Village shifts funds scouts for new police officer

The Village of Whispering Pines approved the 10 Hardee Lane Conceptual Master Plan at its March 10 meeting. The plan’s $300,000 loan has $205,000 remaining, and $188,000 will be left at the end of the fiscal year. A phasing and estimate draft will be available at end of the month and will diagram areas for parks, playgrounds, lake access, swimming, conservation space, greenway, trails, and bicycling.

Under the road assessment study, the council voted to tap into the fund balance for approximately $42,000 to complete a road project in this fiscal year and avoid crossover into next year’s fund. It will leave the fund balance above 35%. The budget has $168,000 of the needed funds to repair, resurface, and complete restriping on Sandpiper Drive, which is 1.34 miles.

There are 30.8 miles of roads to maintain, and funds are planned with a trajectory to repair and resurface roads every 20 years.

In capital reserve last year for Cardinal Lake Dam Repair Fund, there was $25,000 allocated for the dam repair plan. The dam repair is now complete with a safety report, and there is $13,708 remaining that the council voted to return to the capital reserve fund.

Rich Lambdin, the village manager, said police officer Christopher Judge resigned.

Chief Jason Graham said Judge resigned for personal reasons, and they are looking for a replacement. The work schedule is a two-week rotating shift.

“Starting salary with no experience is $36,292 after probationary period,” said the village. “In addition, Position offers a $2,000/year vehicle stipend.  Salary is negotiable for those with experience, certifications, and training. Benefits package includes paid medical, dental, vision, life, and short-term disability insurance, 401K, NC State Retirement, and paid vacation and sick leave.”

Graham said, “Stop by and pick up an application at 14 Hardee Lane.” Applications can also be picked up from the village website at www.whisperingpinesnc.net or contact Lisa Weaver at 949-9961 or weaver@wppolice.com.

The council rejected the purchase of an empty lot at 207 Lakeview Drive.

Under new fire regulations, a 55-gallon burn barrel in residents’ back yards will now be prohibited. Fire pits have a limit of 30 inches high.

A discussion on realtors improperly advertising houses as being in the village when they are not led to examples of neighboring residents believing they had access to the lakes. Sending a strong letter to the state board of realtors, and inviting realtors to an open discussion was suggested. Bob Zschoche volunteered to ride around with realtors. The discussion will continue.

During public comments, it was announced that a new committee has been formed for a Whispering Pines directory after the original committee had lost volunteers, and people said they still want the directory. The directory provides resident numbers, a summary of ordinances, advertisements, and public services. It is expected to be published in fall 2021.

Written public comments will now have a word limit. Check with Linda Christopher for details at (910) 949-3141.

~Article and photo by Sandhills Sentinel Reporter Stephanie M. Sellers.

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