CENTERBURG — The water line break in Centerburg was fixed rather quickly but some residents said they felt like a fish out of water when the initial water shutoff took place.
“A few people fell through the cracks Friday,” Mayor George Shaw said during Monday’s village council meeting.
Village employees went door to door with notices of the water shutoff and the subsequent boil advisory that followed. However, the number listed on the notices is also the number for the village fax machine.
Village administrator Phil Lohmeyer said all the village is required to do is inform local newspapers and radio stations to advise residents of the incident and follow-up information.
One possible solution to the communication problem came from council member Aimee Humphrey.
“This will only work if we have power, but there are phone tree wizards on the Internet. You give them a list of your phone numbers — like water customers or first responders — and the service will deliver a one-minute message to all the numbers,” she said.
Humphrey said the service charges 6 cents for each phone call. For $3, the village could have immediately notified all of the businesses in the village with one phone call.
Shaw authorized Lohmeyer to look into the services available to find out if any is a logical solution of the village.
Centerburg resident David Adkins addressed council about his concerns over a visit by law enforcement telling him it was illegal to park in his driveway if it blocked the sidewalk.
Adkins and his family live on Union Street, the only street in the village that does not allow for parking on either side of the street.
“There was no warning, no letter, just a cop knocking on my door at 7 a.m.,” Adkins said. “I think this could have been handled differently.”
Lohmeyer said he received a complaint that people were blocking sidewalks with their vehicles, and passed the information on to law enforcement to handle.
Ellen Scott, Adkins’ mother-in-law who is selling the home to the couple, told council she felt this was selective enforcement as residents throughout the village park in the same manner, especially those living on Union Street.
“This is simply a young couple trying to raise their family here. … It’s a shame this happens in Centerburg,” Scott said.
After an intense discussion, council agreed to pass the issue to the Public Safety Committee for further review. In the meantime, Lohmeyer will conduct measurements on the street to help determine the ability for emergency vehicles to travel Union Street.
Don McCracken, a representative of the Centerburg U.S.A. Fourth of July celebration, updated council on plans for this year’s four-day event. He also asked council to consider approving a monetary donation to assist in the acquisition of security for the event. Later in the meeting, council agreed to donate $500. Humphrey cast the lone no vote.
A four-year contract with the Knox County Sheriff’s Office was finalized between Village Solicitor Kyle Stroh and Sheriff David Barber. After Stroh walked council members through the changes, a motion was made to waive the three readings and approve the contract. Councilmen Jerry Hess and Jack Tucker cast no votes on waiving the three readings, so the contract was given its first reading. The village has been working on a month-to-month agreement, as the contract expired earlier this year.
Consolidated Electric Cooperative’s effort to provide electricity in and around the village of Centerburg hit a brick wall Monday night as council agreed to table the matter indefinitely. According to Lohmeyer, a new set of electric poles would need to be installed throughout the village, and Consolidated would only offer electricity to new customers, not allowing current AEP customers the opportunity to change providers.
In other news, council:
•Tabled the third reading of an ordinance to adopt the new FEMA flood plain regulations pending council’s approval.
•Approved an ordinance for liability insurance.
•Held a second reading on a resolution to approve revisions to the 2009 9-1-1 plan.
•Passed an emergency ordinance to merge current fee schedules with codified ordinances.
•Tabled an amendment to building codes until July so the Planning Commission can review the codes.
•Held a first reading on a Time Warner franchise fee agreement.