GILBERT — Gilbert Town Council met on Monday, August 17 to discuss issues mainly concerning Gilbert’s water and wastewater plants.
Mayor Vivian Livingood and Randy Livingood were unable to attend the meeting in person, but were dialed in and attended the meeting via telephone.
The meeting began with Vivian Carter leading the group in prayer and the Pledge of Allegiance before Operator of Gilbert’s waste water plant Mike Preston opened the meeting with an update of recent issues concerning the plant.
Although Justice and Sprattsville residents live so close in proximity to the town of Gilbert, most pay their water bills to Mingo County PSD who buys water from Gilbert’s water plant. Recently, it was discovered that there was a major leak in the main line of the Justice area which was leaking 60,000 gallons of water each day. According to Preston, the leak has since been discovered and repaired properly.
There was also a water loss in the Little Egypt area but according to Jerry Miller, that leak will soon be under control.
“It is a very small leak and we are pretty sure we have found it and are working on getting that taken care of,” said Miller.
Preston also informed the council that due to a recent storm, a tree had fallen on the fence around the waste water plant and damaged the fence.
“We need to make sure that our plant is secure,” said Preston. “I have a temporary fence up right now but we will need to fix it very soon.”
Preston estimated that a new fence for the plant would cost approximately $1300.
Rick Roberts, an engineer for E.L. Robinson approached council about approving to purchase a generator from Walker Machinery. Roberts showed the estimate from Walker Machinery to council which estimated the costs to be approximately $56,787. Over $46,000 are said to come from the infrastructure fund while over $9,000 would be allotted from the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) fund. USDA’s Rural Utilities Service (RUS) administers programs that provide much-need infrastructure or infrastructure improvements to rural communities. These include water and waste treatment, electric power and telecommunications services. All of these services play a critical role in helping to expand economic opportunities and improve the quality of life for rural residents.
Roberts also addressed council about their past inquiry for a dump truck located at Thornhill. The diesel truck estimate was approximately $55,359 and will be used by the water and sewer departments. Roberts assured the council that there would be sufficient funds in the RUS fund to purchase the truck but that the extent of any other costs were unknown.
“We have enough funds to write a check and pay for the truck but I cannot promise that we will not be a few thousand dollars short to Griffith and Associates for their role in the process,” said Roberts.
Council agreed that both were necessities and that if the extra money was needed then the town would handle those costs appropriately. Council motioned to approve the purchase of the generator and the dump truck.
Other issues such as the financial report were tabled until the next meeting. The meeting closed after briefly discussing upcoming Trailfest and Mayor Vivian Livingood assuring council and those in attendance that preparing for Trailfest was on schedule and that the town was doing a great job of readying itself for the upcoming surge of ATV riders.
Madalin Sammons is a reporter for the Gilbert Times. Madalin can be reached at [email protected] or by phone at 304-664-8225.