Stanly County commissioners set new priorities at board retreat

Published 1:33 pm Monday, February 6, 2023

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The Stanly County Board of Commissioners set new priorities for the county’s Capital Improvement Plan between 2024 and 2028 at Friday’s retreat at Juneberry Ridge. The board also received updates on previous projects.

County Manager Andy Lucas presented the updates and the projects for consideration for commissioners.

The lobby floor renovation at the Stanly County Agri-Civic Center was completed at a cost of $125,000, while the replacement of the CAD RMS and JMS emergency radio systems have been funded for $2.5 million with a contract awarded for it.

Replacing the freight elevator at the history center was not a full replacement, Lucas said. Installation will be completed upon delivery of parts.

Three other projects were initiated, including broadband expansion, with the county providing matching funds for a Growing Rural Economies with Access to Technology grant along with participating in the state’s Completing Access to Broadband grant. Also, Lucas said American Relief Plan funds of $1.5 million were set aside for matching funds.

Space assessments have also been funded for a new 911 communications and emergency management office, along with a new sheriff’s office.

Using a voting system which ranked nine projects in terms of doing in one year, 1-3 years and 3-5 years, commissioners selected four projects to initiate next year. Two were voted in one to three years, with three landing in the three to five category.

Included in the priorities was a new West Stanly Senior Center facility with an estimated cost of $1.2 million. Currently, Stanly leases the building where the current center is, but the property’s landlord, according to a handout from the county, “is seeking to sell or lease the space for retail in the near future.”

The county leases a 3,000-square-foot space. There’s a daily average of 30 people attending programming at the center.

A second project receiving high priority was renovations for the EMS Base 2 for a cost of $300,000. The existing base would renovate a kitchen area, sleeping quarters and restrooms. Plans also are to add a fourth bedroom, two additional bathrooms and a day room space.

The third project receiving high priority was the demolition of two buildings at the Guard Road complex for $110,000. The two buildings in question, the handout read, “are very dilapidated and a potential safety risk. Removing the structures from the property would facilitate the potential for development of the site in the future.”

Finally, replacing three HVAC units for the Stanly County Public Library would cost $100,000 per year for three years, or $300,000 if done all in the same year.

The current system has been in place for more than 25 years, according to the handout, and the units “are failing and parts are extremely limited.”

Two projects were slated in the 1-3 year category, including replacement of the floor in the Stanly Commons. The floor “is aging” and “cracking, exposing the subfloor.”

The Commons also has three large planters which “are a breeding ground for cockroaches and other insects,” the handout stated, adding the planters needed to be removed.

A new animal shelter was also placed in the 1-3 year period. The shelter, estimated at $2.3 million, would replace the existing facility and add capacity for animal housing, exercise and adoption-related services.

One project included in the long-term range was the exterior passenger elevator for the main library in Albemarle. The project, estimated at $245,000, would include removal of the existing artwork on the Main Street side of the building.

Another long-term project, at a cost of $2.9 million, would expand the Senior Center building in Albemarle.

A third project, a $1.2 million site preparation for a new hangar at the Stanly County Airport, also was placed in the long-term range. The project would prepare sites for pad-ready public and private hangar sites.

About Charles Curcio

Charles Curcio has served as the sports editor of the Stanly News & Press for more than 16 years and has written numerous news and feature storeis as well. He was awarded the NCHSAA Tim Stevens Media Representative of the Year and named CNHI Sports Editor of the Year in 2014. He has also won an award from Boone Newspapers, and has won four North Carolina Press Association awards.

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