Car­bon­ear roads New mayor in Old Per­li­can still suf­fer­ing ef­fects of harsh win­ter

Pre­de­ces­sor re­signs fol­low­ing leave of ab­sence

The Compass - - News - BY CHRIS LEWIS chris.lewis@tc.tc BY AN­DREW ROBINSON edi­tor@cb­n­com­pass.ca

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.

CHRIS LEWIS/TC ME­DIA

A snow­plow clears snow from the side of Wa­ter Street in Car­bon­ear.

TC ME­DIA FILE PHOTO

Bruce Button served mul­ti­ple terms on coun­cil for the Town of Old Per­li­can.

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