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Water main break questions still flowing

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The water main break continues to flood the weekly list of Grilling Stafford questions. Navasota City Manager Brad Stafford discusses the expenses incurred from the water break and how the city is seeking reimbursement.

Navasota Examiner Publisher Ana Cosino and Willy 98.7 Radio Personality André Perrard ask Stafford questions submitted by the community.

Highlights from Grilling Stafford – Episode 47

In February contractors broke a water pipe that caused the City to lose water service and then issue a boil water notice that lasted several days. How much did this cost the City including worker salaries? “It cost us around $40,000 total and that includes all the staff that were out except the salaried staff. But there were a lot of us out there that night. It also includes the lost water and the testing. We included everything.

Who is the City’s insurance company? “For property and liability insurance it is Texas Municipal League Intergovernmental Risk Pool.”

Did the insurance pay for all or part of the damages and if yes, how much? “We did not report it to our insurance company because it was not our issue. We reported it to the contractor who damaged the pipe. We are still working through the process to be reimbursed for that.”

What is the City’s deductible? “$1,000.”

Has the City been reimbursed by the contractor? If yes, how much? If no, why not? “The answer is no because we have engineers working on it. We are working on a plan with that contractor [responsible for water main break] to repay us through extra work. We have some work that needs to be done and it will save the city money if we are able to just swap it out for work. So, we are working through that process with the contractor and engineer right now.”

The cities surrounding Navasota all have Texas DMV offices for licenses and such, why does Navasota not have one? “Because the State of Texas closed it approximately 12 or 13 years ago. It was in the police station. I guess they determined they were needing to save money and they consolidated offi ces and we were one that got eliminated.”

Can and will Navasota ever get a DMV office? “That is a good question. I don’t know if we will ever be able to get it. We’ve asked before, but things would have to change considerably. With our growth, it might actually cause them to reconsider, but you also have to understand it is also connected to the State’s budget and of course the biennium is not projected to be one of their greatest because of what has happened with COVID and the economy. There are so many factors that play into it.”

Severe Weather season is coming up, how can residents sign up for alerts from the City? “They can call city hall, 936-825-6475 and talk to the Utility Building Department or anybody in the Utility Department and they can assist them with signing up. I believe they can also go on our website and sign up as well. I encourage everybody to sign up for that because you get weather warnings, which is not us speaking but from the National Weather Service. It is very handy to have that. You are warned when there is a tornado, severe thunderstorms but you also get calls from the city like when we had the damaged water main. It is really important to sign up for that. On the website it is under ‘Notify Nav.’ If you have a number change then it will really help if you call and change that number.”

To view the full video of Grilling Stafford – Episode 47, or to watch archived episodes, visit The Examiner website, www.navasotaexaminer.com. If you would like to submit a question for Grilling Stafford, email news@navasotaexaminer.com. New episodes of Grilling Stafford are released every Thursday.