ORIGINALLY WRITTEN DON RATZLAFF
The Hillsboro City Council took steps at its Feb. 7 meeting to seek a state loan for a major street improvement along the 300 and 400 blocks of South Adams Street.
After reviewing a cost breakdown for the $293,000 project presented by Rose Mary Saunders of Reiss & Goodness Engineers, the council voted to submit an application to participate in the Transportation Revolving Fund offered through the Kansas Department of Transportation.
Saunders said the city should have a loan agreement in hand within 60 days of a successful application. The present loan rate was 3.83 percent over 20 years, requiring an annual payment of $21,236.
The purpose of the project is to improve drainage along that area of Adams Street to prepare for the construction of student housing by Tabor College along the west side of the street.
Loan payments would come from revenue generated by the half-cent local sales tax approved in 1985 for street and sewer upkeep.
Paying the bill
Most of the remainder of the council meeting was spent paying bills for three capital-improvement projects the city already has in motion.
Those bills included:
- $7,661 to Coonrod & Associates Construction Co. for work done on the new entrance at Hillsboro Community Medical Center.
- $239,109 to Carrothers Construction Co. and $13,824 to Burbach Aquatics Inc. for work completed on the new aquatic center.
- $355,581 to Utility Contractors Inc. and $26,143 to EBH & Associates for work completed at the water-treatment plant; the UCI bill included $41,522 for change-order projects.
In other matters, the council:
- approved city policies No. 68 and No. 69 that originated with the Kansas Municipal Insurance Trust, which provides the city’s workers compensation coverage.
Policy No. 68 states the city’s intention to provide staff with “thorough knowledge” of safety procedures and rules. Policy No. 69 aims to get injured employees back on the job as quickly as possible.
- approved a three-year agreement with Mayer Specialty Services LLC to rehabilitate 200 vertical feet of city manholes each year at a cost of $17,400 per year.
City Administrator Steve Garrett said locking in a three-year price should save the city money.
One year’s work should rehabilitate around 30 manholes each year, which will reduce infiltration of ground water into the city’s sewer system.
“We have a long way to go yet,” Garrett said when asked how many manholes still require attention.
- passed Resolution 2006-03, which commits the city to continue participating in the Kansas Municipal Energy Agency’s mutual aid program, where member cities provide each other with staff assistance as needed during electrical disruptions.
- approved in concept a 20-year natural-gas franchise agreement with Atmos Energy, pending final review of the city attorney.
The agreement allows the city to review the contract every five years and increases the franchise fee from 3 percent to 5 percent of the revenue derived annually from the sale of natural gas within the city.