HARRELLS — The Harrells Board of Aldermen attacked several issues earlier this week when they met, discussing everything from the EMS buildin to a comprehensive transportation plan outlined by the Department of Transportation, and several items in between (see story in Sunday’s edition).
The DOT’s Sarah Lee, along with Joel Strickland from the Mid-Carolina Council of Government and Lyle Moore with the Clinton-Sampson Planning Department, shared the proposed CTP that will start up in September to address the county’s multi-modal transportation needs up to 2040. The board asked questions regarding how this could impact the small town and what the benefits of Harrells sending a representative to the steering committee would be.
Lee responded, “First by having representation on the committee, you will have someone that can keep you, as a board, aware of potential changes and needs in the transportation of the county. You will also be able to have input as to the needs of your area in the county and address those needs.”
The DOT spokeswoman gave as an example the number of bike riders along U.S. 421. “There may be a need to include a bike lane alongside the highway in the future to accommodate those riders. The CTP is not just for highways but all types of transportation needs that the county has,” remarked Lee.
Turning to other matters, the EMS building became the focus.
Now that the town has received the deed to the EMS building several items related to the use and maintenance of the building have come up, the board was told. Mayor Jimmy Moore shared that a local business wanted to use the building for a safety meeting on Thursday, Aug. 9.
“We did not have time for the board to meet to discuss this matter so we agreed to allow the business to use the building with the understanding that after this meeting a fee would be established for the building’s use. We need to determine what the rental fee will be for the building,” stated Moore.
After much discussion, the board voted to set the fee at $100 per day with adjustments for multiple day usage and depending on whether the person(s) renting are a for profit or non-profit enterprise. The board also noted that it could adjust the fees as the move forward with the venture.
Also relating to the EMS building, the aldermen discussed whether they needed to contract for heating/air conditioning and continue with plans to design an apartment for the EMS staffers that use the building each evening. After much discussion and even an alternative option of the Harrells Volunteer Fire Department assuming responsibility for the building, the aldermen decided to hold off on a service contract. They did, however, agree to contact Dennis Carr regarding drawing up some preliminary design and estimates for needed improvements to the building which would allow heating and cooling of only the apartment used by EMS and as well as improvements to their living quarters.
“Our number one priority is to keep the county EMS located here. The second priority is to maintain the building for use as efficiently as possibly and finally to see the building utilized as much as possible by the Harrells community. This is what we have to keep in mind as we move along with this new project for the town,” expressed Moore.