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Spencer workers save town $21,000 in insurance premiums

SPENCER — Spencer employees have saved the town about $21,000 in annual insurance premiums, thanks to a new safety program and attention to policies and procedures, an official said.
Town Manager Larry Smith lauded the employees Tuesday night and presented certificates of appreciation to Joel Taylor, who inherited completing the safety manual after he became public works director last year; Josh Brown, who administers the safety program; and Sgt. Eric Ennis, who answered questions during a meeting with insurance agents and earned a lower premium for the Spencer Police Department.
“It costs time and money to have staff working on policies and procedures, but you are seeing dividends,” John Drye, vice president of Central Carolina Insurance, told the Town Board. “You have some employees who have done a stellar job to get these programs in place.”
Also at Tuesday’s meeting, aldermen said they are interested in working with the town of East Spencer to pursue a bicycle and pedestrian planning grant from N.C. Department of Transportation.
Aldermen directed Smith to meet with East Spencer officials and then report back to Spencer aldermen before the town spends any money. East Spencer has been working on the application and plans to pursue the grant even if Spencer bows out.
Smith said the study could cost up to $40,000, and the state grant would reimburse 90 percent of the cost. Spencer and East Spencer would have to pay about $2,000 each, he said.
The grant would pay for the communities to plan where the Carolina Thread Trail, Safe Routes to School, Small Town Main Street and Spencer Woods connections should tie into East Spencer, Spencer and Salisbury town limits to make the most of safety, convenience, commuting and economic development. The grant deadline is Dec. 16.
Alderman Reid Walters said having a plan for the connections would help Spencer move up in the formula for other grants that are based on points.
Alderman Scott Benfield said it makes sense for two neighboring towns to work together, not compete, to win grants.
If Spencer joins the application process, each town would appoint members to a steering committee.

Contact reporter Emily Ford at 704-797-4264.

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