The Columbia City Council held its monthly meeting Tuesday, October 18.
Council approved a motion to move forward with a rate study of a storm water bond and priority projects. The motion was part of a final recommendation by Melissa Gentry, assistant city manager of operations.
According to Gentry, there is a priority list to be considered for storm water projects that includes danger to human life, flooding which causes damage or negatively impacts transportation or public utilities, and flood elevations where water depth exceeds first floor elevation.
Among the projects already funded are Smith Branch, Rocky Branch, Gills Creek, and the Congaree River.
The current list of proposed projects are divided into tiers. Tier one includes Shandon Phase II, Whaley and Main Street upgrades, Harden Heights drainage project, and Penn Branch. The tier one projects total over $ 33 million. The tier two project is repairs to Smith’s Branch, which will cost over $11 million. The tier three project will continue work on Rocky Branch and will cost over $10 million.
A rate study will require a five year financial plan, a determination of the funding capacity for the project, and will pro- vide supporting material for the first rating with Moody’s and S&P. According to Gentry, the rating agency will want to know that rates are sufficient to pay back the bonds.
Along with a rate study, the next step includes an analysis of storm water utilities which should be finished by the end of January 2017.
Mayor Steve Benjamin’s 10th annual Walk Against Domestic Violence is rescheduled for Saturday, October 29 at Spirit Communications Park. The activities will begin at 8:00 a.m. with open exhibits, a Purple Rally begins at 9:00 a.m., and the walk at 10:00 a.m.
Council approved the first reading of an ordinance amending a previous ordinance granting an encroachment to the Knights of Columbia for installation and maintenance of brick pavers and sod.
Another ordinance granted first reading approval authorized the city manager to execute a contract of sale between the City of Columbia and Jarvais Javon Jackson for 5301 Holmes Avenue.
Council approved a resolution authorizing the city manager to execute a sub- lease agreement between the City of Columbia and The Boys & Girls Club of the Midlands for the Norman Arnold Center at 1100 South Holly Street. Another resolution authorized acceptance and dedication of streets Eastfair Drive, Routhland Court, and Vendue Court in Eastfair.
Council also approved a resolution authorizing the city manager to execute a lease agreement and operation and maintenance agreement between the City of Columbia and South Carolina Electric and Gas Company for the Saluda River Walk-Three Rivers Greenway project.
Council reappointed Michael Juras and Eugene Bell to the Bicycle Pedestrian Advisory Committee. Brian Faulkner, Ernest Grigg, Scott Thorpe, and Christina Galardi were also appointed to the committee.
Council also reappointed Ronald Rogers to the Columbia Museum of Art Commission.