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The Villages
Friday, August 12, 2022

$200,000 emergency pipe repair adds to budget concerns in CDD 1

A $200,000 emergency pipe repair is contributing to budget concerns in Community Development District 1.

The 30-year-old concrete pipe runs between two homes on San Marino Drive.

The pipe is “still in good shape,” but a joint has failed, “due to ground movement over time,” Bruce Brown of District Property Management told the Community Development District 1 Board of Supervisors on Friday morning at their meeting at Savannah Center.

Work on the pipe replacement was taking place on San Marino Drive
Work on the pipe replacement was taking place Friday on San Marino Drive.

In April, a resident discovered a depression between the two homes. District Property Management personnel inspected the site and found “multiple areas of loose soil between those houses.” 

The pipe repair forced a partial street closure on San Marino Drive
The pipe repair forced a partial street closure on San Marino Drive.

The pipe repair will cost $168,129. After the pipe is lined, there will also be geo-engineering costs. Soils will be tested to determine whether a ground-stabilizing chemical injection is necessary. 

The $200,000 dwarfs the $20,000 which had been budgeted in 2021-22 for stormwater inspection/repairs. The additional money will be drawn from working capital.

Supervisor Ellen Cora asked Brown if he expected “other, frequent, expensive-to-repair, issues” like the one on San Marino Drive “because residents are concerned about rising taxes and costs relating to our aging infrastructure.”

Cora asked District Staff to look into alternative means of financing, including sharing costs with other agencies, the Developer, or perhaps issuing municipal bonds to have ready cash to cover such expenses.

“What our residents don’t need, along with the current high gas prices and 8+ percent inflation overall, are large surprises for Villages repairs,” Cora said.

The board also split 4-1 on preliminary approval for the 2022-23 budget which includes a 15 percent maintenance assessment increase.  The increase is due to long-term concerns about CDD 1’s finances.

“Long-term we have to look out for the best interests of everybody,” said Supervisor Rocky Hyder.

Chairwoman Kathy Porter voted against the proposed budget. She said it’s the wrong time for a 15 percent increase on residents. She said she was only prepared to go as high as 10 percent.

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