NEWBERRY — William and Mary Ann Cross were recognized Tuesday night by Newberry City Council for their home being placed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The Crosses notified Mayor Foster Senn that they had received a letter from the Deputy State Historic Preservation Office on Aug. 8 that their home was now listed on the register. The property is located at 921 Jessica Ave. in Newberry.
The designer of the home, Robert Mills, also designed the Newberry County Courthouse that preceded the Community Hall/Old Court House. This would have been Newberry’s third courthouse, as the one currently standing is the fifth belonging to the county, according to Senn.
Senn, along with Councilman Thomas Louis Boyd from District 5, honored the Crosses for the work they had completed on their home.
“We’re excited,” Senn said. “You mean much and do much for our community.”
Ben Bowers was also recognized for 10 years of service with the city’s fire department. Bowers began his employment on Aug. 16, 2004, and was promoted in 2007. He currently holds the position of Fire Engineer.
Ben Dukes was recognized for 15 years of service with the fire department. Dukes began his employment on Aug. 30, 1999 and after his promotion in 2003, holds the position of Fire Engineer.
Senn and City Manager Al Harvey also recognized Jeff Wicker and Jerry Summer for 25 years of service with the city. Wicker began his employment on Aug. 8, 1989 and holds the position of Heavy Equipment Operator with the Public Works Department.
Summer began his employment on Aug. 28, 1989 and holds the position of Wastewater Plant Operator A with the Utilities Department.
Harvey told council there was not much to report as far as the financial report. Harvey said they should be at the 17 percent level on revenue and expenditures in the general fund, but were currently at 16 percent and at 12 percent in utilities.
“It’s still early,” Harvey said. “Nothing to be alarmed at at this point.”
In new business, council discussed the employment of a utility consultant. On Aug. 19, Senn said City Council agreed to proceed with obtaining a cost estimate for employing Utility Financial Solutions to conduct a review of the current utility rates and the cost of services studies used by the city.
Senn read a letter estimating the initial cost to be approximately $17,850. Each year the city staff goes to the Piedmont Municipal Power Agency (PMPA) conference where they receive updates on current industry trends. One topic discussed this year was the idea of a consultant for utilities.
“I think we were impressed with them,” Senn said. “I followed up with them to find out how much it would cost.”
If approved, Senn said Utility Financial Solutions would provide the city with a five year projection. Senn said the person he contacted said that once the company received the information, there was about a two month turnaround time for the calculated estimates.
“They do utilities all over the country so I think we’ll be able to find out where we stand utilities wise,” Senn said.
Once the numbers have been calculated concerning the utilities department, Senn said there was an optional presentation that could be given to council at a cost of $2,000-3,000 which could be discussed at a later date. The idea of hiring the consultant was approved unanimously.
Also under new business, Russell Lemont Glasgow, Zebbie Dee Goudelock, Thomas Louis Boyd and Senn were re-elected to office. Because no candidate ran opposed, no election will be needed Sept. 9. Council members and the mayor will be sworn into office Oct. 14.
In old business, council:
• Passed second reading of an ordinance allowing all parts of the city to have poultry. District R-10 was removed from the ordinance before the vote.
• Passed second reading of an ordinance limiting the number of chickens within the city limits to six per household, and eliminating the owning of roosters. Councilman Lemont Glasgow asked Harvey how individuals that already owned roosters would be handled. Harvey said they would be handled on a complaint basis unless other means were necessary.
• Approved second reading to rezone 913 Cline St. to LI Limited Industrial.
• Approved second reading of an ordinance authorizing a lease-purchase agreement to buy a trash loader, not to exceed $140,000.