Q: Can you give an update on solid waste collection in Mandarin?
A: Many constituents are still dealing with missed or delayed yard, solid waste and recycle pickups and we understand the frustration. Since May 1, my office has received more than 50 emails and more than 40 calls about this issue. I submitted an “enough is enough” letter to the mayor’s office requesting assistance. I received a response from Public Works Director John Pappas reiterating the challenges they are facing with regards to the ability to hire a sufficient number of employees. He said the Solid Waste Division has reached out to non-city commercial haulers to determine if there is an opportunity to contract for supplemental support. Also, the city’s area contract hauler has again increased their pay structure to increase their opportunity to fill vacancies. For more of a long-term process improvement plan, the new Solid Waste Transfer Station is going through the contract phase. This will greatly benefit this area the most, since the average round trip travel distance for collection trucks’ disposal will be reduced from 41.7 miles to 7.4 miles, which allows more time to actually collect waste rather than transport waste.
Q: What can you tell us about the plans for the old Golden Corral property on San Jose Boulevard?
A: This is one of those times that happens occasionally where there are projects that don’t come to my desk because the property is already zoned for the purpose. In this case, my understanding is the plan is for a Daybreak Market, which will include a 4,800 sq. ft. convenience store with 20 fueling stations, as well as a 2,300 sq. ft. fast food restaurant with a drive through and also a car wash.
Q: What is happening with the Village Inn property, which we discussed last month was proposed to become the Time Out Sports Bar?
A: The Planning Commission approved this with conditions in a 6 – 0 vote. I expect this decision to be appealed by constituents in the neighborhood behind the building. I would expect it to be taken up by the Land Use and Zoning Committee (LUZ) in July and then it would go on to the full City Council. As I understand it, one of the major concerns is inadequate parking and the possibility that might lead to street parking in the neighborhood. Also, possibly there is the ability to make a right turn only out of the establishment onto San Jose Boulevard and not use Haley Road.
Q: Do you know when the Mandarin Senior Center will reopen?
A: I believe it is still being used as a COVID site and occasionally it hosts meetings. I don’t expect it to open and reintroduce its full program schedule until after July 1.
Q: Do you have anything else to share with Mandarin?
A: I have been requested by the Mandarin Republican Club to write a two-page summary of the City Council meetings and I do this every two weeks, focusing on what I think are priorities. If you would like to be added to the distribution list for this summary, please contact my office.
Q: What is the best way for our readers to contact you?
A: Community members can email me at MBoylan@coj.net or call (904) 255-5206.