Bradham takes council seat

Town gets $547,000 grant for home improvements

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Dr. David Bradham was sworn in to represent the residents of District 6 at the Dunn City Council meeting Tuesday night.

Surrounded by his family with his wife, Meredith, holding the Bible, Dr. Bradham was administered the oath by City Clerk Tammy Williams who he chose to do the honors.

Dr. Bradham was appointed to the council in a 3-to-2 split vote at a special-called meeting last month. The other candidate was Joey Tart, who previously served 12 years in the same position. Dr. Bradham took the seat formerly held by Billy Barfield, who died in October. The term expires in November of this year. Dr. Bradham will have to run for election if he wants to continue serving.

Mayor Oscar Harris served as master of ceremonies for the event.

“It’s my honor and a privilege to have this opportunity,” Mayor Harris said, adding he knew Dr. Bradham would be a “good servant to Dunn.”

Mayor Harris read Dr. Bradham’s bio prior to the swearing-in. Dr. Bradham has had a chiropractic service here for 20 years. He is the team chiropractor at Campbell University.

He has been active in Kiwanis, Masons, Shriners and parks and recreation in which he volunteered as a coach.

His dad, the late Whit Bradham, served on the council from 1971 to 1983. He and his wife of 23 years have three children. They, along with his mother, brothers and other family members, stood with him as his oath was administered. He was given his nameplate and council member badge before taking his seat. He will serve on the police, library, cemetery and Mid-Carolina Council of Government boards.

CDBG grant

Also, Mayor Harris announced he had received a letter from the N.C. Department of Commerce that the city was awarded a $574,000 Community Development Block Grant. The city has used these in the past. The money is used to help homeowners to improve their property. If the homeowner maintains the property and does not sell, after seven years the grant will be forgiven, Mayor Harris said.

The grant will be used on the homes which qualify around the Dunn Enrichment Center areas, which used to be Harnett Training School.

“This is a big boost for that community. That was good news,” Mayor Harris said.

Mayor Harris said the town was looking at a larger grant, but that was all the homes that qualified.

Water line break

Heather Adams, the new utilities director in public works, gave an update including the fact a 24-inch raw water line ruptured at the water plant in Erwin last month. She said the city is bypassing that line with a 16-inch line that runs parallel to it. She said plans are to start Monday to replace it and it will take three days.

She said erosion on a bank seemed to be a cause. Public works has talked with engineers about ways to improve the stability of the line moving forward.

Council member Chuck Turnage asked if the city was able to keep the water tanks full and she said yes, the only problem is there is an issue with measuring the amount of water.

She estimated repair cost at $200,000 and that some other projects will have to be delayed to pay for it.

Also honored

  • Also during the meeting, there was a resolution passed in honor of Dean Gaster, who retired as public works director for the city effective Jan. 1.
  • New employees were introduced. They are Connie Jernigan, who works in administration; Tasha McDowell, community planner; Adam Sikorski and Tyler Cole with the police department; and Donald Lawson in public works.
  • Dunn Police Sgt. Matthew Smith was honored for earning the Advanced Law Enforcement Certificate.
  • The council set its budget retreat for Friday, Feb. 8, and Saturday, Feb. 9, at the Marriott Resort Myrtle Beach Grande Dunes in Myrtle Beach, S.C. The cost for accommodations for two nights, facilitator, meals and travel is estimated at between $15,000 and $20,000. The item was on the consent agenda so there was no discussion from the board or from the public during the public comment session at the beginning of the meeting.
  • Phyllis Pearson, managing partner with Petway, Mills & Pearson, presented the audit report for 2017-18.

    She said it was a “clean opinion,” adding, “That’s the best report an auditor will give, so congratulations.”

    She said the city’s $29 million in assets exceeded its liabilities and there was a $1.1 million debt decrease. She said property tax collection was at 99.22 percent and management did not overspend the budget.

    She spoke highly of management and how well it is to work with the city’s finance office.

    “This is an excellent report,” Mayor Harris said.

    He said the city has earned the Excellence in Financial Reporting award for nine years in a row and he expects it to be 10.

  • The Campbell University School of Osteopathic Medicine’s request to close a part of the alley between East Broad Street and Edgerton Street behind The Stewart Theatre from Jan. 17 through Jan. 19 was approved. They are holding the Community Care Clinic’s fourth annual Mr. CUSOM Pageant at the theater and would like to have a 20-by-20 tent at the back of the stage door for temporary dressing rooms.

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