Funds sought to fix roads

By Tony Gutierrez: CNJ staff writer

The City of Clovis Public Works Committee decided at its meeting Wednesday to recommend the city pick up the balance for funding road improvements that include Sycamore and Main streets.

The committee initially asked the state for $222,000, but received $62,000, leaving the city to provide $160,000.

Public Works Director Harry Wang said he will assess the exact cost for each district in the city before bringing it before the city commission.

“I’ll come out with exact cost of each district’s … share and how much will be dipped into other districts,” Wang said.

Wang said that in District 2, funds will go toward Sycamore Street rather than residential streets. Commissioner and Mayor Pro Tem Randy Crowder, who represents District 1, said he’d consider dipping into his district’s funds for District 2 because his district’s voters use Sycamore to go to the park just like other residents.

The plan also includes widening Main Street south of its intersection with Llano Estacado Boulevard.

“At the traffic committee meeting, we had requests from citizens of making it three lanes,” Wang said. “Left-turning people are blocking the rest of the people.”

Wang added Main Street is not wide enough to dedicate a turning lane, so he suggested widening it 10 feet from Llano Estacado a distance of 160 feet south.

“It’s not my district, but I go down there every evening and it’s a problem,” said District 2 Commissioner Len Vohs.

The committee also heard recommendations from Joel Rife, a consulting engineer with Camp Dresser & McKee Inc., an engineering firm in Albuquerque, about improving the wastewater treatment system in Clovis.

Rife said the top priority for the plant is air leaks in pipes. He also recommended replacing corroded sludge pumps, improving the effluent chlorination system, improving structural and electrical issues and reducing maintenance costs by reducing the number of blowers.

“There basically is no modern control system,” Rife said. “The plant was equipped with a control system that was good for the day, but it is way out of date.”

Wang said the project would be $8 million, so the next step for the committee is to prioritize the improvements to the plant and submit each one to the city commission in priority order.