Decision Maker Response

Frank Iler’s response

Frank Iler
State Representative

Dec 19, 2018 — To our citizens in Boiling Spring Lakes concerned about Hurricane Florence recovery and East Boiling Spring Road:

I have heard from a dozen or more of your neighbors as of the end of last week that you are not satisfied with the progress on East Boiling Spring Road or other recovery efforts. I immediately contacted NCDOT and requested an update on the progress to date and a time frame for completion of a usable road there. I also visited your city manager on Monday, the first day the office was open after I became aware of the current issues. Monday, we examined the work site and spoke to the Barnhill foreman on the job. We also drove over the temporary roads at the two other breaks on East Boiling Spring Road.

I learned several things. One is that of the ten breaks in roads inside BSL, seven have had a temporary or permanent fix.

Second, I learned that the "Pine Lake " break, the one remaining on East Boiling Spring Road, is planned to be completed by January 15th, according to the foreman on the site. ( The NCDOT update, which is included in this email, gives a completion schedule of completion between January 5th and January 12.)

In conversation with the city manager I was told that DOT gives him an update each Friday, and he puts the information on the town website. I was otherwise led to believe that there was no communication from the municipal leadership.

As some of you may be aware, I observed the damage to several roads and streets in BSL the next week after Hurricane Florence. I also returned to a special meeting of your town council a couple of weeks later, where DOT laid out the plan to repair the only state road involved, East Boiling Spring Road. I believed that DOT would move forward with the most efficient manner. To learn that the citizens were not satisfied with the progress was relayed to me late last week.

As far as the reaction of the General Assembly, we have responded faster for funding for municipal infrastructure than anyone can remember. Out of the S2 billion savings reserve ("Rainy Day Fund"), we have already set aside over $800 million in three bills since September. These funds can be used to match federal funds or construct infrastructure in municipalities, such as towns roads or dams in Boiling Spring Lakes or the storm water and sewer system in Southport. This fund was virtually nonexistent until we came into the General Assembly in 2011.

The Division Engineer for our division, Division 3, Karen Collette, responded Monday to my weekend request for an update. Her response is below. Karen's position, Division Engineer, is the highest authority in the division, one of 14 DOT divisions in North Carolina. The next level of management is the Chief Engineer in Raleigh, then the Secretary of Transportation, then the Governor. Karen has always been responsive to us in Brunswick County, and had her research and response to me by late Monday.

I plan to be in touch with your town leadership and others on the progress of these projects and the associated timelines.

Best Regards,
Representative Frank Iler
District 17 - Brunswick County

Response from Karen Collette, NC DOT Division Engineer

This Hurricane Florence site is currently under construction for repair. The current plan involves excavating the damaged section to install 2 @ 96” CMP with appropriate headwalls, rebuilding the roadway, and repaving the section. The contractor working on this site is Barnhill Contracting Company. Some details are as follows:

There have been significant utility conflicts with this site. The initial review noted 9 ATMC cables in conflict with the repair that needed to be relocated. The initial discussions began on 9/29 and the relocation was completed on 12/5. During subsequent excavation, we discovered 2 additional Time Warner Cables that had been previously unknown that we have been trying to work around. There were also 2 wooden power poles that have also been relocated for this project.

The new pipes were delivered to the site on 11/26 and the bypass pipe was installed on 12/3 and they are hoping to install the pipe bedding material this week. Once this step is completed, the new pipe can be installed. The depth is approximately 20’ so it will require significant backfill once the pipe is set. We understand the contractor is planning to have a second crew on site tomorrow to assist and we are providing a bridge maintenance crew tomorrow as well to assist with putting the pipe together and any other logistical support needed.

The weather has caused additional delays as the contractor has had to stop operations to prepare for the rain events and correct any erosion control issues afterward. Any additional significant rain events may delay operations as well.

Provided we can set the pipe this week and continue backfilling operations next week, we anticipate the road may be opened by January 5th with an unpaved surface. Paving would be scheduled for the following week and anticipate it be completed by January 12th. If we are unable to get the pipe set, then these dates will likely be delayed by at least 1 week.