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Large projects total $13 million in proposed CIP

by Tom Chillemi

Middlesex County’s Capital Im-provement Plan (CIP) is a tool that lists long-term county building projects that have a useful life of more than 5 years and construction costs exceeding $50,000.

The Middlesex Planning Commission recently recommended the CIP for fiscal years 2015-19. CIP projects total $13 million. Being listed on the CIP does not guarantee funding.

The Middlesex Board of Supervisors will hold a public hearing on the proposed CIP on Tuesday, February 4.

While many of the CIP projects require major funding spread over several years, an example of a current CIP project that has already begun is construction of secured entrances to Middlesex Elementary School (MES) and St. Clare Walker Middle School.

Building secure school entrances is the second priority of the current 2014-18 CIP. The county budgeted $115,000 to build a secure entrance at MES. However, Middlesex Public School Superintendent Dr. Thomas Taylor said he secured a $100,000 grant that enabled two secure school entrances to be built at the same time. They are nearing completion.

The proposed CIP for 2015-19 lists constructing controlled school entrances as the “urgent” top priority and estimates the cost at $105,000.

Among other things, the CIP is necessary in order for the county to accept cash proffers from developers.

A Planning Tool
Middlesex County Administrator Matt Walker emphasized that the CIP is only a planning tool. Being listed on the CIP is not a request for funding, nor does it mean the project will be funded or undertaken, he added.

“The CIP helps us plan what our future needs will be,” said Walker.

Building the nearly-completed office for the Middlesex Commonwealth’s Attorney in the basement of the Middlesex Courthouse is an example of a CIP project.

Walker said he hopes to lead the county toward “setting aside money for completion of some of the capital projects that are desperately needed.”

Major projects are often delayed “for years” due to lack of funding, said Walker, adding that planning for large projects is essential.

Setting priorities
Building a wastewater collection system is the second priority on the proposed 2015-19 CIP. The total project, which is listed as “necessary and desirable,” is estimated at $7 million.

The Hampton Roads Sanitation District is studying how to treat wastewater in Saluda and the Town of Urbanna. Urbanna’s treatment plant is 42 years old and needs to be replaced.

Read the rest of this story in this week’s Southside Sentinel at newstands throughout the county, or sign up here to receive a print and/or electronic pdf subscription.

posted 01.15.2014

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