It was an exciting start to the meeting of the Yadkin County commissioners on Monday, with a special demonstration from the award-winning For-BOTS Lego robotics team from Forbush Elementary.
Students Tessa Angell, Zachary Edmonds, Cannon Doub, Hunter Hall, Cooper Hennings, Lance Hutchens, Aiden Lyon, Keegan Martin, Derek Matthews, Emma Mickles, Riley Ruckman, Chase Smitherman and Jacob St. John took turns explaining how the robot they designed works and how they go about completing tasks with the robot as part of the competitions. The team has claimed honors locally, regionally and at the state level.
County Chairman Kevin Austin, who has been involved with the robotics program since its inception two years ago, praised the work of the teachers, parents and students involved.
“It’s been a real thrill to see the way it’s progressed in just such a short time and to see the successes all you kids have had,” Austin said. “Y’all really exemplify exactly what the program is supposed to be and I think you are creating a bright future for our county.”
Following the students’ presentation, Kim Harrell, director of Yadkin County Human Services, gave a brief report to the board.
A contract for remodeling the large shelter at the county park was approved.
Also, a resolution to accept the loan from the North Carolina Drinking Water State Revolving Fund for construction of the new East Bend waterline was approved.
County Manager Lisa Hughes also presented a timeline for that project. Community meetings regarding the easements along the waterline are scheduled for March 10 and March 17. The engineering report is slated to be submitted to the state on May 1 and the bid and design package will be submitted on April 1. The bid is scheduled to be advertised on Sept. 8. Construction on the project is expected to begin in early 2017 with completion slated for early 2018.
The board also adopted a list of goals for the fiscal year 2017. Those goals include protecting the financial position of the county by way of maintaining or lowering the property tax rate, maintain the fund balance and managing the debt service structure; re-establishing healthcare in the Hoots facility in Yadkinville; expanding water and sewer, particularly the East Bend area and Brooks Crossroads; evaluating employee benefits, including adding an employee wellness clinic; collaborating with the Chamber of Commerce on a comprehensive economic development plan; continuing to work with the Yadkin County School System and Surry Community College to meet education needs; and expanding the parks and river access points.
Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-679-2341 or on Twitter @RippleReporterK.