instead. “Maybe we need to think about increasing trash fees, and if people want it, make them pay for it,” Truitt said.

Daisey agreed they should stick with a fall cleanup, and advised her to look into the pros and cons of hiring waste management.

Council also tossed around some possible dates for the town yard sale, and settled on Saturday, June 4.

In water news, Daisey reported county approval for a startup of the new Frankford water plant — but only for testing.

Frustrating, the new plant works, but was designed to flush water into the county sewer, and there appears to have been some miscommunication regarding permits.

More frustrating, according to Daisey, the town dedicated its best well and pump to the new plant. There are two other wells, and they’re still holding up, but Truitt called them the “JV squad.”

She called Tidewater Utilities’ Clarence Quillen “an absolute lifesaver” — contracted to keep things running for a few months until the new plant fired up in April 2004, he’s still there. According to Truitt, the town has also been lucky to find the old water plant had more life left in it than originally thought.

Jim Reardon, maintenance, said the water was on for bathrooms at Town Park, and he hoped to have those floors painted in time for Community Day. He and Johnson talked shingles versus metal for roof repairs at the small pavilion, and settled on shingles.

Reardon said he was working on a floor patch at the Wells Depot building — with that and a little work on the steps, the building would be ready to rent.

Finally, Council Member Pam Davis warned residents to watch out for someone who’d been slipping into unlocked cars around town, stealing spare change and CDs. She said between 10 and 15 cars had been burglarized.

“Keep your eyes open — this person seems to be hitting all of Frankford,” Davis advised.