Special to The Gardner News
Roughly two hours of the three plus hour May 26 Edgerton City Council meeting was devoted to discussion of a proposed agreement for installation of a new wastewater pump station and force main.
The city’s current wastewater treatment facility was constructed in 1981. In 2014, the city found out that the facility fell short of meeting certain newer requirements of Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE).
At that time, city staff began to develop a plan to decommission the existing facility and replace it with a new pump station and force main to transport the sewage to the Big Bull Creek Wastewater Treatment Facility (BBC WWTF).
The new equipment would be located on the same property as the existing facility. It installs a new wastewater line running south along Sunflower Road to 207th Street, where it turns to the east and ends up at BBC WWTF.
KDHE approved of this concept.
In November 2015, the city approved of hiring Burns and McDonnell/CAS Construction to study the project and provide a Design-Build agreement and price for the project.
Staff recommendation was for council to approve a proposed agreement with Burns and McDonnell/CAS Construction on the basis of a stipulated price of $2,787,950.
Representatives of the contractors gave a summary presentation and stayed afterwards to answer questions.
The proposed agreement includes “allowances” for some items that will use labor and materials that can only be estimated until work is actually undertaken. If the actual costs ends up being more than the estimated figure, the city would have to pay the excess. If actual costs turn out to be less than the estimates, the savings would be deducted from the total price.
Council had questions and required explanations of many elements of the project, including the stipulated price.
Don Roberts, mayor, expressed concern about taxpayer reaction.
“I want to be assured that we are doing it right, doing it long term right, but yet do it as cheap as we possibly can,” he said.
The proposal estimates $74,000 as cost to decommission the existing facility. This includes disabling existing equipment, moving the existing sand/salt storage building and filling the existing oval shaped oxidation ditch.
Roberts believed that there might be less costly options to the work proposed there, as well as in other items, and wanted to explore any such possible options in more detail.
“I’m not saying the price won’t be $2.787 million, but the problem I’m having is the heartburn of if it’s more than we anticipated… and I do think it’s our job, for the citizens, to look into this deeper,” Roberts said.
Council recessed into a thirty minute executive session at 9 p.m. to discuss terms in the agreement with city attorney Patrick Reavey.
Upon resuming open session, a motion was made to table the discussion until the next meeting, to get more detail.
Darius Crist, councilmember, was absent, leaving four council members to vote. Clay Longanecker and Jody Brown voted in favor of tabling the discussion, while Cindy Crooks and Charlie Troutner voted against. Roberts cast the tiebreaker vote, and the motion passed with a 3-2 vote.
Automated Water Meter Project
Council also kept the automated water meter project moving by approving the purchase of materials from Schulte Supply, Inc., in the amount of $205,328.10.
Longanecker asked for an explanation of funding for this.
Beth Linn, city administrator, described it as a low interest loan from KDHE with a 20 year term. Staff expects the final loan documents to be presented for council consideration at one of their June meetings.
Once ordered, the new meters will arrive in 3-4 weeks.
Council approved the purchase with a 4-0 vote.
Nelson Street Waterline
In the May 19 work session, council identified the Nelson Street waterline replacement project as a priority. The estimated project cost is $291,495.At the May 26 meeting, staff recommended submitting an application to Johnson County for a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG).
Cities may apply for up to $200,000 in CDBG funds. Staff recommended using Water System Development Funds to cover the remaining cost of over $200,000
A required public hearing was held prior to council consideration.
Council approved the motion to submit the application with a 4-0 vote.
Edgerton council tables pump station, approves automated water meters