$900,000 needed for water, sewer at Marion industrial park

More than $900,000 would be needed to complete water and sewer connections for the proposed Batt Industrial Park at Roosevelt and U.S. Highway 56 in Marion, the Marion City Commission was told in the regular meeting Tuesday, Oct. 10.

The commission also agreed that a non-binding public vote on whether to seek a regional landfill will not be held in the November general election.

Commissioner Larry Reiswig said, “We need to postpone that until numbers and information from Waste Connections come in, so we have something to work with.”

Reiswig, Dennis Nichols, city administrator, and Keith Collett, local attorney, were named the week before as a negotiating team to talk to Waste Connections.

Reiswig and Commissioner Jim Crofoot were at the meeting but Mayor Max Hayen had to be absent. It was decided the next meeting will be postponed from Monday, Oct. 16, to Tuesday, Oct. 17, so all three commission members could attend.

A vote on whether to annex land owned by Pearl Baxter which is seen as connected to plans for a regional landfill is scheduled for that meeting.

Bruce Allman of the environmental division of Professional Engineering Consultants in Wichita presented alternatives on the proposed industrial park to the commission.

The completed park would include two ponds to catch run-off water as more area is surfaced and 20 industrial lots ranging in size from just over one acre to more than five acres. Allman detailed water lines and sewer lines with pump stations needed, and concluded that water costs would be $230,300 and sewer costs would be $708,540 for a total estimated cost of $938,840.

Allman suggested options of developing fewer lots at a time, and looked at shortcuts on water and sewer lines to ease costs.

For instance running sewer lines from an existing lift station by the John Deere dealership might lower development costs to do just two lots to a little more than $200,000. He estimated that doing six lots out of the 20 total would cost $632,730.

Nichols said that as the existing industrial park continues to fill “the city does not have a lot of options for more development without this park.”

Allman suggested the city explore ways to save money by using city workers to at least do cleanup work.

In other business, Nichols said the city delivered 109 tons of trash to KC Development at the transfer station in September.

“The average per ton cost of deliveries for the nine months ended Sept, 30 amount to approximately $55,” he said.

In the continuing problem of the reduced water flow through the city’s transmission line from Marion Reservoir, Nichols said estimates for taking care of it have been reduced to less than $40,000 to increase water flow by 50 gallons per minute. He said engineers have determined that the line needs to be “pigged out.”

Walters-Morgan will install permanent pigging stations and oversee taking bids for the entire project. City personnel will also install a six-inch meter at the reservoir to replace the current four-inch meter. It is believed that where the line goes under the Cottonwood River and over the dike allows a buildup of mud and clams, he said.

Nichols said street project costs for the year came in as projected at $175,558.

That included improvements on Coble Street, asphalt overlays on Lawrence, Freeborn and Industrial Park Street, and concrete work on Timber Road.

The commission agreed that the city extend a $136,072.91 lease/purchase agreement with Straub Oilfield Services, Inc., on the Case-International dealership in town that expires in November.

Nichols said Straub has made all payments on time, but the poor agricultural economy has made it difficult for the company to make a balloon payment.

He said Central National Bank and Marion National Bank, as backers of the city on the agreement, have indicated they are favorable to the extension, but final action was postponed until Hayen returns because of Reiswig’s conflict of interest as a Central National officer.

The commissioners approved paying Marion County $2,878 that was paid to the city in franchise fees.

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