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Chatfield awards 2014 public works improvement contract to Zenke, Inc.


Fri, Jun 27th, 2014
Posted in Chatfield Government

After considerable discussion the Chatfield City Council made the contract award to Zenke, Inc., LaCrescent, at their June 23 meeting.

Dillon Dombrovski, WSB, had recommended awarding the contract to Zenke at the city council’s June 9 meeting. Zenke had submitted the low bid for the 2014 improvement projects in the amount of $1,609,174. Because an easement necessary for the St. Albans Place project was not yet signed, the council tabled the awarding of the contract at that time.

City Clerk Joel Young reported that the easement with one property owner along St. Albans Place had now been signed with a few conditions. After discussing the conditions, the council approved the easement agreement.

Dombrovski noted that the 30 day period for the bid agreement was nearly up. However, easements for the Twiford area were not yet signed. He listed four options that the council had which included awarding the contract assuming the easements will get done.

City Attorney Fred Suhler described several issues that have delayed getting the easements into place. Issues with the land, location of streets, and location of property boundaries have never been corrected or resolved over many decades. These details have to be determined before the easement agreements can be made. Suhler stressed that the re-plat of the Twiford area has to be done right, especially due to the city’s intention of selling a portion of the land to a large company.

Councilor Paul Novotny asked Dombrovski if there would be another option to make the sanitary sewer work in the area without the easements. Dombrovski didn’t offer an alternative. Suhler said he was reasonably confident now that we know the people we need to talk to for the easements. During this process land owners will be getting their boundary issues resolved also.

Suhler suggested that the simplest solution is to take the risk that we can obtain the easements and award the contract for all four project areas including Twiford. Chris Giesen will be working with property owners with the help of Joel Young to get the easements into place.

A motion to accept the Zenke, Inc. bid for all four projects including the Twiford area was approved with a three to two vote. Dave Frank and Mike Urban voted against. Dombrovski said he will get the contracts out the next day.

Mike Bubany, David Drown and Associates, suggested they wait on the bond issue for the improvement projects. The city will be able to cash flow the first pay estimate. By the next meeting, July 14, the city will better know if a change order that could affect the total bond issue will be necessary, assuming the easement issue is resolved.

339 Hawley Street Property Clean-up

Joel Young noted that the property owner had signed a waiver agreement in February giving the city the right to clean up the property. The agreement allows the city to recoup the cost of the clean up through special assessments which can be paid over a period of up to 10 years.

An agreement had also been signed by the residents in which it was agreed that the property would be vacated in May. More recently a letter from the property owner was submitted asking the city to allow clean up of the property to be done with the help of family and friends by October, expecting this to cost less than city hired contractors.

Young noted that he had met with two prospective contractors to do the work last week. Each member of the council made a statement that they have to move forward as it has already gone on too long and the clean up is overdue. A motion for the city to have the work done as planned was approved unanimously.

Other Business In Brief

•Chatfield’s rating with Standard and Poors was reaffirmed as ‘AA’ with a stable outlook. The city was assessed as having very strong budget flexibility and liquidity with “reserves exceeding 80 percent of adjusted operating expenditures during the past several years.” The rating agency also noted that the rating will not be raised in the next two years due to the “very weak debt” profile. There was concern for the amount of debt the city will have which includes the 2014 improvement project.

•Street closings and an alterative parade route for this year’s Western Days were each approved. The parade route will start at Spring Street going south on Main Street (Highway 52), turning left onto Sixth Street and then going north on Fillmore Street and stopping at Third Street.

•Three part time patrol officers including David Friese, Ken Bradford, and Ryan Quanrud were hired.

•Tony Lammers explained that the city’s water tanks that have not been inspected since 1996 should be inspected on the inside to see if there are any problems. The council approved a proposal from KLM Engineering, Inc., Lake Elmo, to use remote operated vehicles to complete an inspection. The cost to inspect three ground storage reservoirs is $6,900. Additional charges may occur if necessary.

•Lammers reported that Schwickert’s Tecta America has inspected roofs on the wastewater treatment plant. Repairs to the roofs will not exceed $5,930. The proposal to repair the flat roofs was approved as presented.

•The response time for public works employees was changed from 10 to 15 minutes to within 25 minutes, requiring employees to live within 25 minutes of travel time from the public works maintenance shop.

•Young reported that he has had numerous calls and e-mails concerning channel line-up changes being made by Mediacom Cable. He made it clear the city simply has no authority over channel changes. The council passed a resolution making a statement to Mediacom about citizen concern over the channel line-up changes.

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