MILLSBORO — With multimillion-dollar borrowing power at stake, town officials are ramping up efforts to garner support for a Nov. 20 referendum.
Voting on the town’s request for authority to borrow up to $38 million for infrastructure upgrades and other capital improvements will take place 1-7 p.m. at Millsboro Town Center.
“This will allow us to extend our borrowing limit, if we need it all,” said Millsboro Mayor Michelle Truitt at Monday’s mayor/council meeting. “Not that we are going to (go) out the very next day and borrow that amount. But we would have that available if we should need it.”
With approval, the referendum would allow for, among other potential projects, replacement of aging sewer and water lines, construction of a second sewer plant and a new police station to meet the needs of a growing department.
Expansion, both commercial and residential, has been ongoing for many years in Millsboro, which is No. 1 in residential growth in Sussex County, Delaware’s fastest-growing county.
While many new homes have come into town and continue to be built in communities such as Plantation Lakes, much of its infrastructure dates back to the mid-1960s, according to Millsboro Public Works Director Kenny Niblett.
To spread the word, the town is advertising the referendum on its website, millsboro.org, as well as on its electronic sign and via its newsletter.
There also is a video on YouTube (search “Millsboro referendum video”).
“We’re trying to get the word out,” said Town Manager Sheldon Hudson. “Please spread the word. Encourage your neighbors to vote yes, so that we can address our aging infrastructure.”
While they are requesting borrowing authority for substantial money, leaders have said all efforts are being made to secure state and/or federal funding, some coming with partial- or total-forgiveness incentives to support upgrades and projects.
Officials are at present unable to provide any definite scope on the impact that referendum passage would have on water/sewer rates. That would be determined at the time the town elects to exercise its borrowing power and the amount borrowed.