Grant will help city put in new surface at Lincoln Park

Published 4:51 pm Friday, March 22, 2024

By Jay Compton


The playground at Lincoln Park will be getting a new, safer surface after the Middlesboro City Council adopted a resolution for a Crumb Rubber Derivative Grant.

Mayor Boone Bowling explained that the resolution allows the city to apply for a grant to get blue padding for the playground at the park.

“It will go under all of the equipment except for the zip line and the swings,” he said. “It’s going to be roughly between $80,000 and $90,000 and we’ll be responsible for 25 percent of it.”

Council member Tommy Jo Mike asked about putting benches in at the park like the ones at Southside. Bowling said those had already been ordered and came in last week.

The council also approved entering into an employment agreement with Samuel Davie as a specialized Codes Enforcement Lawyer.

Council member Glynna Brown asked about turning off some utilities at locations that were out of season or getting some locations  disconnected that are not being used in order to save money.

Mayor Bowling said that was a great idea and some changes were already being made.

“We’ll try to be more careful with that in the future,” he said.

During his report Sewer Department manager Josh Campbell said the plant is running well right now.  “We are a little backed up on solids, but Waste Connections are working with us on that,” he said. “We were hammered with solids last month. Our plant is rated to treat 3347 pounds, we typically handle 5,000 to 6,000 pounds and the plant can handle that without any problems. When you see 16,000 pounds or 11,000 pounds those are abnormal numbers.”

He also told the council that the plans for the main pump station rehab had been approved by the Division of Water.

“The next step is getting all of the paperwork finalized and that project will go out for bid this year,” Campbell said. “Ideally, that work can be done during the summertime when the flow is a lot lower.”

Fire Chief Robbie England told the council that the ambulance the department was given permission to order last year was now expected to be delivered in January of 2026. “We’re still in a holding pattern there and we’ll cross out fingers on everything else,” he said.

England added that the department has hired two new firefighters in the last month. “They both seem to be fitting in really well and finding their place. I think they’ll be a great addition to serving our community,” he said. We’re looking forward to getting them trained up so we can cut back on some of the overtime and let our men have some time off.”

Fencing has been completed around the department’s training center on 15th Street.

“That’s helped a whole lot and kept things from being tampered with or fooled with,” England said. “We’re going to try and get out there this spring and do quite a bit of training with live fire and everything.”

During council comments Brown shared that she had attended a finance committee meeting last week where they went over quarterly budget reports. “I think we’re in good condition financially at this point in time,” she said.

Mike congratulated the Middlesboro Middle School academic team on getting as far as they did at the state Governor’s Cup competition.

Council member Judy Grandey said the community clean-up event is usually in April. This year the clean-up will take place a little later in the month of May.