Water projects top council discussion
By Katie Zerr –
Mobridge Water Department Manager Brad Milliken requested the council approve a request for $5,000 to begin the process of replacing the clarifier at the wastewater plant.
Milliken said he would like to budget for the replacement work in 2014 and he needs to get the ball rolling on the project. The money is for an engineer’s study needed for grant applications. Those applications will be completed and filed by the staff of Northeast Council of Governments (NECOG), which helps in securing funding and administering projects for municipalities in this area.
NECOG will apply for funding of the project from the South Dakota State Revolving Fund.
Milliken told the council he had also researched renovating the clarifier but found the renovation would cost more than the complete replacement project, which includes demolition.
Milliken told the council that there are galvanized drop boxes in the water systems to houses along the Second Avenue West storm Sewer project. Those boxes located on the west side of the street will be replaced at no cost to the home owner as part of the project. Those on the east will not.
Milliken requested he be able to contact those homeowners on the east side with galvanized boxes and offer to replace those while the street is torn up for the sewer project.
Those property owners on the east side of the street have the option to replace the boxes, but the $1,500 cost of replacement would be the responsibility of the homeowner.
Ward II Councilman Tony Yellow Boy asked Milliken to explain why the homeowner would be responsible if the boxes were located in the street, which is city property.
Milliken explained that anything located from the water main line in the street to the home was the responsibility of the property owner. He said the reason he was offering homeowners a chance to replace the boxes during the project is that the cost would be at least $500 less than if something went wrong with the boxes in the future and street had to be dug up again. That cost would be added to the replacement cost of the old boxes.
Ward I Councilman Tom O’Connell asked if there were some way the city could help the homeowners with cost, such as getting a bulk rate from the contractor, that would bring that cost down.
Yellow Boy told the council they need to work something out so the homeowners could pay for replacement cost over a period of time rather than all at once.
Milliken said he would contact the owners of those 17 homes on the east side of the street and see how they respond. If enough of them are interested in replacing the boxes, further discussion about how the city will handle the cost will be held.
Because the project has a deadline for completion, Milliken said he would report back to the council at the July 1 meeting.
Mobridge Zoning Officer Haden Bowie reported that an agreement between Verizon and West River Telecommunications for use of a tower at WRT’s Fourth Street West location has eliminated the need for a temporary tower.
Bowie said no trucks would be needed at that location and the agreement between the two companies meets the requirements of the city.
– Katie Zerr –