Alexander to continue as city’s mayor

Published 10:10 am Friday, December 12, 2014


Curt Alexander will continue for another term as Elizabethton’s mayor, continuing his service as the longest seated mayor for the city.
City Council voted to select the mayor and mayor pro-tem for the next two year term. The body unanimously selected Alexander and mayor pro-tem Bill Carter to continue in their positions.
This appointment marks Alexander’s fifth and will take him into his 10th year as Elizabethton’s mayor when the term expires in 2016. He was first voted into the mayor’s seat by council in 2006. Carter was first named mayor pro-tem in 2012.
There were no other nominations for the mayor and mayor pro-tem seats.
Alexander said the council’s vote of confidence in him was an outward sign of how the governing body continued to work together.
“This shows how well we all work together for the city,” Alexander said. “We work so well together. We don’t always agree but we are always moving together in the same direction for the good of the city.”
Alexander said he was proud of the accomplishments council has made in the past eight years. He listed the upgrades to the city’s sewer and water systems, working with the Watauga River Regional Water Authority to support the city’s water supply, focusing on downtown revitalization and partnering with the Elizabethton City School system to make improvements to their facilities.
“This is nothing I’ve done,” Alexander said. “This is all of us working together.”
For his upcoming term, Alexander said he wanted to continue focusing on improvements to the water and sewer system and the downtown business district. After those things are accomplished, Alexander joked he could “ride off into the sunset.”
Along those lines, council approved a change order to the East Side Water Loss project that will allow more water lines to be replaced.
Utilities Director Johann Coetzee said the project was progressing better than expected allowing additional work to be done. During the first part of the project, some water lines were found in the construction area that did not require replacement.
This change means the work crews are able to add 850 feet of 6-inch line along Walker Street and 3,100 feet of 6-inch line along Riverview Road that had not been included in the original project. The addition of the extra line replacement extended the contract with Tipton Construction by 60 days.
The added work increased the contract price by $168,303 to $451,979. Coetzee said Tipton Construction could complete the work cheaper than city crews could and the state revolving loan fund grant used for the project included a 30 percent principal forgiveness component.
“We have the opportunity to replace more water lines in that zone,” Coetzee said.
Council unanimously approved the change order.
Council also presented a recognition plaque to Sly Gutierrez of Steinway and Sons for being the oldest customer of Mapes Piano String Company. Steinway and Sons has worked with Mapes for the past 96 years.

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