Total cost of project nears $77,000

Havelock commissioners approved added payments for sewer line repairs and park bathroom upgrades during their meeting Monday night.

Board members had earlier allocated $41,028 for repairs of sewer lines at 110 Heron Moon Court, and at 116 and 118 Farina Drive in Tucker Creek, but the low bid on the project was well above the estimate. Commissioners approved an additional $35,922 to meet the total project cost of $76,950.

The money is to come from sewer fund retained earnings and be paid to James L. Cayton Utilities, Inc., contractor on the project.

Havelock Public Services Director Mark Sayger said Cayton’s bid was the lower of two received. The second was for $145,000.

Both projects involve bypass pumping, which is a significant cost issue, Sayger said. Heron Moon Court is a 10-inch PVC at a depth of 15 feet. Farina Drive is an 8-inch PVC at a depth of 10 to 12 feet.

“You have significant mobilization costs whether it’s a small project or a large project,” Sayger said of the repair costs. “You’ve got to get all your gear to the site regardless.”

Commissioner Danny Walsh asked about development of a city crew that could specialize in small repairs of this kind to save money. City manager Frank Bottorff said a significant amount of study would be needed to determine a break-even point.

“It is a significant staffing issue to develop the resources that you would need to support those kinds of repairs in house,” said Sayger.

Havelock Mayor Will Lewis said such a crew would be paid even when repair work was light.

“This year they would have been busy, but there have been years when they wouldn’t have been so busy, so that’s really the balance of trying to figure that out,” Lewis said.

Walsh said it may be worth a look.

“I think it’s something we should study at least and see what the numbers look like,” he said.

Also Monday, the board approved an additional $5,000 for an Americans with Disabilities Act upgrade to the bathrooms at Walter B. Jones Park, bring the total cost of the project to $35,000 The low bid for the project was from Williams Service Company.

“We are going to be removing the partitions that currently do not allow enough room for wheelchairs to turn around, and we are going to replace the existing fixtures, repaint and refurbish the inside,” Sayger said of the project. “The current stalls are too narrow to allow handicap access so we are going to remove the stall partitions and make it a single use, single occupancy bathroom instead of trying to change the floorplan.”

Also Monday night, the board agreed to spend $1,000 of the board’s discretionary funds to purchase a table at the Sea to Table Dinner at the Crystal Coast Civic Center on Sept. 8. The event is a fundraiser for Allies for Cherry Point’s Tomorrow.