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By Christa Jennings
Senior Staff Writer
The Rockford Utilities Board met Monday evening with its first meeting in its new facility, located on U.S. Highway 231 south next to Dollar General.
As the meeting began, Board Member Burt Coffman was asked to open the meeting with prayer and to bless the building, as well. In his prayer Coffman thanked God for the progress they have made in the community and for the new structure there for them to operate out of, as well as thanking Him for all those in attendance and their safe travel.
The bulk of the board’s 40-minute meeting related to the sewer plant and the new building, as well as hearing from citizens.
Regarding the sewer plant, which has been a longtime and ongoing issue, the board is gradually taking steps and moving forward in the process for the new plant.
During Monday’s meeting, the board reviewed a resolution that needed to be approved for the board to get a loan. Suzanne Scott with First Bank was in attendance to answer any questions and provide information as needed.
Board Chair Ronnie Brown stated that it would be a $483,000 construction loan with First Bank for the sewer plant. After brief discussion, with Board Member Ronnie Joiner absent, the board unanimously approved and adopted the resolution relating to the construction loan.
Additionally, the board reviewed an invoice from Sentel Engineering provided by Utilities Clerk Deanna Lesley.
The invoice was in the amount of $3,120, which was said to be the bill for the engineer report for ADEM relating to the sewer plant. The board unanimously approved paying the invoice.
Also in discussion regarding the sewer plant, it was mentioned that as the process continues they are hoping to have it ready to put out for bid by September 18. It was further mentioned that the sewer plant project is going on three years now.
In other business, regarding the new building it was mentioned that the Information Technology individual was to install a firewall at the facility for online security. The board had paid him $799 for the work, which he had begun at the building but ran into an issue and was to come back later to finish installing it.
However, in discussion the board and Lesley stated that he has not finished installing the firewall and is now also not returning phone calls.
Following discussion, the board unanimously approved having the board attorney, Nancy Kirby, write the individual a letter to either finish the job or refund the board’s money.
In other business, the board mentioned that there is a leak where the drop box is located for after-hour payments. They are looking into getting that leak repaired.
Also during the meeting the board heard concerns from customers regarding moving a meter and a high water bill from a leak near a house. Chair Brown also mentioned that the board had received a certificate of appreciation from the Coosa County Long Term Recovery Committee for the work they helped do following the January tornado.
In other business, the board mentioned holding an open house for individuals to see and tour the new facility. The board tabled the matter to discuss and plan further at its next meeting.
The next regularly scheduled monthly meeting of the Rockford Utilities Board will be held at 6 p.m. August 21.