By Cecilia Fox
Record Herald Writer
TIPP CITY — City council awarded contracts Monday night for upcoming construction projects, reviewed the 2013 year-end financial report, and discussed the language of a service contract with Monroe Township.
Council awarded the contract for the Westedge Avenue utility replacement project to Underground Utilities Inc., for $930,954. The project involves the installation of a new 12-inch water main and storm sewers, slip-lining the existing sanitary sewers, and repaving Westedge Avenue between Hyatt and Bellaire.
Funding for the project will come from a $300,000 Ohio Public Works Commission grant and from the water, sewer, the Capital Improvement Plan funds. Another $75,000 will come from the water tower construction fund for the installation of a pressure reducing valve.
Council awarded another bid for right of way acquisition services to O.R. Colan Associates in the amount of $155,050. The firm will negotiate with property owners to acquire the necessary right of way and obtain easements for the County Road 25-A reconstruction project.
This project should be out to bid by December 2014 or January 2015. O.R. Colan Associates has performed these services for the City of Piqua, Clark County, and Ohio Department of Transportation districts 7 and 8.
During the study session, council also discussed the language of a contract between the city and Monroe Township for sewer services.
This contract is similar to a previously approved water agreement, but since the residents of Country Estates voted to move forward with public sewer service as well as water, another agreement was necessary.
The city will provide water and sewer services to the residents of Country Estates East, who will pay 110 percent of the sewer rate a city resident would pay. They will also pay 125 percent of the city water rate, compared to the 150 percent non-residents without contracts would be charged.
The city will only extend service to residential properties. City staff will also review the construction plans and any future plans for expansion of water or sewer must be approved by the city.
The contract explicitly states that the city has no plans to annex any of the Country Estates properties, but that the city reserves the right to do so should “circumstances change.” This was included at the request of the township, Utility Director Christy Butera said.
Council will vote on the agreement at their next meeting; the Monroe Township Water and Sewer District will vote March 10.
The township has contracted with Sands Decker to begin preparing construction documents. In the spring, topographical maps will be prepared and construction will begin this summer.
According to Finance Director John Green, the city ended 2013 in “much better shape than expected,” thanks to higher than anticipated income tax receipts, estate tax receipts, and EMS billings and lower than expected expenditures.
The general fund, the city’s main operating fund, had an increase of about $950,000 and total general fund expenditures were roughly $165,000 below budget. Some funds, electric and water, ended the year at a deficit.
Each of the city’s major funds has several budgeted projects awaiting completion in 2014.
Council also approved the purchase of a new 1 ton Ford F450 dump truck for the street department at a cost of $37,165. Two older older vehicles, a 1998 GMC dump truck and a 1994 Ford pickup, were declared surplus and will be auctioned online. Both older vehicles had a number of mechanical problems.
City Manager Jon Crusey updated Council on the state of the city’s road salt reserves. There are approximately 254 tons of salt in storage, down from the 350 tons in reserve two weeks ago, but enough to get the city through “a couple more storms,” Crusey said. Since Dec. 1, the city has used more than 800 tons of salt.
Council appoint Adam Blake to the Tree Board for a three-year term. All vacancies on city boards and committees have been filled.