Council expected to OK boat-ramp lease

Published 6:52 am Sunday, November 21, 2010

Contributing Editor

Washington’s City Council is expected to approve a 50-year lease agreement regarding improvements to the boat ramp at Havens Gardens at the council’s meeting Monday.
The council also is expected to authorize the city manager to sign the agreement between the city and N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission. The agreement calls for the commission to pay for the boat-ramp improvements and for the city to provide free access to the boat ramp for 50 years.
Under terms of the agreement, the commission agrees to the following items:
• Provide design development for repairs and improvements to the boat ramp, including the parking area.
• Obtain all regulatory permits required for repairs and improvements.
• Make all repairs and construct all improvements to the boat landing and adjacent courtesy docks.
The agreement requires the city to do the following:
• Provide free boat access, including vehicle and boat-trailer parking, 24 hours a day, seven days a week with no closure of the site, except for repairs, improvements or emergencies.
• Maintain the grounds around the boat ramp, including regularly mowing the grass and removing litter.
• Maintain the boat ramp, with no closure of the site, except for repairs, improvements or emergencies.
• Allow the commission to install a sign indicating the city and commission are partners in the site and the commission’s contribution to improving the boat ramp.
During the meeting, the council could approve the contract for an interim city manager.
The interim city manager will run the city until a replacement for outgoing City Manager James C. Smith is hired. Smith will become town manager of Farmville effective January 2011. Farmville’s Town Council voted 4-1 earlier this month to hire Smith.
Last month, Smith offered his resignation from the city manager’s job in Washington effective Jan. 1, 2011, and the City Council accepted that resignation. Smith’s resignation was announced in a news release issued Oct. 8.
Smith began working as Washington’s city manager Jan. 3, 2006.
Other items on the council’s tentative agenda include, but are not limited to, discussions on a new police station, the city’s load-management campaign and a code of ethics policy.
The council meets in the Council Chambers on the second floor of the Municipal Building. 102 E. Second St.