At the March 13 meeting, the Rushford Council received a recommendation from KLM Engineering to award the bid for a water tower restoration project. Initially, the city intended to have the project completed before July. However, the city altered the bid request to allow flexibility in the completion time.
“We got six bids because we weren’t so fussy about the timeline. That’s a good thing,” said City Clerk Kathy Zacher.
A year ago, the original engineer’s estimate was in the high $380,000-390,000 range. Like much else, prices are only continuing to rise. The city added $400,000 to the general obligation bond for the 2022 Street & Utility Improvement Project in anticipation of covering the cost of the water tower project. The city will pay the remainder from the Water Fund.
Bid prices ranged from $410,695 to $622,900. The low bidder was J.R. Stelzer Co. of Lincoln, Nebr. Work will include structure modifications, surface repairs, abrasive blast and coating to wet and dry interior areas, and blast, coating, and containment for exterior work.
The council also reviewed a preliminary review for a lighting system layout for the tennis and basketball courts at Creekside Park. Viking Electric designed the estimated $60,369 plan.
“It’s a first pass at it,” said Mayor Terri Benson.
The layout includes 10 poles, with two heads on each. The city will trench electricity into the area. Public Works would do any trench repair and landscaping after the installation. Rushford Peterson Valley Chamber of Commerce Director Jen Hengel and resident Kayla Volkman are looking into funding options for court upgrades through various foundations, organizations, and individual donations.
“It goes back to what they might find for grant funding,” added Benson. “It’s a big number. I would never have guessed.”
“The number isn’t going to get any cheaper if you wait,” cautioned Zacher.
“I’d like to see it get scheduled, and whatever they get for grants could be applied to it,” noted Ryman.
The council took no action on the information.
The city held the first neighborhood meeting for the proposed city/school district trail through the Tyroll Hills subdivision. Mayor Benson, Zacher, Public Works Director Roger Knutson, and Rushford-Peterson Superintendent Ben Bernard were all present.
“There weren’t really any negative concerns,” said Benson. The trail proposal is on the city’s Facebook page and website.
Also discussed were legislative updates. Right now, the Senate is considering a proposed $150 million increase and a new formulation for Local Government Aid that considers current inflation.
“Decisions are expected in the next few weeks,” said Chladek. “From a permanent standpoint, that would be ideal.”
The next regularly scheduled council meeting is at city hall on Monday, March 27, at 6:30 pm. The public is encouraged to attend.
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