The Pinehurst City Council met in a Special and Workshop Meeting Feb. 10 and had a fairly full agenda.

The council accepted the resignation of council member Matthew Chandler and after discussion decided to leave the seat on the council vacant. “We feel we should provide a level playing field for any citizen who wants to file for the seat on the council held by Mr. Chandler. There are only five meetings to be held before the election and our council is very able to conduct business with one vacant seat”, said Mayor J. L. “Pete” Runnels. “As a council we want to be fair to our citizens.” 

Councilman Dan Barclay was elected by the council to serve as Mayor Pro Tem.

It is necessary for the city council to annually approve the Orange County Mosquito Control District making low altitude flights for the spraying of mosquitoes. “They can fly as low as they want to as often as they want to”, joked Barclay.

Code Enforcement Officer Harry Vines is studying ordinances from neighboring cities in order to recommend wording for an ordinance pertaining to large signs within the City of Pinehurst.

“We do not want to have visual clutter in our city. I am studying an ordinance that I believe can be adjusted to fit our needs”, said Vines. “I believe I can have a draft ready to present at our next meeting.

Assisting Vines on the large sign project will be councilmen Dan Mohon and John Zerko.

Vines reported that there were 17 permits issued for a total of $3,460.50 during the month of January. The usual annual amount of permit fees generated is between $10,000 and $12,000. “Thirteen of the permits were for the new Planet Fitness,” said Vines.

The city’s waste water system has passed the last inspection. water pond. This will serve as a safety barrier and the city has latitude to decide on appropriate fencing.

Fire Chief Shon Branham reported that the department made 22 calls last month including one mutual aid with the West Orange Fire Department, one alarm at Carl’s Jr., and one motor vehicle accident.

Street Department Head John Toney discussed a drainage problem on West Park Street and was given permission to do , what he feels will best grade the street shoulder to provide drainage.

City Secretary Debbie Cormier reported that the audit for the city will be presented at the next council meeting. “We have had 13 applications for the City Administrator position and so far only Dan Barclay has filed in the upcoming election”, said Cormier.

Joe Parkhurst, City Administrator reported on the negotiations with the police union for the new contract. “We are not that far apart. There is some wording we are working on and we will have that worked out shortly”, said Parkhurst. “We will be hurt on city sales tax by the closing of Conn’s, but Planet Fitness will be opening in about two months and they should make up a good bit of the loss generated by Conn’s closing.”

The Pinehurst City Council meets the second and fourth Tuesday of each month.