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City paving project nears completion

News Staff Writer

The roar of heavy road resurfacing equipment was still being heard across Atmore this week, but it apparently won’t be heard much longer.
The $2.6 million, 21-street resurfacing project being done by Mobile-based H.O. Weaver & Sons has progressed steadily since it began in late April. Most of the targeted streets have already been completed, with the remainder to soon follow.
Mayor Jim Staff said after Monday’s council meeting the contractor has done a phenomenal job and the project should be completed within the next three weeks.
“They’re going to be through by the end of this month, with the striping and everything,” Staff said. “They are doing a fantastic job. Everything they’ve done so far, drainage and all, has been perfect.”
City officials had to delay the project’s onset for several weeks while awaiting the completion of the Fiscal Year 2021 audit, a copy of which was required for borrowing low-interest money to do the resurfacing.
The audit, which is being conducted by an Atmore Certified Public Accounting firm, has still not been completed, but city officials finally decided to move forward with the paving plan.
“We’ve made several payments on the paving,” City Clerk Becca Smith said. “We still don’t have the audit, but we are paying for the work in increments. The first payment came out of our gas tax money; the next two came out of the General Fund.”
Smith said the city would now try to finance the entire undertaking through readily available cash resources.
“We’re trying not to borrow any money and trying not to use the city’s line of credit,” she said, pointing out that any money borrowed against the $2.5 million First State Bank & Trust credit line carries an interest rate of 3.45 percent.
While paving crews continued their work on the street project, crews and machinery from Arrington Curb and Excavation began a $348,000 Carpet Drive widening job. The Flomaton company stockpiled base materials on the property adjacent to Carpet Drive and were ready to begin work on Monday, July 10.