Carbonear roads New mayor in Old Perlican still suffering effects of harsh winter
Predecessor resigns following leave of absence
Carbonear’s roads have had a tough battle against winter this year, and the season isn’t over yet.
After driving through certain parts of the town, it’s not hard to see the effect this winter has had on the road conditions in Carbonear. Places like Water Street and Valley Road have significant potholes, and drivers often find themselves swerving around the road to avoid damaging their vehicles.
However, during a recent council meeting in Carbonear, Brian O’Grady, director of operations and public works, noted that the town is also feeling the effects as they struggle to maintain the roads.
“During a normal winter season, we purchase around 1,600 tons of salt and sand, with about 400 tons left over to use the following year” O’Grady said last Monday. “So far this year, we’ve used all 1,600 tons, plus what was leftover from last year. That’s about 2,000 tons, plus some more that we recently purchased.”
On top of maintaining safe driving conditions with salt and sand, O’Grady mentioned that the town is trying their best to stay on top of potholes as much as they can. However, things like the freeze/thaw cycle that comes with rough winter seasons makes it nearly impossible to make permanent fixes to the roads until the temperatures warm up and there is less snowfall.
O’Grady also mentioned that plowing roads in town that aren’t paved has become an issue as well, as the gravel has softened up too much for heavy plowing equipment. He added that smaller equipment could be used, but noted that this was just another thing to add to the list of road problems that come with winter.
Only a few months ahead of the next general election, the Town of Old Perlican has a new mayor.
Carl Hopkins moved into the mayor’s seat at the end of March in the Trinity Bay community, permanently replacing his predecessor Bruce Button.
Speaking with The Compass Thursday, Hopkins confirmed Button requested to take a leave of absence shortly after Christmas. He officially resigned from council last month after serving the town for multiple terms, including the most recent one as mayor.
Hopkins, who was first elected to council in 2013, was previously the town’s deputy mayor and served as acting mayor during Button’s leave of absence.
“It’s a bit challenging and somewhat of an honour and privilege, I guess, to be mayor of your town,” Hopkins said.
It’s a bit challenging and somewhat of an honour and privilege, I guess, to be mayor of your town. — Carl Hopkins
With a general election set to take place in September, the town has decided not to hold a byelection to fill the vacancy resulting from Button’s resignation. Cliff Morgan has assumed the deputy mayor’s position.
A snowplow clears snow from the side of Water Street in Carbonear.
Bruce Button served multiple terms on council for the Town of Old Perlican.