|Council nods drainage, flooding fixes|
|Thursday, October 4, 2012|
By SABRINA GARRETT
An ordinance that will address the drainage and flooding issues in each of Lebanon’s six wards was approved on second reading at a special meeting of the Lebanon City Council Wednesday night.
After hearing complaints from the citizens they represent, councilors decided at Tuesday night’s regular meeting to withdraw $600,000 from the reserve fund – which will give roughly $100,000 to be used for projects in their respective wards.“We had overwhelming support to show the citizens that the council is concerned about the drainage issues,” Lebanon Mayor Philip Craighead said, adding that while there has always been a long list of needs, the city has “never had the money to go and resolve all of them.”
“Now, what we are going to do is look at these projects and find one project or more in every ward, so there is some sort of relief,” he said. “This is a commitment down payment to the citizens that we are serious and do want to address the issues in our community.”
Craighead added that if the sales tax increase passes on a referendum on the Nov. 6 ballot, even more work could be done in the city. “We would be able to address more issues like roads, paving and sidewalks.”
The motion to withdraw $600,000 from the reserve fund was made by Ward 3 Councilor Rob Cesternino who noted, “Let’s get it done.”
Commissioner of Finance Russell Lee instructed the council that in order to move the money out of that fund, it must pass two readings, with the second reading held Wednesday night. The ordinance unanimously passed with a 5-0 vote, with Ward 6 Councilor Kathy Warmath absent.
Each ward will receive about $125,000 in projects to be done by the City of Lebanon and other contracts. “It would be that $100,000 from the reserve fund, plus some of the $150,000 we originally budgeted for,” Craighead said.
Warmath, who has served on the city council since 1992, was pleased with the vote and is hopeful that the upcoming projects bring forth a lasting solution. “I have been here a long time and I’ve been in a lot of ditches. It was always another problem for another day,” she said before commending her colleague Cesternino for initiating the ordinance. “It takes money to fix it and we are past chatting about it. It is time to take some of that money and do something meaningful.”