City to consider $355,000 grant for Nutkao

By Brie Handgraaf

Staff Writer

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The Rocky Mount City Council will vote on three budget ordinance amendments during its 4 p.m. Monday meeting, two of which are the result of grants.

The most significant of these amendments is a $355,000 grant from the Golden LEAF Foundation to cover construction costs associated with a pretreatment facility for new business, Nutkao, and other businesses in the Whitakers Industrial Park.

Nutkao plans to open a new food processing plant in the Battleboro community, which is expected to create 74 new jobs by the end of 2018.

Also on the agenda’s consent agenda is a $6,000 grant from the Nash County Foundation to support drug- and alcohol-prevention initiatives of the Rocky Mount Police Department.

The money will support the Junior Police Academy, Badges for Baseball as well as the No Shine, No Grind football and basketball camps.

According to the agenda for the meeting, insurance allocations will cover $24,106 in repairs to the Wastewater Treatment Plant due to the installation of a vacuum swing absorption system, a more energy-efficient filtration unit used in the process of treating wastewater.

At the 2 p.m. Committee of the Whole meeting, council members will hear three presentations.

Planning and Development Director Ken Graves will kick off the meeting with a presentation on proposed community appearance standards, which would ensure all exterior walls visible from the public right-of-way would be covered with brick, wood, stone or glass instead of metal. The proposal would apply to new development along Benvenue Road, Hunter Hill Road, Raleigh Boulevard, Sunset Avenue, Thomas A. Betts Parkway, Wesleyan Boulevard and Winstead Avenue. The next step for the standards would be to have a public hearing at a future council meeting.

The second item on the agenda is a quarterly financial report by Budget Manager Ken Hunter.

City Manager Charles Penny will finish the meeting with a presentation on the enterprise fund financial model – a software system that would allow staff to do long-range forecasts for the city’s utility funds.

“This will give us the tool, so we can forecast rate adjustments and production changes and calculate the financial impact on our customers,” Penny said. “Instead of going into a dark room and calculating it for hours, we’ll be able to forecast it within a matter of minutes.”

The system installation is expected to be completed within 60 to 90 days for utilization during the budget season.