Blue Earth OKs added outlay

BLUE EARTH — Blue Earth City Council had an unexpected expense issue to deal with Monday.

The council learned there was a heavier toll taken on the roadways around the Blue Earth Wastewater Treatment Plant reconstruction project than what had been planned for, and it will end up costing the city some extra money.

City Engineer Wes Brown explained that only the roadway into the plant was planned to be totally reconstructed, while the other roadways inside and around the plant were to have mill and overlay resurfacing.

“The pavement did not hold up during the construction at the plant,” Brown said. “I don’t think the mill and overlay will be sufficient.”

Brown presented the added costs in segments. Doing the minimum would be an added $43,000. Doing the maximum would cost $74,000.

“We do have $36,225 left in the project contingency fund,” Brown explained. “But we would still be short nearly $7,000 of doing the minimum.”

After quite a bit of discussion, the council voted to do all the work, at a cost of $74,000, and to add the extra cost to the overall project loan.

The vote was 6-1, with Councilman Glenn Gaylord dissenting.

In other business, the council:

o Spent time discussing other city projects, including the wrapping up of last year’s Moore and 13th Street project. Brown said the contractor is doing prep work for driveway extensions and the final lift of pavement. But the main topic of discussion was whether sod on the boulevards should be installed this spring or later, as well as whether sod or seeding would be better.

In the end, a motion to change from sod to seed failed to get a second.

o Voted to approve the hiring of Dave Olson for the position of manager of the Blue Earth Wine and Spirits municipal liquor store.

o Agreed to work with a veterans group on securing a location for a proposed Veterans Memorial Park in the city.

o Went into closed session to conduct the annual review of city administrator Tim Ibisch.

o Learned the proposed city sales tax is included in bills at both the state House and Senate, but the city may have to be more specific in saying what the revenue will be used for.