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Filling Vacancies on Council & in Parks & Recreation, Continuing our Water & Sewer Rates Discussion & Much More on Monday's Agenda

11/29/2018

We hope you will join us at 6 p.m. Monday, Dec. 3 for the Clayton Town Council meeting at The Clayton Center/Town Hall, 111 East Second Street in Downtown Clayton.

You can view the full agenda packet online here, or click here to download a PDF copy. Here are the highlights:

Town Council Vacancy Discussion

Clayton Town Council will discuss filling a current vacancy created by the departure of long-time Council Member Butch Lawter, who was recently elected to the Johnston County Board of Commissioners. The Mayor & Town Council had a special farewell presentation to Lawter at his final Clayton Town Council meeting on Nov. 19. 

Pursuant to NCGS 160A-63, any vacancy that occurs in an elective office shall be filled by appointment of the Council. The appointed person serves until the next election, which in this case would be November 2019. In an open meeting, a Council member may make a motion naming someone to fill the vacancy. If that motion receives a majority of votes, the person named would be sworn in and take a seat immediately.

Three New Faces Join Parks & Recreation Team

In addition to a possible new face on Town Council, three new members of the Clayton Parks & Recreation team will be introduced Monday, including the first new director the Town has had in more than 30 years. Scott Barnard comes to Clayton from the City of Goldsboro, where he has served as a transformational Parks & Recreation Director for the past seven years. Monday is his first day on the job. Throughout his career, Barnard has supervised and maintained more than 100 parks, greenways and even golf courses across central and eastern North Carolina. Barnard takes over for long-time Parks & Recreation Director Larry Bailey who retired in August after of growing and evolving Clayton's recreation programs since the 1980s.

oining the parks maintenance team is Joseph Boettger who will serve as a Parks Maintenance Specialist, helping to with the upkeep of seven town parks and numerous athletic fields and recreation facilities. Originally from Greenville, he comes with great parks experience serving in park maintenance for the Town of Winterville, NC. Another addition to the parks maintenance team is Bobby Henn, a name and face very familiar to our staff and park visitors. Over the past four years, Henn has volunteered his time, passion and machete skills helping design and construct the Town of Clayton's first disc golf course in the woods of East Clayton Community Park on Glen Laurel Road. As a leader with the Capital Area Disc League, Henn helped bring this increasingly popular sport to Clayton. Disc golf (often erroneously referred to as frisbee golf) is a flying disc game, as well as a precision and accuracy sport, in which individual players throw a flying disc at a target. The 18-hold disc golf course weaves through the woods of our largest park and we encourage first-timers to give the sport a try! 

Water & Sewer Rates/Wastewater Capacity Study Public Hearing

This is a continuation of the public hearing opened on November 19. Consultants working to formulate options to expand wastewater capacity are still gathering information and will not present new information at this meeting. They are expected to attend the Dec. 17 Council meeting where this public hearing will once again be opened. The public is welcome to attend Monday to share comments during the hearing as Council continues to study how to best plan and pay for the replacement of the Town’s wastewater treatment plant, which serves our residential, commercial and industrial customers. The plant is 54 years old and lies in a flood hazard area. Plans to replace the plant date back decades. In the mid-90’s, Town leaders purchased land to build a new wastewater treatment plant near the Neuse River.  In the mid-2000s, Town leaders began planning for the cost and construction of a new plant, but those plans were shelved when the country hit the Great Recession, the biggest economic downturn since the Great Depression. Unclear on the timeline for economic recovery and growth, Town leaders began to explore intermediary methods of accommodating our sewer needs.  We reached agreements to connect and send wastewater flow to the City of Raleigh and Johnston County – and those increased capacities have served Clayton to this day. The City of Raleigh flow agreement, however, is not permanent. 

This critical wastewater capacity topic is on many municipal and county agendas, as Raleigh, Johnston County, Smithfield and Selma are also in the processes of capacity and water/sewer rate analyses. On Oct. 22, the Town Council invited the utility consultants to present their study findings, which included slides on water and sewer rates and wastewater capacity.  At the Nov. 19 presentation/public hearing, engineers from the Wooten Company reviewed that capacity needs again and presented options for Council to consider. Council advised the consultants to bring back options to build the wastewater treatment plant in phases based on the baseline recommendation. 

Original baseline calculations call for building a new plant within 4 years on that designated piece of land, and to pay for the project by raising sewer fees and rates for most homeowners an average of about $15 a month starting July 1, 2019.  The study also calls for annual 30% sewer rate and 2% water rate increases for the following three years. 

Since the last meeting, the consultants have been revisiting growth forecasts as they tie into the schedule and scope of needed wastewater solutions. The Town Manager will update Council on that progress and the status of updating the options to partner with regional and private entities, operate two facilities, and/or operate a single facility.

Walton Farm Annexation Public Hearing to be Set for Dec. 17

FSC Ranch LCC is seeking approval to annex 48.09 acres of land located at 3131 Covered Bridge Road – just north of the intersection of Covered Bridge and Loop Roads. FSC Ranch LLC owns the land and plans to develop 190 single-family houses and 120 apartments. The site plan lists Fred Smith Co. as the developer.

The new development would have a main entrance on Covered Bridge Road, and connect to the rest of Riverwood Athletic Club to the north via Ravens Ridge. The apartments would be located in four buildings, which would be similar to the apartments located along Athletic Club Boulevard. They would have a maximum height of 44.5 feet.

The development would include a clubhouse and three small parks with walking trails, fire pits, grills and gazebos. Residents would also have access to the existing Riverwood Athletic Club amenities. The development would have 299 parking spaces.

In 2017, with residents expressing some concerns about increased traffic and run-off/erosion concerns, Walton Farm received approval to build and to be rezoned to Planned Development Residential (PD-R) from Residential Estate (R-E) and Residential-8 (R-8). The smallest lots for houses would be 3,148 square feet, or just under 1/14th of an acre. Construction is expected to start in 2019. 

Ramey Kemp & Associates prepared the Traffic Impact Analysis and determined the development would create 2,660 trips each weekday, including 206 during morning rush hour and 274 during the evening rush. Read the summary here. The study recommended road features and improvements to deal with the traffic, including the addition of 150-foot left turn lane south of the entrance on Covered Bridge Road. The N.C. Department of Transportation also reviewed the plans and recommended a 150-foot right turn lane north of the entrance on Covered Bridge Road, along with a three-lane section with a two-way left turn lane on Covered Bridge Road from the Loop Road intersection to the neighborhood's entrance.

More info will be included in future agenda packets. For more, call the Planning Department at 919-359-9399.

Inspection Code Updates

The North Carolina Building Codes Council adopted new 2018 Building Codes this past July, giving local jurisdictions a 6-month transition period to switch from the 2012 Building Codes currently being used to updated codes. All projects that have not been permitted by Dec. 31, 2018, must comply with the 2018 N.C. Building Codes. Staff is taking this opportunity to update Chapter 150 for Building Regulations and Chapter 95 for Fire Prevention. Those administrative updates will ensure local codes are consistent with state building codes. 

Sunbelt Rentals: Two Public Hearings on Special Use Permit & Major Site Plan

Moffat Properties, LLC seeks a special-use permit and major site plan modification to add a 1,500-square-foot addition its development of a Sunbelt Rentals at 7635 U.S. 70 Business, which is just north of the U.S. 70 Bypass.

In April, the Planning Board approved plans to build a 10,500-square-foot building with a 34-space parking lot on the site. The site plan showed a majority of the property to be leveled and covered in gravel for outdoor equipment storage, with area lighting surrounding the property and landscaping around the perimeter. In May, the Council approved a special-use permit to allow vehicle sales and rental on the property.

According to the staff report, the applicant now seeks to erect a 12,000-square-foot building. That's more than a 5 percent increase in area from the previously-approved special-use permit and major site plan, and therefore each modification requires separate approval from the Town Council. The addition is proposed in the rear of the previously approved building, to add an additional loading bay. 

BUDGET AMENDMENTS

The Planning Department is requesting approval to utilize lapsed salary to procure an office cube system at the cost of $5,000 to help accommodate planning and GIS/mapping staff needs. Two staff members are currently located outside the Planning area and this will help integrate the team in one space. 

The Electric Department has requested a Capital Project Budget Ordinance for implementation of the LED Lighting Changeover Project. As LED (light-emitting diode) lighting continues to become more affordable, cities around the world have started the process of switching from traditional street lighting to the far more energy-efficient technology. Such a transition also provides a platform for other innovations beyond merely lighting up dark places. An interconnected network of smart streetlights can serve a city by monitoring traffic and weather and other benefits.

Need More Info?

If you have any questions about the agenda or any other Town-related issues, please feel free to email Public Information Officer Stacy Beard or call her at 919-358-0348. You may also email Assistant Public Information Officer John Hamlin or call him at 919-480-0170.

Have a great weekend, and we hope to see you at the meeting.

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