The City Council ordered the municipal election in Pinehurst to be held May 5. The council met Tuesday night and approved holding the election with the Orange County Election Administrator to supervise the voting.
The position of mayor currently held by Pete Runnels and two alderperson positions, those held by Cynthia Adams and John Zerko will be on the ballot. Runnels has indicated he will run again for mayor. Adams who was appointed to the City Council to fill the unexpired term of Dan Barclay, said she is still contemplating whether to run for a full term. Candidates can file for a position on the ballot beginning January 17.
Two leaders of the Pinehurst Volunteer Fire Department received their oaths of office Tuesday night. Fire Chief Shon Branham (right) and one of the department’s captains Samuel Johnson were sworn in by City Attorney Tommy Gunn. Both were elected to their respective positions by a vote of the department’s volunteers in December. Branham said during his report to the council that he was terminating three members of the fire department for their low percentage of responses to emergency calls. He added that new members will be found.
Debris removal from Tropical Storm Harvey is nearly complete in Orange County, but there is concern of some debris still be seen on streets and properties in Pinehurst. City Administrator Robbie Hood informed that the official pickup of debris from contractors hired by the county has ended in Pinehurst.
Hood said the city will try to work with its citizens to help remove some of the debris from their properties if it is actually damaged items from the storm. Hood commented, “New construction debris is the responsibility of the property owner or the contractor they hired. It just seems like when we pick something up, two days later there’s something else out there, and that’s what we’re facing.” Public Works Director John Toney reminded that Pinehurst will charge a fee of $16 per cubic yard to dispose of debris if citizens request it.
As a follow up to last month’s meeting during which two aldermen complained about the garbage service being provided by Republic Services, Hood requested the City Council to authorize him to solicit proposals for solid waste disposal services. Hood stated the contract calls for a 180-day notice if Pinehurst decides to go out for bids. The council approved Hood’s request. The current contract with Republic Services runs through September 30, 2018.
The Pinehurst Police Department will be getting a new vehicle to replace two old Dodge Chargers that were used as patrol cars. The City Council approved Pinehurst entering into a financing agreement with First Financial Bank to purchase a 2018 Ford F150 for $39,300. The payments to purchase the new vehicle were approved in the last budget by the city. Both of the Dodge Chargers were at least ten years old.