Motorists by-passing interstate delays to reach N.C. 115 in Statesville will soon face a 25 mph limit.
The Statesville City Council is cutting the speed limit on Beverly Drive, in the city’s northwest section, from 35 mph to 25 mph. The reduction, requested by residents of the area, has been made necessary by the many motorists using that residential road at a high rate of speed to reach N.C. 115.
The council tentatively approved the lower speed limit at its first meeting in June, prompting Mayor Costi Kutteh to say, “Well, now the speeders will do 40 in a 25 rather than 50 in a 35.” The change is expected to be permanently authorized at the council’s June 15 meeting, after which it will be enforced.
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According to Statesville assistant police chief Michael Watts, motorists have increasingly been using Beverly Drive as a cut through to N.C. 115 in recent years, especially with construction work nearby on I-40. “After receiving a residential complaint concerning vehicular speed our own survey revealed that the road carries a high volume of traffic for a residential area,” Watts said.
Watts said Beverly Drive consists of curves, hills, and numerous driveway cuts. “The street is narrow, with an average width of 18 feet, and has little to no shoulder, with limited sidewalks for pedestrian foot traffic. As a matter of public safety, we recommend a 25 mph speed limit.”
In other action, the council:
▪ Authorized Lisa Salmon, the city finance director, to write off $117,311 in uncollectable utility accounts. The unpaid accounts cover the period from July 1-Dec. 31, 2013. They had initially been turned over to the city’s collection agency but when the agency made no significant progress in obtaining the money, collection efforts were ceased.
The city writes off uncollectable accounts twice a year, according to Salmon. During this same time period, Statesville recovered $14,481.00 in utility bad debts.
The city provides both electricity as well as water and sewer services to a majority of its residents and businesses, and the write-off amount is less than one percent of revenues generated through the city’s utility operations.
▪ Tabled a request to write off parking tickets issued by the city that are 7 years old or older. Salmon said there were 2,669 tickets totaling $37,765 for the period from Jan. 1, 2004 to May 1, 2008 that were deemed uncollectable. Instead of approving the request, the council asked for a full report on how the process of using a collection agency to go after past due parking tickets, which was initiated in 2013, was working.
Dave Vieser is a freelance writer. Have a story idea for Dave? Email him at email@example.com.